The glitz and glamour of award shows does not belong exclusively to Hollywood and Broadway. Each year the Critics and Awards Program recognizes all aspects of high school theater productions throughout the country with Cappie award nominations.
In the Greater Philadelphia Region, consisting of 37 schools, CB West earned 12 nominations for this year's staging of Cabaret, including best musical. The Cappies Award Gala will be held on Sunday, May 5 at 5 p.m. at the Upper Darby Performing Arts Center. Nominated students receive a medal, and the winner of each category receives an engraved Cappies award.
“We are happy to be recognized by such a large and diverse student theater community,” said CB West Harlequin Club Director Brian Weiner.
The Cappies recognizes outstanding performance in high school theater, journalism, and playwriting. Every school creates a team of student critics who are charged with seeing at least five productions throughout the year. The critics meet with the critics from other schools at each show and discuss the production, including positive moments and constructive criticism.
Following the shows, each critic writes a 300-400 word review of the production. The top reviews are selected by teacher mentors and published in local and regional newspapers, including the Philadelphia Inquirer online. CB West's critic team consists of Colleen Smith (Lead Critic), Nicole Telesco, Jade Hebling, and Edin Thornton.
"'Cabaret' is a little bit more mature for the high school crowd, it really challenges them," said Weiner. "We kept it age appropriate, but there isn't a lot of flash or easy laughs. The message about tolerance and respecting our neighbors really resonated with people."
The recognition is not reserved for the stars on stage. As long as a certain portion of the production is student-run, it is eligible for a Cappie nomination.
"Our pit orchestra was all students, so they were able to be nominated," said Weiner. "We have a student who is interested in marketing, so he handled all of our promotional materials, PR, managed the website and social media and earned a nomination for his work."
The following CB West students were nominated for Cappies:
- Andrew Greenberg, Marketing & PR
- Dylan Praul & Anna Vollrath, Sound
- Kit Kat Klub Orchestra, Orchestra
- Kit Kat Klub Performers, Ensemble in a Musical
- Audrey Bristol-Evans, Featured Actress in a Musical
- Roger Kuna, Featured Actor in a Musical
- Kit Kat Girls, Ensemble Dancers
- Andrew Carson, Male Vocalist
- Rachel Baughman, Supporting Actress in a Musical
- Cayce Kolodney, Lead Actor in a Musical
- Willkommen - ENTIRE CAST - Best Song
- And a nomination for Best Musical