Tag Archives: John Burroughs High School


(Photo by Ross A Benson)

Forget the movies, even Judy (for now.)  This weekend, go to the spectacular Burroughs On Broadway revue and see today’s budding Judy Garlands and Mickey Rooneys blow you away.   Once again, the John Burroughs High School Vocal Music Association features triple-threat teens that sing-dance-act more like college seniors.

So last night, as one stunning performance succeeded another, I had to keep reminding myself:  I’m not at UCLA and I’m not at the California Theatre of the Performing Arts.  I’m at a high school, one fast becoming the west coast’s answer to New York’s High School of Performing Arts, of Fame fame.

The show opened with all choirs doing a full-throated version of “Masquerade” from Phantom of the Opera, launching us into an evening of wow. There were songs from classic Broadway, like Guys and Dolls, Camelot and The Pajama Game.  There were songs from beloved movie-based musicals like Singin’ In the Rain, Sister Act, You’re A Good Man, Charlie Brown and Catch Me If You Can.  And newer Broadway was on tap as well, with songs from Hamilton, Waitress, and Anastasia.  The show ended as spectacularly as it had begun, with dramatic highlights from The Hunchback of Notre Dame.

(Photo by Ross A Benson)

BTW, first-time visitors to the Burroughs High School auditorium may be surprised to see professional-level sound, lighting, and staging.  Tremendous student talent—and community support—resides in these areas as well.

Among the most amazing of the amazing performances was the dancing in “Toledo Surprise” (The Drowsy Chaperone,) Khavion Johnson’s “The Room Where It Happens’ (Hamilton), Lauren Duncanson’s “Where Am I Now?”  (Lysistrata Jones), Emery Goulet’s singing and dancing in “Singin’ In The Rain” and Shaylin Becton’s “Easy As Life” (Aida.)

“My favorite part of this show is digging deep and working with Director Jennifer Strattan to match the songs with the talents of each performer,” said Musical Director Brendan Jennings. 

(Photo by Ross A Benson)

A whole lot of great songs and a whole lot of wonderful talent.

Remaining performances are Saturday, October 11 at 7 p.m. and Sunday, October 13 at 2 p.m.  $26 for reserved side orchestra seats and $20 general admission/$15 for students and seniors. Tickets can be purchased in advance online here or at the box office in advance of the show. The John Burroughs High School auditorium is located at 1920 W. Clark Street in Burbank. More information about the JBHS VMA can be found on their website.  

Burroughs High Choirs Present “Burroughs On Broadway”

The John Burroughs High School Vocal Music Association presents its annual Burroughs On Broadway show Friday through Sunday, October 11 – 13, in the school auditorium.

“Audiences should expect a mixture of old favorites like “Singing in the Rain,” “Guys and Dolls,” and “Camelot” as well as songs from the recent shows like Hamilton, Waitress, and Anastasia,” said JBHS VMA Choir Director Brendan Jennings. “The audience will laugh, cry and go on a journey through the music and dance of Broadway.”

Image Courtesy John Burroughs High School Vocal Music Association.

The cabaret fundraiser has become a favorite show for the VMA to put on. For those who select the reserved cabaret seats, that ticket includes a reception buffet prior to the show, lounge style seating and dessert/drink service at the table during the intermission.

Tickets are $52 for premium reserved cabaret seats, $26 for reserved side orchestra seats and $20 general admission/$15 for students and seniors. Tickets can be purchased in advance online here or at the box office in advance of the show.

Showtimes are 7:00 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, October 11 and 12, and 2:00 p.m. on Sunday, October 13. Those purchasing cabaret seats arrive for the cabaret reception at 5:30 p.m. on Friday and Saturday and at 12:30 p.m. on Sunday.

The John Burroughs High School auditorium is located at 1920 W. Clark Street in Burbank. More information about the JBHS VMA can be found on their website.

JBHS Drama Presents “The Iliad, The Odyssey, And All Of Greek Mythology (In 99 Minutes Or Less)”

John Burroughs High School Drama Department presents The Iliad, The Odyssey, and All of Greek Mythology (in 99 Minutes or Less) in the school auditorium this Friday through Sunday, May 10 – 12.

With a book written by Jay Hopkins and John Hunter, the play is a mashup of well-known Greek myths given a contemporary twist: “In this easy to understand comedy, you will see Gods and Goddesses walk the red carpet, learn about the creation of mankind and how the gods botched it up and witness Pandora’s fateful decision to open that ominous box! Famous love stories are presented like dating shows and Greek Wars and tragedies are presented like sporting event highlights, with costume changes and madcap mayhem!”

(Photo Courtesy Guy Myers)

“In The Iliad, Helen of Troy gets kidnapped, leading to a ten-year slap-fight of epic proportions followed by The Odyssey where Odysseus attempts to get home for another ten years while fighting seductresses, monsters and even the Gods themselves!”

“This show, The Iliad, The Odyssey, and All of Greek Mythology (in 99 Minutes or Less), has been a joy to be a part of!” commented senior Caroline Dowers. “A majority of the cast is playing multiple roles which gives everyone a chance to explore fun and interesting character choices!”

“I am playing the characters Thetis, Chlamydia, Carol and Trojan Soldier – they are all very different from one another and a blast to play,” Dowers added. “This play is the last addition to my list of fun and memorable productions I have been a part of at JBHS.”

(Photo Courtesy Guy Myers)

“It is my last show with the Drama Department and I will surely miss being a part of the phenomenal productions we have put on, but I am glad to be leaving with joyful memories and amazing friends!” she also said.

“I’m so grateful for the opportunity to have this production be my final performance at Burroughs,” said senior Jack Weerts. “It’s so high energy, with constant action and constant hilarity, it’s certainly not a show you can get tired of!”

(Photo Courtesy Guy Myers)

“I am loving the challenge of playing seven different parts in the play, from a Cyclops to the Greek Hero Theseus, and could not ask for a better cast or a better director than Mr. Myers,” Weerts added. “His vision always blows me away and is making this show one of the most fun productions I’ve been a part of. If you have 99 minutes to spare in your day, bring your stopwatch and stop by!”

“This is a slapstick farce that has made rehearsing this show one of the most fun we have ever worked on,” commented Drama Department head Guy Myers. “The script allows the students some freedom to improvise, and I am always impressed with how hilarious they are while thinking on their feet.”

“Each actor plays many roles as they speed through all of Greek mythology, making this show educational and entertaining.”

“Inventive staging, physical comedy and ridiculous characters make this show a great choice for the whole family!” he also said. “AND we are offering a free ticket to any junior high school student who shows up to the box office with their middle school ID with them!”

The Iliad, The Odyssey, and All of Greek Mythology (in 99 Minutes or Less) begins at 7:00 p.m. on May 10 and 11 and at 2:00 p.m. on May 12. Tickets are $10 for students/seniors and $15 for adults and can be purchased in advance at jbhsdrama.com or at the box office day of show.

The John Burroughs High School auditorium is located at 1920 W. Clark Avenue in Burbank.

Burroughs High Pool Deck Murals Brighten “Home Away From Home”

John Burroughs High School unveiled their new, colorful pool deck murals on Wednesday, April 17, during the JBHS – BHS swim meet. Designed by senior Ella Jennings, who was also lead painter on the project, the murals came together in just a few weekends with the help of several Burroughs students and parents.

The pool deck murals are “an effort to beautify the pool deck and bring some school spirit,” commented JBHS Aquatics Board President Julie Thomas. “Our booster club… wanted to highlight and beautify the pool deck to reflect how hard our student athletes work. Make their home away from home inspiring and not just functional.”

Burroughs senior Ella Jennings poses with one of the murals on the JBHS Pool Deck she designed and painted. (Photo By Ross Benson)

Assistant Principal of Athletics and Activities, Robyn Anders, presented the sketches to BUSD administrators and the Board of Education, got approval for the murals and helped get the process underway.

