Huntington Wins Two
A strong year for the Huntington High School drama club was capped off with two Hunting-Tony Awards. The prizes were presented during a festive evening before packed house at the John W. Engeman Theater in Northport.
The Huntington actors were vying for awards against teenagers from high school drama clubs across the town. There were separate categories for drama productions and musicals. Huntington High School's shows this year were A Midsummer Night's Dream last fall and Little Women this spring. Huntington was nominated for 10 awards in all.
Huntington sophomore Chelsea Holmes won the award for Best Actress in a Musical for her role as "Jo March" in Little Women. Huntington's second award was for the Best Playbill & Marketing/Publicity for a Musical for Little Women. "It was an honor to be recognized for the art I love so much," Ms. Holmes said.
Huntington's nominees in the drama category included:
• Best Lead Actress: Monica Owen (Helena) – A Midsummer Night's Dream
• Best Featured Female: Chelsea Holmes (Titania) – A Midsummer Night's Dream
• Best Stage Crew: A Midsummer Night's Dream
Huntington's nominees in the musical category included:
• Best Lead Actress: Chelsea Holmes (Jo March) – Little Women
• Best Supporting Actor: Josh Morris (Laurie Laurence) – Little Women
• Best Supporting Actress: Katherine Gerdes (Amy March) – Little Women
• Best Female Vocalist: Chelsea Holmes (Jo March) – Little Women
• Best Musical: Little Women
• Best Marketing/Publicity: Little Women
• Best Scenery/Props: Little Women
Huntington High School's acting royalty turned out at the Engeman Theatre for the special evening. "It was a really fun experience and it felt good to be recognized for my hard work," Ms. Owen said.
The event drew drama clubs from across the town and was modeled after the real Tony Awards. Huntington High School had a substantial cheering section supporting its award hopefuls. "Seeing all of the talented actors and actresses from all the high schools was great," Zach Burden said. "We cheered on all our beautiful nominees."
"It was great to see the energy and excitement the kids brought to the theatre last night," said Michael Schwendemann, a Huntington High School English teacher and the drama club's faculty advisor. "Whether nominated or not the camaraderie shown between high schools was awesome to see. It was a way not only to appreciate their own achievements but to learn how much talent they are surrounded by. What a wonderful fun-filled night!"
Katherine Gerdes accepted Huntington's award for Best Playbill & Marketing/Publicity for a Musical. "I had fun and I looked good, you know," she joked.
It was that kind of evening. The young actors reveled in the pomp and circumstance, enjoyed wearing their finest clothing and basked in the attention directed their way.
"The night was really enjoyable, even though we didn't win much," Sarah Mosden said. "We were like a big happy family on a night out."
Jamie Moskowitz found the event delightful, too. "It was a great way to connect with other drama clubs from across the town and see the culmination of everyone's hard work," she said.
"Going to the Hunting-Tony's was such a great experience for our drama
club," Stephanie Shea said. "We all got to dress up and be together, which is always a good time. It was great to see all of the other schools and meet new people! I am so proud of us and our wins and can't wait to do it all again next year!"
The event was hosted by Town Board members Susan Berland and Mark Cuthbertson in cooperation with the John W. Engeman Theater.