Pinewood thespians receive superior ratings

  • Friday, February 28, 2014

Monica Kreber/Journal Scene Pinewood Prep’s play “Lockdown” received superior ratings in last weekend’s thespian festival in Rock Hill.

Pinewood Prep’s High School drama students are officially “superior” actors after participating in a recent state-wide workshop.

Last weekend Pinewood Prep’s High School Drama students headed to the International Thespian Society / Palmetto Dramatic Association Festival and the young actors received “superior” ratings.

Thirty of the top public and private high school drama programs compete at the festival for chances to continue on to the national competition and compete for national scholarships.

This year’s festival was held at Winthrop University in Rock Hill. Pinewood’s students competed in the one-act play category, as well as individual categories in solo acting, duets, make-up and set design. The goal of the individual categories is to be recommended to the national competition over the summer. The one-act participants compete for a rating, with only a handful of the participants earning the top “superior” rating.

Out of the 19 students who went to Rock Hill 11 are moving on to nationals for their individual events: Mason Hazel, Cameron Poaps, Clayton Are, Seth Williams, Grayson Charpia, Anna Kassing, Ashley Ellin, Janelle Laribo, Gillian Williams, Austin McCray and Ben Gamble. All the students on the trip were Honors students in 10th through 12th grades.

The students were lead under the guidance of theatre teacher Shannon Horn. “It’s a learning experience for them for sure,” Horn said. “I always tell them if they don’t get that superior rating that is fine, but what did you gain from it and what would you do differently next time?”

Horn said the festival is always a great time for the students to network and meet other theatre students from other schools. Plus, it is always held at a college within the state so it is also a good time for high school students to look at potential schools.

“It’s not often that they get to hang out with 300 to 400 other theatre kids from across South Carolina,” Horn said. “It’s fun to be a huge group of people who love what you love.”

The group performed “Lockdown” during the festival, and received a superior rating, as well as the outstand Ensemble Award. Cameron Poaps received an Excellence in Acting for his performance and Kerstin Fridh received a Superior Acting for her performance. Fridh also received the Blair Beasley Scholarship, worth $1,000.

“I’m always really proud of the kids,” Horn said. “I’m always amazed and impressed that they can balance their academics, their athletics and still make it to rehearsal on time.”

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