WMHS chosen as part of Hennepin Theatre Trust SpotLight Program

Ann Jorgenson, Kathryn Jorgenson, Whitney Rhodes, SpotLight Manager, and Joyce Peterson recently participated in an orientation event at the State Theatre in Minneapolis for the Hennepin Theatre Trust’s SpotLight program. (Submitted photo)

Ann Jorgenson, Kathryn Jorgenson, Whitney Rhodes, SpotLight Manager, and Joyce Peterson recently participated in an orientation event at the State Theatre in Minneapolis for the Hennepin Theatre Trust’s SpotLight program. (Submitted photo)

Watertown-Mayer High School was one of 67 schools in the state chosen to participate in Hennepin Theatre Trust’s SpotLight program this year.

Hennepin Theatre Trust, a non-profit organization and the owner of the Orpheum, Pantages, State and New Century Theaters, is dedicated to arts-inspired community cultural development. One of the Trust’s programs is the SpotLight program, which honors and supports Minnesota high school musical theater students by offering a multitude of master classes now available to Watertown-Mayer students throughout the year. These classes are taught by Broadway touring professionals and held downtown in the Trust‘s theaters.

The Trust also offers support to high school musical productions by providing theater professionals who will come to the school and assist in areas the cast may be having difficulty in such as, technical, choreography, diction and more.

A pre-evaluation will be done by a Trust representative one week before Watertown-Mayer’s fall musical — Seusical, The Musical — opens on Nov. 14. This pre-evaluation is a tool for which the cast and directors can use to make changes to fine tune their show.

During the three performances, three evaluators will attend the shows and evaluate all aspects of the production including house operations, technical, direction, acting and more. All areas of the production will be scored.

If any one cast or crew member receives an “Outstanding” score they will be asked to participate in the SpotLight Showcase Awards event held at the Orpheum Theater in June. If the show receives an “Outstanding” overall score, the cast will perform a musical medley at the Showcase Awards.

“This is really an honor for our school and an amazing opportunity for not only our musical’s cast and crew, but also the 40 students who are in the newly created Behind The Scenes enrichment club.” director Joyce Peterson said.  “I am so excited for them to have access to all that the SpotLight program has to offer.”

Behind The Scenes is a new enrichment club, created by Peterson and Activities Director Mary Haugen, that brings students together to learn, hands on, all aspects of the Performing Arts Center. The four parts to the club are costuming hair and make up, set design construction and art work, technical, and head of house which consists of ushers and ticketing advertising  marketing and fundraising.

An orientation was held Oct. 13 at the historic State Theater. It was attended by Peterson, student liaison and Watertown senior Kathryn Jorgenson, and parent liaison Ann Jorgenson.

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