Using a combination of District funds and JBHS Aquatic Booster funds, the pool deck beautification included costs for the mural painting (approximately $600 for supplies) and a new school record board to be dedicated in May.

Jennings, who has made a name for herself as an artist at Burroughs, was also a member of the JBHS water polo team for her freshman, sophomore and junior years.

(Photo By Ross Benson)

“I knew what I wanted to do for the concept almost immediately since I was inspired by the intensity and fluid movement the players take in both swim team and water polo,” explained Jennings.

“The concept designs took about 10 hours from sketch to finished product. After they were approved by the School Board, scaling the designs up to mural size, sketching and painting them took two weeks with the help of volunteers.”

Those volunteers included sophomore sister Lottie Jennings, who is also a member of the JBHS water polo  and swim teams, and sophomore members of the JBHS aquatic program Grace Mokracek, Chrissy Vlick, Emily Callahan, Sura Sohi, Tara Sohi, Maddie Spangler, Angie Lee and Bella Mucha.

(Photo By Ross Benson)

Freshmen Evelyn Bresee and Bethany Salas, juniors Mallory Thomas and Bella Hedman and seniors Jaelynn Bijasa and Katie Vlick, also JBHS Aquatic program members, added their help with the paint brushes.

Jennings “had complete artistic direction in terms of design, overseeing the painting, delegating tasks and more refined aspects such as selecting paint colors and materials and embellishing the final details.”

“I was very grateful for the support of my art teacher, Mina Ho Ferrante, who advised me on the mural process, as well as the enthusiastic volunteers,” she said.

(left to right, back row) – Bella Hedman, Evelyn Bresee, Mina Ferrante, Emma Nathan, Katie Vlick, Mallory Thomas, Lottie Jennings, Chrissy Vlick, Maddie Spangler, Angie Lee, Emily Callahan, Tara Sohi, Bethany Salas. (left to right, front row) – Bella Mucha, Maya Wilson, Ella Jennings, Jaelynn Bijasa, Grace Mokracek, Sura Sohi, Briana Meneses. (Photo By Ross Benson)

Jennings is available for commissioned art pieces and notes her current work can be found on her public Instagram account @ellaillustrates.

After graduation she plans to attend Westmont College in Montecito as an Art and Psychology double-major with the goal of becoming an art therapist. She also plans to attend graduate school, earn a doctorate degree and become a licensed art therapist.

“Designing and painting the murals was a wonderful opportunity,” Jennings added. “I am honored to leave my unique mark on the school, as well as to help inspire a greater appreciation of the JBHS Aquatics programs.”

Congressman Schiff Joins Burroughs High Students Against Gun Violence Rally

More than 200 students at John Burroughs High School left their fourth period class early and joined the Walkout Against Gun Violence today, Friday, April 19, to ask for gun legislation reform.  U.S. Congressman Adam Schiff and California State Assemblymember Laura Friedman spoke at the lunchtime rally held by the Burroughs High Students Against Gun Violence Club.

Several dozen members of the Burbank community also joined the students at the rally on Memorial Field.

John Burroughs High School members of the Students Against Gun Violence Club Arya Desai, Zachary Hagen-Smith, Ariana Kretz, Kalea Neiviller and Reese Coblentz join Congressman Adam Schiff at the Students Against Gun Violence rally at Burroughs’ Memorial Field on Friday, April 19, 2019. (Photo By Ross Benson)

“It was an honor to be with the students participating in the Walkout Against Gun Violence,” commented Schiff. “Across America, students and families have responded to the tragedy of gun violence with strength, resolve and a clear message to Congress – enough is enough.”

“They made it clear they want meaningful action from elected officials—across the country, at every level – in response to the gun violence plaguing our schools and our entire society,” he said.

Students left class about nine minutes early in protest, according to JBHS Assistant Principal of Athletics and Activities, Robyn Anders. There were no repercussions handed out for leaving class early to join the Walkout Against Gun Violence.

(Photo By Ross Benson)

April 20 is the 20th anniversary of the Columbine school shooting, in which 13 people were killed and more than 20 others were wounded. Students at schools around the U.S. are holding walkouts and rallies on April 19 and 20 to call attention to the impact of gun violence and their desire for gun legislation reform.

The Burroughs Students Against Gun Violence Club has about 101 members, according to President Zachary Hagen-Smith, a senior, who welcomed students to today’s rally.

“This is about freedom. Freedom to go to school in safety,” commented Hagen-Smith. “For officers of the law to do their jobs in safety.”

“For all Americans to live their lives without the lingering threat of shootings,” he added. “Until we have legal preventatives against gun violence on a national level, we cannot be truly free.”

Senior Cheyenne Arroyo sang the National Anthem and Mahmoud El-Farra, Co-Political Director, March for Our Lives California, then talked to the assembled students and adults.

California State Assemblymember Laura Friedman speaks to Burroughs students. (Photo By Ross Benson)

Members of the Students Against Gun Violence Club, juniors Arya Desai, Babbette Wagner and Ariana Kretz, then spoke.

Assemblymember Laura Friedman talked to the students and community members, followed by senior SAGV member Louis Zekowski, who also spoke on behalf of SAGA, the Straight And Gay Alliance Club.

Sophomore SAGV member Reese Coblentz and senior Kalea Neiviller, who’s also Vice President of the Club, then said a few words.

Congressman Adam Schiff concluded the rally with his remarks.

Congressman Adam Schiff talks to students at the Students Against Gun Violence rally at John Burroughs High School. (Photo By Ross Benson)

“Gun violence is a public health crisis across our country and it’s preventable,” said Assemblymember Laura Friedman (D-Glendale, CA District 43).  “Safe storage, universal background checks and other common sense measures can save lives and it’s time for our national leaders to stand up to the NRA and take action.”

“I’m grateful for the energy and commitment our youth have shown towards ending gun violence,” Friedman also said. “We need to learn from them and renew our commitment to ending the steady stream of senseless tragedies that have plagued our nation for far too long.”

Junior Ariana Kretz talks at the Students Against Gun Violence rally. (Photo By Ross Benson)

Burbank Unified Superintendent Dr. Matt Hill, Board of Education Clerk Steve Frintner and Burroughs Principal Deborah Madrigal were also in attendance.

“I was really impressed to see so many young people come out to demonstrate today,” Schiff said, noting he was pleased to see great leadership by the students in organizing and holding the event.

“Young people like the students at Burroughs are changing the conversation about gun violence,” added Schiff. “They have launched a movement to change minds, to change laws and to force adults to reckon with the effect that weak gun laws have had on our country. And I know they are just getting started.”


Burroughs’ Build A Miracle Club Inspires Former Mexican President Visit

Former President of Mexico Vicente Fox spoke with students at John Burroughs High School on Friday, March 29, after he was inspired by work members of the school’s Build A Miracle club have been doing for years, building and furnishing homes in the poverty-stricken El Florido area of Tijuana.

Fox spoke with a group of students, including members of the Build A Miracle club, Habitat For Humanity club, students from AP Spanish classes and some of the school’s English learners, according to Burroughs Principal Deborah Madrigal.

build a miracle

Former President of Mexico Vicente Fox talks with students at John Burroughs High School in Burbank.(Photo By Ross Benson)

Build A Miracle (BAM) club president Jack Weerts introduced Fox, who started off acknowledging the efforts of the BAM club members.

“This club defined their purpose with their work in Tijuana,” Fox said. “They wanted to show themselves that they could change the world. And yes, you can change the world with big ideas, but you can also change the world step by step in the small leadership actions like the ones these students are doing in Tijuana. One home among millions of homes for one person, one family makes a difference.”

“The shortcut to happiness is doing for others. That is the only way our actions will transcend when we involve others and that is also the shortcut to accomplishment,” Fox continued. “When a leader has a cause and that leader is coming from compassion, there is no limit to what you can do and how far you can get.”

