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- Senior High School
The Hennepin Theatre Trust awarded three Benilde-St. Margaret’s students with Outstanding Achievement Honors for their participation in BSM’s production of Irving Berlin’s White Christmas.
Lance Hoover ‘23 and Bianca Mojica ‘23 received honors for Outstanding Performances in a Leading Role, while Grace Ehrmantraut ‘23 earned recognition for Outstanding in Technical Leadership as stage manager for the BSM fall musical.
The BSM drama department also received an honorable mention for Achievement in Theatre while Cordelia Wolf ‘23 received an honorable mention in a Leading Role.
“Being a part of ‘White Christmas’ was such a dream,” said Mojica. “We all worked so hard on the show, and it feels amazing to be recognized for a production and a performance that I can say I’m genuinely proud of! Hennepin Theatre Trust’s Spotlight Education program is an exciting aspect of doing BSM drama because having outside sources of feedback encourages all of us to be at our best at all times.”
Mojica played the role of Betty Haynes in the musical White Christmas, based on the much-loved 1954 musical film of the same name. She previously received an Outstanding Performance award and Honorable Mention for her performances during the 2021-2022 school year.
For Hoover, who played the role of Phil Davis in White Christmas, this represents his last theatrical performance while a student at BSM. “Receiving this award was a very special moment for me because it’s something I’ve aspired towards for many years,” he said, adding, “Performing in White Christmas was different—in the best way. There’s something daunting about attempting an iconic classic, not to mention that this was BSM’s first big dance show in years. This made it incredibly exhilarating to see our hard work in tap shoes and top hats come to life, and that we could pull off a more challenging period show.”
BSM has participated in Hennepin Theatre Trust’s Spotlight program since 2011, an annual review process for high school theater programs throughout the state of Minnesota. Each show is reviewed by three anonymous theater professionals and a technical evaluator who watch and evaluate the productions.
The Spotlight Showcase is Minnesota high school theater’s biggest celebration featuring over 1,600 students from across the state, recognized for excellence in drama productions.
Ehrmantraut has been involved in drama throughout her time at BSM, and her leadership as stage manager for BSM theatrical productions has provided opportunities to develop her passion for theater.
“Being a part of White Christmas was such an amazing experience. Everyone I worked with was so dedicated to making the show the best it could be, and I’m so glad I got to work with them,” Ehrmantraut explained, “This is my third show being a stage manager for the BSM shows, and I’ve found it to be such a wonderful creative outlet for me. My award is for everyone who’s helped me along the way, not just for me!”
As part of the recognition for excellence in drama productions, BSM students will head downtown in June 2023 to work with theater professionals and other students from across the state. They will also perform on stage at the historic State Theatre in Minneapolis.
“I loved seeing that the ensemble dance and performance all received evaluator shoutouts on top of the Outstandings received for technical performance, tech leadership, tech team,” said Jake Mahler, artistic director for BSM's drama department.
“The honors received for White Christmas are particularly special given everyone pulled together as a team and brought this festive show to life. I couldn't be more proud of the whole team.”
BSM’s productions are annually recognized for the caliber of work presented by students both on stage and behind the scenes. Red Knights sing, act, and dance on stage while other classmates build the set, prepare lighting and sound, and manage props and costumes. All of which provides students with opportunities to experience all aspects of presenting a full-length production.
BSM drama is currently preparing for the junior high production of Mary Poppins Jr, and the senior high spring musical, Mamma Mia.
- performing arts