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DTASC Goes Live and Peninsula Drama Wins Big
 
Saturday April 23 was another milestone in the return to normalcy as the Drama Teachers' Association of Southern California (DTASC) hosted their first live festival since November of 2019 at Royal Oak Middle School. 
 
The Varsity Division festival saw our Drama 2 and 3/4 Advanced students competing against 22 other schools in five technical theater and 7 acting categories, and the students of Peninsula Drama found some great success.
 
Our entry in Small Open Drama was a semi-finalist (Director: Prudence Bhattarai, featuring Christian Downs, Stella Lenzie, Jack Pratley). Reaching the Finals, Elena Fischer received an Honorable Mention award for her entry in the Audition Monologue category. 
 
Elsewhere we earned 5th place in the World Court Costume Design category (Siena Funiciello, Angelina Lakis & Bela Osorio), 4th place in Set Design (Simon Ackermann, Andrew Peters & Chloe Sohngen), Large Group A Midsummer Night's Dream (Zaria Ackermann, James Callaghan, Megan Cherry, Athena Crescibene, Colin Hassett, Maddy Magana; Directed by Tiffany Arita) and the musical category - Music by David Bowie, Words by Shakespeare (Stella Cortese, Melody Dominguez, Gabby Hoffman, Grecia Merino-Cornejo, Sydney Miller, Cole Moore, Jacob Pascover & Soomin Sun; Directed by Grecia Merino-Cornejo).
3rd Place finishes in Lighting Design (Melanie Flores, Mark Fraley, Kai Rinzler & Iris O’Connor),  Character Costume Design (Angela Hoffmann, Paul Kerker & Delaney O’Connor), Open History (Jessica Doty, Bethany Vetchtein, Rikki Walker; Directed by Aaron Byrnes) and Large Group Romeo & Juliet (Juliette Belke, Emily Feigle, Alison King, Maya Locano, Erica Tsuei; directed by Alison King). 2nd place trophies were earned by Graphics and Publicity Design (Ashley Gomez, Kayla Law & Ben Leet), and the Original Scene - Shakespeare Play in Modern Day Category (Evalynn Castro, Julia Doty, Cheyenne Grenda, William Kelly; directed by Trenton Sakamoto).
 
Overall, Peninsula Drama ranked 3rd in Sweepstakes, based on total earned points across all competition categories. A very exciting and successful return to live theater festivals indeed. 
 
An Inspector Called and Peninsula Drama Answered (December 2021)
Peninsula Drama's Fall play, An Inspector Calls by J.B. Priestley opened to rave reviews as Peninsula Drama made their return to the stage, hosting audiences in the PAC for the first time since the early closure of Freaky Friday in March of 2020. Audiences were blown away by the power of the performances from both casts of this double-cast production, and they were equally taken aback by the work of our stage crew who were able to effectively whisk us into Northern England in the early 20th century. Between the beautiful set, production designs, costumes and hair and the support of impeccable lighting and sound design, we were transported into the home of the Birlings.
 
High praise came from the California Educational Theatre Association (CETA) as their set of adjudicators came to pass judgement on our production. Though Peninsula Drama's production did not finish as a top-3 production LA Country (8 out of 24 schools) based on scores, a handful of our students were singled out for exceptional work. 
 
One judge wrote, "The acting is top-notch. The directing is deeply emotional and evocative. The technical elements are mostly superb." and another commented, "The technical design was simple and purposeful, the directorial stage pictures were well thought-out and subtly enhanced themes repetitiously, and the ferocious momentum found during peaks of the play made by the cast was stunning to behold." 
 
The cast of AN INSPECTOR CALLS
(pc: Kaylie Pak, La Pantera)
 
CETA recognized a number of our students from the cast, crew and production team for their efforts in bringing An Inspector Calls to the Peninsula High stage.
 