(Photo By Ross Benson)

“We are mighty powerful within. Usually when we speak about leadership, we speak about others. Be yourselves and recognize yourselves as leaders and do your work. Purpose must come together with performance,” he said. “We all dream. The American dream that we dream for our family, we dream for ourselves and we dream for our futures. We plan. We try to build up our path to where we want to go and we should try to get there with compassion and determination.”

Since leaving the Mexican Presidency in 2006, Fox has put his efforts into Centro Fox, also known as the Vicente Fox Center of Studies, Library and Museum, located in his home state of Guanajuanto. He told the JBHS students how non-profit work and his work with Centro Fox has been a great passion for him.

Fox also spoke about how important it is to set goals, no matter what it is one does in life. He credited his goal-setting with working his way up to heading the Latin American division of Coca-Cola, becoming Governor of Guanajuanto and, ultimately, President of Mexico.

(Photo By Ross Benson)

He also talked about the importance of education and the challenges in Mexico, noting more young people are getting more education now than in the past.

“There is only one way that you can change a nation in one generation and that is through education.,” Fox stated. “There is no other way to have successful nations, successful economies and a successful life with hope. So congratulate yourselves because you’re in school.”

“It was very inspirational and quite an honor to have him speaking to our students,” commented Madrigal. “He thanked the BAM club for all the work they have done over the years. When he spoke to the students he focused on how they can be leaders and how if they have compassion and a clear goal, they can accomplish anything.”

Maddie Weerts, a junior at UCSD who started the Build A Miracle club at JBHS, former Mexican President Vicente Fox and current BAM club President, senior Jack Weerts. (Photo By Ross Benson)

“Getting the opportunity to hear Vicente Fox come and speak to us was truly an incredible experience,” said senior Billie Erickson, who’s been volunteering with BAM since she was a freshman. “Hearing his inspirational story about finding purpose and working towards the betterment of mankind and civilization has truly sparked a drive in me to spread more love and care to the world.”

“I have experienced Vicente Fox’s work up close, as I used to live down in Oaxaca, Mexico, while my family and I served as missionaries down in the orphanages, building communities. I’ve seen just how much a single person can change lives and serve as a leader, precisely as Vicente Fox has demonstrated to us young adults. For that, I convey an undying gratitude for the example he sets for people everywhere.”

 “The Build A Miracle Foundation has acted as a bridge between the communities down in Tijuana and the students in the club at JBHS,” Erickson added. “We get to see up close how our actions impact other people, and we connect and build lasting relationships with the families in Mexico and with each other.”

Former Mexican President Vicente Fox spoke with students at John Burroughs High School about leadership and the value of humanitarian work. (Photo By Ross Benson)

“The work we experience through BAM is unlike anything I’ve done throughout high school. I greatly look forward to the next trip down to Mexico, and all the good it shall bring.”

“I was so inspired by President Fox’s passion about his causes: healthcare, infrastructure, education and the creation of new leaders,” commented Weerts, a senior who’s been with BAM for three years and has visited Mexico eight times to help with the work. Weerts’ sister Maddie, a junior Psychology/Spanish major at UCSD, started the BAM club at Burroughs High School.

“The entire room was (unsurprisingly) invested and interested in what President Fox had to say and the questions posed by the students reflected their interest in being leaders in their own community and beyond,” he added. “One of the things that stood out most to me was when he spoke about doing what you’re passionate about in helping others and the money will come.”

BUSD administrators Emilio Urioste and Sharon Cuseo, former President of Mexico Vicente Fox, John Burroughs High School Principal Deborah Madrigal and BUSD Superintendent Matt Hill. (Photo By Ross Benson)

For the past twenty years, the Build A Miracle Foundation has building homes and changing lives in the impoverished El Florido community outside Tijuana, Mexico. Every family who gets a house through the Foundation must commit to making sure their children complete high school.

BAM provides educational support through their community center for both children and adults, and finds donors to assist children who want to attend college. A year in most Mexican universities averages $1500 and BAM has a dozen students currently pursuing higher education.

Last fall, the JBHS BAM club learned that there were families living at the dump in El Florido whose children had never attended school. The club raised money to purchase backpacks and school supplies for the students.

(Photo By Ross Benson)

Burroughs students have raised over $12,000 to furnish three homes over the past three years and are in the midst of trying to raise $15,000 to both build and furnish a new home by the summer.

The JBHS BAM club has set up an online fundraiser to help reach their goal and more information can be found here. To date, the campaign has raised just over $6000 in both online and offline donations. The students also recently gave a presentation on their efforts at a Burbank City Council meeting.

“Fox’s message about becoming a better leader resonated with myself and many other people,” commented senior Grace Vinyard, who has been a member of BAM for three years. “He emphasized the importance of working together with other people and connecting heart to heart with others. He also talked about how anyone and everyone can be a leader, and that even people who are less comfortable leading others can guide in any aspect.”

“Every time we travel down to Mexico, we help others build houses, but we inspire them to help themselves and their communities,” she also said. “Fox’s leadership inspiration translates into the action we would like to take in Mexico.”

Burroughs’ “West Side Story” Wows A SRO Audience

Absolutely. Freaking. Awesome.

Burroughs’ performance of West Side Story last Saturday night amazed even fans well acquainted with the high bar of excellence of the Performing Arts Department.

The studio-quality sound, lighting and sets are by now the standard operating procedure. And the live orchestra and the singers routinely rise to college-level.

(Photo By Ross Benson)

But last night was special, even for Burroughs. Arya Desai’s (Maria) angel voice just didn’t rise, it soared. And she navigated the notes with beautiful precision, as in the chromatic lead-in to “Somewhere.” Coen Sosa’s (Tony) rich tenor voice shone in solo pieces like “Maria” and also perfectly complemented Desia’s romantic soprano. Whatever the star-crossed fate their characters were to suffer, their duets were a match made in heaven.

Janina Colucci (Anita) knew how to put fire in her singing, in keeping with her smoldering character. Trenton Rogers (Riff) knew how to convey the right mix of toughness and vulnerability, and gave the show a rousing start.

(Photo By Ross Benson)

Everyone—not just the leads—were at the top of their game. They weren’t just singing superbly, they were acting superbly. Usually, it takes men in their early twenties to credibly play teenagers; actual male teens are deemed too immature. Not so with these guys. The men had the chops to own the Jets and the Sharks. And as for the women, you get the feeling any one of them would already be a serious contender for a lead role in a local theatrical production.

(Photo By Ross Benson)

And as if all that wasn’t enough to blow the audience away, there was the dancing. Oh, was there ever. Serious dancing. Dancing that did justice to Jerome Robbins’ demanding choreography: The “Mambo” at the high school gym. The “America” dance off in 9/4 time. The coiled-snake “Cool” scene, the sudden bursts in the rumbles between the gangs. The quiet grace in the “Somewhere” scene. The hilarious “Gee, Officer Krupke” set piece. Throughout the musical, the dancers combined spontaneity with well-defined movements and did not let their tremendous energy flag for a single second.

“This year we’re blessed with a large group of triple-threat performers,” remarked Vocal Director Brendan Jennings during the intermission. And how.

JBHS Drama Presents “West Side Story”

John Burroughs High School Drama department presents the Tony Award-winning classic West Side Story for three performances Friday through Sunday, February 8 to 10. Students from the drama, musical theater, vocal music, instrumental music and tech crew programs at JBHS have all joined forces to put on an entertaining show.

With music by Leonard Bernstein and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim, JBHS Drama Director Guy Myers follows the book by Arthur Laurents.

Vocal Music director Brendan Jennings guides the singing portions and Instrumental Music head Taylor Arakelian conducts the pit orchestra, comprised of a majority of JBHS students, bolstered by a few professional musicians.

west side story

(Photo Courtesy Guy Myers)

West Side Story tells of “two young lovers caught between prejudice and warring street gangs in the musical retelling of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet.” Set in New York City, the Montagues and Capulets become the rival street gangs, the Jets and the Sharks. Star-crossed lovers Tony and Maria update the tragically doomed tale of Romeo and Juliet.

