Tag Archives: JBHS Drama

JBHS Drama Presents “The Laramie Project”

The John Burroughs High School Drama department presents The Laramie Project on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, November 17, 18 and 19.

Written by members of the Tectonic Theater Project, The Laramie Project looks at community members’ responses to tragic story of Matthew Shepard, who was kidnapped, badly beaten and left tied to a fence in the middle of the prairie outside Laramie, Wyoming, in October 1998.

The twenty-one-year-old student from the University of Wyoming was not discovered until the next day, and he died several days later in a nearby hospital. Shepard was attacked because he was gay.

The Laramie Project

(Photo Courtesy of Guy Myers)

After the beating and death of Shepard and during the trial of the two young men accused of the assault and murder, members of the Tectonic Theater Project made six trips to Laramie over a year and a half and interviewed more than 200 people in the community.

“Aaron Kreifels is the one who finds Matt by the fence,” explained junior Xander Taylor, who portrays Kreifels. “I knew it would be a tough role to play, considering what he goes through.”

“Witnessing someone near death, trying your best to save them.. It’s heartbreaking.”

“The beautiful thing about The Laramie Project is that it represents all of the different opinions and outlooks on the situation,” added Taylor. “It’s a slice of real life.”

The Laramie Project

(Photo Courtesy of Guy Myers)

“Due to the level of talent and the incredible student interest, this is the largest cast for a play we have ever had so far,” commented director and Drama teacher Guy Myers. “Over 50 students are giving their hearts to create a profound night of theater that you will not forget.”

“This true story of the beating and murder of a young gay man and the impact it had on the city of Laramie, Wyoming, feels so timely even now, 19 years later,” he said. “I am so proud of the dedication and support this cast is showing at rehearsals and we are so honored to bring this production to the stage.”

“I play Catherine Connolly, a University of Wyoming professor in her forties who was the first ‘out’ lesbian faculty member,” commented sophomore Laura Brown. “I feel very privileged to be a part of this cast of talented people who I believe truly care about this story.”

“I know that although The Laramie Project was created almost 20 years ago, its presentation of differing viewpoints opens a dialogue that is relevant and critical for audiences today,” she added.

The Laramie Project

(Photo Courtesy of Guy Myers)

Senior Sierra Spencer is the student producer for The Laramie Project. Her job is to record all of the staging, blocking and any changes made during rehearsals by the director. She also sends out the schedule daily before rehearsal.

“I love being  able to be a part of the show in an aspect that isn’t necessarily acting,” Spencer said. “I love theater and the creative process behind theater but I’ve realized my interest isn’t in acting.”

“Watching this play go from the read through to the stage it is now… has been such an amazing experience. I’m always so impressed by how people my age are able to handle a piece like this with such integrity and translate the message so well.”

The Laramie Project

JBHS Drama presents “The Laramie Project.” (Photo Courtesy of Guy Myers)

“I feel very honored to be in such a beautiful and relevant show that has such a powerful meaning behind it,” said junior Veronica Haug. “The cast is so great and all the group scenes are so powerful. My character, Marge Murray, is like the fun grandma and she is such a fun person to portray.”

“Mr. Myers is an amazing director and always is able to take meaningful plays like The Laramie Project or last year’s play To Kill A Mockingbird and handle it with such integrity and make the end result something beyond high school theater,” added Spencer.

Tickets are $15 general admission and $10 for students and seniors. They are available in advance here or at the box office before the show. More information on JBHS Drama and their upcoming shows can be found on their website.

The Laramie Project will run for three performances at the JBHS auditorium on Friday and Saturday, November 17 and 18, at 7:00 p.m. and Sunday, November 19, at 2:00 p.m. John Burroughs High School is located at 1920 W. Clark Avenue in Burbank.

JBHS Drama Presents “To Kill A Mockingbird”

The John Burroughs High School Drama Department presents Harper Lee’s Pulitzer Prize-winning classic To Kill A Mockingbird on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, May 12 – 14.

