• 2017 True West Award: Claudia Carson

    by John Moore | Dec 06, 2017
    True West Awards. Claudia Carson. Photo courtesy Jimmy Awards

    2017 TRUE WEST AWARDS  

    Day 6: Claudia Carson


    By John Moore
    Senior Arts Journalist

    Claudia Carson loves her job to her core. That job is to help high-students love theatre to their cores. And she’s pretty good at her job.

    There’s far more to it than that. Carson is also a stage manager, choreographer, director and teaching artist. But what really fuels her fire is coordinating two profoundly meaningful student programs for the Denver Center for the Performing Arts: The annual Bobby G Awards, which celebrate achievements in high-school musical theatre, and a year-round, statewide teen playwriting competition.

    “Claudia is just so joyful, so inspirational and so hungry to make an impact with students,” said DCPA Director of Education Allison Watrous. “She makes those programs possible with her year-round passion and commitment.”

    Claudia Carson True West BGA 2017The Bobby G Awards, which served 42 high schools and nearly 7,000 students last school year, are Carson’s true labor of love. She manages all operational elements of the wide-ranging, 5-year-old  program, including coordinating in-school workshops, professional adjudications of every production and a big, culminating Tony Awards-style party attended by nearly 2,000 each May at the Buell Theatre.

    Participating high schools have the opportunity to be mentored by DCPA Teaching Artists, and last year 24 schools signed on for 70 workshop classes. Once their school musicals go up, they are judged by a field of professional artists and educators who not only score each show for awards consideration, they provide detailed, constructive feedback that teachers can use to make their programs better.

    The awards ceremony itself is a remarkable celebration of the high-school theatre community. Carson not only directs the slick show, she choreographs sophisticated, original medleys that are performed by all of the male and female leading actor nominees. The two students ultimately named Outstanding Actor and Actress move on to the National High School Musical Theatre Awards in New York City, also known as The Jimmys. And Carson chaperones them every step of the way.

    “I think the magic of Claudia coordinating the Bobby G Awards program is that she cares so much about theatre in Colorado, and she cares so much about teachers,” Watrous said. “Claudia is a full-on champion of high-school theatre in Colorado.”

    More Colorado theatre coverage on the DCPA NewsCenter

    This past year, the DCPA’s fourth High School Playwriting Competition drew 132 one-act submissions from budding writers in 14 Colorado counties. That after Carson sent DCPA Teaching Artists to 46 high schools, where they conducted 138 workshops for more than 2,800 students. Four of the resulting scripts were chosen to be read by professional actors at the 2017 Colorado New Play Summit in February, and two were ultimately given fully staged productions through DCPA Education’s summer academy.

    Claudia Carson True West BGA 2016If that weren’t “job enough,” Carson also returned to her roots as a Stage Manager this year for the recent return engagement of Girls Only: The Secret Comedy of Women. And as a summer Teaching Artist for DCPA Education, she and a group of ambitious teens created an entire original musical from scratch — in just two weeks.

    If that sounds like a lot, you should know this about Carson: It's in her DNA. Her mother, Bev Newcomb-Madden, is a pioneer of  children's theatre in Denver and has directed more plays than any other woman in Colorado theatre history. Her sister, Glenna Kelly, is an accomplished actor who for a long time ran Kaiser-Permanente’s acclaimed Educational Theatre Programs for Colorado. And her daughter, Claire Carson, studied at Denver School of the Arts and SMU, and is now an actor in Dallas. That’s three generations of accomplished Newcomb women — and counting. And brother Jamie Newcomb performed in the DCPA Theatre Company's recent productions of Benediction and All the Way

    Pictured above and right: Claudia Carson with 2016 Bobby G Awards Outstanding Actors Curtis Salinger and Charlotte Movizzo, and DCPA  Senior Manager of Press and Promotions Heidi Bosk).

    “Claudia is a sensitive, caring and compassionate person, and she really has an innate ability to connect with teenagers,” said DCPA Broadway Executive Director John Ekeberg. “But at the same time, she is also a quintessential stage manager and mother, which is probably why she is so good at both jobs. Part of being a good mom is being a good stage manager.”

    Carson graduated from Denver East High School and studied journalism at Metropolitan State University of Denver. She came to the Denver Center as a stage manager for all Galleria Theatre shows for a five-year stretch starting in 2003 with the longest-running musical in Colorado theatre history, I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change. She later took charge of the global expansion of the runaway hit Girls Only and then served as Executive Assistant to DCPA President Randy Weeks, who died in 2014. She has also worked as a stage manager at Curious Theatre and the Arvada Center.

    But she seems to have found her sweetest spot working with students.

    “She’s doing what she loves with the people she loves the most,” Ekeberg said. “For someone who has done so many things, that’s a pretty cool culmination of a pretty cool career.”

    John Moore was named one of the 12 most influential theater critics in the U.S. by American Theatre Magazine in 2011. He has since taken a groundbreaking position as the Denver Center’s Senior Arts Journalist.


    True West Claudia Carson 2017

    The four finalists from the DCPA's fourth statewide High School Playwriting Competition had their plays presented as readings at the 12th annual 2017 Colorado New Play Summit, including 'Dear Boy on the Tree,' above, written by Jasmin Hernandez Lozano of Vista Peak Preparatory Academy in Aurora. Photo by John Moore for the DCPA NewsCenter.


    ABOUT THE TRUE WEST AWARDS: '30 DAYS, 30 BOUQUETS'
    The True West Awards, now in their 17th year, began as the Denver Post Ovation Awards in 2001. DCPA Senior Arts Journalist John Moore — along with additional voices from around the state — celebrate the entire local theatre community by recognizing 30 achievements from 2017 over 30 days, without categories or nominations. Moore was named one of the 12 most influential theater critics in the U.S by American Theatre Magazine in 2011. He has since taken a groundbreaking position as the Denver Center's Senior Arts Journalist. His daily coverage of the DCPA and the Colorado theatre community can be found at MyDenverCenter.Org

    A look back at the history of the True West Awards

    The 2017 True West Awards (to date)


    Video bonus 1: The 2017 Bobby G Awards




    Video bonus 2 Student playwriting:

  • Video: Tournament raises $110,000 for DCPA Education programs

    by John Moore | Jun 23, 2017

    The Denver Center’s annual Randy Weeks Memorial Golf Tournament, held June 16 at Legacy Ridge Golf Course in Westminster, raised a record $110,954 to support the DCPA’s arts in education programs.

    More than 106,000 students of all ages participated in DCPA Education programs around the state last year. Proceeds from the golf tournament help underwrite these important efforts, including:

    • Nearly 22,000 youth benefited from free and reduced-price tickets, matinees for their schools, and special Student Nights.
    • Shakespeare in the Parking Lot toured to 60 schools in 10 different counties, providing more than 9,000 unique interactions with students.
    • DCPA Teaching Artists offered workshops for all 189 schools participating in the annual DPS Shakespeare Festival, which attracted nearly 5,000 to the Denver Performing Arts Complex last month.
    • The Bobby G Awards celebrates achievements in Colorado high-school musical theatre. Trained judges adjudicate more than 40 local high-school musicals, culminating in a Tony Awards-style celebration that advances two local students to the National High School Musical Theatre Awards (The Jimmys) in New York City.
    • DCPA Education administers a year-round one-act playwriting competition to nurture high-school writers. This year, four finalists had their plays presented at the DCPA’s annual Colorado New Play Summit. And earlier this month, two plays were selected for fully staged performances in the Conservatory Theatre.
    • DCPA Education also contributes to workforce development through multiple industry courses, a Career Readiness program and Job Shadow Days.

    Randy Weeks worked from the ground up to become President of the Denver Center for the Performing Arts. He started in the box office as a college student and was named Executive Director of the DCPA’s Broadway division in 1991. He was promoted to president in 2004. As President, welcomed more than 11.6 million guests to the Denver Center until his death in 2014.

    Guests on the video above include DCPA CEO Janice Sinden, President John Ekeberg, Bobby G Awards winner Austin Hand, and golf-tournament event co-chairs Shawn Fowler and Maxwell Bull. Video by DCPA Video Producer David Lenk and intern Avery Anderson.


    Photo gallery: 2017 Randy Weeks Memorial Golf Tournament:

    Randy Weeks Memorial Golf Tournament

    DCPA CEO Janice Sinden gets a lift at the 2017 Randy Weeks Memorial Golf Tournament. To see more photos, click the forward arrow on the image above. Photos by Amanda Tipton. Photos may be downloaded and shared with proper photo credit. 


    Our 2017 Bobby G Awards Video Playlist (so far):
    Road to the Jimmy Awards: Austin Hand performs at the DCPA golf tournament
    Road to the Jimmy Awards: Bobby G Awards winners perform for DCPA Board
    The 2017 Bobby G Awards: The full video recap
    The 2017 Bobby G Awards: Nominated actors medley
    The 2017 Bobby G Awards: Performance Highlights
    The 2017 Bobby G Awards in 60 seconds
    The 2017 Bobby G Awards welcome to all participating schools

    More of our 2017 Bobby G Awards coverage:
    Our complete photo gallery
    Our full Bobby G Awards report: Persistence pays off at Valor Christian
    Video, photos and top quotes from the 2017 Bobby G Awards
    Meet your 2017 Bobby G Awards Outstanding Actress finalists
    Meet your 2017 Bobby G Awards Outstanding Actor finalists
    2016-17 Bobby G Award finalists are announced

    More Colorado theatre coverage on the DCPA NewsCenter


  • 2017 Bobby G Awards: Our complete video coverage

    by John Moore | Jun 08, 2017

    The Denver Center's fifth annual Bobby G Awards celebrated achievement in Colorado high-school theatre on May 25 at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House. The video above follows Colorado's Outstanding Actors Austin Hand and Elleon Dobias to New York City, where they advanced to compete in the National High School Musical Theatre Awards, otherwise known as the Jimmy Awards. There, they took workshops with Broadway creatives and performed at the Minskoff Theatre.

    The video below offers the complete original medley performed by the 10 Outstanding Actor and Actress nominees, as well as 2016 winners Charlotte Movizzo and Curtis Salinger:


    The nominees were:  

  • Chandler Carter, The Scarlett Pimpernel, Chaparral High School
  • Elleon Dobias, Pippin, Valor Christian High School
  • Austin Hand, The Addams Family, Fossil Ridge High School
  • Chantal King, Into the Woods, Niwot High School
  • Gable Kinsman, Pippin, Valor Christian High School
  • Trey Kochevar, Sweeney Todd, Lakewood High School
  • Cameron Marter, Sweeney Todd, Lakewood High School
  • Grace Nolte, The Scarlett Pimpernel, Chaparral High School
  • Asha Romeo, Rent, Boulder High School
  • Jesse Shafroth, Rent, Boulder High School

  • Videos by produced David Lenk for the DCPA NewsCenter.

    Our complete 2017 Bobby G Awards Video Playlist:

    Colorado's Bobby G Award winners at the 2017 Jimmy Awards in New York City
    Road to the Jimmy Awards: Austin Hand performs at the DCPA golf tournament
    Road to the Jimmy Awards: Bobby G Awards winners perform for DCPA Board
    The 2017 Bobby G Awards: The full video recap
    The 2017 Bobby G Awards: Nominated actors medley
    The 2017 Bobby G Awards: Performance Highlights
    The 2017 Bobby G Awards in 60 seconds
    The 2017 Bobby G Awards welcome to all participating schools

     

    More of our 2017 Bobby G Awards coverage:
    Our complete photo gallery
    Our full Bobby G Awards report: Persistence pays off at Valor Christian
    Video, photos and top quotes from the 2017 Bobby G Awards
    Meet your 2017 Bobby G Awards Outstanding Actress finalists
    Meet your 2017 Bobby G Awards Outstanding Actor finalists
    2016-17 Bobby G Award finalists are announced

    More Colorado theatre coverage on the DCPA NewsCenter


    A Bobby G Awards
    From Valor Christian's performance of 'Pippin.'
  • Video, photos and quotes from 2017 Bobby G Awards

    by John Moore | Jun 02, 2017
    A VIDEO LOOK BACK:


    Video by DCPA Video Producer David Lenk. Interviews by Senior Arts Journalist John Moore.


    The Bobby G Awards celebrate achievement in high-school musical theatre. Our look back in video, photos and words. 

    By John Moore
    Senior Arts Journalist

    The Denver Center's fifth annual Bobby G Awards celebrated achievement in Colorado high-school theatre on May 25 at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House. (Click here for complete night-of coverage of the awards, including a list of winners and nominees.)

    Bobby G Awards. Boulder High RentThe video above provides a recap of the evening and includes interviews with students, teachers and DCPA staff. Our photo gallery below includes the red-carpet walk, the awards, student performances, backstage trophy presentations and a look back at rehearsals leading up to the big night.

    The Bobby G Awards are a culmination of a year-long program administered by the Denver Center that emphasizes camaraderie and shared experiences - but there is also much at stake. The students named Outstanding Actor and Actress go on to represent Colorado at the The Jimmy® Awards/National High School Musical Theatre Awards in New York City. This year’s honorees are Elleon Dobias of Valor Christian High School in Highlands Ranch and Austin Hand of Fossil Ridge High School in Fort Collins.

    (Pictured above: Boulder High School's performance of 'Rent.')

    Our full report from the 2017 Bobby G Awards

    Bobby G Awards. Valor Christian.  PippinFor Dobias, was her record fourth straight nomination and first win. “Yes, I was nominated for Bobby G Awards my freshman, sophomore and junior year, and lost, lost, lost. But you lose some - you lose some,” she said with a giggle. “I was super excited to be nominated again this year just to have the chance to maybe go out on a win. I can't believe it. My mind is short-circuiting right now because I am just so happy.”

    Dovias played Catherine in Valor Christian's production of Pippin, which was named Outstanding Musical (pictured right). Valor Christian is a private Christian school in Highlands Ranch. "My freshman year when I auditioned for the school play, there were 10 people auditioning," she said. For Pippin, we had more than 60 people audition. I think recognition from a program like the Bobby G Awards has helped that growth."

    (Story continues below the photo gallery)

     

    COMPLETE PHOTO GALLERY:

    2017 Bobby G Awards

    To see more photos, click the forward arrow on the image above. All photos by John Moore and Emily Lozow for the DCPA NewsCenter. All photos may be downloaded and redistributed with permission from the DCPA with proper photo credit.

    Award presenters included Denver First Lady Mary Louise Lee and Colorado native Gene Gillette, who is a member of the national touring production of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, currently performing at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House through  June 25.

    Bobby G Awards. Valor Christian.  Pippin“High school was pretty rough for me,” Gillette told the DCPA NewsCenter. “I really look up to and envy these kids and the discipline they have to have gotten this far at this young of an age. I've been lucky to have theatre in my life." Asked his advice to the teens, Gillette wisdom of his own theatre professor from the University of Colorado. “He told me, "There are two wolves inside of you. There is the wolf that wants to do good, and the wolf that wants to do bad. And whichever wolf you feed, that's what you become. So feed your good wolf.”

    (Pictured right: Reaction to naming of Valor Christian's 'Pippin' as Outstanding Musical.)

    More Colorado theatre coverage on the DCPA NewsCenter

    While the Bobby G Awards culminate each year with the awards ceremony, which is modeled after the Tony Awards, the year-long focus of the program is to both celebrate and educate. The participating schools receive detailed feedback on their musical productions from the adjudicators. Joe Robinson, who played Dewhurst in Chaparral High School’s The Scarlet Pimpernel, was named the 2017 Rising Star. That’s an award reserved for a promising underclassman. 