The musical score continues to be regarded as one of the “best ever written” with classic songs including “Tonight,” “Maria,” “America” and “Somewhere.”

“This show has been an exhilarating experience!” commented Myers. “The students have been so dedicated throughout the rehearsal process, keeping up with our amazing choreographer, Jennifer Stanley, as she challenges them with difficult Jerome Robbins’ style dance routines.”

(Photo Courtesy Guy Myers)

“Mr. Jennings, our vocal director, and I have been wanting to produce West Side Story for a long time and have been waiting for the right mix of triple threat actors to make this production the best it can be!”

“Our experienced tech crew, led by Jon King, will be assembling a professional two-story revolving set that promises to wow audiences, and our mostly student orchestra will be led by our instrumental music teacher, Taylor Arakelian,” added Myers. “This is a show that you won’t want to miss! I bet people are going to want to see it more than once! It’s a classic!”

(Photo Courtesy Guy Myers)

“I’d just like to say that every production put on by the JBHS Drama program has an incredible level of professionalism and care that is amazing to be a part of every single time I’m lucky enough to be [part of],” commented senior Coen Sosa, who plays Tony.

“The acting and songs in this production are more difficult than what I’ve had to do in the past, so this production has definitely given me many opportunities to expand as an actor, singer and performer which I’m very appreciative of.”

“My absolute favorite part of any production is the people that I get to share the experience with. It’s so fun to see everyone else grow into their role and continue to put their all into making the production its best.”

“I would also like to comment on how amazing Arya Desai is as Maria,” Sosa added. “Every single time we have a scene together, even if it’s only the first time running through it, she finds a way to capture the emotion and the passion behind each word she’s saying. Which just makes my job a thousand times easier when you’re working with someone that talented.”

“I’m so excited to be a part of such an amazing production of West Side Story, and that I get to play an iconic and beloved role,” commented Desai, a JBHS junior. “I definitely feel that I’ve connected to Maria and learned a lot about myself along the way!”

(Photo Courtesy Guy Myers)

“The school and the drama program has been so dedicated to telling the story the right way, and I think it definitely shows through the effort put into the set, outfits and performance of each individual. I’m so proud to be a part of this story, considering the important message which it carries, especially in this day and age where racial tensions are rising again.”

“This show has a special place in the hearts of everyone involved and the directors who’ve put it on. I can’t wait to see how the public reacts to the show, and what it will mean to all of the ethnic minorities which have been put in the backseat for much of musical theater,” she also said. “The show will be a challenge to all involved, but it’s one which will prove the versatility of the JBHS performing arts programs, and an experience I will cherish forever!”

(Photo Courtesy Guy Myers)

“Working on West Side Story has been an incredible experience,” commented student producer, junior Wyatt Wheeler. “It has been my first experience with a musical, and producing it has allowed me to see the inner workings of the program and appreciate the hard work people like Mr. Myers and the rest of the creative team put in, and the hard work shows in the quality of the work we put out.”

“I have enjoyed every minute of the process, and I hope that everyone who sees the show has as much fun seeing it as we had putting it together.”

“I have so much love to give to Mr. Myers and the drama program at Burroughs,” added senior Trenton Rogers, who plays Riff. “This production has been one of the most amazing experiences I have ever had since West Side Story has been one of my favorite shows since I was a kid, and the cast and crew have made the experience a million times better. I cannot wait for people to see what we have in store!”

“As one of the Jets (the greatest gang since the T-Birds from Grease), I have been lucky enough to spend countless hours with some of the most talented and raucous boys on the Burroughs campus,” said senior Jack Weerts, who portrays A-rab. “Trenton Rogers and Coen Sosa, playing the parts of Riff and Tony respectively, have been so much fun to work with, and I could not have asked for a better group of guys to rumble with.”

“The JBHS Drama and VMA department are well known for putting on professional-grade productions and this one is definitely among the best. Under the direction of Guy Myers and Brendan Jennings, I can guarantee that this is a show you won’t want to miss, and we’ll have you snapping right along with us by the end!”

“While I’ve been participating in the drama program since I was a freshman… this is the first time I’ve assisted in the musical theater program,” said senior student producer Zachary Hagen-Smith. “West Side Story is easily my favorite musical we’ve done.”

(Photo Courtesy Guy Myers)

“Firstly, the music is incredibly coordinated and articulate even without lyrics, conveying narrative through solely instrumentals,” he also said. “Beyond the soundtrack’s quality (which spread evident given the Bernstein-Sondheim collaboration), the story of Tony and Maria is a compelling one that spoke to civil rights issues of the 1960s and still speaks to current debates about immigration, renewed racist movements and urban violence. It is truly a timely piece and I hope to do it justice.”

West Side Story runs for three shows: Friday and Saturday, February 8 and 9, at 7:00 p.m. and Sunday, February 10, at 2:00 p.m. General admission tickets are $10 for students/seniors/children and $20 for adults. Tickets may be purchased online here or at the box office window ahead of the performances.

The John Burroughs High School auditorium is located at 1920 W. Clark Avenue in Burbank. Plenty of free parking is available in adjacent lots and on surrounding streets.

Pop Show Unplugged Showcases Burroughs High School Talent

John Burroughs High School choir members gave two performances of their annual Pop Show Unplugged at The Colony Theatre on Saturday, January 12.

The hour-long show featured original compositions and arrangements of popular songs performed by members of the school’s Vocal Music Association in smaller ensembles and solo acts.

Photo by Ross Benson

“We started this show three years ago because we noticed a trend in our students auditioning more and more acoustic, original and self-accompanied music for our annual pop show,” explained Pop Show Unplugged co-director Jen Oundjian.

“The talent was there, the students just needed an opportunity to show it in a more intimate setting, rather than our own extremely large auditorium,” she went on to say. “And it’s just a fun, sweet, heartwarming show!”

Photo by Ross Benson

The VMA’s Muses and Vocal Ensemble a cappella groups performed a song from their competition sets. Many students also took a turn on the guitar or keyboard accompanying their fellow students.

“It’s great to see my students shine in a different style and format,” commented Burroughs choir director Brendan Jennings. “It’s a smaller, more intimate stage and yet the talent is just so huge.”

Photo by Ross Benson

Burroughs VMA accompanist and pianist Dan Scoville performed with some of the students along with percussionist Jeremy Needleman. Co-director Jenna Townsend and producers Sid and Tracy Sosa also helped put on Pop Show Unplugged.

The JBHS VMA’s next big performance is Pop Show 40 “Change The World,” with four performances over three days on February 22, 23 and 24 at the school auditorium, which seats approximately 1400 people. Tickets and more information on Pop Show 40 can be found here.

Photo by Ross Benson

The “BIG GAME!!” 70th All-Time Meeting; Burroughs Leads Burbank, 42-27

Burbank vs. Burroughs: a one-of-a-kind rivalry since 1949

Burbank vs. Burroughs: a one-of-a-kind cross-town rivalry since 1949

By Dick Dornan
myBurbank Sports Emeritus


69 Meetings

1949 – 2017

Burroughs leads Burbank, 42-27

1949 – Burbank 12, Burroughs 7.  The “Big Game” made its debut in 1949. Former junior high and first year high school, John Burroughs, made what was supposed to be an easy Burbank victory a hard fought battle. The stronger Bulldog team prevailed, however, paced by Pete LiPera who later became head coach at Burbank, and Paul Cameron, who later starred at UCLA.

1950 – Burroughs 6, Burbank 0.  Burroughs avenged the previous year’s loss on a rain drenched field as Louie Elias went 41 yards through “Lake Memorial” for the only score of the game. He later recalled that the rivalry was already intense even though it was only two years old.

1951 – Burbank 28, Burroughs 12. Having already won the Foothill League Championship, the Bulldogs could have let down and been upset; but showing true championship caliber, overpowered the Indians.

1952 – Burbank 33, Burroughs 0.  The Bulldogs were led by Bob McCalmont and shut out the Indians for their second straight series win.