Adapted by Christopher Sergel, the play chronicles a series of violent events in a small town in Alabama in 1935, loosely based on real events Lee experienced as a child in the Deep South. The story is as relevant today as when it was originally published in 1960.

(Photo Courtesy John Burroughs High School Drama Department)

Told through the eyes of two children – Scout and Jem Finch – To Kill A Mockingbird examines prejudice, justice and moral conscience when a young black man is wrongfully charged with the rape of a white girl.

“It is such a pleasure to work with students who are able to handle this sensitive material in such a mature way,” commented JBHS Drama Director Guy Myers. “They have been dedicated throughout the process, and the seniors have done an excellent job of mentoring all of the new students.”

(Photo Courtesy John Burroughs High School Drama Department)

“We have so many freshmen in the main cast for this show, and the new energy has invigorated our rehearsals!” he added. “We have collaborated with our wonderful woodshop teacher, John Benne, on building the sets, and of course the amazing tech students, led by the talented Jon King.”

“I have absolutely loved working on this production,” said student producer Talya Cohen. “It’s really incredible to see this show step by step, and it seems I only get more emotionally invested as time goes on.”

“There is an equal part new and old faces in this show so it was great to see them learning and growing together as an ensemble,” she said. “As a senior, it’s sad to see what I have to leave behind, but I know that the graduating class has left this program in capable hands. I can only hope the audience can see the passion and dedication we all have for this program.”

(Photo Courtesy John Burroughs High School Drama Department)

“I have the honor of playing Atticus Finch,” explained senior Sully Zack. “He’s a man truly ahead of his time, and he often serves as the moral conscience of Maycomb County.”

“Atticus Finch is hands down one of my favorite characters, so the chance to play him has made for one incredible experience. And the fact that I’ve gotten to spend rehearsals with such a tight-knit and talented cast has only augmented that experience.”

To Kill A Mockingbird is my last JBHS drama production,” added Zack. “And while I’m sad to leave the amazing program where I have made memories, my best friends and where I have been encouraged to follow my dreams, I know that with my incredibly talented peers, and the guidance of Mr. Myers, our little program is destined for success.”

(Photo Courtesy John Burroughs High School Drama Department)

To Kill A Mockingbird has been the perfect topper to the drama cake,” said senior Maddie Seiffert. “I get to play Miss Maudie, which is challenging because not only is she motherly and older, but she’s also a warm and young spirit.”

“This has been such a fun part to play as the balance between the town creates such a loving environment but also this horrid conflict between those who believe in right or wrong.”

“Drama for the past four years has been a home to me,” Seiffert also said. “It’s a place filled with the most loving, caring, and funny people on campus! It’s been a blast for every show!”

(Photo Courtesy John Burroughs High School Drama Department)

“My character is a sad victim of abuse, poverty and racism,” commented junior Megan Mazer who portrays Mayella Ewell. “I am grateful to have the opportunity to play this role and to expand my abilities as an actress.”

“I’m extremely grateful to be performing as Scout with such a talented cast,” said freshman Jordyn Holt. “I’ve made many new friends this freshman year, and I am so lucky to have the opportunity to perform with these amazing people.”

“Each person is inspirational and I love learning from them all. Although Scout is young and naive, she is able to teach the importance of acceptance, and displays unconditional love for others. This show is incredible. I’m so proud of the whole cast’s delivery… I can’t wait for opening night!”

Tickets are $10 for students, staff and seniors and $15 general admission. They are available online here and at the box office before the show begins. Performances are at 7:00 p.m. on Friday, May 12, and Saturday, May 13, and at 2:00 p.m. on Sunday, May 14.

“Harper Lee’s classic work still remains so relevant, and it has been a show I have wanted to direct for a long time,” added Myers. “Audiences are in for something special.”

 

JBHS Drama Presents Peter And The Starcatcher

John Burroughs High School’s Drama Department opens Peter and the Starcatcher on Friday, November 18, at the high school auditorium. The play runs through Sunday, November 20.

Based on the novel by Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson, the Tony-award-winning Broadway drama written by Rick Elice with music by Wayne Barker, tells the origins of Peter Pan, Wendy, the Lost Boys and Captain Hook.