    “I would like to thank my Bobby G adjudicators for all of the valuable feedback you gave me,” Robinson said in his acceptance speech. “It really helped me in the right direction last year, moving into this year, and now going into next year.”

    (Story continues below the photo)

    Bobby G Awards

    Timothy McCracken, Head of Acting for DCPA Education, said the Denver Center is proud to offer the Bobby G Awards in Colorado because it aligns so well with its overall educational mission. “We are always looking for ways to continue to offer opportunities for younger artists to see what art and theatre can bring to a community, and to themselves as individuals. And this is one of those programs that highlights that."

    Coming next week: A separate video offering performance highlights.

    John Moore was named one of the 12 most influential theater critics in the U.S by American Theatre Magazine in 2011. He has since taken a groundbreaking position as the Denver Center’s Senior Arts Journalist.

    MORE QUOTES OF NOTE:

    • Shelly Cox-Robie, Director, Boulder High School (and 25-year actor at the nearby BDT Stage): The theatre kids feel like this is their equivalent of the football team going to state. As both a parent and as a teacher, it means so much for these kids to have the support and the camaraderie and the family that they have with (school theatre).
    • Bobby G Awards. North High School and Strive Prep's 'In the Heights'Maya Stone, North/Strive Prep High School's In the Heights: Doing In the Heights made a really big impact at our school because the story of In the Heights isn't just a story to our community. It's our story. We have such a feeling of pride. So many people put in so much work to make this happen. And it means so much to come together for one final performance her at the Bobby G Awards. I was telling (a castmate) on closing night, 'I just want to go on stage as Nina one more time. You always want that when a show closes - and it is amazing that we get that opportunity to do that here tonight.
    • Davie Gonzalez, North/Strive Prep High School's In the Heights: It feels great to be invited to the party. It makes us feel like we did something really special. Something this big makes us feel really happy about ourselves, and makes us feel like we really do matter to this community.
    • Dayna Marshal, North/Strive Prep High School's In the Heights: Being nominated for Outstanding Musical was a very big deal to us. It meant coming out of the shadows. It meant proving everyone wrong about a minority community at a small school. It means everything to us. And as for performing tonight at the Ellie: It feels like butterflies are exploding in my stomach.
    • Trey Kochevar, Outstanding Actor finalist, Lakewood High School: At school, it's become a lot more that arts can be a cool thing thanks to the Bobby G Awards, rather than it just being about sports. You get a lot more respect when you are able to showcase your craft like all of the other extra-curricular activities can.  
    • Grace Nolte, Outstanding Actress finalist, Chaparral High School: I came into this experience so scared that it was going to be such a catty environment. That changed the first minute we were all together. I have never been in such a collaborative environment with such contagious energy.
    • Asha Romeo Outstanding Actress finalist, Boulder High School: I think this program raises up the schools that have put  a lot of work and dedication into their productions, and pushes other schools to better their own programs.
    • Jesse Shafroth, Outstanding Actor finalist, Boulder High School: The Bobby G Awards has given us all good insight into what  show business is actually like. Because these rehearsals have been really fast-paced, and we have been learning a lot of stuff very quickly. I want to give a shout-out to our (Bobby G Awards) director, Claudia Carson. She's the best.
    • Chantal King, Outstanding Actress finalist, Niwot High School: Everyone has been so nice. Meeting everybody here was such a humbling and great experience.
    • Gable Kinsman, Outstanding Actor finalist, Valor Christian High School: “I think theatre doesn't usually get the credit that it deserves at our schools, but I think the Bobby G Awards program definitely helps.
    • Austin Hand, Outstanding Actor, Fossil Ridge High School: This was the first year Fossil put itself up for nominationf, so just everyone was so excited when we found out that we were even nominated for two awards. I feel like athletics in schools get most of the recognition because of the competitive nature of sports. Theatre doesn't have that, so its fun to have that extra push that Bobby G Awards provides to strive for greatness.
    • Timothy McCracken, Head of Acting for DCPA Education: I have an 8-year-old son and I cannot wait till he has an opportunity to be in this environment, I think it is so inspiring. There are so many people here. The excitement is just amazing. You can just feel everyone bubbling over.
    Bobby G Awards. Outstanding Actor and Actress medley.
    The Bobby G Awards' Outstanding Actor and Actress finalists performed a medley tailored to each other, and their school musicals.

    Previous 2017 Bobby G Awards coverage

    Meet your 2017 Bobby G Awards Outstanding Actress finalists
    Meet your 2017 Bobby G Awards Outstanding Actor finalists
    2016-17 Bobby G Award finalists are announced
    Video: The 2017 Bobby G Awards in 60 seconds
  • 2017 Bobby G Awards: Persistence pays off at Valor Christian

    by John Moore | May 25, 2017

    A Bobby G AwardsThe cast of Valor Christian's production of 'Pippin,' which was named Outstanding Musical tonight. Photo by John Moore for the DCPA NewsCenter.

    Fourth time is the charm for Outstanding Actress
    Elleon Dobias, who will represent Colorado in New York.

    By John Moore
    Senior Arts Journalist

    The fifth annual Bobby G Awards, which celebrate achievement in Colorado high-school theatre, were proof positive that persistence pays off. Valor Christian High School Senior Elleon Dobias (pictured at right), who was nominated all three of her underclassman years but had never before won a Bobby G Award, was named Outstanding Actress. And her school won Outstanding Musical for the first time for its production of Pippin.

    Bobby G Awards. Elleon DobiasLakewood High School led all schools by earning four of the evening’s 19 awards for its epic production of Sweeney Todd. In all, a record 12 schools won at least one award, spreading the love wide among the 42 participating high schools. Valor Christian's Pippin earned three. Bobby G Awards will soon be taking up new residence at schools throughout the state, including at Aspen, Glenwood Springs and Niwot high schools.

    The Bobby G Awards are a culmination of a year-long program administered by the Denver Center that emphasizes camaraderie and shared experiences - but there is also much at stake. The students named Outstanding Actor and Actress go on to represent Colorado at the National High School Musical Theatre Awards in New York City.

    Bobby G Awards (Pictured at right: The cast of North High School/Strive Prep's production of 'In the Heights', which was nominated for best musical. Photo by John Moore for the DCPA NewsCenter.)

    Austin Hand of Fossil Ridge High School in Fort Collins was named Outstanding Actor for his performance as Gomez Addams in The Addams Family. Dobias had been nominated as a freshman and sophomore in the "Rising Star" category, for promising underclassmen. Last year she was nominated as Outstanding Supporting Actress, and this year, playing the widow Catherine in Pippin, she won for Outstanding Actress.

    "For this to be my fourth year to be nominated at the Bobby G Awards and to go out on such a high has been a delight, to say the least," said Dobias, who also graduated from high school earlier in the day.

    Moments after the ceremony ended, the newly named Outstanding Actors already were exchanging phone numbers with previous recipients. "This is a family you've entered into," said last year's Outstanding Actor, Curtis Salinger. 

    More Colorado theatre coverage on the DCPA NewsCenter

    Bobby G Awards. Austin Hand.As Colorado’s winners, Dobias and Hand (pictured right) will be joined next month by other regional honorees for "The Jimmys," as they are known in New York City. That’s 10 days of intensive training with some of Broadway's leading actors, choreographers and directors, all leading up to a fully staged, one-night performance at Broadway's Minskoff Theatre.

    Nominees for the Bobby G Awards are determined by scoring from a team of professional adjudicators. Unlike other awards categories, the Outstanding Actor and Actress winners are determined by two equally scored criteria: First, the students are judged for their actual performances in their respective school musicals. The five students with the highest scores then go before a professional panel for a private, scored audition.

    This year, a record 42 schools participated in the statewide Bobby G Awards program, up from 30 two years ago. Valor Christian, a private school with an enrollment of 879, is located on a 35-acre campus in Highlands Ranch. When she was a freshman, Dobias said, only 10 kids tried out for the school play at Valor Christian More than 60 auditioned for Pippin, she said.

    Bobby G AwardsColorado native Gene Gillette, who is a member of the national touring production of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, opening Tuesday at the very same Ellie Caulkins Opera House, presented two awards.

    (Pictured at right: Gene Gillette with former Outstanding Actor Curtis Salinger and Outstanding Actresses Abby Noble and Charlotte Movizzo.)

    Gillette encouraged the high-school kids in their pursuits, saying professional success takes discipline, a strong belief in yourself and a strong sense of wonder.

    Denver First Lady and prominent area singer and actor Mary Louise Lee, who runs a nonprofit called Bringing Back the Arts, presented two awards. Lee, who made her professional debut at the Denver Center when she was 18, riffed from the signature song from The Wiz, "Believe in Yourself." The students were also greeted by DCPA CEO Janice Sinden and Broadway Executive Director John Ekeberg.

    Among the heartfelt and comic acceptance speeches was Will Warner, who was named Outstanding Supporting Actor for his work as Beadle Bamford in Lakewood High School's Sweeney Todd. "I would like to thank the women in my life," Warner said ... "Because they told me I had to."

    (Story continues after the video.)

    Video: 2017 Bobby G Awards in 60 Seconds


    Video by DCPA Video Producer David Lenk. Interviews by Senior Arts Journalist John Moore. More video and photos to come.


    Of note to the local theatre community was longtime BDT Stage performer Shelly Cox-Robie's nomination as a fifth-year director at Boulder High School. She directed Rent, with her son playing Angel. Two of her actors were nominated as Outstanding Actor (Jesse Shafroth) and Actress (Asha Romeo). Boulder won for both Outstanding Chorus and Orchestra.

    Students and educators were honored in the areas of performance, design, direction, choreography, technical production and overall production excellence. All participating schools received one personal master class session with a DCPA Education theatre teacher. Winners of the Outstanding Supporting Actor, Actress and Rising Star (Outstanding Underclassman) awards also earn a full year of free classes at the Denver Center. "Theatre is alive in Colorado," said Education Director Allison Watrous. “The DCPA is proud to be a part of your journey.”

    A Bobby G AwardsWhile the Bobby G Awards culminate each year with Thursday's awards ceremony, which is modeled after the Tony Awards, the year-long focus of the program is to both celebrate and educate. The participating schools receive detailed feedback on their musical productions from the adjudicators. The 10 nominated Outstanding Actors and Actresses are invited to the Denver Center two weeks before the awards to prepare a medley together in community and friendship, which they then perform at the ceremony on the Ellie Caulkins stage.

    Each of the five nominated Outstanding Productions performed a musical number during the ceremony, each drawing thunderous appreciation from an enthusiastic Ellie Caulkins  crowd estimated at 1,800.

    The Bobby G Awards were founded in 2013 by the late DCPA President Randy Weeks. They are named after late producer Robert Garner, who established Denver as a top destination for touring Broadway shows.

    The Master of ceremonies was again Greg Moody, longtime known as Colorado's Critic-At-Large for CBS-4.

    John Moore was named one of the 12 most influential theater critics in the U.S by American Theatre Magazine in 2011. He has since taken a groundbreaking position as the Denver Center’s Senior Arts Journalist.

    THE 2016-17 BOBBY G AWARDS

    Hair and Makeup

    Outstanding Achievement in Hair and Make-up Design

    Cierra Denning and Izze Sajdak
    The Scarlet Pimpernel
    , Chaparral High School

    Other nominees:

    • Devan Green, Fiddler on the Roof, Brighton High School
    • Katie Kostenik, Sweeney Todd, Lakewood High School
    • Lydia Cole, Averi Davis, Emma Smith and Hannah Tester, Children of Eden, Mountain View High School
    • Maya Julien, Christina Larez and Simone Rodriguez, In the Heights, North High School and STRIVE Prep Excel High School


    Costumes

    Outstanding Achievement in Costume Design

    Camille Gionet, Kaila Govan and Alyssa Mader
    Sweeney Todd, Lakewood High School

    Other nominees:
    • Joe Kennedy and Anne Murphy, Aida, Fairview High School
    • Mollie Beck and Rebecca Spafford,The Addams Family, Fossil Ridge High School
    • Jen Bleem, Lauryn Starke, Cynthia Vega and Ramses Vega, Children of Eden, Mountain View High School
    • Mona Lucero, Simone Rodriguez and Sarah Davies-Schley, In the Heights, North High School and STRIVE Prep Excel High School


    Lighting


    Outstanding Achievement in Lighting Design

    Ethan Thomas and T.J. Thomas
    The Little Mermaid,
    Ralston Valley High School

    Other nominees:
    • Demian Detweiler and Scott Nelson, Pippin, Aspen High School
    • Brian Morgans, The Scarlet Pimpernel, Chaparral High School
    • Jude Franco, Dennis Gilsdorf and Nich Gilsdorf, Children of Eden, Mountain View High School
    • Karley Durate, Anthony Heredia, Joylene Quintana and Travis Roth, Tarzan, Westminster High School


    Scenic

    Outstanding Achievement in Scenic Design
    Hannah Freeman and Tom Ward
    Pippin,
    Aspen High School

    Other nominees:

    • Katya Hirsch and Chris Sweeney, Rent, Boulder High School
    • Clare Buntrock, Rachel Barckholtz, Taylor Dykstra and Jace Smykil, Sweeney Todd, Lakewood High School
    • Josh Belk and Starr Samkus, Starlight Express, Palmer Ridge High School
    • Tori Byam and Liam Southwick, Beauty and the Beast, Durango High School


    Choreography

    Outstanding Achievement in Choreography
    Angie Dryer
    Sweeney Todd, Lakewood High School

    Other nominees:

    • Lindsey Solano, Fiddler on the Roof, Brighton High School
    • Caitlin Parets, Guys and Dolls, Loveland High School
    • Evan DeBord, Tammy Johnson, Cydney Kutcipal and Rachel Miller, Children of Eden, Mountain View High School
    • John DeYoung and Jamie Geary, Pippin, Valor Christian High School


    Musical Direction

    Outstanding Achievement in Musical Direction
    Marty Magehee, Rick Paswaters and Jenny Timmons
    Pippin, Valor Christian High School

    Other nominees:

    • Duncan Cooper, Cabaret, Bear Creek High School
    • Mary Bateman, Rent, Boulder High School
    • Steve Hinman and Luke Tredinnick, The Scarlet Pimpernel, Chaparral High School
    • Bryce Melaragno and Debbie Miller, Sweeney Todd, Lakewood High School


    Chorus

    Outstanding Performance by a Chorus
    Rent

    Boulder High School

    Other nominees:

    • Sweeney Todd, Lakewood High School
    • Children of Eden, Mountain View High School
    • Pippin, Valor Christian High School
    • The Pirates of Penzance, Wheat Ridge High School


    Orchestra

    Outstanding Performance by an Orchestra

    Rent

    Boulder High School

    Other nominees:

    • Cabaret, Bear Creek High School
    • Fiddler on the Roof, Brighton High School
    • The Producers, Denver School of the Arts
    • Aida, Fairview High School


    Supporting Actress

    Outstanding Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role
    McKinley Mueller
    Grandma Addams, The Addams Family
    Glenwood Springs High School

    Other nominees:

    • Stella Martin as Andrea, Once on This Island, Conifer High School
    • Anna Rosenthal as Grandma Addams, The Addams Family, Heritage High School
    • Alexa Hand as Sydney, It’s a Bird, It’s a Plane, It’s Superman, Resurrection Christian School
    • Libby Lukens as Jan, Grease, Steamboat Springs High School