CETA Certificates of Achievement recipients:
Zaria Ackermann, Tiffany Arita, James Callaghan, Evalynn Castro, Athena Crescibene, Emily Feigle, Jessica Doty, Julia Doty, Elena Fischer, Cheyenne Grenda, Alyna Han, Alicia Jeong, Alison King, Stella Lenzie, Maya Locano, Maddy Magana, Grecia Merino-Cornejo, Sydney Miller, Jacob Pascover, Jackson Pratley, Trenton Sakamoto, Soomin Sun
The Costume Design Crew, The Set Construction Crew
 
An Inspector Calls was awarded many Certificates of Merit by CETA
 
Additionally, Director's Awards are handed out to one member of the cast and one member of the crew who showed an extra level of commitment and dedication to the production, this year the Director's Awards were presented to Tiffany Arita and Cheyenne Grenda.
 
Director's Awards Recipients, Cheyenne Grenda & Tiffany Arita
 
 

DTASC Goes Virtual Again (November, 2021)

At the Fall 2021 Drama Teachers’ Association of Southern California (DTASC) Festivals our Drama 1 Advanced students competed in the Junior Varsity Division (directed by our Drama 3/4 class) and the students in Drama 3/4 competed at the Varsity level.

At JV, Peninsula Drama had finalists in every category we entered. Final placements were Honorable Mention in Audition Monologue (Amanda Byrne, directed by Elena Fischer & Alison King; Same Scene (featuring Jonathan Herrmann, Holly Miller & Violet Neils and directed by Tiffany Arita, Stella Lenzie & Jessica Doty); We scored a 5th place trophy in the Large Open Comedy category (Giovanna Bearman, Leah Gold & Sidney Sidell, directed by Zaria Ackermann, Cheyenne Grenda & Erica Tsuei) and 4th place in Student Original Based on a News Article (Anara Cook, Elizabeth Lau & Kamara Matthews, directed by Evalynn Castro, Cole Moore & Rikki Walker). Overall we earned Honorable Mention as a finalist in Sweepstakes for overall scores across all categories.

At the Varsity festival semifinalists included: Audition Monologue (Prudence Bhattarai); Playwrights of Color (Zaria Ackermann, Elena Fischer, Maddy Magana & Soomin Sun, directed by Zaria Ackermann); Large Open Drama (Megan Cherry, Athena Crescibene, Melody Dominguez, Christian Downs, Stella Lenzie, Sydney Miller & Jack Pratley, directed by Megan Cherry & Melody Dominguez) and Large Open Comedy (Jessica Doty, Julia Doty, Emily Feigle, Cheyenne Grenda, Dontae Sheng, Amrutha Srivatsav, Erica Tsuei, Rikki Walker & Bethany Vetchtein, directed by Julia Doty). Our finalists included Honorable Mention recognition for Audition Monologue (Grecia Merino-Cornejo); Student Original Based on a News Article (Aaron Byrnes, Juliette Belke, Alison King & Trenton Sakamoto, directed by Trenton Sakamoto) and Open Musical (Tiffany Arita, James Callaghan, Stella Cortese, Colin Hassett, Gabby Hoffman, Cole Moore & Jacob Pascover). Our entry in Same Scene earned a 4th place trophy (Evalynn Castro, William Kelly & Maya Locano, directed by Maya Locano)

Visit www.DTASC.org for more information.

Another Successful DTASC Festival for Pen Drama (November, 2020)
This last month Peninsula Drama competed in the annual Drama Teachers’ Association of Southern California (DTASC) Fall Festival and found great success. For the first time in DTASC’s 100 year history, the full competition was held virtually and our students adapted admirably.

 

The students in Drama 1 Advanced, directed by our Drama ¾ Advanced students, excelled at the Junior Varsity Division. We placed 4th in Group Original (Megan Conrad and Angela Hoffman, directed by Prudence Bhattarai, Trenton Sakamoto); 3rd place in Small Group Comedy (Simon Ackermann & Delaney O’Connor, directed by Evalynn Castro, Stella Cortese, Jacob Pascover, Sarena Vetchtein) and Musical (Mark Fraley, Ben Leet, Isabela Osorio, Chloe Songen, Taryn Yamato; directed by Aaron Byrnes, Annelise Espinoza, Cheyenne Grenda, Zoe O’Neil, Kylie Young); 2nd place for Large Group Drama (Sienna Funiciello, Melanie Moore, Rebecca Pegan-Goldblum, Kai Rinzler, directed by Zaria Ackermann, Tiffany Arita, Melody Dominguez, Sydney Miller, Lizzie Navarro ) and Large Group Comedy (Ashley Gomez, Angelina Lakis, Kayla Law, Andrew Peters, directed by Julia Doty, Gabby Hoffman, Katie Lewis, Cole Moore). Overall, Peninsula’s Drama Department earned 1st place in Sweepstakes, based on points earned in each category of competition. An even greater accomplishment considering we only entered half of the categories.