Photo Courtesy JBHS Drama

Photo Courtesy JBHS Drama

“This is one of the most high energy casts I have ever had the pleasure to work with and they have worked incredibly hard to bring this fantastic adventure to life,” commented Drama Director Guy Myers. “Their spirit of collaboration and generosity with each other during the rehearsal process has made working on this play so special.”

“An inventive theatre experience, Peter and the Starcatcher is for all ages and promises to be fun for the whole family!”

Photo Courtesy JBHS Drama

Photo Courtesy JBHS Drama

Senior Maddie Seiffert portrays Starcatcher-in-training Molly Aster who joins a group of orphans after their ship is taken over by the pirate Black Stache, played by senior Sully Zack.

Black Stache is “hands down one of my favorite roles out of every show I’ve been in, ” said Zack. “Black Stache is the classic character Captain Hook, before he becomes Captain Hook. The Stache is ‘cunning,’ ‘beguiling,’ and ‘so much more than a ‘lawn on the lip.'”

Photo Courtesy JBHS Drama

Photo Courtesy JBHS Drama

“And through the show, you will see him transition from the Stache into the classic Captain Hook character we all know,” he added. “I’m so thrilled, and lucky, to get to play such a zany and hilarious role.”

“Playing Molly Aster has been a dream of mine since I first saw Starcatcher,” commented Seiffert. “She’s the hero in a time when girls weren’t allowed to be leaders, and she’s a strong and powerful character.”

Photo Courtesy JBHS Drama

Photo Courtesy JBHS Drama

“I couldn’t be happier performing Starcatcher with this cast. I’ve gotten so close with our lost boys and working alongside Jack on his first show has been so much fun. He’s really talented and a joy to work with. Sully blows me away every rehearsal and makes us all choke back laughs with his comedic genius. Mr. Myers gave us the true dream team and it shows on stage. Our connection is indescribable, and I wouldn’t change a single thing.”

Sophomore Jack Weerts plays young Peter.

“It’s been a lot of fun to be part of such an imaginative and hilarious play and an honor to share the stage with this talented cast,” said Weerts. “One thing I love most about the play is that it will entertain and immerse both children and adults alike.”

“I am grateful to Mr. Meyers, the tech crew, our musical accompaniment, and all the people behind the scenes that have helped in bringing this magical story to life.”

Photo Courtesy JBHS Drama

Photo Courtesy JBHS Drama

“It is an experience unlike any other,” added student producer, senior Talya Cohen. “What I enjoy is seeing the actors learn and grow into their characters, while also seeing the show come together piece by piece. Also, as a senior it’s pretty incredible to see the new faces learning how our program puts on great shows!”

“The rehearsal process has truly been a blast! Our show is very unique in the sense that everyone in the cast also doubles as a member of the ensemble, playing sea folk, or crazy Mollusk natives or even walls!” enthused Zack. “Because of this, I’ve gotten to spend time with old friends, as well as make new ones, and our Starcatcher cast has become a family–it’s really something special.”

Photo Courtesy JBHS Drama

Photo Courtesy JBHS Drama

“I want to thank everyone in the cast, for their hard work and the energy they bring to our show!” added Zack. “I also want to thank our Peter (Jack Weerts) and our StarCatcher (Maddie Seiffert), for their hard work, Paris Stacy, who brilliantly plays the role of Smee, my right hand man, and of course, Mr. Myers, our drama teacher and director, for his vision and guidance and his dedication. Prosciutto!”

Tickets for JHBS Drama’s production of Peter and the Starcatcher are available at the door and online at this link. The show begins at 7:00 p.m. on Friday and Saturday and at 2:00 p.m. on Sunday.

Photo Courtesy JBHS Drama

Photo Courtesy JBHS Drama

 

Burroughs Graduate Josh Strobl Wins Best Actor In National Musical Theater Competition

Recent John Burroughs High School graduate Josh Strobl won Best Performance by an Actor at the National High School Musical Theatre Awards (NHSMTA) Monday evening, June 27, in New York City. He received a $10,000 scholarship and was offered a full scholarship to NYU/Tisch School of the Arts.