    Supporting Actor

    Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role
    Will Warner
    Beadle Bamford
    Sweeney Todd

    Lakewood High School

    Other nominees:

    • Will Coleman as Lumiere, Beauty and the Beast, Arvada West High School
    • Brandon Michael as Herr Schultz, Cabaret, Bear Creek High School
    • Adrian Clark as Farleigh, The Scarlett Pimpernel, Chaparral High School
    • Luccio Dellepiane, Harold Bride, Titanic, Cherry Creek High School


    Rising Star

    Rising Star

    Joe Robinson
    Dewhurst
    The Scarlet Pimpernel

    Chaparral High School

    Other nominees:

    • Ana Lemus as Serena, Legally Blonde, D’Evelyn High School
    • Luke McKenzie as Theo, Pippin, George Washington High School
    • Sam Feng as Oz Guard, The Wizard of Oz, Lutheran High School
    • Ellie Hill as La Fou, Beauty and the Beast, Regis Jesuit High School

    Leading Actress

    Outstanding Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role

    Elleon Dobias
    Catherine
    Pippin

    Valor Christian High School

    • Asha Romeo as Joanne Jefferson, Rent, Boulder High School
    • Grace Nolte as Marguerite St. Just, The Scarlett Pimpernel, Chaparral High School
    • Cameron Marter as Mrs. Lovett, Sweeney Todd, Lakewood High School
    • Chantal King as Witch, Into the Woods, Niwot High School


    Leading Actor

    Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role
    Austin Hand
    Gomez Addams
    The Addams Family

    Fossil Ridge High School

    Other nominees:

    • Jesse Shafroth as Mark Cohen, Rent, Boulder High School
    • Chandler Carter as Chauvelin, The Scarlett Pimpernel, Chaparral High School
    • Trey Kochevar as Sweeney Todd, Sweeney Todd, Lakewood High School
    • Gable Kinsman as Pippin, Pippin,Valor Christian High School


    Direction

    Outstanding Achievement in Direction
    Tami LoSasso and Yovana Milosevic
    Sweeney Todd

    Lakewood High School

    Other nominees:

    • Shelly Cox-Robie, Rent, Boulder High School
    • Kate McRaith, The Addams Family, Glenwood Springs High School
    • Katie Marshall, Children of Eden, Mountain View High School
    • Lindsey Hutcheon and Kurt Muenstermann, Pippin,Valor Christian High School


    Overall Production

    Outstanding Overall Production of a Musical
    Pippin

    Valor Christian High Schoo
    l

    Other nominees:

    • Rent, Boulder High School
    • The Scarlet Pimpernel, Chaparral High School
    • Sweeney Todd, Lakewood High School
    • In the Heights, North High School and STRIVE Prep Excel High School

    Valor


    Valor Christian High School's production of 'Pippin.'



    Video: A look back at the 2016 Bobby G Awards



    More video and photos from Thursday's awards ceremony will be posted next week.

    2017 SPECIAL ACHIEVEMENT WINNERS:

    • Achievement in Orchestra: Tim Costello, Cabaret, Bear Creek High School
    • Achievement in Scenic Design: Danielle Waldman, The Producers, Denver School of the Arts
    • Achievement in Technical Direction: Chris Brown, Into the Woods, Niwot High School
    • Special Achievement for a Premiere Production in Colorado: cast and crew of Starlight Express, Palmer Ridge High School
    Previous 2017 Bobby G Awards coverage
    Meet your 2017 Bobby G Awards Outstanding Actress finalists
    Meet your 2017 Bobby G Awards Outstanding Actor finalists
    2016-17 Bobby G Award finalists are announced

    Video: Montage welcoming all 42 participating schools:

    Watch our welcoming video introducing all 42 schools participating in the 2016-17 Bobby G Awards. Video shot by DCPA Video Producer David Lenk.

  • Meet your 2017 Bobby G Awards Outstanding Actor Finalists

    by John Moore | May 25, 2017

    The Bobby G Awards celebrate outstanding achievement in Colorado high-school musical theatre. The fifth annual awards and performance take place Thursday, May 25, at the Buell Theatre. (RESERVE YOUR SEAT HERE.)

    Today we introduce you to the five students who are finalists for Outstanding Lead Actor. The winner will advance to represent Colorado at the national Jimmy Awards in New York City.

    Actor 1 Carter

    CHANDLER CARTER

    Chauvelin in The Scarlet Pimpernel
    Chaparral High School
    Class of 2017

    • First role: I played Baby Elephant in a kids version of The Jungle Book in fourth or fifth grade. But the first role I feel like I really played was Frank Senior last year in Catch Me If You Can.
    • Why do you perform? Because I love to sing, and I've always loved making jokes as other "characters" in daily conversation. Theatre gives me a place to do that where it doesn't feel odd or out of place.
    • Ideal scene partner: I'd love to be in a scene with Kyle Gill from ThunderRidge High School. He’s one of my very best friends and I don't get to be around him nearly enough.
    • Favorite moment from your show: The first night that Jack, who played Percy, decided he was going make a joke about Chauvelin's name being "like a shovel!" on-stage, in front of an entire audience. I was so close to breaking, and it's a moment I'll never forget.
    • Fun with a moment where something went wrong: There was one night where my cape decided that it wasn't going to come off right before a fight scene, after which the sword I was trying to grab fell to the floor. I just kept going, because at that point there's nothing else you can do.
    • How does it feel to be nominated? It's amazing, and something I wasn't expecting. It's really cool to get to work with the other nominees.
    • What has this experience taught you about the value of arts education and extracurricular activities? I already valued arts education and extracurricular activities so much. But I'm so glad that this program exists. It makes me happy to see high-school theatre being recognized for the work we all put into it.

    Actor 2 Hand


    AUSTIN HAND

    Gomez Addams in The Addams Family
    Fossil Ridge High School
    Class of 2019

    • First role: I played the frog in Thwacked, a rendition of The Princess and the Frog, in fifth grade.
    • Why do you perform? To find out more about myself through the complexity of a character.
    • Ideal scene partner: I would love to act in a scene with Jack Nicholson because the energy he brings to each and every character is so unique and real to the point that it is almost terrifying.
    • Fun moment where something went wrong: During a dress rehearsal, we reached the end of the show when I was supposed to kiss Caroline Frevert, who played Morticia. That night was the first time that makeup had experimented with drawing my mustache on, and after the kiss I remember looking up and hearing all of the directors and crew laughing in the audience. I was confused until I looked back at Caroline and noticed that most of my mustache had rubbed off onto her lip, making it appear as though we had matching facial hair.
    • How does it feel to be nominated? I don't think that it has quite sunk in yet. It's a very surreal and humbling opportunity that I am so thankful to have been given. Working with some of the most talented (and kind) high-school thespians in the state has been one of the most fun experiences of my life, and has only solidified my passion for theatre and acting.
    • What has this experience taught you about the value of arts education and extracurricular activities? A truly magnificent thing occurs when people of all different backgrounds come together to develop a shared passion, whether it is theatre, sports, academics or anything else. School is a place where people of varying perspectives and beliefs are sort of forced together in a building, and these activities provide a medium to unite each individual in creating something brand new and entirely unique.

    Actor 3 Kinsman

    GABLE KINSMAN

    Pippin in Pippin
    Valor Christian High School
    Class of 2018

    • First role: I played a sailor in Christian Youth Theatre's production of The Little Mermaid in 2008. I vividly remember my one line at the end of Act 1 when I yelled 'C’mon mateys, let’s get out of here!' and shortly after, I was followed offstage by the rest of the pirate crew. I felt like the coolest 8-year-old in town.
    • Why do you perform? To communicate with people through the telling of
      stories. It is a special thing to me that I get to communicate with people I have never met before through a story that comes to life on stage. I personally have been very impacted by stories through performance, and that inspires me to do the same unto others.
    • Ideal scene partner: If I were to take the stage with Derek Klena and Robin Williams, I think I would pee my pants. They both have been huge inspirations to me, Robin through his impeccable film and standup work, and Derek through his incredible performances in his multiple musicals as a lead. I have grown up watching and listening to both of them, and just being in the same room as them would be an honor.
    • Favorite moment from Pippin: At our very last dress rehearsal before opening night, our Theo, who was played by a 12-year-old, wasn’t able to make the rehearsal. But without a hesitation, our fearless stage manager (Neil Trotter) stepped in to play Catherine’s (Elleon Dobias) strapping young son. He waddled on, playing the best little boy he could play, which actually turned out to be pretty good. Now this was my first time seeing Neil onstage performing instead of hiding backstage in the dark, but was so dedicated to giving the most realistic performance possible, with his high-pitched voice and enthusiastic youthfulness. Let me tell you, it was an inspiration to experience that first-hand onstage. Elleon and I finished the scene, fighting through the tears of laughter, as our directors in the audience laughed hysterically at the fact that Catherine’s son was taller than both her and Pippin. I still think he could get a job as either a stage manager or playing a young boy. Or both.
    • How does it feel to be nominated? It is surreal. I can’t describe how incredible it feels. It has been such a joy to work with the rest of the nominees and get to know them. They are so much fun to be around. Working with (Bobby G Awards Director) Claudia Carson and (Musical Director) Robyn Yamada has been such a blast. They are like my two new moms. I feel honored and humbled to be nominated, and I’m so glad that I get to go through this whole process with one of my best friends, Elleon Dobias, who is such a deserving nominee as Outstanding Actress for her work as Catherine.
    • What has this experience taught you about the value of arts education and extracurricular activities at your school? This process has shown me
      the importance of education through creativity. People are able to hone
      different skills when they learn creatively, and this is very important for everyone to experience. Theatre alone provides so many opportunities to excel through creative art, which is a very special thing. Also, this process has reminded me how much I love this community. The other nominees have become some of my best friends in just the first two days that I have been rehearsing with them. That doesn’t happen anywhere else.


    Actor 4 Kochevar

    TREY KOCHEVAR

    Sweeney Todd in Sweeney Todd, The Demon Barber of Fleet Street
    Lakewood High School
    Class of 2017

    • College plans: University of Northern Colorado’s acting program
    • First role: I was in the ensemble of Lakewood High School’s Young Frankenstein in my freshman year. I was 14 years old and I played a mad scientist and an angry villager.
    • Why do you perform? Because people can learn a lot about themselves and society from art. It allows us to become self-aware and question ourselves. I have always been so intrigued by all the tiny details I have seen in acting performances both onstage and in film, and I love being a part of telling stories that make people re-think aspects of their lives.
    • Ideal scene partner: Philip Seymour Hoffman, because he knew how to get to the core of a scene. He had a very human, instinctual sense of grit when attacking any piece of dialogue. He’s one of those actors who makes every performance a believable one. To have shared the stage or screen with someone who had such a tremendous presence would have been an absolute honor.
    • Favorite moment from your show: When I finally felt confident with my character. This is an iconic role that has so much expectation attached to it. So for the first month or so it was a struggle to figure out my own take on the role. I did my character research, analyzed the script and even read excerpts from the original penny dreadful. It finally started feeling more organic, and I was gaining more confidence in my performance as the show approached. I knew I had found a character of my own on the night of the first performance, when I was greeted by both laughs and gasps.
    • How does it feel to be nominated? This has been a truly humbling experience, and the talent I’ve seen in my fellow nominees has just blown me away. This year’s nominees are a true display of the positive effects of the arts in education, and I am honored to have the opportunity to perform with them.
    • What has this experience taught you about the value of arts education and extracurricular activities at your school? I’ve learned that both extracurricular activities as well as arts education in schools allow students a therapeutic outlet that can be difficult to find elsewhere at this age. I’ve seen students who would rather stay at school working on building a set than go home and face whatever challenges they are dealing with. That’s OK, because that’s what helps them. It teaches them to refocus their energy and contribute to something bigger. But at the same time, when something tragic does occur, those within their extracurricular activities are often their most powerful source of support. On top of that, the arts teach life skills that can be difficult if not impossible to find in a math or English class.

    Actor 5 Shafroth

    JESSE SHAFROTH

    Mark Cohen in Rent
    Boulder High School
    Class of 2019

    • First role: I played Yao, the fat, bad-tempered soldier in Mulan Jr. in the seventh grade at Casey Middle School. I wasn’t going to audition, but my friend dragged me into it, and I’m glad he did.
    • Why do you perform? I love making people feel. Whether it’s laughter, crying or shock, seeing people care about a character I’m portraying feels awesome. Plus, it’s fun.
    • Ideal scene partner: I would love to do a scene with Robert Downey Jr. He is just so hilarious and random and all over the place, it would be fun to see what we could create. Also, just ’cause he’s Robert Downey Jr.
    • Favorite moment from your show: After an eight-hour rehearsal, we were running the final scene for the second time. By then, we were all really tired and, honestly, feeling quite weird. So when our lead guitarist began shredding on his electric guitar, we all just let loose and started dancing and singing like there was no tomorrow. Our directors were fine with it. In fact, they started filming us and posted it to Facebook. It was quite a way to end a long and stressful day.
    • How does it feel to be nominated? I am so, so honored. Even though it’s been stressful at some points, it has really been a great experience, and it is helping me to understand what show business is like.
    • What has this experience taught you about the value of arts education and extracurricular activities? The arts foster a very inclusive social circle. People from all walks of life can be a part of this incredible community without being judged. A lot of extracurricular activities promote inclusiveness, but I think the arts are almost completely nondiscriminatory because art is fluid. To be on a sports team, you have to be good at that sport. To be on a trivia team, you have to be smart. But art is everywhere. Art can be anything.

    Reserve your seat for the May 25 Bobby G Awards celebration here!

    Previous coverage of the 2017 Bobby G Awards:
    Meet your 2017 Outstanding Actress Finalists
    2016-17 Bobby G Award finalists are announced
    Video: Montage welcoming all 42 participating schools

    Meet your 2017 Bobby G Awards Outstanding Actress Finalists

  • Meet your 2017 Bobby G Awards Outstanding Actress Finalists

    by John Moore | May 24, 2017
    The Bobby G Awards celebrate outstanding achievement in Colorado high-school musical theatre. The fifth annual awards and performance take place Thursday, May 25, at the Buell Theatre. (RESERVE YOUR SEAT HERE.)

    Today we introduce you to the five students who are finalists for Outstanding Lead Actress. The winner will advance to represent Colorado at the national Jimmy Awards in New York City.