 

At the Varsity competition, Peninsula Drama’s 10th, 11th and 12th graders competed admirably.

Semi-Finalists included Audition Monologue (Soomin Sun, directed by Trenton Sakamoto), Public Domain (Elena Fischer, Bethany Vetchtein, Julia Wagner, Alexander Yu, directed by Elena Fischer & William Kelly), Small Comedy (Emma Adams, Colin Hassett, Maddy Magana, directed by Tali Fortis), Large Drama (Cassie Bautista, Michelle Lin, Grecia Merino-Cornejo, Melody Dominguez, Stella Lenzie, Lizzie Navarro, Michael Porter, Brianna Yi, directed by Melody Dominguez & Lizzie Navarro) and Musical (Aaron Byrnes, Stella Cortese, Annelise Espinoza, Cheyenne Grenda, Gabby Hoffman, Cole Moore, Zoe O’Neil, Jacob Pascover, Amrutha Srivatsav, Quinn Sullivan, directed by Kylie Young). Our team made it to the finals and earned Honorable Mention in Costumes & Makeup Design (Emily Feigle, Eden Webster & Jessica Wiemels), Graphics/Publicity Design (Juliette Belke, Heidi Brust & Taylor Cowling) and Student Original (Zaria Ackermann, Maya Locano, Jackson Pratley, directed by Prudence Bhattarai). We earned 5th place in Set & Light Design (Bridget Callaghan, Christian Downs & Alison King) and Large Group Comedy (Tiffany Arita, Evalynn Castro, Julia Doty, Tom Evans, Sharon Iporac, Katie Lewis, Sydney Miller, Shumayl Shahzad, Dontae Sheng, directed by Sarena Vetchtein); and Francesca Genato earned 4th place in the Audition Monologue category (directed by  Trenton Sakamoto). Overall our Varsity group earned 5th place in Sweepstakes at the Varsity Division.

 

Congratulations to all of our performers and designers. All of their entries will be available to view on the Drama Department’s Vimeo page by the end of the week (November 20).

Drama Department Excels at Fall Theatre Competitions 

 

Over the last two weeks, members of the advanced Drama classes competed with schools from all over Southern California at the annual Drama Teachers Association of Southern California Fall Festivals.

 

At the Varsity Division, Peninsula Drama had semi-finalists in the following categories: Technical Theatre Design – Graphics & Publicity (Aaron Byrnes, William Kelly & Jackson Pratley); A Woman’s Voice (Cassandra Bautista & Arista Mozena), African American Playwrights (Anjali Gupta & Hasti Zahedian, directed by Sarah Kay Adams), Small Open Comedy (Lucas Arico, Tom Evans, Sharon Iporac & Katie Lewis, directed by Tali Fortis), Large Open Comedy (Bree Bennett, Macey Caron, Shumayl Shahzad & Brandon Weiner) and Open Musical (Anna Alaga, Annelise Espinoza, Michael Porter, Sarah Snow, Quinn Sullivan, Maili Tom, Brianna Yi & Kylie Young [director]). Three of our competition groups reached the finals, with Honorable Mention going to Technical Theatre Design – Costumes & Makeup (Zaria Ackerman, Jenny Cantu, Stella Cortese & Melody Dominguez) and Technical Theatre Design - Sets & Lights (Prudence Bhattarai, Colin Hassett, Trenton Sakamoto & Dontae Sheng). 4th place was earned by our entry in the Large Open Drama category (Emma Cool, Francesca Genato, Michelle Lin, Ley’ah McClain, Alexander Yu, directed by Gigi Moreno).