1953 – Burroughs 7, Burbank 0.  Paced by a 44 yard touchdown run by Maurice Elias, brother of Louie, Burroughs returned the previous year’s favor, scoring their second series shutout.

1954- Burroughs 49, Burbank 0.  Again paced by Maurice Elias, who set a then single game school record of 162 yards rushing, the Indians recorded their second straight and third overall series shutout. This stands as the most one-sided victory in the series.

1955 – Burbank 20, Burroughs 14.  On their way to a probable playoff berth, the Indians overlooked the Bulldogs and were knocked out of the playoffs. Steve Searock and Bill Reed led the Bulldogs who were under the guidance of rookie coach Ham Lloyd, whose squad included John Lockwood who later became head coach at Burbank.

1956 – Burbank 18, Burroughs 0.  The Bulldogs scored their second shutout of the series in a battle for the Foothill League title (first time in the series). Played before an estimated crowd of 11,000 people, the Bulldogs were quarterbacked by Bob Alfred and paced by Fred Tunnicliffe, whose nephew, Tom, would later start at both schools, winning CIF Player of the Year as a senior at Burroughs.

1957 – Burroughs 28, Burbank 19.  In another rookie coaching victory, Leon Shortenhaus guided the Indians, led by Bob Hand, to the victory. Playing for Burroughs was Pete Lubisich, who would later go on to play at USC.

1958 – Burbank 32, Burroughs 0.  Posting their third series shutout the Bulldogs were led by the three touchdown performance of Tom Pulford. Tom, whose son, Darrin, also played for the Bulldogs, is one of the many players to have relatives also compete in the series.

1959 – Burroughs 19, Burbank 0.  Trading shutouts again, the Indians scored their fourth win with an assist from Burbank, who was forced to use many J.V. players after having 19 of the varsity members declared ineligible for the game for “egging” the mural over the Burroughs Auditorium. Conde Lick and Brent Vance led the Indians with a TD each.

1960 – Burroughs 19, Burbank 7.  Indian coach Leon Shortenhaus closed out his coaching career at Burroughs with a 3-1 record in the “Big Game”, beginning and ending with a victory.

1961 – Burbank 25, Burroughs 13.  In the fourth of his 22 seasons as a coach at Burroughs, and first as Head Coach, Bob Dunivant watched his Indians and the Bulldogs battle to a 7-7 tie into the third quarter, only to see the Tribe fumble three times in the second half, helping Burbank to the victory.

1962 – Burbank 34, Burroughs 0.  Also beginning and ending his coaching career with a victory, Ham Lloyd posted a 5-3 “Big Game” record with this win in his final game. Phil Culotta scored three touchdowns to pace the Bulldogs to their fourth series shutout and came up just points short of the CIF scoring championship, losing to Steve Grady of Loyola who scored five touchdowns the same evening.

1963 – Burbank 14, Burroughs 7.  Burroughs finally ended a string of seven straight shutout losses since the second game of the season but were unable to contain the Bulldogs’ Gerry Altman, whose 100 yards helped Burbank to its third straight series win.

1964 – Burroughs 27, Burbank 7.  The Bulldogs’ Tom Paggi set a school record with a 74 yard run from scrimmage for one of his two touchdowns on the night but Burroughs snapped a three game losing streak to Burbank.

1965 – Burroughs 19, Burbank 0.  The Indians notched their fifth series shutout.  Bob McCorkle, who passed or ran for a then school record 17 touchdowns on the year, hit Mike Erickson for one touchdown and while playing defense, picked off a Bulldog aerial and returned it 78 yards (also a school record) for another score.

1966 – Burroughs 19, Burbank 0.  Posting its sixth series and fourth season shutout, Burroughs coasted to its favorite score in the rivalry (the Indians have won three 19-0 “Big Games”), and third consecutive series victory.

1967 – Burbank 20, Burroughs 19.  Undefeated going into the game, the Indians again scored 19 points. Burbank, however, on the 173 yard passing of Dale Cirscione and the 85 yard fumble recovery of Randy Ivie for a touchdown, scored 20 for one of the biggest upsets in the series. The win prevented Burroughs from going ahead, for the first time, in the rivalry.

1968 – Burbank 20, Burroughs 13.  The Bulldogs again scored 20 points, led by Bill Johnson who scored all three touchdowns and rushed for 100 yards.

1969 – Burbank 44, Burroughs 8.  Dan Flavin passed for four touchdowns and John Minor rushed for 91 yards for the Bulldogs. The game was so dominated by Burbank that the only Indian score came on a 95 yard kickoff return by Jess Talamantes which remained a school record until 1978. Burbank again won three in a row versus Burroughs.

1970 – Burroughs 15, Burbank 12.  In a well played game, Bulldog star John Minor scored both touchdowns and rushed for 152 yards, only to see his heavily favored team lose to a fired up Indian squad. Burroughs was led by QB Tim Molina who passed for 113 yards and threw two touchdowns to Bruce Wallace. Jess Talamantes rushed for 111 yards.

1971 – Burroughs 17, Burbank 13.  Jeff Budrick and John Funk scored the two Indian touchdowns. Quarterback Tom Lawson completed 19 passes, 10 to Scott Nelson for 117 yards, all of which were single game Indian records at the time. Bob Mendoza booted a 29 yard field goal to seal the victory.

1972 – Burbank 14, Burroughs 0.  Burbank notched their fifth shutout in the series as quarterback Leo Orange and Kenny Walker scored the two Bulldog touchdowns. The game was played for the Foothill League title, and with the victory, Burbank knocked the Indians out of a playoff berth.  Jim Galbraith caught seven passes in a fine effort for the Indians, who went on to shut out Burbank the next three games. The Bulldogs won their fourth league title and would not win another one for the next 37 years (2009).

1973 – Burroughs 6, Burbank 0.  Burroughs tied Crescenta Valley for the league title with their seventh series shutout and went into the CIF Playoffs for only the second time in school history.  Jerry Howell scored the games only touchdown played in pouring rain at “Lake Memorial”.  Indians’ quarterback Curtis Ilhe and wide receiver Randy Simmrin were the inspirational leaders on the team. Simmrin later starred for USC and played for Buffalo and Tampa Bay in the NFL.

1974 – Burroughs 36, Burbank 0.  A boisterous crowd of 12,000 fans came to Memorial Field to witness Burroughs dominate the helpless Bulldogs. Burbank could have tied the Indians for first place in the Foothill League with a win, but were dominated as Burroughs recorded their second consecutive and eighth series shutout, holding the Bulldogs to 36 total yards. All-CIF quarterback Tom Miller passed for three touchdowns and 179 yards, mostly to wide receivers Bob Frishette, Hans Anderson and Kirk Morales. Tony De Felicis, Joe Mersola, Mike McDonald and Ron Wollard all contributed in the convincing win. The Indians went on to post an 11-1 record, tied with the 1979 team for the best record ever, and advanced to the CIF Quarterfinals.

1975 – Burroughs 40, Burbank 0.  Burroughs took the series lead for the first time ever, 14-13, with their ninth series shutout and third consecutive over Burbank. The game also marked Bulldog coach Pete LiPera’s last contest. The rout was highlighted by All-CIF linebacker Mike McDonald, who later played at USC and for the Rams, returning an interception for 67 yards as the Indians finished their first regular season under Craig Bell at 8-1.

1976 – Burbank 17, Burroughs 14.  Burbank avoided a fourth consecutive Burroughs win by upsetting the Indians on a 41-yard field goal by George Florez on the last play of the game. The kick was set up by an interception with 17 seconds left by Rich Good who ran it back 46 yards to the 24-yard line. This was Good’s second pick of the night, both of which set up two Burbank scores for the game. Al Penaranda and George Williams, both of whom had brothers who later played for Burroughs, scored the two Indian touchdowns, while the Bulldogs were paced by Denny Caira.