    Actress 1 Dobias

    ELLEON DOBIAS

    Catherine in Pippin
    Valor Christian High School
    Class of 2017

    • College plans: I will be attending Roosevelt University in Chicago
    • First role: My theatre debut was May 16, 2013, as Mrs. Potts in a required 8th grade production of Beauty and the Beast, My teapot spout arm is still sore . . . 
    • Why do you perform? One of my mentors once told me that the aim of the art of theatre is not to represent the outward appearances of things, but rather their inward significances. This phrase has come to mean a great deal to me because, as I continue to play various characters, I am reminded that performance has the power to give light to what may have once gone unseen, unaddressed or unappreciated.
    • Ideal scene partner: This is a total toss-up between Phyllis Diller and Carol Burnett. Phyllis Diller absolutely revolutionized comedy for women, and her witty creativity and masterful delivery have been an inspiration to me. Carol Burnett, on the other hand, has such a hilariously gawky, self-deprecating yet completely magnetic presence about her.
    • Favorite moment from your show: One of my favorite things about this role was all of the quirky, ad-libbed comments and improvised character exchanges between Catherine and Pippin (played by Gable Kinsman). From playing guitars for our duet to weeping in silent strength in the final scene, Gable’s talent and encouragement pushed me as an actress in both emotional vulnerability and light-hearted humor, and I am incredibly grateful for being able to play off of our friendship on stage.
    • How does it feel to be nominated? I have been both humbled and amazed by the talent I’ve seen at the Bobby G Awards over these last four years, and I feel so lucky to be a part of it. My fellow nominees have been delightful to say the least, and it is truly such an honor to work alongside them.
    • What has this experience taught you about the value of arts education and extracurricular activities at your school? Arts education has legitimately changed my life. It has sparked in me a desire to influence positive social and cultural change with empathy and optimism, and I look back on my four years at Valor with nothing but gratitude and love for my theatre family and teacher mentors. The Bobby G Awards is not a competition but rather a celebration of the role that performance art has played in the lives of all of these students. We are all from different schools and different personal backgrounds, but we join together in the joy that comes from creating something wonderful.

    Actress 3 King

    CHANTAL KING 

    The Witch in Into the Woods
    Niwot High School
    Class of 2017  

    • College plans: I am headed to University of Northern Colorado. I will be majoring in political science and hopefully one day will become a Political Consultant. Or take over Stephen Colbert's talk show.        
    • First role: I played July in Annie when I was 10 years old and in the fifth grade at Twin Peaks Elementary
    • Why do you perform? Because I love making people smile and feel better. Theatre has always been an escape for me. Going to see any play or musical is magical. And I want to share that experience with any and every audience member I perform in front of. 
    • Ideal scene partner: I would love to be in a scene with Patti Lupone. She has been a big role model for me. She is just so iconic in the musical-theater world, and doing a scene with her would just be a dream come true. 
    • Favorite moment from your show: It has to be our final dress rehearsal. It was the scene where The Baker and his wife have lost their cow, and I pop out of nowhere to threaten them. Then Rapunzel singing was supposed to stop them in their tracks, but the actor forgot to sing. So I keep going on with my lines and I did not know what to say. So when we came to the end of my cue line, just yelled to the Baker and his wife:  "I will eat your beans! " Which made no sense. The Baker and his wife practically broke character, and it was just a hilarious moment! 
    • How does it feel to be nominated? It is such honor, and I'm just lucky to have this experience.  I'm very appreciative of being a part of theater for so long it is such a joy. 
    • What has this experience taught you about the value of arts education and extracurricular activities at your school? That art is so valuable and important in the high-school years. I met some of my closest friends through arts participation. I don’t think I would have truly found myself if I did not do theater. My biggest takeaway from arts education and extracurricular activities is to just try, because you don't know who you'll meet or how it can better you as a person if you don't put yourself out there and go for it.  

    Actress 4 Marter

    CAMERON MARTER

    Lakewood High School
    Mrs. Lovett, Sweeney Todd
    Class of 2017

    • College plans: University of Montana, double major in acting and psychology
    • First role: It was in a program called Prelude, which is linked with the Evergreen Children’s Chorale. The show was Pinnochio, and I played the Ringmaster. I was in first or second grade.
    • Why do you perform? It brings me joy. But more important, it brings other people joy, along with a plethora of different emotions. If I made one audience member laugh or cry or smile or emote in any way, I feel like I’ve done my job.
    • Ideal scene partner: Colin Firth is one of my all time favorite actors. I might pass out if I were in the same space as him.
    • Favorite moment from your show: There’s a song called “A Little Priest,” and it’s essentially seven minutes of Trey (Sweeney Todd) and I making cannibalism puns. I’m supposed to pretend to take a swig from one of the cups on my counter, but I forgot to drain the cup of water from a previous scene. When I went to take a swig, I wasn’t ready for any actual liquid to be in the cup, and I proceeded to inhale the water. We went on with the song mostly fine, but there was a brief 30-second period of me coughing like mad, and then giving Trey the wrong cue line once I started again. It was the night we recorded the show, too.
    • How does it feel to be nominated? There are not enough words to begin to describe how I felt seeing my name among the nominees. There was a lot of joy and excitement. But above all, the biggest thing I felt was gratitude.
    • What has this experience taught you about the value of arts education and extracurricular activities at your school? I have felt endless joy through this and every other experience I have had in theater. I think every student should find an art or an extracurricular activity they take pride in and have a passion for. It’s through hard work in the things we are passionate about that we find joy.


    Actress 5 Nolte

    GRACE NOLTE

    Marguerite St. Just in The Scarlet Pimpernel
    Chaparral High School
    Class of 2017

    • College plans: Drake University to major in Musical Theatre
    • First role: I played the old woman in Cinderella for CYT community theatre when I was 11 years old
    • Why do you perform? Because I love how you can really make a character your own. You can bring your past experiences and emotions to help your characters grow. I also love how the emotion from a character can relate to audience members and their past experiences. It can be such a powerful moment. 
    • Ideal scene partner: I love Tom Hanks. He is such an incredible actor, and I feel like he would be so much fun to work with and learn from.
    • Favorite moment from your show: Our final dress was our best rehearsal yet, and after we finished there was such a contagious energy going around. In that moment, we truly realized what everyone had worked so hard on for three months. It was an incredible feeling that we had created something truly amazing.  
    • Fun moment where something went wrong: During the sword-fight scene, a sword (not mine!) hit me in the face. Luckily, this was the scene where my husband was going to be executed, so it was OK that a few tears were shed. 
    • How does it feel to be nominated? It honestly hasn't fully hit me yet. I am so honored and thankful that I have gotten the opportunity to take part in this wonderful event, and that I get to share this feeling with all of my wonderful cast and crew members, as well as the other incredible nominees.  
    • What has this experience taught you about the value of arts education and extracurricular activities at your school? I have been in theatre for all four of my high-school years, and there were times when I felt that theatre wasn't always as important at our school as the sports teams or student government. But this is my family, and theatre has given me a place to belong. I am so glad that there is an event like The Bobby G Awards, where so many these schools can come together and celebrate all of our achievements and support one another in the work that we do. 


    Actress 1 Romeo

    ASHA ROMEO

    Joanne Jefferson in Rent
    Boulder High School
    Class of 2017

    • College plans: Attending San Francisco Conservatory of Music to study Vocal Performance
    • First role: Juliet in Romeo and Juliet
    • Why do you perform? Because it gives me the chance to connect to audiences even though I’m portraying a completely different person. It means I get to experience another life. I do it because of the raw connection it creates between myself and those watching.
    • Ideal scene partner: Robin Williams. I have always loved and admired his comic flare, as well as his ability to genuinely present both himself and as his characters. I think he was incredibly intelligent as far as understanding human nature. Just being in the same room with him would be a pleasure.
    • Favorite moment from Rent: Anytime I performed “The Tango: Maureen” with Jesse Shafroth, who played Mark. Each performance was unique, and I always had fun doing it. On our last show, Jesse and I were really milking it, and our audience was playing into it as well. There was some improvisation from both of us and I’m sure we looked ridiculous. But I will always remember how fun and natural it felt.
    • How does it feel to be nominated? It still feels like a bit of a dream. It’s been a wonderful experience to work with all the other nominees, and it has been very humbling.
    • What has this experience taught you about the value of arts education and extracurricular activities at your school? So many kids have talent and drive and potential. It’s a shame when those kids don’t get the chance to explore those abilities. I’m grateful to have gone to Boulder High School, where there are dedicated teachers and staff who take time out of their days to work with us. Boulder High provides focus on almost every aspect of the arts, and I could have taken classes in each one if I chose to. I would want that same high-school experience for everyone else.

    Reserve your seat for the May 25 Bobby G Awards celebration here!

    Previous coverage of the 2017 Bobby G Awards:
    Meet your 2017 Bobby G Awards Outstanding Actor Finalists
    2016-17 Bobby G Award finalists are announced
    Video: Montage welcoming all 42 participating schools
    Coming tomorrow: 2017 Outstanding Actor finalists

    Meet your 2017 Bobby G Awards Outstanding Actor Finalists
  • Video: 2017 Bobby G Awards welcome montage

    by John Moore | May 22, 2017


    The fifth annual Bobby G Awards, which culminates in a Tony Awards-style ceremony and performance on Thursday, May 25, at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House, celebrates outstanding achievement in high-school musical theatre in Colorado. This year the program included participation from a record 42 high schools across Colorado, and 30 of those received at least one nomination. That's up nearly double from 16 a year ago. Here's brief a look at all of the participating schools.

    Reserve your seat for the May 25 Bobby G Awards celebration here!

    Previous coverage of the 2017 Bobby G Awards:
    2016-17 Bobby G Award finalists are announced


    Photos: A look back at last year's Bobby G Awards:

    2016 Bobby G Awards

    To see more, click the 'forward' arrow on the image above. This year's ceremony will be May 25 at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House.

  • 2016-17 Bobby G Award finalists are announced

    by John Moore | May 02, 2017
    2016 Bobby G Awards

    A look back at the 2016 Bobby G Awards in photos. To see more, click the 'forward' arrow on the image above. This year's ceremony will be May 25 at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House.


    Finalists for the fifth annual Bobby G Awards were released this morning. The awards program, which culminates in a Tony Awards-style ceremony and performance on Thursday, May 25, at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House, celebrates outstanding achievement in high-school musical theatre in Colorado. This year the program included participation from a record 42 high schools across Colorado, and 30 of those received at least one nomination. That's up nearly double from 16 a year ago.

    BOBBY G AWARDS While the nominations were more spread out than ever, Lakewood High School emerged with the most nominations, with 11 for Sweeney Todd – The Demon Barber of Fleet Street.  Boulder High School earned eight for Rent and Chaparral High School eight for The Scarlett Pimpernel.

    Those three productions are all up for Outstanding Production of a Musical, along with In the Heights, a co-production between Denver North High School and STRIVE Prep Excel High School; and Valor Christian High School's Pippin.

    All five productions will be invited to perform at the May 25 Bobby G Awards ceremony, as well as the 10 individuals nominated for Outstanding Actor or Actress.

    (Pictured above right: Mountain Vista's Anything Goes wins Outstanding Musical at the 2016 Bobby G. Awards. Photo by John Moore for the DCPA NewsCenter.)

    Reserve your seat for the May 25 Bobby G Awards celebration!

    With today's announcement, tickets are now on sale for the 2016-17 Bobby G Awards ceremony, which will include performances by students from across Colorado on the Ellie Caulkins Opera House stage. The evening is an opportunity for the students to commune and mutually support one another’s work. Click here to purchase tickets.

    Adjudicators, made up of professional working theatre artists in the Denver area, attended the participating schools’ musical theatre productions. Using the standards set by The Bobby G Awards training and criteria, as well as their own professional experience, these adjudicators completed extensive evaluation forms, offering schools detailed feedback on various elements of their musical productions. Participating schools receive each adjudicator's comments, praise and constructive criticism as a way of recognizing accomplishments and motivating future growth.

    (Story continues after the following list of nominations)

    2016-17 Bobby G Awards Finalists:

    Outstanding Achievement in Hair and Make-Up Design

    Devan Green
    Fiddler on the Roof
    Brighton High School

    Cierra Denning and Izze Sajdak
    The Scarlet Pimpernel

    Chaparral High School

    Katie Kostenik
    Sweeney Todd, The Demon Barber of Fleet Street
    Lakewood High School

    Lydia Cole, Averi Davis, Emma Smith and Hannah Tester
    Children of Eden
    Mountain View High School

    Maya Julien, Christina Larez and Simone Rodriguez
    In the Heights
    North High School and STRIVE Prep Excel High School

    Outstanding Achievement in Costume Design

    BOULDER RENTJoe Kennedy and Anne Murphy

    Aida
    Fairview High School

    Mollie Beck, Nikki Habestad and Rebecca Spafford
    The Addams Family

    Fossil Ridge High School

    Camille Gionet, Kaila Govan and Alyssa Mader
    Sweeney Todd, The Demon Barber of Fleet Street
    Lakewood High School

    Jen Bleem, Lauryn Starke, Cynthia Vega and Ramses Vega
    Children of Eden
    Mountain View High School

    Mona Lucero, Simone Rodriguez and Sarah Davies-Schley
    In the Heights

    North High School & STRIVE Prep Excel High School 

    Outstanding Achievement in Lighting Design

    Demian Detweiler and Scott Nelson
    Pippin
    Aspen High School

    Brian Morgans
    The Scarlet Pimpernel
    Chaparral High School

    Jude Franco, Dennis Gilsdorf and Nich Gilsdorf
    Children of Eden

    Mountain View High School

    Ethan Thomas and T.J. Thomas
    The Little Mermaid
    Ralston Valley High School

     Karley Durate, Anthony Heredia, Joylene Quintana and Travis Roth
    Tarzan
    Westminster High School

    Outstanding Achievement in Scenic Design

    Hannah Freeman and Tom Ward
    Pippin

    Aspen High School

    Katya Hirsch and Chris Sweeney
    Rent
    Boulder High School

    Clare Buntrock, Rachel Barckholtz, Taylor Dykstra and Jace Smykil
    Sweeney Todd, The Demon Barber of Fleet Street
    Lakewood High School

    Josh Belk and Starr Samkus
    Starlight Express
    Palmer Ridge High School

    Tori Byam & Liam Southwick
    Beauty and the Beast

    Durango High School

    Outstanding Performance by an Orchestra

    Cabaret
    Bear Creek High School

    Rent
    Boulder High School

    Fiddler on the Roof
    Brighton High School

    The Producers                                   

    Denver School of the Arts

    Aida
    Fairview High School

    Outstanding Achievement in Musical Direction

    CHAPARREL SCARLET PIMPERNELDuncan Cooper
    Cabaret
    Bear Creek High School

    Mary Bateman
    Rent
    Boulder High School

    Steve Hinman and Luke Tredinnic
    The Scarlet Pimpernel
    Chaparral High School 

    Bryce Melaragno and Debbie Miller
    Sweeney Todd, The Demon Barber of Fleet Street  

    Lakewood High School

     Marty Magehee, Rick Paswaters and Jenny Timmons
    Pippin

    Valor Christian High School

    Outstanding Performance by a Chorus

    Rent
    Boulder High School

    Sweeney Todd, The Demon Barber of Fleet Street  
    Lakewood High School

    Children of Eden

    Mountain View High School

    Pippin
    Valor Christian High School

    The Pirates of Penzance
    Wheat Ridge High School

     

    Outstanding Achievement in Choreography

    Lindsey Solano
    Fiddler on the Roof    
              
    Brighton High School

    Angie Dryer
    Sweeney Todd – The Demon Barber of Fleet Street
    Lakewood High School

    Caitlin Parets
    Guys and Dolls
    Loveland High School

     Evan DeBord, Tammy Johnson, Cydney Kutcipal and Rachel Miller
    Children of Eden
    Mountain View High School

     John DeYoung and Jamie Geary
    Pippin

    Valor Christian High School

    Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role

    Will Coleman
    Lumiere
    Beauty and the Beast
    Arvada West High School

    Brandon Michael
    Herr Schultz
    Cabaret

    Bear Creek High School

    Adrian Clark
    Farleigh
    The Scarlett Pimpernel

    Chaparral High School

    Luccio Dellepiane

    Harold Bride
    Titanic

    Cherry Creek High School

    Will Warner
    Beadle Bamford
    Sweeney Todd – The Demon Barber of Fleet Street
    Lakewood High School 