Strobl gave an impassioned performance of “Maria” from West Side Story in the finals, going last in the group of eight male finalists. He had prepared the song in advance of the competition, working with Kenny Ortega, a Los Angeles movie producer and choreographer for Michael Jackson.

Best Actor winner Josh Strobl performs "Maria" during the finals of the 2016 National High School Musical Theatre Awards at the Minskoff Theatre in New York City on June 27, 2016.  Photo Courtesy of Henry McGee

Best Actor winner Josh Strobl performs “Maria” during the finals of the 2016 National High School Musical Theatre Awards at the Minskoff Theatre in New York City on June 27, 2016. Photo Courtesy of Henry McGee

“It felt incredible,” he said about the performance on the Minskoff Theatre stage. “It was because of the audience propelling me forward and from the other 61 nominees support, I was able to give one of the best performances ever.”

Since June 19, Strobl and the other nominees – 31 male and 31 female in all – spent long days of rehearsals with Broadway professionals and auditions in front of the judging panel.

First the competitors learned an eight-minute opening number, including choreographed dancing and singing. Then they were separated into two groups – medley and production.

Strobl was part of the medley group, during which he performed part of “It Takes Two,” which his character Link Larkin sang in the Burroughs’ production of Hairspray.

Best Actor Josh Strobl and Best Actress Amina Faye at the 2016 National High School Musical Theatre Awards After-Party at John's Pizzeria in New York City on June 27, 2016.  Photo Courtesy of Henry McGee

Best Actor Josh Strobl and Best Actress Amina Faye at the 2016 National High School Musical Theatre Awards After-Party at John’s Pizzeria in New York City on June 27, 2016. Photo Courtesy of Henry McGee

Strobl credits his coach during the NHSMTA competition, Eden Espinosa, who performed as Elphaba in Broadway’s Wicked, with helping him prepare for the finals.

“She taught me really valuable things about performance and how to be a real person on the stage,” he said, “Which I was then took to the finals.”

Winners were selected by a panel of judges comprised of notable theater professionals including Tony Award-winning producers, award-winning casting experts and industry professionals such as Kent Gash, Rachel Hoffman, Alecia Parker, Tara Rubin, Nick Scandalios and Kate Shindle.

Additional judges who selected the groups in which the students performed were Paul Canaan, Wayne Cilento, Kent Gash, Stephanie Klapper and Cesar Rocha.

The 2016 National High School Musical Theatre Awards Red Carpet at the Minskoff Theatre in New York City on June 27, 2016.  Photo Courtesy of Henry McGee

The 2016 National High School Musical Theatre Awards Red Carpet at the Minskoff Theatre in New York City on June 27, 2016. Photo Courtesy of Henry McGee

Amina Faye won Best Performance by an Actress. A number of other competitors in the 2016 finals won recognition and scholarships as well.

Strobl won Best Actor in the regional Jerry Herman Awards, held at the Pantages Theatre in Hollywood, in May 2016. He was nominated for his role of Link Larkin in the Burroughs 2016 production of Hairspray by Southern California judges.

His win at the Jerry Herman Awards in May qualified him to travel to New York City and compete in the National High School Musical Theatre Awards.

Held on the stage of the Minskoff Theatre, current home of The Lion King, the NHSMTA was hosted by Zachary Levi, who currently stars on Broadway in Roundabout Theatre Company’s She Loves Me at Studio 54.

NHSTMA’s prestigious annual competition is also known as The Jimmy™ Award; it’s named in honor of James M. Nederlander, Chairman of Nederlander Producing Company of America.