1977 – Burroughs 40, Burbank 10.  Burbank surprised everyone by taking a 10-7 lead into the locker room at halftime but the Indians roared back in the second half with a fine passing performance by quarterback Dean Townsend.  Mike Pate intercepted a pass for the Indians for a touchdown. George Williams, Lupe Yanez and Reuben Torres also scored for the Indians. The defense was sparked by the play of linebacker Jeff Fitzgerald. The game marked the return of Bob Dunivant as head coach of Burroughs.

1978 – Burroughs 28, Burbank 16.  Burbank, led by Tom Tunnicliffe who passed for 182 yards, again came out on the short end of the score. Lincoln Simonds scored three Indian touchdowns and the defense, led by Nick Manocchia, held the Bulldogs to six yards rushing and sacked Tunnicliffe seven times for a loss of 67 yards.

1979 – Burroughs 33, Burbank 12.  In a unique twist of events, Burroughs, now quarterbacked by Tom Tunnicliffe, who transferred from Burbank, the Indians went into the game rated the number one team in the San Fernando Valley, Los Angeles, Southern California, the State and the Nation. The Bulldogs put up a strong fight, scoring 12 points against a team that had badly beaten the previous #1 team, St. Paul, 27-12, and allowed only one touchdown to four previous Foothill League opponents, outscoring them 152-7. The Indians were paced by the 191 yards rushing of Edgar Penaranda and Tunnicliffe’s 123 yards passing while the defense held Burbank to 90 total yards.  Burroughs finished the season 11-1 (tied with the 1974 team for the best record ever) and advanced to the CIF Quarterfinals.  Head Coach Bob Dunivant would later step aside from his coaching duties.

1980 – Burroughs 25, Burbank 17.  Taking a four game lead with their fourth consecutive win in the “Big Game” series, a first for either school, the Indians also knocked the Bulldogs out of a playoff berth while recording their fourth consecutive Foothill League Title, also unprecedented in the history of the league. Led by the rushing of Edgar Penaranda and Rick Williams, plus the passing of Gary English, the Indians managed to hold off a stubborn Burbank team, led by the rushing of Eric Burcham. The Indians went on to the CIF Semifinals.

1981 – Burroughs 44, Burbank 21.  Burroughs jumped out to a 30-7 halftime lead on the passing and rushing of quarterback Rich Strasser (34 and 87 yard touchdown completions) and the rushing of Paul Kibala and Joe D’Alessio. The Indians would advance to their first-ever CIF Finals and finish as runner-ups while winning their fifth consecutive league title.

1982 – Burroughs 42, Burbank 6.  Burbank took to an early lead, going 55 yards on 11 plays to take a 6-0 advantage midway through the first quarter. The Indians, behind the rushing of Bret Mersola, Jeff Markland and Eli Montemayor, finally got on track and cruised to a rather easy victory. It was Burroughs’ sixth consecutive win over Burbank.

1983 – Burbank 24, Burroughs 21.  In one of the more exciting games of the series, the Bulldogs opened the scoring with a one yard run by Derek Trabilcy.  The lead changed hands several times in the game until late in the fourth quarter when Burroughs tied the score on a 61 yard pass from Sean Spring to Bret Mersola. Burbank, led by QB Gary Lotka, took their last possession of the game and marched down the field to the Indian 10, and lined up for a field goal with less than 10 seconds on the clock. The first Bulldog attempt was deflected and went wide, but the Indians were called for defensive holding on the play. After the penalty was assessed, Alfredo Velasco nailed his second attempt from 21 yards out with no time showing on the clock for a dramatic, upset victory for the Bulldogs. The win snapped the six “Big Game” winning streak of the Indians.

1984 – Burbank 28, Burroughs 0.  Quarterback Gary Lotka threw for 315 yards and four touchdowns on 18 of 23 passing and led the Bulldogs to their second consecutive victory in the series and their first playoff berth since 1977.  It is Burbank’s first shutout of the Indians since 1972 and sixth in the series. Lotka’s efforts cement his name in “Big Game” lore and he went on to win the Most Valuable Player of the Foothill League.

1985 – Burbank 14, Burroughs 10.  For the first time since 1967-69, the Bulldogs win their third straight “Big Game” behind the leadership of quarterback Sal Velasco.  Burbank overcame a 10-7 deficit as Velasco hit wide receiver Robert Jarrin with what proved to be the game winning pass on the first possession of the second half. The Bulldogs marched 69 yards in seven plays and the defense shut out the Indians the rest of the way.

1986 – Burroughs 33, Burbank 26.  In his return to the sideline for the first time since he left coaching in 1979, Bob Dunivant led the Indians to victory and snapped the three-game winning streak of the Bulldogs in the rivalry.  After trailing 14-12 at the half, the Indians took the lead at 19-14 entering the fourth. The Indians’ Danny Cusumano scored from two yards out to make it 26-14. Quarterback Jeff Barrett led the Indians with 177 yards and two touchdowns.

1987 – Burroughs 41, Burbank 0.  Quarterback Jeff Barrett shined on offense as he completed 11 of 16 passes for 122 yards and three touchdowns. He even rushed for two more touchdowns.  Burbank’s Gabe Jimenez ran for 118 yards on 24 carries and was the lone bright spot for the Bulldogs. Burroughs won their tenth series shutout and first vs. the Bulldogs since 1975. The Indians would eventually reach the CIF Finals and finish as runner-ups as they did in 1981.

1988 – Burroughs 31, Burbank 15.  The magic of former head coach Bob Dunivant was evident again as he helped head coach Butch McElwee lead the Indians to victory.  Having the headsets on again for only the third time in the season, Dunivant surprised Burbank by calling a reverse, flea-flicker for a 65 yard completion early in the game to spark the victory.

1989 – Burroughs 23, Burbank 19.  The Indians were led by a trio of running backs in the win.  Andre Banks rushed for 33 yards in 12 carries, Lionel Portugal ran for 31 yards on eight carries and Danny Suarez added 33 yards in eight carries as Burroughs defeated Burbank yet again.

1990 – Burroughs 20, Burbank 7.  Sean McDermott rushed for 183 yards on 23 carries and scored a touchdown as the Indians defeated the Bulldogs for the fifth consecutive year.  Ben Goldwasser added a touchdown and Eddie Gavilan had an interception for Burroughs.

1991 – Burbank 14, Burroughs 12.  The Brenes brothers led the Bulldogs to victory and halted the Indians winning streak in the series at five games. Steve carried 19 times for 123 yards and Frank scored both Burbank touchdowns en route to 72 yards on 14 attempts.  DB Mike Lyneis made a diving interception of a Marco Esquivel pass at the Bulldog 15 to clinch the win.

1992 – Burbank 21, Burroughs 17.  Down 17-14, Bulldog quarterback Brian Casey completed a 30 yard touchdown strike to wide receiver Kendricks Lewis with 53 seconds left to give Burbank the four point victory. Bulldog running back Hector Valencia, who later would become head coach at Burbank, scored on a 56 yard run up the left sideline to put Burbank up 7-3 late in the first quarter.  Burbank increased their lead to 14-3 only to see the Indians come back and take the lead. Burbank wouldn’t be denied as they took their second straight “Big Game”.

1993 – Burroughs 31, Burbank 6.  After finishing 0-10 a year ago, the Indians completed their turn around with a decisive win that sent them to the playoffs for the first time since 1989. Eddie Melgar rushed for 115 yards and scored three touchdowns as Indian head coach Gary Bernardi earned his first win in the “Big Game” and snapped the brief two game winning streak for Burbank in the series. This win began a run of 10 consecutive victories for Burroughs over their hated rivals.

1994 – Burroughs 17, Burbank 13.  The Indians scored the winning touchdown on a four yard pass from Mike Barrett to Tony Listro with 7:05 left in the game. Carlos Moreno ran for 134 yards on 28 carries as Burroughs stormed back from a 13-3 halftime deficit. Burbank’s Carlos Baker rushed for 121 yards on 21 carries.