    Outstanding Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role

    LAKEWOOD SWEENEY 800Stella Martin
    Andrea
    Once on This Island

    Conifer High School

    McKinley Mueller
    Grandma Addams
    The Addams Family
    Glenwood Springs High School

    Anna Rosenthal
    Grandma Addams
    The Addams Family

    Heritage High School

    Alexa Hand
    Sydney
    It’s a Bird, It’s a Plane, It’s Superman
    Resurrection Christian  School

    Libby Lukens
    Jan
    Grease
    Steamboat Springs High School

    Rising Star

    Joe Robinson
    Dewhurst
    The Scarlet Pimpernel

    Chaparral High School

    Ana Lemus
    Serena
    Legally Blonde
    D’Evelyn High School

    Luke McKenzie
    Theo
    Pippin

    George Washington High School

    Sam Feng
    Oz Guard
    The Wizard of Oz

    Lutheran High School

    Ellie Hill

    La Fou
    Beauty and the Beast

    Regis Jesuit High School 

    Outstanding Achievement in Direction

    NORTH IN THE HEIGHTSShelly Cox-Robie
    Rent
    Boulder High School 

    Kate McRaith
    The Addams Family

    Glenwood Springs High School

    Tami LoSasso and Yovana Milosevic

    Sweeney Todd – The Demon Barber of Fleet Street
    Lakewood High School

    Katie Marshall
    Children of Eden

    Mountain View High School

    Lindsey Hutcheon and Kurt Muenstermann
    Pippin
    Valor Christian High School 

    Outstanding Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role

    Valor copyAsha Romeo
    Joanne Jefferson
    Rent
    Boulder High School

    Grace Nolte
    Marguerite St. Just
    The Scarlett Pimpernel

    Chaparral High School

    Cameron Marter
    Mrs. Lovett
    Sweeney Todd – The Demon Barber of Fleet Street
    Lakewood High School

    Chantal King

    Witch
    Into the Woods
    Niwot High School

    Elleon Dobias

    Catherine
    Pippin
    Valor Christian High School

    Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role

    Jesse Shafroth
    Mark Cohen
    Rent
    Boulder High School

    Chandler Carter
    Chauvelin
    The Scarlett Pimpernel

    Chaparral High School

    Austin Hand  

    Gomez Addams
    The Addams Family

    Fossil Ridge High School

    Trey Kochevar           

    Sweeney Todd
    Sweeney Todd – The Demon Barber of Fleet Street
    Lakewood High School

    Gable Kinsman

    Pippin
    Pippin

    Valor Christian High School

    Outstanding Overall Production of a Musical

    Rent
    Boulder High School

    The Scarlet Pimpernel

    Chaparral High School

    Sweeney Todd – The Demon Barber of Fleet Street
    Lakewood High School

    In the Heights
    North High School & STRIVE Prep Excel High School

    Pippin
    Valor Christian High School

    PRHS Starlight Express

    2017 Outstanding Special Achievement Award Winners:

    In addition to the nominations, this year’s four Special Achievement winners also were announced today: 

    • Orchestra: Tim Costello, Cabaret, Bear Creek High School
    • Scenic Design: Danielle Waldman, The Producers, Denver School of the Arts
    • Technical Direction: Chris Brown, Into the Woods, Niwot High School
    • Special Achievement for a Colorado premiere (at the high-school level): Starlight Express, Palmer Ridge High School (pictured above, photo by Jackie Burhans)

    The Bobby G Awards, overseen and hosted by the Denver Center for the Performing Arts, are Colorado's regional representative within the larger Jimmy® Awards/National High School Musical Theatre Awards. The winners of Colorado's Outstanding Actor and Actress awards not only will be invited to attend the Jimmy Awards in June at the Minskoff Theatre in New York, but to participate in a week-long series of intensive classes and workshops with Broadway actors, directors and designers. The national awards ceremony will be June 26.

    Video recap: Kinship and camaraderie at the 2016 Bobby G Awards

    Video highlights from the 2015-16 Bobby G Awards ceremony.

    Today’s announcement produced several return nominees, including Danny Miller of Arvada West, who was nominated as Outstanding Actor for his role as Valjean in Les Misérables. In 2014, Miller was nominated in the same category as a sophomore for playing the title role in The Phantom of the Opera.

    Reserve your seat for the May 25 Bobby G Awards celebration!

    Last year’s Bobby G Award winner for Outstanding Actor was Curtis Salinger for Durango High School’s Legally Blonde. Ponderosa High School's Charlotte Movizzo was named Outstanding Actress for her starring role in Sweet Charity. Both are expected to perform at this year's Bobby G Awards.

    Luccio Dellepiane of Cherry Creek High School, who was named Rising Star as a sophomore for Rodgers + Hammerstein's Cinderella, is nominated this year for Outstanding Supporting Actor for his role as Harold Bride in Titanic.

    Elleon Dobias of Valor Christian High School, nominated in 2015 as a Rising Star for playing Madame de la Grande Bouche in Beauty and the Beast, and again last year as  Supporting Actress for playing Miss Andrew in Mary Poppins, is nominated for a third time, as Outstanding Actress for playing Catherine in Pippin

    Notables from Colorado theatre community:

    • Rebecca Spafford, who recently played Karen in OpenStage's August: Osage County in Fort Collins, is nominated as part of the costume team for Fossil Ridge High School's The Addams Family.
    • BDT Stage veteran Shelly Cox-Robie, nominated last year as part of a costume team, is nominated for directing Boulder High School's Rent.


    2016-17 Bobby G Awards participating schools:


    Arvada West High School
    Beauty and the Beast

    Aspen High School
    Pippin

    Bear Creek High School
    Cabaret

    Boulder High School
    Rent

    Brighton High School
    Fiddler on the Roof

    Castle View High School
    Aida

    Chaparral High School
    The Scarlet Pimpernel

    Cherry Creek High School
    Titanic

    Conifer High School
    Once On This Island

    Denver School of the Art
    The Producers

    D’Evelyn High School
    Legally Blonde

    Durango High School
    Beauty and the Beast

    East High School
    Hairspray

    Erie High School
    The Addams Family

    Fairview High School
    Aida Mary

    Fort Collins High School
    Poppins

    Fossil Ridge High School
    The Addams Family

    Gateway High School
    In the Heights

    George Washington High School
    Pippin

    Glenwood Springs High School
    The Addams Family

    Heritage High School
    The Addams Family

    Lakewood High School
    Sweeney Todd -The Demon Barber of Fleet Street

    Legend High School
    Fiddler on the Roof

    Lewis Palmer High School
    Thoroughly Modern Millie

    Liberty Classical Academy
    Peter Pan

    Loveland High School
    Guys and Dolls

    Lutheran High School
    The Wizard of Oz

    Monarch High School
    Annie

    Mountain View High School
    Children of Eden

    Niwot High School
    Into the Woods

    North High School & STRIVE Prep Excel High School
    In the Heights

    Palmer Ridge High School
    Starlight Express

    Ponderosa High School
    Little Shop of Horrors

    Poudre High School
    Legally Blonde

    Ralston Valley High School Regis Jesuit High School
    The Little Mermaid Beauty and the Beast

    Resurrection Christian School
    “It’s a Bird…It’s A Plane…It’s Superman”

    Steamboat Springs High School
    Grease

    Valor Christian High School
    Pippin

    Westminster High School
    Tarzan

    Wheat Ridge High School
    The Pirates of Penzance

    Selected recent NewsCenter coverage of the Bobby G Awards:
    Mamma Mia's Cashelle Butler returns to Cherry Creek High School
    Authentic voices: 2017 student playwriting winners announced
    North High School gets real with In the Heights
    Video: Colorado's Bobby G Awards reps win scholarships in New York 
    Bobby G Award winners' Road to the Jimmy Awards
    Video, story: Kinship and camaraderie at 2016 Bobby G Awards
    Video: 2016 Bobby G Awards in 60 seconds
    Video: Outstanding Musical nominee performances
    Photos: 2016 Bobby G Awards (Download for free)
    Mountain View scales Bobby G Awards' 2016 peak
    Meet your 2015 Bobby G Awards Outstanding Actor Finalists
    Meet your 2016 Bobby G Awards Outstanding Actress Finalists
    2015-16 Bobby G Award nominations: The complete list


  • NewsCenter: Our 10 most popular articles of 2016

    by John Moore | Jan 08, 2017

    Hamilton in Denver. Broadway Nothing got readers more excited last year than the news that the hit Broadway musical 'Hamilton' will be coming to Denver as part of the 2017-18 Broadway season.


    The DCPA NewsCenter was launched in October 2014 as an unprecedented new media outlet covering theatre at the Denver Center and throughout the state and nation telling stories with words, videos, podcasts and photos. It is a service made possible by the Denver Center for the Performing Arts as a shared resource for the Colorado theatre community as a whole. Here are the 10 most-clicked stories on the NewsCenter in 2016 from among the nearly 430 posted. Thanks to our readers for making it a record-breaking year:

    NUMBER 1HamiltonBroadway’s Hamilton is heading to Denver: The national tour of the Broadway musical Hamilton will play the Buell Theatre as part of the Denver Center's 2017-18 Broadway subscription series. Information regarding engagement dates and how to purchase single tickets will be announced at a later time. READ IT

    NUMBER 2Brenda Billings 1Brenda Billings: 'A warrior of acceptance':  Brenda Billings died while doing what she loves most – conducting auditions for an upcoming production of Little Shop of Horrors. She was the co-Artistic Director of Miners Alley Playhouse and  President of the Denver Actors Fund, and she was only 57. “Her passion for storytelling and art is carried on through all of us who were lucky enough to call her friend,” said Tony Award-winning actor Annaleigh Ashford. READ IT

    NUMBER 3Fun Home. Joan Marcus2016-17 Broadway season: Frozen, Fun Home, Finding Neverland and more: The DCPA announced a landmark 2016-17 season lineup that includes both of the most recent Tony Award-winners as well as the pre-Broadway debut of the highly anticipated stage adaptation of Disney’s record-breaking hit Frozen, the highest-grossing animated film in history. It was later announced that the Denver dates for Frozen will be Aug. 17 through Oct. 1, 2017. READ IT 

    NUMBER 4Terry DoddTerry Dodd: a playwright, director who bled empathy: Terry Dodd will be remembered as one of the most prolific local directors in the Colorado theatre community, as well as an accomplished playwright and screenwriter who was known for exploring deeply personal family issues. Dodd died of a heart attack at age 64. READ IT 

    NUMBER 5osg-christiana-clark2In Ashland, converting rage into action: In many ways Ashland, home to the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, seems to be an insular, harmonious bubble immune to outside social realities. But on June 24, the bubble burst when an African-American company member had an ugly encounter with a white supremacist. Now the local and national theatre communities are asking difficult questions about race. READ IT

    NUMBER 6Finalists for the 2015-16 Bobby G Awards announced: The annual Bobby G Awards celebrate outstanding achievement in high-school musical theatre in Colorado. The year-long program culminates in a Tony Awards-style ceremony at the Buell Theatre. Here’s who was nominated from among the 40 participating schools. READ IT

    NUMBER 7Tom SutherlandFormer hostage Thomas Sutherland is freed a second time: Former Colorado State University professor Thomas Sutherland was held hostage in Beirut for more than six years - or 2,353 agonizing days. The genial Scotsman made his first foray into acting at age 72, and later donated $500,000 to Bas Bleu Theatre Company’s new performance space. He drew it from the $35 million he was awarded in frozen Iranian assets. Sutherland died July 23 at age 85. READ IT http://dcpa.today/EX6aBY

    NUMBER 8David Bowie Elephant ManDavid Bowie's acting career began in Denver: David Bowie’s death had the world mourning the loss of one of rock’s most chameleonic performers. But he was also a versatile stage and screen actor whose legit theatre career began in Denver starring as the ultimate “Broken Man,” John Merrick, in a 1980 touring production of The Elephant Man. "Judging from his sensitive projection of this part, Bowie has the chance to achieve legit stardom,” one critic wrote. READ IT 

    NUMBER 9Buell TheatrePhantom return will mark Buell Theatre’s 25th anniversary: The Buell Theatre was built, in large part, to host the national touring production of The Phantom of the Opera in 1991. It was, Denver Post critic Jeff Bradley wrote at the time, “the most successful theatrical event in Denver history.” We take a look back at the Buell’s first 25 years. READ IT 

    NUMBER 10Theresa Rebeck quoteRebeck's The Nest flies in face of national gender trends: Theresa Rebeck, author of the DCPA Theatre Company’s world premiere play The Nest, says the need to level the gender playing field in the American theatre is urgent. “Women's voices have been marginalized in the theatre, and in film and television,” said Rebeck. But the Denver Center, she said, is bucking the trend. “Kent Thompson and everyone at the Denver Center have always been way ahead of the curve on this issue.” READ IT


    John Moore was named one of the 12 most influential theater critics in the U.S by American Theatre Magazine in 2011. He has since taken a groundbreaking position as the Denver Center's Senior Arts Journalist.
  • Video: Bobby G Awards winners sing Denver Outlaws anthem

    by John Moore | Jul 26, 2016


    a-bobby-g-awards-denver-outlaws-600Charlotte Movizzo and Curtis Salinger, Colorado's 2016 Bobby G Awards winners, were invited to sing the National Anthem at the Denver Outlaws' professional lacrosse victory over the Atlanta Blaze on July 16. It also happened to be "Star Wars Night" at Mile High Stadium, hence the appearance of stormtroopers. The Bobby G Awards celebrate outstanding achievement in high-school musical theatre. Salinger and Movizzo were named Outstanding Actor and Actress. The rehearsal pianist and anthem arranger was Martha Yordy.

    Video by DCPA Video Producer David Lenk with interviews by DCA Senior Arts Journalist John Moore. Anthem footage provided by the Denver Outlaws.   

    Selected recent NewsCenter coverage of the Bobby G Awards:
    Video: Colorado's Bobby G Awards reps win scholarships in New York 
    Bobby G Award winners' Road to the Jimmy Awards
    Video, story: Kinship and camaraderie at 2016 Bobby G Awards
    Video: 2016 Bobby G Awards in 60 seconds
    Video: Outstanding Musical nominee performances
    Photos: 2016 Bobby G Awards (Download for free)
    Mountain View scales Bobby G Awards' 2016 peak
    Meet your 2015 Bobby G Awards Outstanding Actor Finalists
    Meet your 2016 Bobby G Awards Outstanding Actress Finalists
    2015-16 Bobby G Award nominations: The complete list
    Video: Coloradans on Broadway to high-schoolers: 'Be relentlessly yourself'


    a-bobby-g-awards-denver-outlaws-600l



    Photo gallery: 2016 Bobby G Awards, after Denver


    2016 Bobby G Awards: After DenverThis gallery follows our Colorado representatives since winning at the 2016 Bobby G Awards. To see more, press the forward arrow on the image above. Photos by John Moore for the DCPA NewsCenter.
  • Bobby G Award winners' Road to the Jimmy Awards

    by John Moore | Jun 19, 2016

    This YouTube playlist will be updated all week with more dispatches from Charlotte Movizzo and Curtis Salinger for BroadwayWorld. Bookmark it here.