 

Drama 2, 3, 4 celebrate a successful Varsity DTASC Festival. October 24, 2019 at Calabasas High School. (pc: Seth Cohen)

 

At the Junior Varsity competition, all of our entries reached the final round.

5th Place – Small Open Comedy (Irene Oh, Nani Vierra-Lambert & Jessica Wiemels; directed by Katie Lewis and Sarah Kay Adams); 4th Place – Large Open Comedy (Juliette Belke, Heidi Brust, Bridget Callaghan, Erica Tsuei & Rikki Walker; directed by Arista Mozena, Sarah Snow & Brandon Weiner); 4th Place – Large Open Drama (Bella Colton, Taylor Cowling, Michelle Dardon, Jessica Doty & Eden Webster; Directed by Lucas Arico & Gigi Moreno)

2nd Place – A Woman’s Voice (Dominic Ebilane & Allison King; Directed by Emma Cool & Kylie Young). Overall, PV Peninsula placed 6th in Sweepstakes, thanks to the strong showing from all of their groups, despite competing against schools who were entered in at least seven of the nine competition categories at the Junior Varsity Division.

 

An exciting Fall competition season comes to a close for Peninsula Drama, and they are looking forward to continued success at April’s DTASC Shakespeare Festivals.

 

CETA 2019 (January 28, 2019)

 

Kudos to the Peninsula High Drama students that attended the California Educational Theatre Associations' Southern High School Theater Festival in Fullerton.

  

The three day weekend festival offers a variety of events for theater students from all over California including workshops led by professionals in the industry. 

 

Students enjoyed several performances and took advantage of the wide variety of theater opportunities. Congratulations to Peninsula High senior, Rachel Edelstein on earning one of five senior scholarships awarded during the weekend among 96 auditioners. Peninsula Drama also earned 2nd place in the Film Trailer competition for their entry from She Kills Monsters (Produced by Chloe Green, Sydney Miller & Kaito Suzuki). 

 

Many other students involved in our Fall productions also earned Certificates of Merit from CETA Adjudicators for their efforts: 

For Girls Like That:

Anjali Gupta (11)
Costume Design
Greta Cox (12)
Julia Warrick (12)
Rachel Edelstein (12)
Sophia Molino (12)
For She Kills Monsters
Aidan Jasanis (11)
Anna Alaga (10)
Bea Albino (12)
Diego Sheng (12)
Elizabeth Ozawa (12)
Emma Adams (9)
Emma Cool (11)
Evalynn Castro (9)
Fightcore
Gigi Moreno (11)
Gracie Edler (12)
Ian Roettger (02)
Linda Muggeridge
Molly Scott (12)
Noah Shafer (12)
Rachel Edelstein (12)
Saffy Laurio (12)
Sarah Vakil (12)
Zaria Ackerman (9)
 
Mr Cohen with students at the CETA 2019 Student Festival  Rachel Edelstein receiving her Senior Scholarship Award  Students from our Fall productions receiving their Certificates of Merit

DTASC, Fall 2018 (November 6, 2018)

This past weekend wrapped up a successful Fall competition season for Peninsula Drama where they entered the Drama Teacher’s Association of Southern California’s (DTASC) 77th Annual Fall Festival.


At the DTASC Varsity Division, competing against 67 other high schools, Peninsula Drama’s Drama 3/4 Advanced students reached the semi-finals in all acting categories. Our lone finalist entry, Rachel Edelstein, earned 5th place out of 101 entries in the Audition Monologue category .