1995 – Burroughs 21, Burbank 0.  In a game that will be remembered for ending early due to a brawl with 3:21 left, Indians quarterback J.K. Scott led the way completing 9 of 15 passes for 166 yards. Wide receiver Glenn Adriatico caught three passes for 69 yards, including a 23 yard pass from Scott that gave Burroughs their final touchdown.  Burbank was last shut out in the “Big Game” in 1987 and it marked Burroughs’ eleventh series shutout. The Indians defeated the Bulldogs for the third straight time.

1996 – Burroughs 35, Burbank 6.  Quarterback J.K. Scott completed 16 of 29 passes for 202 yards and three touchdowns as the offense continued to put up big numbers and the defense was led by Danny Kang who had two interceptions, two sacks and a forced fumble. Scott would later take his talents to the University of Washington.

1997 – Burroughs 29, Burbank 14.  Glenn Adriatico finished his illustrious prep career catching an 89 yard TD pass from quarterback Chris Santoyo and added an 11 yard TD run too as Burroughs won their fifth straight in the series. Adriatico completed his career with 199 receptions for 3,069 yards. The Indians jumped out to a 14-0 first quarter lead and never looked back in Bulldogs alum Keith Knoop’s first “Big Game” as head coach for Burroughs.

1998 – Burroughs 26, Burbank 21.  In the 50th meeting of the “Big Game”, wide receiver Kyle Cremarosa caught eight passes for 223 yards and three touchdowns to lead the Indians to victory. Burroughs quarterback Joe Kroells completed 11 of 20 passes for 280 yards and four touchdowns as the Indians took an 18-7 halftime lead and held off Burbank. Alan Gutierrez led the Bulldogs with 161 yards on 32 carries.

1999 – Burroughs 35, Burbank 14.  The Indians won their seventh consecutive game (longest in the series) over the Bulldogs by overpowering them from the very start.  Jonathan Overturf scored on an 83 yard trick play on the first play from scrimmage in the game. Randy Beckmann and Michael Perez added a touchdown apiece and Spencer Steward caught a TD pass from Joe Kroells as Burroughs rolled to victory. The game marked the 1000th point ever scored by the Indians against the Bulldogs in their storied rivalry.

2000 – Burroughs 54, Burbank 36.  The Indians’ Mike Perez rushed for 214 yards on 31 carries including a 57 yard TD run with less than a minute to play. Teammate Lonn Salmon threw for 167 yards and two touchdowns on 6 of 10 passing. Burroughs’ 54 points set a record for most points scored by one team in the “Big Game” and the 90 points combined was also a record.

2001 – Burroughs 38, Burbank 21.  Mike Perez rushed for 84 yards on 12 carries and scored two touchdowns and Gabriel Moise Jr. picked up a fumble and rumbled 88 yards down the field for the clinching touchdown in the fourth quarter. Trailing 26-21, Burbank was driving deep into Indian territory only to have the turnover. Moise’s score made it 32-21 and it ended any hope of a Bulldog win. Perez reached the 1,000 yard mark for the second consecutive season. He also had an 80 yard touchdown reception in the game.

2002 – Burroughs 43, Burbank 31.  The Indians had a commanding 30-7 lead early in the third quarter behind the play of quarterback David Brooks, who rushed for 177 yards and three touchdowns. However, Bulldog signal caller Mike McDonald, son of former Burroughs star Mike McDonald Sr., rallied his team to within 37-31 with 3:51 to play on a TD pass to Rico Clark. Burbank was on the drive again looking for the win when Burroughs’ Darrel Ditri intercepted a pass and returned it 55 yards for a score with 24 seconds to play to cap the win. This marked the tenth consecutive win in the series for Burroughs and the longest such streak in the “Big Game”.

2003 – Burbank 24, Burroughs 18.  Finally! The Bulldogs snapped the 10 game “Big Game” winning streak of Burroughs as Mike McDonald finished 14 of 28 for 203 yards and three touchdowns. McDonald connected with Jesse Ayers on an 11 yard TD pass with 3:28 to play which turned out to be the decisive score.

2004 – Burbank 26, Burroughs 12.  Jason Barbic did it all for Burbank in their second consecutive “Big Game” win over the Indians.  Barbic rushed for 50 yards in six carries and a TD, caught two passes for 108 yards and threw a 13 yard touchdown pass.  Mike McDonald finished his “Big Game” career completing 7 of 11 passes for 166 yards and a touchdown.

2005 – Burroughs 35, Burbank 28.  As Mike Perez did back in 2000, the Indians’ Thomas Kyle put his team on his back and rushed for 249 yards on 32 carries and a pair of touchdowns, including a 62 yarder that put Burroughs ahead 26-14 early in the third quarter. Burbank’s Robert Linda completed 16 of 36 passes for 283 yards and a score. The Indians regained control of the series after Burbank had won back to back contests the previous two years.

2006 – Burroughs 24, Burbank 6.  First Mike Perez, then Thomas Kyle.  Now Joe Wiggan. He did it all in a convincing manner as he rushed for 288 yards on 47 carries and scored two touchdowns.  Wiggan rushed for 178 yards in the second half alone.  The Indians scored 24 unanswered points to defeat the Bulldogs who could have shared the league title with a win. Led by head coach Keith Knoop, Burroughs finished the regular season with a 9-1 mark and 7-0 in Pacific League play, its first league title since 1981.

2007 – Burroughs 30, Burbank 20.  The Indians rallied from a 13-0 first quarter deficit and scored the game’s next 23 points to lead 23-13 late in the third quarter. After a Bulldog touchdown with 4:39 left in the game trimmed the Burroughs lead to 23-20, Indians’ tailback Dominique Barnes scored on a 27 yard run to seal the victory. Barnes finished with 149 yards in 16 carries as Burroughs won their third straight in the series.

2008 – Burroughs 58, Burbank 22.  Following in the legendary footsteps of Indians’ Mike Perez, Thomas Kyle and Joe Wiggan, Dominique Barnes put on a performance of a lifetime in the 60threndition of the “Big Game”. Barnes rushed for 304 yards, a school record, on 23 carries and scored five touchdowns to lead the Indians to the dominating win. The 58 points scored by Burroughs set a “Big Game” scoring record for one team. Barnes scored on touchdowns runs of seven, 20, 48, 85 and nine yards. In the process, Barnes set the school record for most points scored in a season by a player. The Indians won their fourth straight in the series. On a historic note, Burbank made the CIF playoffs and won their first playoff game since 1927, a stretch that lasted 81 years. 1927 also marked the year when Burbank won its first league title.

2009 – Burbank 28, Burroughs 21. The Bulldogs snapped a four game losing streak vs. Burroughs and in the process won their first league title in 37 years! (1972 the last) Before 8,800 fans, these two teams clashed in a thrilling contest. It marked the first time in the 61 year history of competing against each other that both teams finished as co-champions together (each team finished with identical 6-1 records in the Pacific League. For Burbank, it was their fifth league title. Burroughs won their tenth league title the previous week). After Dalton Williams gave the Indians a 21-20 lead on a 79-yard touchdown dash down the Burroughs’ sideline late in the third quarter, Burbank’s Ulises Ochoa scored on a one yard touchdown run with 5:36 remaining in the game to give the Bulldogs a 28-21 advantage that they would not relinquish. Williams led Burroughs with 203 yards rushing while Ochoa ran for 127. Burbank quarterback Adam Colman completed 14 of 23 passes for 174 yards and teammate Jackson Diamond caught 10 passes for 111 yards and was rewarded with the game ball by first-year head coach and Bulldog alum, Hector Valencia. Burbank finished its season with a school-record tying nine wins (9-3) and advanced to the CIF quarterfinals for a second consecutive season.

