Twenty-Seven Winners from Local H.S. Theatrical Productions
Announced at Red Carpet Affair
Selden, NY: Amid hundreds of fans, popping flash bulbs and under the spotlights of the grand Shea Theatre on the Ammerman Campus of Suffolk Community College, the winners of the Second Annual Student Theatre Arts Recognition Scholarship Awards, or STARS, were announced at gala red carpet hosted by the Greater Port Jefferson-Northern Brookhaven Arts Council, June 7th.
The STARS Awards is a scholarship recognition program where High School theatre arts students earn awards from 25 categories. Along with a beautiful glass STARS trophy, the award winners receive a scholarship from The STARS Awards, and matching scholarships from Stony Brook University and Dowling College if they attend those higher educational institutions. The STARS Awards winners were selected from more than 100 nominees for 11 High Schools, who participate in the STARS Awards at no cost to the districts. The STARS Awards are run completely by volunteers and donations from individuals and corporations.
The top High Schools award winners for 2009 were Ward Melville with six awards; William Floyd, and Port Jefferson with four each; and Newfield and Rocky Point with three honors. The specially selected performances at the Gala were stunningly executed by Sachem East High School, Mount Sinai High School, Port Jefferson, Ward Melville High School, and William Floyd High School.
“The performances this year were nothing less than spectacular; some I would even categorize as Broadway level. The talent on our high school stages is overwhelming. Our judges were able to see the growth from last year to this year. I predict at least one STARS winner on that stage today will one day soon end up at the Met,” said Lori Anne Casdia, Executive Director of the STARS Awards. “I’m proud of all of the 2009 STARS Award winners, nominees, faculty and all those who participated in the theatre arts this school year.”
• Leading Actor – Brian Viccaro, role of James, Rocky Point, “The Miracle Worker”
• Leading Actress – Lisa Lauto, role of Gina, Ward Melville, “Who Will Carry the Word”
• Supporting Actor – Christopher Germaine, role of Mr. Keller, Rocky Point, “The Miracle Worker”
• Supporting Actress – Hope Pedisich, role of Yvonne, Ward Melvillle, “Who Will Carry the Word”
• Leading Actor – Brandon Murtagh, role of Nigel Trupin, Ward Melville, “The Expensive, Prized, Beloved Possession” and role of Garry Lejeun, Ward Melville, “Noises Off”
• Leading Actress – Katie Lugo, role of Ida (the Maid), William Floyd, “See How They Run”
• Supporting Actor –Ron Gross, role of Bishop, William Floyd, “See How They Run”
• Supporting Actress –Ashley Ruggiero, role of Madam Clara Voyant, Port Jefferson, “The Werewolf’s Curse”
• Leading Actor – David Schwartz, role of Tevye, Mt Sinai, “Fiddler on the Roof”
Carlton Welch, role of Curly, Rocky Point, “Oklahoma”
Ralphie Picciarelli, role of Lumiere, Newfield, “Beauty & the Beast”
• Leading Actress – Marguerite Jones, role of Madame Dubonnet, Port Jefferson, “The Boyfriend”
• Best Supporting Actor –Alexander Steiner, role of Lord Brockhurst, Port Jefferson, “The Boyfriend”
• Best Supporting Actress – Janine Leverich, role of Maisie, Port Jefferson, “The Boyfriend”
• Leading Performer/Male- Tyrell Roberts, Sachem East, “Smokey Joe’s Café”
• Leading Performer/Female – Gabrielle Donnelly, Sachem East, “Smokey Joe’s Café”
Lighting Design: Brooke Perlee, Newfield, “Beauty & the Beast”
Set Design: Brianna Gobetz, Ward Melville, “Noises Off”
Pit Band: Centereach High School, “Guys & Dolls”
Choreographer: Jessica Bogia, ward Melville, “The Expensive, Prized, Beloved Possession”
Costume Designer: Jackie Abruzzo, Newfield, “Beauty & the Beast”
Program Cover/Poster Art: Emily Zirimis, William Floyd, “Brigadoon”
Stage Management: Sarah Prosser, Longwood, “Pippin”
Student Director: Jessica Bogia, Ward Melville, “The Expensive, Prized, Beloved Possession”
Outstanding Performance: Stephen Kalogeras, role of Lewis, Longwood, “Pippin"
Judges’ Choice: The Bottle Dance, Mt Sinai, “Fiddler on the Roof”
Innovation in Theatre Education: William Floyd
The Innovation in Theatre Education Award – the most prestigious award of the STARS program - recognizes the high school that goes beyond the regular theater program of classes and yearly plays by supporting an activity that nurtures theater arts in education for going beyond the regular theater program of classes. The Judges’ Award is made by a vote of the judges for a particular scene, musical number, dance number, ensemble effort or group that warrants special merit.
“This program is a labor of love for me. One of my proudest moments this year came when I saw students from other schools attending each other’s shows. They stepped beyond the walls of their high school and created their own theatre community amongst the participating schools,” Casdia said.
Among the high schools that earned or were considered for awards were Mt. Sinai, Longwood, Sachem East, Sachem North and Comsewogue.
The STARS Awards are made possible as a result of major partnerships and sponsorships from:
SUFFOLK COUNTY COMMUNITY COLLEGE, DOWLING COLLEGE, STONY BROOK UNIVERSITY, ASSEMBLYMAN STEVE ENGLEBRIGHT, LEGISLATOR DAN LOSQUADRO, TBR NEWSPAPERS
LI PULSE, MAC COSMETICS, COCACOLA, STW CONSULTING, PTP CONSULTANTS
PHOENIX THEATRE PRODUCTIONS, J SIGNS, EFT NETWORK INC, WBAB, SHORT STACK MODELS, LIGHTS UP CUE SOUND, CRACKERJACKS ADVERTISING & SPECIALITY CORP., SHOW BIZ SHOTS, ROBERT A. KELLY PHOTOGRAPHY