Best Actress Amina Faye, host Zachary Levi and Best Actor Josh Strobl at the 2016 National High School Musical Theatre Awards After-Party at John's Pizzeria in New York City on June 27, 2016.  Photo Courtesy of Henry McGee

Best Actress Amina Faye, host Zachary Levi and Best Actor Josh Strobl at the 2016 National High School Musical Theatre Awards After-Party at John’s Pizzeria in New York City on June 27, 2016. Photo Courtesy of Henry McGee

The annual Broadway-focused talent showcase featured performances by all 62 nominees and solos by select finalists. Their debut on a Broadway stage followed 9 days of rehearsals and private coaching with faculty at the New Studio on Broadway, NYU Tisch School of the Arts Department of Drama and other professionals. Students also enjoyed a performance of On Your Feet! including a talkback with the cast.

The 2016 National High School Musical Theatre Awards introduced a new format for the program in order to accommodate more regional awards programs and provide opportunities for more students to experience Broadway and New York City. This year there were 62 students representing 31 programs, compared to last year’s 52 students representing 26 programs.

Strobl not only played the lead role of Link Larkin in JBHS Drama’s production of Hairspray this past year as a senior, but he also was a soloist and president of the award-winning Powerhouse, the top mixed show choir of JBHS’ Vocal Music Association.

Although Strobl did win a full scholarship to NYU/Tisch, he will attend his first choice school, University of Michigan, and begin studies towards a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Musical Theater in the fall.

JBHS Drama Presents “George Washington Slept Here”

John Burroughs High School Drama program presents its final play of the 2015-16 season with George Washington Slept Here on May 6, 7 and 8 in the school auditorium.

A Broadway hit which debuted in 1940, George Washington Slept Here chronicles the comedic antics that ensue when some New York City folk buy a fixer-upper in the pastoral Pennsylvania countryside.

Photo By Lisa Paredes

Photo By Lisa Paredes

Written by the classic stage comedy team of George Kaufman and Moss Hart, the play begins simply enough when Newton Fuller, portrayed by senior Daniel Beimford, buys a country home in need of some repairs.

“Owning a new home brings on new problems from the expected to the ridiculous. The roof leaks but they have no water. They can’t get to their own home because the obnoxious neighbors own the very road that leads to their doorstep,” explaines JBHS Drama Director Guy Myers.

Photo Courtesy of Guy Myers

Photo Courtesy of Guy Myers

“The undisturbed peace they were seeking is interrupted by an invasion of weekend guests and a couple of very high maintenance relatives. Add in a pair of summer theatre actors bringing their own personal drama, a bratty nephew getting in the way, an onslaught of the seventeen year locusts and a possible bank foreclosure, and audiences are sure to enjoy watching Newton and his family try to save their dream home!”

“This is a classy show with a hilarious ending. Playing opposite my dear friends from the past four years has been incredibly special,” commented senior Madison Mayer who plays Annabelle Fuller.

Photo Courtesy of Guy Myers

Photo Courtesy of Guy Myers

“I’m extremely lucky to have gained theatrical experiences as well as life long friendships through the drama program here at JBHS, and this is the perfect show to wrap up my time here.”

“I’m lucky enough to get to play Hester, the maid, alongside my friend Faith playing the cook,” said junior Maddie Seiffert. “We have a lot of fun backstage with tech crew since this is an incredibly complicated tech show and we are all in it together.”

“Tech is doing a great job and being very patient with us as we destroy the set every night and it’s honestly been just a blast backstage! I wouldn’t trade it for the world.”

Photo By Lisa Paredes

Photo By Lisa Paredes

“This year’s students have set a new standard for professionalism, talent, and dedication,” added Myers. “We’ve had so much fun working together on this show, and I think that audiences will see that on opening night.”

“This play is all about home being what you put into it and the people you spend your life with, and it has been a treasure to build this home with the drama and tech students.”

George Washington Slept Here runs Friday and Saturday, May 6 and 7, at 7:00 p.m. at the John Burroughs High School Auditorium and ends with a matinee on Sunday, May 8, at 2:00 p.m. Tickets are available at the box office before the shows or online here.

Photo Courtesy of Guy Myers

Photo Courtesy of Guy Myers

JBHS Students Entertain With “Hairspray”

Students in the drama, musical theater, vocal and instrumental music and dance programs at John Burroughs High School entertained nearly two thousand attendees over three shows this past weekend, February 5-7, with the musical Hairspray.