    Today, Denver’s representatives for the 2016 National High School Musical Theatre Awards – “The Jimmys” – arrived in New York and immediately began their eight-day immersion into workshops and rehearsals, all leading up to their appearance on Broadway’s Minskoff Theatre stage on June 27.

    Charlotte Movizzo of Ponderosa High School and Curtis Salinger of Durango High School were chosen to represent Colorado at the DCPA’s recent Bobby G Awards, which celebrate Outstanding Achievement in high-school theatre.

    We spoke with each of them on their way to the Great White Way:

    Meet Charlotte Movizzo:

    1 PerspectivesHow has your life changed since the night of the Bobby G Awards ceremony? I have had some incredible opportunities. I was invited to sing to perform before the DCPA board, and at the Randy Weeks Memorial Golf Tournament, which raised more than $91,000 for the advancement of musical theatre for Colorado high-school students. Both events showed me what incredible people there are supporting the program, and high-school theatre. Otherwise, I have been very busy practicing and preparing music for New York.

    2 PerspectivesTell us about your family connection to the local theatre community. My mother performed at the former Country Dinner Playhouse alongside some big names in the local and Broadway theatre communities. Having a mom with a background in the performing arts has influenced me since Day 1. I grew up singing showtunes in the car, and performing for anyone who would listen. My mom has made sure that I have had every opportunity to grow in the arts, from driving me theatre camps to staying up until midnight listening to me sing the same two measures over and over. She is my vocal coach and acting coach, and she has done everything she can to teach me her knowledge of the performing-arts world. The two of us often can be found doing tap combinations while washing the dishes, and attempting to harmonize to Annie Get Your Gun in the car.

    3 PerspectivesWhat’s the one thing you are looking forward to most in New York? Having the opportunity to work with the amazing teachers and professors there, as well as meeting other high-school students from around the country who share my passion. The theatre world is a very supportive place, so I can’t wait to see what relationships I form there.

    4 PerspectivesHow do programs like the Bobby G Awards and the Jimmy Awards help the reputation and respect of your high-school theatre program? This experience will help the theatre program at Ponderosa make a name for itself within the school, as well as within the community. The Bobby G Awards have allowed our theatre program to say that we have people going to the equivalent of “state” or, “nationals” - titles usually claimed by the sports teams.

    5 PerspectivesSierra-BoggessWho do you most hope to encounter on the streets of New York? Sierra Boggess, star of School of Rock. is a guest speaker at the Jimmy Awards. Not only is she a Denver girl, but she is so incredibly versatile and talented. She has been a huge inspiration to me. I saw her perform in The Little Mermaid at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House before it went to Broadway, and I have been dying to see her perform ever since.

    Last words: I am so honored to have been allowed this enormous opportunity. I already have learned so much in a very short amount of time, and I know I have so much more learning ahead of me.

    READ MORE ABOUT CHARLOTTE AND THE OTHER NOMINEES

     Bobby G Awards Road to the Jimmy Awards Montage

    Clockwise from top: Curtis Salinger and Charlotte Movizzo shortly after winning their Bobby G Awards on May 26 at the Buell Theatre; Charlotte performs before the DCPA Board, Charlotte and Curtis appear on Fox's 'Daybreak' with Chris Parente; Charlotte and Curtis on their first day at the Jimmy Awards in New York; Curtis turned 16 on June 18, and he found the perfect place to mark the rite of passage on Denver's 16th Street mall.

    Meet Curtis Salinger:

    1 PerspectivesHow has your life changed since the night of the Bobby G Awards ceremony? My life has been surreal. I still don't believe I won. Walking around town is a mess of congratulations and word has spread through a front-page newspaper story in my hometown of Durango. It's an indescribable feeling when someone you don't know congratulates you on the street for winning this award. It's also been a mad dash preparing material and forms and packing for a theatre camp to then leave right away for New York.

    2 PerspectivesTell us about your interesting family connection to the Bobby G Awards. My brother, Evatt, won the Bobby G Award for Outstanding Actor last year. He was the one who really inspired me to continue and pursue theatre, and I've been watching him on stage for as long as I can remember. Watching him have so much fun and get so much support was something that really gave me the ‘oomph’ it took to join in, and I'm so glad I did. Our family was so, so excited and blown away when he won. For me, it became my dream. I'm so fortunate that this dream came true.

    3 PerspectivesWhat’s the one thing you are looking forward to most in New York? While watching the show On Your Feet! is going to be very exciting, I'm looking forward to meeting the other actors and the professionals the most. I love making new friends and learning new things, and there's no better place to do that than with the nation's best. I'm also really looking forward to singing the opening and closing numbers with the guest artists because it will be a chance to sing with this enormous group of absolutely amazing peers and professionals all doing what they love. I think that'll just be flat-out awesome.

    4 PerspectivesHow do programs like the Bobby G Awards and the Jimmy Awards help the reputation and respect of your high-school theatre program? I think my winning the award gives my school fresh perspective when it comes to the arts. Sports offers the opportunity to compete in tournaments and make the playoffs and there's a goal of winning first place. And that is impressive. However, with theatre, a show usually opens and closes - and that's it. This award tells students they can take their art further and get recognition for their talent. The Bobby G Awards gives you the chance to extend the experience – to Denver and New York. And, no two of the four Outstanding Actors have come from the same school. And they happen to be brothers - and one of them happens to be me! One of the Outstanding Actresses came from our school, and last year our show was named Outstanding Musical at the Bobby G Awards and the Colorado Thespian Conference. This is a huge success from our school. It will help our community and our school board recognize that we have some amazing talent in Durango and theatre is something that should not get looked over.

    5 Perspectivesleslie-odom-jrWho do you most hope to encounter on the streets of New York? Lin-Manuel Miranda, Leslie Odom Jr. … OK, basically the entire cast of Hamilton. I am thrilled that Zachary Levi is hosting the Jimmy Awards in New York, because I've seen his TV show Chuck and I loved it. I used him in a TED-x talk I gave about promoting theatre in the schools because he was a childhood actor. He's someone I really look up to, and it will be awesome to have him host.

    Last words: The mom of a kid I'd worked with in a show last year came up to me on the street and congratulated me on winning. She told me her son looked up to me, and that I was setting a really good example for the younger kids. That was one of the most rewarding things that's ever happened to me. I have a goal to help promote theatre – especially for guys - and to hear that was amazing. That was something I’ll never forget.

    READ MORE ABOUT CURTIS AND THE OTHER NOMINEES

    Selected recent NewsCenter coverage of the Bobby G Awards:
    Video, story: Kinship and camaraderie at 2016 Bobby G Awards
    Video: 2016 Bobby G Awards in 60 seconds
    Video: Outstanding Musical nominee performances
    Photos: 2016 Bobby G Awards (Download for free)
    Mountain View scales Bobby G Awards' 2016 peak
    Meet your 2015 Bobby G Awards Outstanding Actor Finalists
    Meet your 2016 Bobby G Awards Outstanding Actress Finalists
    2015-16 Bobby G Award nominations: The complete list
    Video: Coloradans on Broadway to high-schoolers: 'Be relentlessly yourself'

    Check out the 2016 Nominated Performers' Medley:


    The 2016 Bobby G Awards, which celebrate outstanding achievement in Colorado high-school theatre, were held May 26 at the Buell Theatre. Each of the 10 nominated Outstanding Actors and Actresses took part in an original medleys before the crowd of 1,700. They were joined by last year's winners, Emma Buchanan and Evatt Salinger of Durango High School. The featured students are:

    Garrett Charles, Arvada West High School
    Abbie Cheney, Glenwood Springs High School
    Keala Fraioli, Steamboat Springs High School
    Michael Kosko, Denver School of the Arts
    Danny Miller, Arvada West High School
    Charlotte Movizzo, Ponderosa High School
    Jacob Pearce, Fairview High School
    Curtis Salinger, Durango High School
    Sienna Sewell, Fairview High School
    Savannah Wood, Mountain View High School

    Video by DCPA Video Producer David Lenk
  • Video: Bobby G Awards' Outstanding Musical nominee performances

    by John Moore | Jun 15, 2016


    The 2016 Bobby G Awards, which celebrate outstanding achievement in Colorado high-school theatre, were held May 26 at the Buell Theatre. Each of the five nominated Outstanding Musicals performed songs or medleys before the crowd of 1,700. Here are excerpts from each of those performances. The featured productions were:  

    • Cherry Creek High School's How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying
    • Denver School of the Arts' Spring Awakening
    • Mountain View High School's Anything Goes
    • Arvada West High School's Les Misérables
    • Fairview High School's Guys and Dolls
    Video by DCPA Video Producer David Lenk.


    Bonus video: Mountain View High School 's
    Anything Goes:


    Anything Goes,
    by Mountain View High School of Loveland, was named Outstanding Musical at the 2016 Bobby G Awards. Here is the school's full performance at the Buell Theatre.   


    Selected recent NewsCenter coverage of the Bobby G Awards:
    Video, story: Kinship and camaraderie at 2016 Bobby G Awards
    Video: 2016 Bobby G Awards in 60 seconds
    Photos: 2016 Bobby G Awards (Download for free)
    Mountain View scales Bobby G Awards' 2016 peak
    Meet your 2015 Bobby G Awards Outstanding Actor Finalists
    Meet your 2016 Bobby G Awards Outstanding Actress Finalists
    2015-16 Bobby G Award nominations: The complete list
    Video: Coloradans on Broadway to high-schoolers: 'Be relentlessly yourself'

    Bobby G Awards. Arvada West High School's Les Misérables Arvada West High School's 'Les Misérables.' Photo by John Moore for the DCPA's NewsCenter. 
  • Video, story: Kinship and camaraderie at the 2016 Bobby G Awards

    by John Moore | Jun 08, 2016

    Acceptance speeches and interview comments before and after the 2016 Bobby G Awards. Video by David Lenk and John Moore for the DCPA NewsCenter.


    Before newly graduated Ponderosa High School senior Charlotte Movizzo discovered the theatre, she said, “I was the quietest person you will ever meet. I was very shy.”

    How shy?

    “I was afraid to order at Qdoba,” she said. “It was terrifying.”

    Jimmy Miller Bobby G Awards But when Movizzo found the theatre, she found a second home. “I felt I could break out of my shell,” she said.

    Movizzo left any remaining fragments of her broken shell on the Buell Theatre stage last month when she was named Outstanding Actress at the 2016 Bobby G Awards, which honor achievements in Colorado high-school theatre. As the newly named Outstanding Actress and Actor, Movizzo and 15-year-old Durango High School sophomore Curtis Salinger earned a trip next week to New York City, where they will be immersed for 10 days of theatre training with Broadway professionals before performing in the Minskoff Theatre at the national Jimmy Awards.

    That’s how fast your life can change because of the Bobby G Awards, which were begun by late DCPA President Randy Weeks four years ago and named in honor of his late mentor, Denver theatre producer Robert Garner.

    When she heard her name called, Movizzo said, there were no words. “I almost started crying,” she said.

    Winning was nice, but the best part of her Bobby G Awards experience, she said, was working together with her nine fellow nominees for a week on a specially created medley they performed at the ceremony. “Working with all of the nominees has been amazing because they are all so talented,” she said. They became so close and supportive, she said, they formed a private Facebook group.

    But the Bobby G Awards are not all about churning out the next generation of Broadway performers. 2014 Outstanding Actor Conner Kingsley matriculated to Tulane University, where he had the cred to star as Jack in the Stephen Sondheim musical Into the Woods as just a freshman. But his heart soon led him toward a Management Environmental Studies degree and, hopefully, next into law school. Kingsley said performing in high-school school theatre and the Bobby G Awards experience prepped him well for that transition.

    “That has really helped me to talk openly in front of people, and taught me how to share my ideas and opinions easily,” he said.

    In the lobby before the Bobby G Awards, it was clear this unique annual gathering is all about celebrating both theatre and camaraderie.

    Bobby G Awards Luccio Dellepiane “For my kids, high-school theatre is their life for four years, and the school musical becomes the epicenter of their entire year,” said Cherry Creek High School Drama Teacher Jimmy Miller, whose How To Succeed in Business Without Really Trying was nominated for eight Bobby G Awards. “But what my kids really enjoy about these awards is being around other high-school kids and sharing the energy, and sharing the love.”

    Another example of how much can change in a year was made plain when Cherry Creek student Luccio Dellepiane (pictured above) stepped onto the Buell Theatre stage as J. Pierpont Finch alongside his How to Succeed castmates to perform a medley from the show.

    Last year, Dellepiane was singled out as the Bobby G Awards’ Rising Star, an award that honors outstanding work by an underclassman for his work as The Herald in Creek’s Cinderella. This year, Dellepiane starred in the leading role of How to Succeed. Star risen.

    “That was really crazy,” said Dellepiane, who like many others, was surrounded by proud family and friends in the Buell lobby before the awards. “That was the greatest honor I have ever received.”

    Our 2016 Bobby G Awards photo gallery:

    2016 Bobby G Awards

    To see more photos, click the forward arrow on the image above. Photos by John Moore and Emily Lozow for the DCPA NewsCenter.


    One of the fringe benefits of winning the Rising Star Award is a year of free classes offered by the DCPA’s Education Department, and Dellepiane took full advantage by signing up for four summer classes ranging from improv comedy to audition tips.

    “I know I grew as a performer because of it,” he said. “It gave me confidence to go further.”

    The Bobby G Awards’ Outstanding Musical Award went to Mountain View High School’s tap-dance extravaganza, Anything Goes. Mountain View is a medium-sized school of 1,200 located in Loveland, about 45 miles north of Denver. 

    “It’s humbling,” leading actor Owen Whitham said of the honor. “We come from a smaller town and we pour our heart and soul into our work. Being recognized for that is something we never even thought of.” 

    The cast’s performance of the title song drew thunderous response from the Buell crowd of about 1,700.

    “Shockingly, only five of us had ever tapped before,” said cast member Kira Minter, who said the students went through a two-week tap-dancing boot camp before rehearsals even started. Their efforts paid off at the Bobby G Awards.

    “I think this program is amazing,” Minter said. “It’s one of those experiences that changes your life. Performing on a real, professional stage is a great opportunity, especially for kids who are new to theatre. It’s a chance for them to say, ‘Oh, my gosh, this is what I love to do.’ ”

    Denver School of the Arts was nominated for seven Bobby G Awards for its daring production of Spring Awakening, one of the first in the nation by any high school troupe. DSA is one of only two schools in the nation that have been invited to perform at the upcoming International Thespian Festival in Lincoln, Neb. Actor Keely Kritz said performing Spring Awakening at the upcoming conference “is the fulfillment of a big dream.”

    Spring Awakening is a modern retelling of young 1880s German teens growing up in the complete absence of real information about sexuality or the human body.

    Bobby G Awards Mountain View High School
    Mountain View High School's cast of 'Anything Goes.' Photo by John Moore for the DCPA NewsCenter.

    “It was freeing to be able to do this show,” said cast member Beau Wilcox. “It’s great to be able to say, ‘This is our school, and we are going to take on a tough subject, and we are going to do a good job with it.”

    Added castmate Jimmy Bruenger: “We like to do shows that are impactful and share a human experience - and what a perfect show to that,” he said. “This is a show about growing up, and we’ve all done that in the past seven years.”

    Still, for many, the enduring moment of the 2016 Bobby G Awards was watching as Curtis Salinger of Durango High School was named Outstanding Actor one year after his brother, Evatt, won the same honor. And it was Evatt who had the honor of handing the trophy to his younger brother, who turns just 16 next week. Curtis called it a Zoolander moment. But he was was most happy for his parents.

