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Theater Students Win At CETA

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Members of the SJHHS Stallion Theatre Company attended the California Educational Theatre Association (CETA) Festival on January 13-15, where two seniors received scholarships and another, a first place award in film. Students attending the festival view shows presented by other high schools in California, participate in workshops to learn more about acting or design, and compete for awards and college scholarships all during the span of three days.

Among the other high volume of awards given out during the festival, a few stand above the rest in selectivity and honor. There are only two scholarships available for technical theatre and this year they were both awarded to SJHHS seniors Rose Krol and Julia Gordon.

Gordon and Krol won the first place award for the Senior Technical Design Scholarship, where the students had to theoretically design an entire show and present it for a panel of professional designer judges and the audience of fellow competitors.

The presentation was prepared ahead of time and paperwork had to be printed. Krol even had to go to Office Max two hours before the presentation to print her design.

The competitors had to choose from the shows “Midsummer’s Night Dream,” “Our Town,” and “Six Characters in Search of an Author”  to create their complete show design. Krol chose to design “Six Characters in Search of an Author” and Gordon chose “Our Town.”

They both won a scholarship of $500 out of the group of 13 competitors that will go toward their college education and will be sent to whichever university they choose to attend.

Krol and Gordon prepared for the award all throughout the school year of 2016 before the actual festival during the month of January. “

I did the thought process and the design for my project all throughout the year. I have been working on it for a while, but I didn’t actually sit down and start writing it until the week of”

— Rose Krol

,” Krol said.

Krol accredits her success to teacher Cambria Beilstein who emphasized thinking outside the box and explaining why the students do every aspect of the design.  

Krol and Gordon are not the first SJHHS students to win this award, however. “We have a three year streak of winning that scholarship. So last year, Hunter Klein got second place and the year before that Sarah Stickler won and she got first place,” Gordon said.

Being the third year to win the award, Gordon said, “It makes me feel more confident about who I am as a designer in technical theater and I think it also shows how strong our technical theater program is here at San Juan Hills.”

Krol and Gordon, however, were not the only students to win awards at this festival. Senior Charles Lindberg won first place for an award in film.

Lindberg submitted a trailer he filmed for SJHHS’ production of Dark of the Moon and won the award, beating the 20-25 other schools who also submitted a trailer. Unlike most other schools, he chose not to have the trailer be in the style of an interview. Instead, the trailer takes the format of a more film-style movie preview.

No one else at SJHHS has ever won first place for this award, but Lindberg did come in third place during his sophomore year.

Although most productions at the school have trailers filmed, they are not always submitted to competitions like CETA. Often the trailers are submitted last minute, if there is time.

“I want to be a film director so any opportunity I get to film something, I take it,” Lindberg said. “To be recognized for that was pretty cool.”

Overall, SJHHS’ theatre program has continued to excel and, although these winning seniors may be leaving after graduation, the school should expect more awards from the program in the future.

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