Friday, March 24, 2006

REV: District One-Act Play

The bad news is that the Ingram Tom Moore Thespians did not advance yesterday at district One-Act Play. The good news is that they performed very well, got lots of kudos, and recognition, and we’re all proud of what they did under enormous pressure this year. So to the starring seniors, Lillian, Meggie, Whitney, and Summer, and everyone else in the cast and crew of 21, and the directors, Roy, Marie and Holly, congratulations on a wonderful season. The now-open spring also will allow for another spring show – which the kids are already working on today.

The competition was, as usual, tough. It’s our humble opinion that district is the toughest level for us, until state. There are four consistently good schools competing, including Wimberley (a perennial OAP powerhouse), Bandera and Llano. And the others, Brady and Liberty Hill are always capable of surprises. The advancing plays this year were Wimberley with Man of La Mancha and Bandera with The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie. Llano with Dancing at Lughnasa got the Honorable Mention/Alternate slot.

The judge, Dr. Marty Runnels, was very complimentary of ITM’s crew, including singling out Meggie Nidever (to whom he awarded Honorable Mention All-Star Cast) and Lillian Beaudoin (who was named to the All-Star Cast).

Wimberley, which never fails to entertain and impress, was stunning in its rendition of Man of La Mancha. Cole Sutera, playing Don Quixote de la Mancha, was named Best Actor. I’ve seen him the last three years and he has always been a standout, but he’s grown much as an actor, and this year it was difficult to take your eyes off him, so much did he command the stage. I thought Brooke Shedd, Bryan Chafin and Patrick Byers were also outstanding. But the entire cast was thoroughly engaging – they never broke character, and in full transition were a swirling mass of humanity you could not get enough of. It’s a bit like being in a candy store and being unable to choose.

I missed seeing Bandera’s piece (since i was still absorbing anesthesia down the road), but the folks i talked to on arrival were uniformly impressed. The judge was too, presenting Ashley Jennings with Best Actress. Of course, besides being homers, and having an affinity for Wimberley, we root for Bandera because the director is our good friend Roslyn Houghton, who’s acted in a number of works with us at The Point. So, go Bandera and Wimberley.

I also finally caught up with Louie Bond, whose daughters Annie (as Antonia) and Jenny (alternate) were a part of Wimberley’s production. It took Louie's hunting me down last year for us to reconnect. We worked together in the distant past as reporters/editors. Now she’s a magazine editor. Twice now she’s come to my rescue when i put my foot in my mouth . . . Thanks Louie.

She pointed out that Wimberley's Bryan Chafin is the star of Kat Candler’s new movie Jumping off Bridges, which i’ve been itching to see.

The Area competition will be at the Lone Star Theatre at Wimberley High School on April 8.

The state competition is May 4-6 at The University of Texas in Austin.

Here’s the awards:
Technical Crew Awards: Vladimir Merritt (ITM)

Honorable Mention All-Star Cast: Meggie Nidever (ITM), Millie Owens (Liberty Hill), Kendale Rice (Brady), Jordan Bovson (Bandera), Acayla Haile (Bandera), Bryan Chafin (Wimberley), Brooke Shedd (Wimberley), Chris Thomas (Llano)

All-Star Cast: Lillian Beaudoin (ITM), Casey Curry (Liberty Hill), Johnathon Fleming (Brady), Chris Abdo (Bandera), Zane Gordon-Bouzard (Wimberley), Patrick Byers (Wimberley), Beth McDaniel (Llano), Clarissa McDaniel (Llano)

Best Actress: Ashley Jennings (Bandera)
Best Actor: Cole Sutera (Wimberley)

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