    “We have amazing parents, and they have raised us well,” Curtis said. “I know I speak for Evatt when I say we are eternally grateful to them and for the opportunities they have given us.” 

    One of the giddiest attendees this year was 2014 Outstanding Actress Abby Noble, who was happy to be taking her seat in the Buell Theatre audience before the show. “I just ate at McDonalds, because I don’t have to sing,” she said with a smile as wide as her face.

    John Moore was named one of the 12 most influential theater critics in the U.S by American Theatre Magazine in 2011. He has since taken a groundbreaking position as the Denver Center’s Senior Arts Journalist.

     

    MORE QUOTES FROM THE BOBBY G AWARDS:

    2014 Outstanding Actress Abby Noble: “Theatre definitely helps me in every aspect of my life. Especially when it comes to working with other people at the work place. I am a tour guide at my school, and theatre has really helped with the presentational aspect of the job, abs being able to stand under pressure with a smile on your face and be genuine.”

    Shelly Cox-Robie, director of Boulder High School’s Beauty and the Beast and a 250-year performer at BDT Stage in Boulder: “I am so happy for these kids. We have to fight for funding and fight for any recognition for these kids, who work countless hours for months to make these shows.”

    Ronni Gallup, nominated for the third time at Cherry Creek High School and choreographer of Phamaly Theatre Company’s upcoming Evita: “It is so important that we give these kids a taste of what the real business is. I’m hard on them. I push them and I challenge them, year after year. And I think they are the better for it" 

    2015 Outstanding Actress Emma Buchanan: "Being back at the Bobby G Awards makes me nostalgic being back here at the Buell Theatre. You can feel the excitement of the event and how important it is for so many kids in the state."


    Selected recent NewsCenter coverage of the Bobby G Awards:
    Video: 2016 Bobby G Awards in 60 seconds
    Photos: 2016 Bobby G Awards (Download for free)
    Mountain View scales Bobby G Awards' 2016 peak
    Meet your 2015 Bobby G Awards Outstanding Actor Finalists
    Meet your 2016 Bobby G Awards Outstanding Actress Finalists
    2015-16 Bobby G Award nominations: The complete list
    Video: Coloradans on Broadway to high-schoolers: 'Be relentlessly yourself'
  • Video: 2016 Bobby G Awards in 60 seconds

    by John Moore | Jun 01, 2016


    In the first of our series of videos covering the 2016 Bobby G Awards, we present you with this 60-second recap, focusing on the Colorado actors who are advancing to the National High School Musical Theatre Awards, otherwise known as The Jimmys, later this month in New York City. The Bobby G Awards celebrate outstanding achievement in high-school theatre. Video by DCPA Video Producer David Lenk.

    Selected recent NewsCenter coverage of the Bobby G Awards:
    Photos: 2016 Bobby G Awards (Download for free)
    Mountain View scales Bobby G Awards' 2016 peak
    Meet your 2015 Bobby G Awards Outstanding Actor Finalists
    Meet your 2016 Bobby G Awards Outstanding Actress Finalists
    2015-16 Bobby G Award nominations: The complete list
    Video: Coloradans on Broadway to high-schoolers: 'Be relentlessly yourself'


    Bobby G Awards

    Curtis Salinger and Charlotte Movizzo. Photo by Emily Lozow for the DCPA NewsCenter.
  • Photos: The 2016 Bobby G Awards

    by John Moore | May 29, 2016
    2016 Bobby G Awards
    To see more photos, click the forward arrow on the image above. To download any photo for free, in a variety of sizes, click on the photo. You will be taken to our Denver Center Flickr account, where you will click on the download arrow at the bottom right of the image. Photos by John Moore and Emily Lozow for the DCPA NewsCenter.



    Bobby G AwardsHere is a gallery of our best photos from the fourth annual Bobby G Awards held Thursday, May 26 at the Buell Theatre. The Bobby G Awards, named after late Denver theatre producer Robert Garner, honor outstanding achievement in Colorado high-school theatre.The gallery includes photos from the day-long rehearsal at the Buell on Wednesday, May 25.

    Read our complete report on the 2016 Bobby G Awards


    Bobby G Awards DCPA Broadway Executive Director John Ekeberg with New York-bound Outstanding Actor and Acrtress Curtis Salinger and Charlotte Movizzo. Photo by Emily Lozow.DCPA Broadway Executive Director John Ekeberg with New York-bound Outstanding Actress and Actor Charlotte Movizzo and Curtis Salinger. Photo by Emily Lozow.


    Here is a fun time-lapse video covering the day-long Bobby G Awards rehearsal the day before the ceremony, including performances by Fairview, Arvada West, Denver School of the Arts, Mountain View and Cherry Creek. Video shot by DCPA Video Producer David Lenk on May 25 in the Buell Theatre.

    The traditional post-Bobby G Awards celebration photo on the Buell Stage by John Moore for the DCPA.
    Everyone who was part of a winning production was invited onto the Buell Theatre stage for the traditional  post-Bobby G Awards celebration photo by John Moore for the DCPA.


    Selected recent NewsCenter coverage of the Bobby G Awards:
    Mountain View scales Bobby G Awards' 2016 peak
    Meet your 2015 Bobby G Awards Outstanding Actor Finalists
    Meet your 2016 Bobby G Awards Outstanding Actress Finalists
    2015-16 Bobby G Award nominations: The complete list
    2014-15 Bobby G Awards a triumph for Durango High
    Bobby G Award winners sing National Anthem at Rockies game
    Video: The Acceptance Speeches
    Photos: The 2015 Bobby G Awards. (Download for free)
    Video: Coloradans on Broadway to high-schoolers: 'Be relentlessly yourself'

    Bobby G Awards Mountain View High School. Anything Goes. Mountain View High School celebrates the announcement that its 'Anything Goes' had won the 2016 Bobby G Award for Outstanding Musical. Photo by John Moore for the DCPA NewsCenter.

  • Mountain View scales Bobby G Awards' peak

    by John Moore | May 26, 2016

    Overall Production 2016 Bobby G Awards Mountain View Anything Goes


    The Buell Theatre was a Land of Love throughout Thursday’s fourth annual Bobby G Awards, which celebrate achievement in Colorado high-school theatre. Not only was Mountain View High School of Loveland winner of the prestigious Outstanding Musical Award, but brotherly love was on full display when 2015 Outstanding Actor Evatt Salinger handed the 2016 award to his younger brother, Curtis Salinger.

    Mountain View led all schools by earning four of the evening’s 18 awards for its tap-dancing extravaganza, Anything Goes. In all, 11 schools won at least one award, making 2015-16 a second straight year of evenly distributed awards. Fairview High School in Boulder was next with three, with other awards heading out to Durango, Niwot and beyond.

    The Bobby G Awards are a culmination of a year-long program administered by the Denver Center that emphasizes camaraderie and shared experiences - but there is also much at stake. The students named Outstanding Actor and Actress go on to represent Colorado at the National High School Musical Theatre Awards in New York City. Colorado’s winners are joined by other regional honorees for "The Jimmys," as they are known in New York City. That’s 10 days of intensive training with some of Broadway's leading actors, choreographers and directors, all leading up to a fully staged, one-night performance at Broadway's Minskoff Theatre.

    Now only in their fourth year, the Bobby G Awards have established a literal bloodline to Durango, located nearly 400 miles southwest of Denver. Evatt Salinger was named Outstanding Actor last year for his work in Les Misérables. Curtis Salinger was just a freshman when he played Marius to his brother’s Valjean in that production, which was named Outstanding Musical of 2014-15.

    Curtis Salinger literally followed in his brother’s footsteps Thursday when he was honored for his work as Emmett Forrest in Legally Blonde at Durango High School. He will now be joined in New York by new Ponderosa High School graduate Charlotte Movizzo, who was named Outstanding Actress for her starring role in Sweet Charity.

    Nominees for the Bobby G Awards are determined by scoring from a team of professional adjudicators. Unlike other awards categories, the Outstanding Actor and Actress winners are determined by two equally scored criteria: First, the students are judged for their actual performances in their respective school musicals. The five students with the highest scores then go before a professional panel for a private, scored audition.

    This year, a record 40 schools participated in the statewide Bobby G Awards program, up from 30 the year before. Mountain View, a school with an enrollment of 1,200, is located 45 miles due north of Denver on I-25. It was considered a favorite going into Thursday’s ceremony on the basis of its 10 nominations. It also won for Outstanding Costume Design, Choreography and Chorus.

    The ceremony was filled with emotional moments, none more so than when DCPA Broadway Executive Director John Ekeberg announced Curtis Salinger’s name. As last year’s winners, Evatt Salinger and former classmate Emma Buchanan were tasked with presenting trophies to each of Thursday’s honorees. The Buell crowd erupted when it became evident that the Salingers are brothers.

    “I watched my brother win last year, and it was everything that I could ever dream of,” said Curtis.

    Watch our fun time-lapse video covering Wednesday's day-log Bobby G Awards​ rehearsal, including performances by Fairview, Arvada West, Denver School of the Arts, Mountain View and Cherry Creek. Video shot by DCPA Video Producer David Lenk.


    Of note to the local theater community was Brandon Warren’s win as Outstanding Supporting Actor for his performance as Nicely-Nicely Johnson in Fairview High School’s Guys & Dolls. Brandon is the son of acclaimed local actor and theatre educator Tracy Warren, who recently starred in Mary Poppins for BDT Stage in Boulder, and is currently performing in Into the Woods with Debby Boone at the Candlelight Dinner Playhouse in Johnstown.

    Westminster High School's Andre' Rodriguez, who was named Outstanding Director in 2015, was part of the team that won the Bobby G Award for Outstanding Scenic Design, for The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee. Rodriguez has now been nominated in all four years of the Bobby G Awards.

    Students and educators were honored in the areas of performance, design, direction, choreography, technical production and overall production excellence. All participating schools received one personal master class session with a DCPA Education theatre teacher. Winners of the Outstanding Supporting Actor, Actress and Rising Star (Outstanding Underclassman) awards also earn a full year of free classes at the Denver Center. “The DCPA is proud to be a part of your journey,” said Education Director Allison Watrous.

    While the Bobby G Awards culminate each year with Thursday's awards ceremony, which is modeled after the Tony Awards, the year-long focus of the program is to both celebrate and educate. The participating schools receive detailed feedback on their musical productions from the adjudicators. The 10 nominated Outstanding Actors and Actresses are invited to the Denver Center two weeks before the awards to prepare a medley together in community and friendship, which they then perform at the ceremony on the Buell Theatre stage.

    Each of the five nominated Outstanding Productions performed a musical number during the ceremony, each drawing thunderous appreciation from an enthusiastic Buell Theatre crowd estimated at 1,700.

    The Bobby G Awards were founded in 2013 by the late DCPA President Randy Weeks. They are named after late producer Robert Garner, who established Denver as a top destination for touring Broadway shows.

    Veteran Broadway actor Candy Brown, who was in the original Broadway casts of Pippin and A Chorus Line, presented four awards. She is now a teaching artist at Denver School of the Arts, which earned seven nominations for its production of Spring Awakening, which is one of two finalists for Outstanding Musical at the national thespian convention next month in Lincoln, Neb.

    If Brown’s era was the Golden Age of Broadway, she told the current high-school performers in the crowd that they will represent the Platinum Age – one in which “race, creed or color will not matter if you do your job,” she said.

    The Master of ceremonies was again Greg Moody, longtime known as Colorado's Critic-At-Large for CBS-4.

    John Moore was named one of the 12 most influential theater critics in the U.S by American Theatre Magazine in 2011. He has since taken a groundbreaking position as the Denver Center’s Senior Arts Journalist.


    THE 2015-16 BOBBY G AWARDS


    Bobby G Awards Anything Goes Mountain West
    Mountain View High School's Outstanding Musical "Anything Goes" at Wednesday's Bobby G Awards rehearsal. Photo by John Moore for the DCPA NewsCenter.

    Outstanding Overall Production of a Musical
    Anything Goes, Mountain View High School

    Other nominees:
    • Les Misérables, Arvada West High School
    • How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, Cherry Creek High School
    • Spring Awakening, Denver School of the Arts
    • Guys and Dolls, Fairview High School


    Direction

    Outstanding Achievement in Direction
    Lanny Boyer and Janice Vlachos, Fairview High School, Guys & Dolls   

    Other nominees
    :
    • Lindsey Welsh, Arvada West High School, Les Misérables
    • Jimmy Miller, Cherry Creek High School, How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying
    • Shawn Hann, Denver School of the Arts, Spring Awakening
    • Brian Cook, Annie Dwyer and Tom Mullin, Wheat Ridge High School, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat


    Lead Actress


    Outstanding Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role

    Charlotte Movizzo, Ponderosa High School, Sweet Charity, Charity Hope Valentine

    Other nominees:
    • Sienna Sewell, Fairview High School, Guys & Dolls, Sarah Brown
    • Abbie Cheney, Glenwood Springs High School, Anything Goes, Reno Sweeney
    • Savannah Wood, Mountain View High School, Anything Goes, Reno Sweeney
    • Keala Fraioli, Steamboat Springs High School, Legally Blonde, Elle Woods


    Lead Actor Bobby G Awards
    Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role:

    Curtis Salinger, Durango High School, Legally Blonde, Emmett Forrest

    Other nominees:
    • Danny Miller, Arvada West High School, Les Misérables, Jean Valjean
    • Garrett Charles, Arvada West High School, Les Misérables, Javert
    • Michael Kosko, Denver School of the Arts, Spring Awakening, Moritz
    • Jacob Pearce, Fairview High School , Guys & Dolls, Nathan Detroit


    Rising Star Bobby G Awards
    Rising Star (honoring underclassmen):

    Abby Lehrer, Valor Christian High School, Mary Poppins, Bird Woman

    Other nominees:
    • Matti Guillette, Durango High School, Legally Blonde, Margot
    • Jenna Szczech, Durango High School, Legally Blonde, Pilar
    • Audrey Smith, Fort Collins High School, Company, Sarah
    • John Kibozi, Wheat Ridge High School, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Levi


    Supporting Actress Bobby G Awards
    Outstanding Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role

    Senora Robinson, Durango High School, Legally Blonde, Serena

    Other nominees:
    • Lauren Rocha, Brighton High School, Tarzan, Kala
    • Tilly Leeder, Durango High School, Legally Blonde, Vivienne Kensington
    • Hannah Jones, Legend High School, Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella, Gabrielle
    • Elleon Dobias, Valor Christian High School, Mary Poppins, Miss Andrew


    Supporting Actor Outstanding Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role   Other nominees
    Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role

    Brandon Warren, Fairview High School, Guys & Dolls, Nicely-Nicely Johnson

    Other nominees:
    • Marcos Ospina, Boulder High School, Beauty and the Beast, Lumiere
    • Jimmy Bruenger, Denver School of the Arts, Spring Awakening, Hanschen
    • Jacob Sadow, Fairview High School, Guys & Dolls, Harry the Horse
    • Michael Mathey, Legend High School, Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella, Jean-Michel