Directed by JBHS Drama Director Guy Myers, the student stage production of the musical adaptation of John Waters’ movie Hairspray, took audiences back to the early 1960s Baltimore, complete with overt racism and strict gender roles.

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Junior Aubrianna Rohan, in the role of protagonist Tracy Turnblad, impressed with her vocal skills and acting chops.

Students from JBHS’ world-renowned vocal music program, directed by Brendan Jennings who also provided vocal direction for Hairspray, wowed the crowd with their singing and harmonizing.

Many of the students gave stand-out performances, including junior Zach Guerrero in the role of Tracy’s mother Edna Turnblad, made famous on the screen and stage by Divine and John Travolta.

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

As Edna’s husband Wilbur, junior Sully Zack provided spot-on comic moments and an eye-popping array of colorful garb from the 1960s.

Senior Madison Mayer, as the antagonist Velma Von Tussle, was in excellent form as well.

A live orchestra conducted by JBHS Instrumental Music head Taylor Arakelian included many students from the high school instrumental music program.

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Tech, lighting and stage support, under the direction of Jon King, was carried out by JBHS students in the Tech Crew program. Tech Crew put together the actual sets from the Las Vegas production of Hairspray, complete with lights, doors, engines and mechanical parts.

Burroughs High School’s Drama and Musical Theater program puts on two plays and one musical every year. Next up for the thespians will be George Washington Slept Here on May 6, 7 and 8.

JBHS “Hairspray” Opens With High Energy, Upbeat Attitude

John Burroughs High School students present the musical Hairspray at the high school auditorium Friday through Sunday, February 5 – 7. Hairspray tells the story of high school outcast Tracy Turnblad who realizes her dream of becoming a regular dancer on the popular Corny Collins Show.

Tracy uses her newfound popularity to try to change the segregation in her local 1960s Baltimore society, while going head to head with the reigning Teen Queen and turning the teen scene and the status quo upside down.

(Photo By Lisa Paredes)

(Photo By Lisa Paredes)

Directed by JBHS Drama head Guy Myers, with vocal direction by Vocal Music Director Brendan Jennings and a live orchestra conducted by high school Instrumental Music teacher Taylor Arakelian, the musical adaptation is based on the John Waters’ movie Hairspray.

Hairspray is high energy fun onstage, but there is just as much going on backstage during the show with complicated sets, multiple costume changes and almost 50 wigs!” commented Myers. “The cast and crew have been incredibly professional in dealing with the rented sets from the Vegas production of Hairspray, which was part of the national tour.”

(Photo By Lisa Paredes)

(Photo By Lisa Paredes)

“This production is more than just another high school musical; it is going to be an event!” he added.

Members of the JBHS drama, musical theater, vocal music and dance programs have spent an intense month of preparation for the performance.

“The drama program at John Burroughs High School is honestly so amazing and unlike anything I have come across in my years of acting,” commented junior Zach Guerrero, who portrays the witty and outspoken Edna Turnblad, Tracy’s mother.

“I had recently moved from Arizona to pursue my dreams and the level of performance that Hairspray has to offer is beyond the standards of productions I have participated in.”

(Photo By Lisa Paredes)

(Photo By Lisa Paredes)

“I am so excited to be playing my dream role as Edna Turnblad. I am so honored to be directed under Mr. Myers and to be working with such talented actors in the cast,” Guerrero added. “The show is extravagant and thrilling and I am excited to bring it to the public!”

“This production of Hairspray at JBHS is hands down one of the most amazing things I’ve ever had the pleasure of being apart of,” said junior Aubrianna Rohan. “Being able to portray the iconic role of Tracy Turnblad had been a dream of mine for as long as I can remember.”

“The outstanding director, Mr. Guy Myers, has allowed the entire cast to explore their creative ability as actors and actresses, as well as have a blast while doing it. We have all worked so hard on this show and I am so excited to welcome everyone to the 60s!”

