PV Theater Wins Big at Bucks County
Christopher Krusberg '18
23 April 2018
On April 17th, PV’s Theater Department went on their annual Bucks County Playhouse field trip in New Hope, Pennsylvania to perform in front of other attending schools. Ms. Caren Atamian’s Rumors and Ms. Jennifer Shue’s Freaky Friday were demoed to a splendid reaction from both the crowd and professional reviewers. Annie Challice ‘18 and Gabriella Volonnino ‘19 won awards for Best Female Performances in a Musical while Freaky Friday won Best Production.
Every year in April, Bucks County Playhouse hosts a high school theater festival over a span of three weeks where schools get the opportunity to perform a shortened version of their plays and/or musical productions. Shows are cut down into 20 minute segments with the goal being to showcase the best portion of their production in competition against other schools.
The winning performances and performers are evaluated by a panel of three professional reviewers. They determine winners based on the production’s ability to entertain and/or deliver a meaningful message to the audience.
Annie Challice was ecstatic upon discovering that she won the award for Best Female Performance in a Musical. “Winning [this award] is such a great feeling because you know all the your hard work really paid off," she said. "Also, you don’t perform to get recognition or awards, you do it because it’s what you love, but being rewarded for that is a great feeling and I am really thankful."
This is now the fourth year in a row that Passaic Valley has taken the award for best actress in a production. The past three years were won by former Hornet Brianna Cielo, but this is the first time two girls of PV have taken the award together.
“They deserve every award possible,” Ms. Shue said about Annie Challice and Gabriella Volonnino’s winning performances. “They both put their hearts and souls into this production from January. They are both amazingly talented and wonderful to work with.”
Ms. Shue was also thankful for the great work from the entire production team involved. “I would like to thank the production staff for going along on this crazy ride. Maggie Letsche (Assistant Director/Costumes), Mike Deluccia and Pia Vanderstreet (Musical Directors), Rob Lavagano (Set designer), Alexa Arrabito (Hair and Make-up), Nick Marmo (Lighting designer), Mr. Rossilli and Mr. Cappello (Sound Designers), and most importantly Eden O'Connor ‘18 and Sophia Ayoub ‘19 (Stage Managers). These two girls work countless hours on set, props, lights and making this a smooth sailing production. Without them, this production would not be possible!”
Yet again, the students in the Theater Department enjoyed themselves throughout the day. The performance was so good that the Theater Department was asked to return to the Bucks County Playhouse on May 6th for an encore performance of the play.