By Sue Suchyta
From the Front Row
Crestwood and Dearborn high schools were big winners at the annual Dearborn Area Theater Association’s adjudicated theater awards May 22, which focused on high school performances and bestowing scholarships.
Dearborn High School took six awards for the comedy “See How They Run” and four awards for the musical “Kiss Me Kate,” while Crestwood’s musical, “The Hunchback of Notre Dame” was the most honored show, garnering nine awards.
“The Hunchback of Notre Dame” was recognized as best musical, and Cayla Kolbusz, Dilyse McAllister-Kirsh and Delaney Singleton for makeup and hair design; Cayla Kolbusz for property design; Ryan Wisniewski for lighting design, and for sound design; Kevin Kadau, Sean Mason and Matt Woldanski for scenic design; Amanda McFarland for orchestral direction; Cayla Kolbusz for direction; and Karim Hazime for lead actor in a musical.
“See How They Run” was recognized as best play, and for lead actress in a play, an award shared by double-cast Anna Karoub and Heather Slanec; for lead actor in a play, an award shared by double-cast Graham Dallas and Brandon Hestand; featured actress in a play, an award shared by double-cast Katie Garber and Scout Greimel; featured actor in a play, to Ben Blessing; and direction, to Greg Phillip Viscomi.
“Kiss Me, Kate” received four awards: Lisa Goddard and Leslie Garber for costume design; Jennifer McPherson and Adam Lynch for choreography; Carmelle Siciliano Atkins for musical direction; and lead actress in a musical, an award shared by double-cast Scout Greimel and Heather Slanec.
Divine Child High School’s production of “Beauty and the Beast” received two awards, and Edsel Ford High School teacher Robert Doyle was recognized with two awards, for direction and production of his school’s one act plays.
The adjudicated high school shows were performed between September 2017 and May 2018. Crestwood, Dearborn, Divine Child and Edsel Ford.
The Players Guild of Dearborn withdrew from the adult level adjudicated awards several years ago after Henry Ford College opted out of the adjudication process, Dearborn Heights Civic Theatre disbanded and the city of Dearborn phased out its adult main stage theatrical productions. PGD’s board decided it did not want its members competing against each other. The group continues to support DATA’s annual awards through its participation and attendance.
Currently the only non-scholastic adjudication is for the Random Acts of Theatre scenes and one act plays, whose productions support DATA’s scholarship fund. This year Dianne Bernick was recognized for her direction of “Paw Prints.”
Another adult level recognition went to Marc Walentowicz, who was inducted into the Dearborn Theatre Hall of Fame.
DATA scholarships were awarded to Dearborn High School seniors Will Bryan, Scout Greimel and Sam Joachim, and to Crestwood High School seniors Lia LaBenne and Lauren Littlejohn.
DATA also recognized youth in summer theater programs, including Cass Dickie and Maddie Woods, who performed in “The Little Mermaid Jr.” with the Divine Child’s Summer Youth Theatre program, and Calum Carscadden and Lucee Wilson, who performed in “Peter Pan Jr.” with the Guildlings at the Players Guild of Dearborn.
High school technical theater achievement was also recognized. Stage management awards were given to Crestwood High School students Alec Ferensic and Lia LaBenne, and Divine Child High School students Lachlan Brokeman and Camryn Pieknik.
Dearborn High School recognitions were awarded to Andrew Blankenship and Hannah Pfeiffer for lighting design; Andrew Blankenship and Cassidy Darragh for properties design; Sabrina Jouney and Sarah McDonnell for stage management; Scout Greimel and Heather Slanec for make-up and hair design; and Joshua Kesrwan and Angel Krawczyk for sound design.
Edsel Ford High School recognitions were awarded to Colleen Stover for properties design; Simon Aytes and Kevin Brehm for sound design; Nathan Wall for virtual tech design; Hailey Arfan for make-up design; and Claire Colarossi, Shatha Haidar and Abbey Mullen for stage management.