(Photo By Lisa Paredes)

(Photo By Lisa Paredes)

Hairspray has been an incredibly entertaining experience. I’ve loved playing the shockingly cruel villain named Velma,” said senior Madison Mayer about her turn as Velma Von Tussle. “The music, the message and the cast make for an environment that makes smiles multiply. It’s a beautiful story about the importance of equality told through the rhythmic music of the era.”

With music by Marc Shaiman, lyrics by Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman and the book by Mark O’Donnell and Thomas Meehan, Hairspray won eight Tony Awards including Best Musical, Best Book and Best Score. The musical features popular songs “Good Morning, Baltimore,” “I Can Hear the Bells,” “Without Love” and “You Can’t Stop the Beat.”

Hairspray runs Friday, February 5, and Saturday, February 6, at 7:00 p.m. and Sunday, February 7, at 12:00 p.m. Tickets are $25 for priority seating, $15 for adults and $10 for seniors and students and are available in advance here or at the box office before the show.

(Photo By Lisa Paredes)

(Photo By Lisa Paredes)

JBHS Drama “Inherit The Wind” Opens Friday

John Burroughs High School students present Inherit The Wind this Friday through Sunday, November 20 – 22. The intense drama based on the Scopes “Monkey” Trial of 1925 focuses on the still-relevant public and legal discourse of personal religious beliefs conflicting with scientific facts and religious freedom in the United States.

“With such a large cast, heavy subject matter and a live monkey, Inherit the Wind has certainly been one of the most challenging shows we have taken on,” commented JBHS Drama Director Guy Myers. “At some points, the dialogue of the play sounds as if it could have been  written today, touching on the timeless issues having to do with our basic freedoms.”

(Photo By Lisa Paredes)

(Photo By Lisa Paredes)

“The drama students are handling the complicated and rich scenes with humanity and are breathing life into these characters,” he added. “I am so proud to work with such dedicated thespians, tech students and parent volunteers to bring this important story to the stage.”

Written by Jerome Lawrence and Robert E. Lee, Inherit The Wind takes its title from the book of Proverbs in the Bible: “He that troubleth his own house shall inherit the wind.”

Inherit The Wind follows the story of Tennessee school teacher Bertram Cates, arrested for teaching his students Darwin’s theory of evolution. National attention focuses on the small town as two famous lawyers battle in the Hillsboro courthouse. The defendant’s girlfriend Rachel is also the daughter of the town preacher, and as the story develops, everyone in the town must choose sides.

Daniel Beimford (Matthew Harrison Brady) and Madison Mayer (Rachel Brown) in Burroughs High School's "Inherit The Wind." (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

Daniel Beimford (Matthew Harrison Brady) and Madison Mayer (Rachel Brown) in Burroughs High School’s “Inherit The Wind.” (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

“The drama’s purpose was to criticize the then-current state of McCarthyism and also to defend intellectual freedom,” stated Lawerence, the author, on his fictionalized story. “It’s not about science versus religion. It’s about the right to think.”

“This has been a very fun show for me to be a part of,” commented student Matt Bond, who portrays reporter E.K. Hornbeck. “It’s a great senior year show because it’s a show of firsts. This is really the first show where I’ve gotten the chance to just play a total jerk, which is actually quite enjoyable to get into that character.”

“Also the big new experience is getting to work with the ever talented Squirt the Monkey!” added Bond. “Squirt’s a great actor and he’s going places man, probably a TV deal soon. Overall this show has been a great learning experience and just a lot of fun!”

Burroughs students Daniel Beimford (Matthew Harrison Brady) and Nick Apostolina (Henry Drummond) get into it during a scene from the JBHS Drama production of "Inherit The Wind." (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

Burroughs students Daniel Beimford (Matthew Harrison Brady) and Nick Apostolina (Henry Drummond) get into it during a scene from the JBHS Drama production of “Inherit The Wind.” (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

“I love playing Mrs. Brady. She is such a diverse character and one I’ve gotten to work with to change her perspective,” said junior Maddie Seiffert. “It is super entertaining to sit in the court room and watch Nick and Daniel banter back and forth. I wouldn’t trade the role for the world.”