2010 – Burroughs 38, Burbank 35In front of a boisterous crowd of 9,000 die-hard Indian and Bulldog fans, Burroughs mounted the greatest comeback in “Big Game” history and defeated arch-rival Burbank, 38-35, on a last-second field goal to win a share of the Pacific League title for the second consecutive season. Amidst an electric atmosphere that only this rivalry could produce, the Indians rallied from a dire 28-0 deficit early in the second quarter and stunned Burbank when junior Cristobal Escobar kicked a 20 yard field goal as time expired to cap off one of the greatest games in “Big Game” annals. Trailing 35-21 early in the fourth quarter, the Indians scored back to back touchdowns to tie the game. After forcing Burbank to punt with 1:15 to play, Burroughs quarterback Lucas Yanez completed three passes to set up Escobar’s game winning field goal. Burroughs fans rushed the field to celebrate as all of us bore witness to the last “Big Game” to be played at venerable Memorial Stadium. Yanez completed 14 of 26 passes for 227 yards and three touchdowns and also rushed for 63 yards while his twin brother Tyler Yanez caught eight passes for 122 yards and two touchdowns. Burbank’s Ulises Ochoa finished with game-highs of 188 yards on 34 carries and three touchdowns (two rushing, one interception). Burroughs would go on to defeat El Rancho in the first round of the CIF playoffs and advance to the quarterfinals, their first postseason win since 1987.

2011 – Burroughs 34, Burbank 7. In the first-ever “Big Game” played outside the city limits, John Burroughs won their third consecutive Pacific League title with a 34-7 victory over Burbank. Due to the ongoing renovation of Memorial Stadium, the 63rd “Big Game” was played at Arcadia High School.  More than 5,000 fans traveled to the game to witness a rushing performance like none other in “Big Game” lore. Indians’ star tailback Zander Anding broke the single-game “Big Game” rushing record with 349 yards on 29 carries and four touchdowns. Anding’s 73-yard touchdown run in the second quarter gave Burroughs a 14-7 halftime lead. His 46-yard TD late in the fourth quarter cemented the win and gave the Indians back to back city bragging rights over the rival Bulldogs. It was Anding’s fifth 300 yard-plus effort of the season. He finished the regular season with 2,453 yards rushing which is not only the best single-season mark in the school’s history, but the best single-season mark in Pacific League history as well. He also has scored 25 rushing touchdowns and 29 touchdowns overall heading into the CIF playoffs. Burroughs claimed their fourth league title in the last six years (2006, 2009, 2010, 2011), their twelfth in their storied history and have won three consecutive league titles for the first time since 1977-1981 when they won five straight championships.

2012 – Burbank 37, Burroughs 14. After a year hiatus away from the city of Burbank, the 64th “Big Game” returned to venerable Memorial Stadium which received a facelift in 2011. Before 8,000 die-hard football fans, Burbank won the cross-town matchup with a dominating 37-14 effort for its first win in the series since 2009. It was Burbank’s largest margin of victory against Burroughs since a 28-0 shutout of the Indians in 1984. The Indians avoided what would have been their worst defeat in the history of the Big Game. Burbank pounded Burroughs 44-8 back in 1969. The Bulldogs outgained the Indians, 288 to 148. Burbank held the Burroughs ground game to 75 yards on 24 carries. In contrast, the Bulldogs rushed for 246 yards while controlling the line of scrimmage throughout the night. Sophomore James Williams rushed for 149 yards on 14 carries; including an 89-yard touchdown burst on Burbank’s first play of the second half that gave the Bulldogs a commanding 30-0 lead.

2013 – Burbank 47, Burroughs 21. Before a raucous capacity crowd at Memorial Field, Burbank won its second consecutive game against rival Burroughs, 47-21, in the 65th renewal of the “Big Game.” The Bulldogs had not beaten the Indians in back-to-back years since the 2003 and 2004 seasons. The victory marked the third win in the rivalry over the last five years for Burbank, its best stretch in the cross-town duel since winning three straight from 1983 through 1985. Meanwhile, the 26-point loss marked the worst defeat by Burroughs at the hands of Burbank since suffering a 28-0 loss to Burbank in 1984. It was the most points scored ever by Burbank against Burroughs in the 65-year history of the BIG GAME. The 47 points eclipsed the previous high set in 1969 in which Burbank won, 44-8. The one-two punch of James Williams (173 yards on 23 carries) and Joseph Pendleton (132 yards on 14 carries) was too much to handle for Burroughs as the two talented running backs sliced and diced their way to the tune of 305 combined rushing yards and six touchdowns. Leading 17-14 at halftime, the Bulldogs outscored the Indians, 30-0, in the third quarter en route to the easy victory. Burbank advanced to the CIF semifinals for the second time in its history and won a school-record 10 games on the season.

2014 – Burbank 16, Burroughs 10. For the third consecutive game, the Bulldogs were victorious against their cross-town rivals. The last time that happened was 1983, 1984 and 1985. Burbank quarterback Ryan Meredith completed 16 of 24 passes for 158 yards including a 21-yard touchdown pass to Nick Warren that proved to be the game winner late in the third quarter. Leading 9-7, Burbank’s Kyle Alvarez recovered an Indians fumble and one play later Meredith found Warren on a screen pass that resulted in a touchdown with 23 seconds to play in the third period. Burroughs committed five turnovers to aid the Bulldogs’ effort as BHS clinched third place in the Pacific League and an automatic playoff entry. The loss knocked JBHS from earning a postseason berth.

2015 Burroughs 47, Burbank 21. The Indians rallied from an early 14-0 deficit to score 40 unanswered points en route to a resounding victory and with it the outright Pacific League championship, their first title since 2011. The win propelled Burroughs to a 10-2 season where the Indians advanced to the CIF quarterfinals and achieved their best season since 2006. Burbank jumped out to a quick 14-point lead only to see its cross-town rivals respond with 19 second quarter points. Junior Chance Bell (164 yards on 20 carries) broke off a nifty 76-yard touchdown run that gave the Indians a 26-14 advantage early in the third quarter. Senior quarterback Steven Hubbell (17 of 28 for 268 yards) threw five touchdowns to four different receivers as JBHS snapped the three game series win streak strung together by the Bulldogs. Burbank has never defeated Burroughs four straight times in the 67 year history of this phenomenal and historical rivalry.

2016 – Burbank 36, Burroughs 7. Behind a dominating effort, the Bulldogs defeated their cross-town rivals for the fourth time in five years, the first time that Burbank has accomplished that feat during the 68-year history of this rivalry. Darnell Williams, younger brother of former BHS star James Williams, scored two touchdowns and rushed for 66 yards on 10 carries. Senior quarterback Guy Gibbs threw for 128 yards and a touchdown. Meanwhile, Burroughs’ offense was stifled throughout the game by a tenacious Bulldogs’ defense that limited Indians’ standout Chance Bell to just 12 yards on 20 carries. The decisive win marked Burbank’s largest margin of victory over Burroughs since 1969 when the Bulldogs won, 44-8. The victory propelled Burbank to historic heights as the Bulldogs advanced to their first-ever CIF championship game only to lose to Yorba Linda, 31-21, in the Division VIII final. Burbank won a school-record 10 games during a magical season and one for the ages.

2017 – Burbank 41, Burroughs 14. The Bulldogs capped off an unbeaten run through league en route to their first Pacific League title since 2009 with a convincing 41-14 win over Burroughs. Burbank won for the fifth time in the last six meetings against its crosstown rivals. Bulldogs quarterback Matthew Porras finished 21 of 32 for 239 yards with four touchdowns. The Bulldogs broke up the scoring as Porras and fellow junior Duncan Smith hooked up on a 7-yard touchdown pass with 43 seconds left in the first half. It was the first of three touchdowns the pair would team up for. Darnell Williams scored the first of his two touchdowns in the third quarter to give Burbank a 28-14 advantage. Williams finished with 152 yards on 30 carries. Burbank (10-3) used the unblemished campaign in league to catapult and win two playoff contests only to fall short in the CIF Division VII semifinals. The year before the Bulldogs reached the CIF championship game. The last two seasons have served as the greatest two-year run in Burbank football history.

2018 – 70th all-time meeting!!