AVPA Theater Students Stretch and Stand Out at Theatre Competition

“I love DTASC because I get to work with people of all grades and experience levels, some who usually pursue tech over performance,” beamed CCHS senior Josie Peinemann. “And I got to direct for the first time in a safe environment where I didn’t feel like my lack of experience in the area was an inhibitor to my creativity.”

DTASC, the Drama Teachers Association of Southern California, creates a network where theatre educators and students can effectively communicate ideas, share resources, workshop and showcase their theatre skills. Last weekend, 57 schools from the region came in multiple categories including: Tech Theater/Design (Sets, Lights, Graphics/Publicity, Costume Design); Audition Monologues; Small Group Categories: (Female Playwrights, LGBTQ+ Playwrights, Oscar Best Picture Nominees), and Large Group Categories (Open Drama, Open Comedy, Open Musical).

Josie and 39 other students from Culver City High School’s AVPA (Academy of Visual and Performing Arts), led by Creative Director of Theatre Lee Margaret Hanson, competed in six categories at the annual DTASC competition. All talked about how DTASC helps them stretch in their craft.

“The style of DTASC is so specific. It really emphasizes aspects of performance and technical theatre that I don’t always consider,” said AVPA student Marin Halbert. “It shows that we can create beautiful scenes and tell important stories without elaborate sets, costumes or makeup- and in such a short amount of time. Everyone I saw compete was so incredible and I have so many new ideas for future projects. It is an honor to be able to represent my school and my craft in this festival.”

Ginger Anderson-Willis said, “It has helped me grow so much as a director and a writer, translating full plays into short scenes, working with texts I never would have experienced before like Shakespeare, and figure out how to communicate my ideas to actors. It has challenged me and been a source of excitement and inspiration.”

All Culver City High School participants made it to the semi-finals, and CCHS brought home trophies in two categories:

Audition Monologue – Marin Halbert
Large Open Drama – Girl in the White Pinafore directed by Marin Halbert and Ginger Anderson Willis; featuring Isaiah Griffin, Jones Hodur, Catherine Laborde, Nazira Paul, Sophia Pezo and Katie Sriro

“I love DTASC so much because you get to work with other students to be so creative and produce amazing work!,” said Trinity Fuller. “I competed in the musical category and it was one of the best things I have done in my high school career.”

Congratulations to all participants.


The Actors' Gang

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