Nick Apostolina portrays the defendant’s lawyer Henry Drummond and Daniel Beimford is prosecuting attorney Matthew Harrison Brady.

The show runs Friday and Saturday, November 20 and 21, at 7:00 p.m. and Sunday, November 22, at 2:00 p.m. at the John Burroughs High School auditorium located at 1920 Clark Avenue in Burbank. Tickets are $12 general admission and $8 for students, seniors and faculty. Tickets are available via the JBHS Drama website and updates can be found on the JBHS Drama Facebook page.

Matt Bond (E.K. Hornbeck) and Madison Mayer (Rachel Brown) in a scene form "Inherit The Wind."(Photo By Lisa Paredes)

Matt Bond (E.K. Hornbeck) and Madison Mayer (Rachel Brown) in a scene form “Inherit The Wind.”(Photo By Lisa Paredes)

Burroughs Music And Comedy Night Entertains Full House At The Colony

Students, friends and family all turned out to support the Burroughs Music And Comedy Night fundraiser with a full house at The Colony Theatre Tuesday evening, November 10.

A collaboration between students in the John Burroughs High School Drama and Vocal Music programs, the evening raised money towards offsetting the cost of the annual mainstage musical at the school.

(Photo By Lisa Paredes)

(Photo By Lisa Paredes)

The 2015-16 season mainstage musical is Hairspray which runs February 5-7, 2016, on the Burroughs High School stage.

Many of the cast members of Hairspray performed songs, selected with the guidance of Drama Director Guy Myers and Vocal Music Director Brendan Jennings. Students from the Improv Club and Drama classes also presented comedic skits and improv games, drawing laughter from the audience.

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

JBHS Drama next production is Inherit The Wind, on November 20, 21 and 22. The Burroughs Vocal Music Association’s next choir performance is the annual Holiday Spectacular on December 11, 12 and 13.

 

JBHS Drama And Choir Present A Night Of Comedy, Improv And Musical Theater At The Colony

John Burroughs High School students in the drama, musical theater and choir programs put on a night of comedy, improv games and musical numbers Tuesday evening, November 10, at The Colony Theatre in Burbank.

The annual fundraiser showcases performances by students in the upcoming mainstage musical, Hairspray, and comedic skits and improv from drama students. Now in its sixth year, the Burroughs High School Music & Comedy Night marks its second year on the stage at The Colony Theatre.

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“Mr. Jennings and I help students select songs and improv games for the event,” explained Guy Myers, JBHS Drama Director, referring to JBHS Vocal Music Association Director, Brendan Jennings.

“Many students from our Improv Club also attend, so you never know who will wind up onstage in the middle of a game! This year features many classics from Broadway musicals as well as some hilarious newer material.”

Members of the JBHS Improv Crew perform at The Colony Theatre in this file photo from October 2014 .(Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Members of the JBHS Improv Crew perform at The Colony Theatre in this file photo from October 2014 .(Photo by Ross A. Benson)

“The purpose of the event is to help fund the mainstage musical Hairspray being put on February fifth and sixth at 7:00 p.m. and on February seventh at 12:00 p.m.,” added Myers. “With the rising costs of producing a mainstage musical, this great opportunity wouldn’t be possible without the generous support of the community to keep arts education alive in our schools.”

Tickets are $25 general admission for adults and $10 for students and seniors and include refreshments. Desserts and drinks will provided by Luther Burbank Middle School’s Catering Class under the direction of Lisa Raluy.

Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and the curtain rises at 7:00 p.m. The Colony Theatre is located at 555 N. Third Street in Burbank. Parking is available in the parking structure on the corner of Third Street and Cypress Avenue.

Nick Apostolina and Matt Bond lead the Music & Comedy Night cast in a rousing rendition of the Blues Brothers' "Everybody Needs Somebody To Love" in this file photo from October 2014. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Nick Apostolina and Matt Bond lead the Music & Comedy Night cast in a rousing rendition of the Blues Brothers’ “Everybody Needs Somebody To Love” in this file photo from October 2014. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)