 

Our 9th graders in Drama I Advanced (directed by members of Drama 3/4) competed against 30 other schools at the Junior Varsity competition and had an amazing day! All of our groups made the final round and brought home some hardware. The results:

Honorable Mention for: Small Group Drama (Emma Adams & Viviana Hilario; directed by: Tess Rivera) and Large Group Drama (Stella Lenzie, Sydney Miller & Kourney Williams; directed by Garrett Moore & Gigi Moreno). 3rd place for: Large Group Comedy (Prudence Bhattarai, Colin Hassett, Jackson Pratley, Dontae Sheng & Amrutha Srivatsav; directed by Sarah Adams and Sophia Molino) and Musical (Tiffany Arita, Aaron Byrnes, Stella Cortese, Melody Dominguez, Cheyenne Grenda, Gabby Hoffman, Maya Locano & Cole Moore; Directed by Emma Cool, Ley’ah McClain & Sarah Snow). 2nd Place for: Audition Monologue (Kyra Kaya, directed by: Saffy Laurio & Sarah Vakil) and Student Original (Evalynn Castro, Elena Fischer, Will Kelly & Jacob Pascover; Directed by Shioka Chetanna & Blue Martinez). And First place was earned by Audition Monologue (Maddy Magana, directed by: Saffy Laurio & Sarah Vakil) and Small Group Comedy (Zaria Ackerman, Sagan Barbour, Julia Doty & Sarena Vetchtein; Directed by Maddie Ness & Hasti Zahedian)

 

All of that individual and group success added up as Peninsula High School took home 1st place in Sweepstakes, based on points accumulated in all categories throughout the day. Congratulations to our competitors at both divisions.

 
DTASC SPRING 2017
The Drama Department comes up big at annual Shakespeare Festival
On Saturday, April 22, 2017 our Drama I and Drama 3/4 Advanced classes competed in the Drama Teacher’s Association of Southern California’s (DTASC) 97th Spring Shakespeare Festival.

In the Junior Varsity Division, PVPHS reached semifinals in Modern Adaptation (Aina Williams & Hasti Zahedian, directed by Ashley Zoeckler). Honorable Mention was earned by finalists in Audition Monologue (Atina Hamidi, directed by Lauryn Williams) Audition Monologue (Maddie Ness, directed by Lauryn Williams), Shakespeare Uncut (Blue Martinez, Arista Mozena, Kat Neumann, Bella Zuniga, Directed by Autumn Rinck) and Large Group Comedy - A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Emma Cool, Anjali Gupta, Sarah Snow & Maili Tom, Directed by Julianna Yonis & Kara Zupanovich) 5th Place for Theme Collage (Sarah Adams, Amada Kalaydjian, Miles Muir & Kaito Suzuki, directed by Alyssa Condon and Trevor Rinzler). PVPHS earned first place in Large Group Drama - Richard III (Leila Bahraini, Elissa Luce, Ley’ah McClain & Angelica Moreno ,directed by Courtlyn Foster & Alexa Jones).

At the Varsity Division, Audition Monologists Austin Kelly and Joshua Medina reached the Semifinals, as well as Large Group Comedy - A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Gabriella Campbell, Naomi Drayton, Sophia Goodin, Samantha Herrmann, Trevor Rinzler & Ashley Zoeckler, directed by Lexie Jones). Pen earned Honorable Mention for Shakespeare Uncut (Madison Hermon & Lauryn Williams, Directed by Austin Kelly), 5th place in the Shakespeare’s Contemporaries category (Natalia Achatz, Sophie Jacobs, Isabella Navarro & Kara Zupanovich) & 4th place for Large Group Drama - Richard III (Lucas Grenda, Erika Placer, Julianna Yonis & Elise Zimmerman, directed by Courtlyn Foster). Junior Alexa Jones earned first place for her Costume Design for Richard III in the Technical Theatre: Character Costume category.

PVPHS earned Honorable Mention in Sweepstakes for both Varsity and Junior Varsity divisions for finishing in the top 10 overall among all competing schools.

Visit our Vimeo page to see some the Varsity and Junior Varsity performances. . .
 
DTASC FALL 2017
Peninsula Drama Completes Another Successful Festival Season

On October 28, students in Drama 3/4 Advanced competed at the Drama Teachers Association of Southern California Fall Varsity Festival. Competing against 82 schools at Calabasas High School, Peninsula Drama reached the Semifinal round in Student Original (Bea Albino, Courtney Barber, Sophia Molino, Julia Warrick; Directed by Lauryn Williams) and Large Group Comedy (Liam Goodin, Jae Hwang, Sofia Molina, Elizabeth Ozawa, Noah Shafer, directed by Isabella Navarro). Finalists included Honorable Mention for Technical Theatre - Costume Design (Leila Bahrami, Arista Mozena & Katarina Neumann); 4th Place in Set/Light Design (Blue Martinez, Ley’ah McClain-Perez, Angelica Moreno, Maddie Ness & Isabella Zuniga) and Audition Monologue (Rachel Edelstein; directed by Chloe Albino & Kara Zupanovich).
PVPHS Received two first place finishes: Graphics & Publicity Design (Emma Cool, Sarah Snow & Hasti Zahedian) and Lauryn Williams finished 1st out of 98 competitors in the Audition Monologue category (directed by Chloe Albino & Kara Zupanovich).

All this success earned PVPHS 9th place overall out of 75 competing schools.

The Drama Department was competing again, this time with the Drama I Advanced class at the Junior Varsity DTASC competition on November 4. This time around, all of our entrants made their way to the final round.

Honorable Mention went to Audition Monologue (Sophia Daniel,; Directed by Kara Zupanovich), Leading Ladies (Sarina Bacich, Lilly Odhner & Brianna YI; Directed by Lexie Jones and Tess Rivera), Horror/Thriller (Rachel Crawford, Katherine Lews & Thomas Evans; Directed by Autumn Rinck & Ayron Shin), Large Group Comedic (Annika Daniel, Francesca Genato, Kat Kugler, Leili Rose Mohammadi & Zeke Glavas; Directed by Shioka Chetanna, Sophia Molino & Diego Sheng) and Open Musical (Kevin Riley, Quinn Sullivan, Jacob Wong & Kylie Young; Directed by Erin Walker & Elise Zimmerman). Our 9th graders also earned 5th Place in Large Group Dramatic (Macey Caron, Anneliese Espinosa, Shanna Ziobro; Directed by Chloe Albino, Lucas Grenda & Samantha Herrmann); and 3rd Place for Student Original (Jordan Cherry & Zoe O’Neill; Directed by Natalia Achatz, Alexa Jones & Saffy Laurio).

Overall, Peninsula Drama scored a 5th place finish out of 27 schools in Sweepstakes.
 
FOOTLIGHTERS 2015
pic 
12th grader Ryan Axberg (Igor in the Spring Musical Young Frankenstein) was chosen as one five recipients of the Musical Theatre West annual Footlighters scholarships. Ryan and the other scholarship winners were honored on Saturday, March 21 at MTW's 'Music in the Morning' event which featured performances by all the scholarship winners. In all, Musical Theatre West selected 10 outstanding high school juniors and seniors out of 43 applicants from all over Southern California.
 
CALIFORNIA YOUTH IN THEATER DAY 2015
 
Senior Brianna Bowers participates in California Youth In Theatre Day, 2015

On March 17, 2015, over two hundred Theatre students, theatre educators and administrators from schools all over California gathered at the state capitol topic breakfast with legislators and legislative aides. During the past twelve years over two thousand students and teachers have participated in this statewide event. Brianna, along with prize-winning Theatre students were invited to perform at the California Department of Health during the 18th Annual CYIT. Brianna earned her invitation based upon her senior scholarship auditions at January’s CETA Theatre Festival.

The Governor and the Legislature of California declared March 17, 2015, as California Youth in Theatre Day. The Legislative Resolution by the Senator Hannah-Beth Jackson states that “Whereas these students are the future of the arts and entertainment business of the twenty-first century; and Whereas, by succeeding in theatre, the students learn the art of creative endeavors with assurance; and Whereas, their success in theatre lead to enhance job esteem and cultural appreciation, therefore, it is declared that March 17, 2015, is CALIFORNIA YOUTH IN THEATRE DAY, and extends highest compliments to the student performers and their teachers, and parents on their accomplishments and their promise.”

Brianna and Mr. Cohen met with our local legislators, Assembly-member David Hadley and Senator Ben Allen, in addition to her performance at the event. And spoke with them about the importance of arts in education and government’s need to continue to support the arts and education as a whole. Congratulations Brianna!