    Musical Direction
    Outstanding Achievement in Musical Direction

    Michael Bizzaro and Travis Keller, Fairview High School, Guys & Dolls   

    Other nominees:
    • Chris Maunu and Craig Melhorn, Arvada West High School, Les Misérables
    • Kaitlin Miles, Fort Collins High School, Company
    • Phil Forman, Bryan Kettlewell and Peter Toews, Mountain View High School, Anything Goes
    • Brian Cook, Charles Craig and Vicki Duckworth, Wheat Ridge High School, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat


    OrchestraOutstanding Performance by an Orchestra

    Arvada West High School, Les Misérables       

    Other nominees:
    • Boulder High School, Beauty and the Beast
    • Denver School of the Arts, Spring Awakening
    • Fairview High School, Guys and Dolls
    • Mountain View High School, Anything Goes


    Chorus
    Outstanding Performance by a Chorus
    Mountain View High School, Anything Goes

    Other nominees
    :
    • Arvada West High School, Les Misérables
    • Brighton High School, Tarzan
    • Cherry Creek High School, How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying
    • Fairview High School, Guys and Dolls


    Choreography
    Outstanding Achievement in Choreography

    Bailey Friar and Tammy Johnson, Mountain View High School, Anything Goes

    Other nominees:
    • Angie Dryer, Arvada West High School, Les Misérables
    • Leigh Miller and Lindsey Solano, Brighton High School, Tarzan
    • Ronni Gallup, How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, Cherry Creek High School
    • Karen Cassel and Emma Sappey, Wheat Ridge High School, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat


    Scenic Design
    Outstanding Achievement in Scenic Design

    Corey Baca, Brandon PT Davis and Andre Rodriguez, Westminster High School, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee           

    Other nominees:
    • Jane Archuleta, Nick Dibbern, Phil Lollar and Sammy Perez, Brighton High School, Tarzan
    • Jack Hagen, Yuuki Hashimoto and Caleb Nghe, Cherry Creek High School, How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying
    • Shailyn Clay, Tyler King, Rebecca Reynolds and Lucas Sanchez, Mountain View High School, Anything Goes
    • Mallory Hart, Riley Hoffman and Rhys Holton, Wheat Ridge High School, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat


    Lighting Design
    Outstanding Achievement in Lighting Design
    Whitney Larson and Kayli Porterfield, Arvada West High School, Les Misérables


    Other nominees:

    • Yasmin Farsad, Cherry Creek High School, How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying
    • Lenora Grant and Caleb Werkmeister, Fairview High School, Guys & Dolls
    • Jude Franco and Tanner Friar, Mountain View High School, Anything Goes
    • Mallory Hart and Katherine Yates, Wheat Ridge High School, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat



    Costume Design
    Outstanding Achievement in Costume Design
    Jen Bleem, Cindy Sipes and Lauryn Starke, Mountain View High School, Anything Goes

    Other nominees:

    • Harrison Haggas, Chaney McCulloch, Shelly Cox-Robie and Chris Sweeney, Boulder High School, Beauty and the Beast
    • Jimmy Miller and Katya Zabelski, Cherry Creek High School, How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying
    • MaryV Benoit and Lara Kirksey, Denver School of the Arts, Spring Awakening
    • Molly Merewether, Teri Nydegger, Amy Sares and Denise Wood, Wheat Ridge High School, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat



    Hair and Makeup
    Outstanding Achievement in Hair and Make-up Design
    Austin Sabala, Boulder High School, Beauty and the Beast

    Other nominees:

    • Kendall Mesch, Arvada West High School, Les Misérables
    • Marrisa Hadden, Cherry Creek High School, How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying
    • Skylar Arterburn and Owen Nuss, Denver School of the Arts, Spring Awakening Averi Davis and Emma Smith, Mountain View High School, Anything Goes




    Photo gallery: Day 1 of the 2016 Bobby G Awards

    2016 Bobby G Awards
    Photos from Thursday's awards ceremony will be posted on Friday.

    SPECIAL ACHIEVEMENT WINNERS:

    • Achievement in Costuming: Annie Trumble, D’Evelyn High School, Young Frankenstein
    • Achievement in Student Direction: Shu Lee and Aurora Vadas-Arendt, Niwot High School, The Sound of Music
    • Achievement in Orchestra: Tristana Whetten, Vista PEAK Preparatory, Beauty and the Beast
    Selected recent NewsCenter coverage of the Bobby G Awards:
    Photo from Day One of the 2016 Bobby G Awards
    Meet your 2015 Bobby G Awards Outstanding Actor Finalists
    Meet your 2016 Bobby G Awards Outstanding Actress Finalists
    2015-16 Bobby G Award nominations: The complete listBobby G Awards a triumph for Durango High School Video: Outstanding Actor Nominee Performances Video: Bobby G Award winners sing National Anthem at Rockies game Video: The Acceptance Speeches
    Video: A look at Durango's Outstanding Musical, Les Misérables
    Photos: The 2015 Bobby G Awards. (Download for free)
    Andre' Rodriguez's stirring Bobby G Awards speech
    Video: See how we introduced all 30 participating schools
    Video: Page to Stage highlights with Bobby G Awards winners
    Meet your Bobby G Awards nominees, in their own words
    Video: Coloradans on Broadway to high-schoolers: 'Be relentlessly yourself'
  • Photo gallery: Day 1 of the 2016 Bobby G Awards

    by John Moore | May 26, 2016
    2016 Bobby G Awards

    Bobby G Awards Evatt SalingerHere are our best photos from the full day of rehearsal for the 2016 The Bobby G Awards, held Wednesday, May 25 at the Buell Theatre. The awards, which the public is encouraged to attend, take place at 7 p.m. on Thursday, May 26. To see more, click the forward arrow on the photo above. To download any photo for free, click on it and follow instructions. Photos by John Moore and Emily Lozow for the DCPA NewsCenter. Visit  www.MyDenverCenter.Org

    (Pictured right: Evatt Salinger, winner of the 2015 Bobby G Award for Outstanding Actor, rehearses for a medley he will perform as part of the 2016 awards ceremony.)



    This is fun! Watch our time-lapse video covering the day-long Bobby G Awards rehearsal, including performances by Fairview, Arvada West, Denver School of the Arts, Mountain View and Cherry Creek. Video shot by DCPA Video Producer David Lenk on May 25 in advance of the 2016 awards show on May 26 at the Buell Theatre.

    Bobby G Awards: Ticket information
  • Thursday, May 26
  • Buell Theatre 
  • 7 p.m.
  • Tickets: 303-893-4100 or BUY ONLINE

  • Selected recent NewsCenter coverage of the Bobby G Awards:
    Meet your 2015 Bobby G Awards Outstanding Actor Finalists
    Meet your 2016 Bobby G Awards Outstanding Actress Finalists
    2015-16 Bobby G Award nominations: The complete listBobby G Awards a triumph for Durango High School Video: Outstanding Actor Nominee Performances Video: Bobby G Award winners sing National Anthem at Rockies game Video: The Acceptance Speeches
    Video: A look at Durango's Outstanding Musical, Les Misérables
    Photos: The 2015 Bobby G Awards. (Download for free)
    Andre' Rodriguez's stirring Bobby G Awards speech
    Video: See how we introduced all 30 participating schools
    Video: Page to Stage highlights with Bobby G Awards winners
    Meet your Bobby G Awards nominees, in their own words
    Video: Coloradans on Broadway to high-schoolers: 'Be relentlessly yourself'
  • Meet your 2016 Bobby G Awards Outstanding Actor Finalists

    by John Moore | May 25, 2016

    The Bobby G Awards celebrate outstanding achievement in Colorado high-school musical theatre. The fourth annual awards and performance take place Thursday, May 26, at the Buell Theatre. Today we introduce you to the five students who are finalists for Outstanding Lead Actor. The winner will advance to represent Colorado at the national Jimmy Awards in New York City.

    Arvada West Garrett Charles 

    GARRETT CHARLES

    Javert, Les Misérables
    Arvada West High School
    Class of 2017

    • College plans: BYU
    • Your Director: Lindsey Welsh
    • First role: This is it. It was such an honor to be cast in such a large role as a rookie.
    • Garrett CharlesWhy do you perform? Because I love to see the emotions I can evoke from an audience.  It's the greatest feeling to know someone appreciated your work enough to let affect them emotionally.  It's the greatest compliment to hear, "Garrett, you made me cry with that song."  It means I've made someone's life a little better by sharing my hard work and talent. That is what I live for.
    • Ideal scene partner: Honestly, it was so much fun to do “The Confrontation" with my classmate, Danny Miller. But I would love to sing it with Alfie Boe.  I am such a fan of that man's voice and his work in the 25th Anniversary recording of Les Misérables was phenomenal. It would be such an experience to perform with him.
    • Favorite moment from your show: If I was forced to pick from the among the millions I'd probably say performing “The Epilogue on closing night. I remember entering from underneath the bridge I had thrown myself off of just scenes before, my head whirling with emotions. During that song, I reflected on the entire process and realized how much change I had gone through personally as a result of joining the family that is the Arvada West Theatre Company.  I remember glancing to either side of me and seeing tears streaming down all of my friends' faces.  The emotion and power of that performance topped anything I'd ever experienced.
    • Fun moment when something went wrong: My police-officer uniform had a flap on the front, which was sewn on one side and had Velcro on the other.  After the prologue, I had to do a quick costume change to go back out and play a street urchin, and with the urgency of my costume change on my mind, I ran to the dressing room and promptly tore the flap clean off of the front of my police uniform.  I now had an official-looking trapezoid of cloth in my hand and a very plain-looking blue tailcoat on my body.  I knew I had to be onstage quickly, so I completed my costume change and pounded on the girls’ dressing room door like there was a fire.  They told me I was safe, so I opened the door, mumbled, "ItoremyflapoffcansomeonegosewitbackonIgottabeonstagethanks!" and closed the door.  Thankfully they were able to decode my panicked slur - and the audience never found out about it.
    • What did it mean for you to be cast in this role? Javert has been my dream role ever since I found out about Les Mis my freshman year. To be cast in such an important role almost blindly was such an honor, and I was determined not to let anyone in the production down.
    • How does it feel to be nominated? I was extremely surprised when Ms. Welsh read my name. I did not expect to be nominated alongside someone with so much talent as our Jean Valjean, who was also nominated.  I definitely owe thanks to my directors for having the faith to cast me despite never really having seen me act before.
    • What would you say to a younger student who might be nervous or unsure about participating in the performing arts? The performing arts are the quickest way to get a gigantic circle of friends.  Also, if you don't want the pressure of being onstage or in the pit, there's always a need for crewmembers to run the show behind the scenes, and you will still have the same bonding experiences with your friends that all those onstage do.  I absolutely love it, and I think you will, too.
    • What has this experience taught you about the value of arts education and extracurricular activities? Arts education and extra-curricular activities save lives.  I've learned that being a part of something larger than yourself helps you mature, and gives you productive outlets for you pain and sorrow.  That's definitely what theatre and choir are for me.
    • Last word: Thank you so much for the nomination. I'm so honored to be considered for this prestigious award.


     Denver School of the Arts Michael Kosko Bobby G Awards

    MICHAEL KOSKO

    Moritz Stiefel, Spring Awakening
    Denver School of the Arts
    Class of 2016

    • College plans: London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art
    • Your Director: Shawn Hann
    • First role: I was the Mayor of MunchkinLand in The Wizard of Oz in the 6th Grade at Campus Middle School.
    • Actor Quote 2 Michael Kosko Bobby G AwardsWhy do you perform? I had an obsession with The Wizard of Oz my entire childhood. My older brother loved Pokémon and G.I. Joes, and I just loved Oz. I would parade around saying I’d be the Scarecrow when I grew up. So of course, when the middle school announced the spring musical of The Wizard of Oz, my mother made me audition. The rest is history. Theatre has become my form of expression. It’s the human connection through this work. We all have rich pain and emotion - and in this art form, we’re able to understand others.
    • Ideal scene partner: The first of many to come to mind is Jessica Lange. I have so much respect for the woman. She’s one of the bravest and most powerful artists I can think of, so to do a scene with her would be unreal. More specifically, to play her son, Edmund, in Long Day’s Journey Into Night, would be the dream.
    • Favorite moment from your show: Absolutely, it was saying the line, “I’m ready now: I’ll be an angel.” During that line, I’m on my knees collecting the lilies that llse dropped, and by the end come to the realization that I really am ready. And then I’d take a big breath of the flowers, carefully set them down and then pull out the gun. It was raw and terrifying and beautiful.
    • Fun moment when something went wrong: We had this wonderful moment during an evening performance where my good friend Jimmy Bruenger, who was playing Hanschen, forgot the gun to hand me at the end of the song And Then There Were None. It’s essential to that moment for the gun to appear, and the second the lights shifted into the final chords: he bolted off stage-right and vanished. As each of the other boys made their exits, Jimmy, from the corner of my eye, came charging through the stage door and then stopped dead right at the last foot of wall protecting him from view of the audience. Then, as confident as ever, he strolled on and threw the gun in my hand. It was thrilling.
    • What did it mean for you to be cast in this role? This became my dream role in the fall of my freshman year. I wanted nothing more than to play Moritz, and the last thing I could have ever imagined was playing him for my senior musical. It was the biggest deal for me, and it felt so right. I never doubted what he was to me, and where he lived in me. My little Moritz is a huge part of me.
    • How does it feel to be nominated? It is unreal to me, and such an incredible, incredible honor. In the 10th grade, I was in Cherry Creek High School’s Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, and performing at the Bobby G Awards that year as a finalist for Outstanding Musical was the biggest nomination I thought I’d ever come across. I could have never anticipated being nominated myself two years later.
    • What would you say to a younger student who might be nervous or unsure about participating in the performing arts? I’d say this is the single most important thing in the world. It teaches you what it means to be human. There’s something seriously missing from the boy or girl who is not in the arts. It allows you to feel. There are so many moments in this life when we have to step into the fear, and the moment you’re slightly uncomfortable is the moment you’re living. You must be brave. If you’re even the tiniest bit interested in something: Pull the thread. Investigate it. You owe it to yourself to be open to everything.
    • What has this experience taught you about the value of arts education and extracurricular activities at your school? It taught me how important it is to push the bill. Our wonderful principal doesn’t believe in the censorship of art, and we were so fortunate to have his blessing to perform full version of Spring Awakening. Arts education frees you completely. It gives you the ability to process heavy depression or intense delight and really feel those things, but be OK. This show was my biggest challenge yet, but it helped me to understand my emotions and how to deal with them. It taught me that through the darkness, there is always light.



    Arvada West Danny Miller Bobby G Awards

    DANNY MILLER

    Jean Valjean, Les Misérables
    Arvada West High School
    Class of 2016

    • College plans: Majoring in classical voice at the University of Northern Colorado
    • Your Director: Lindsey Welsh
    • First role: It was back in 2014, when I was cast to play The Phantom in Arvada West's production of Phantom of the Opera
    • Actor Quote 3 Danny Miller Bobby G AwardsWhy do you perform? For the joy of meeting new friends I can call my family. And to share music with the world.
    • Ideal scene partner: Ramine Karimloo is my idol. I love his work, and it would be a dream to work with him. He's my inspiration.
    • Fun moment when something went wrong, and how you bounced back: I forget words and flip lyrics around, and once I forgot the words to "Alive," a song in Jekyll and Hyde - and I did not bounce back at all. I literally sang the rest of the song in something like growls and grunts.
    • Favorite moment from your show: The slight moments of silence after singing the last glimmering note of your song.
    • What did it mean for you to be cast in this role? This was a euphoric dream. It was unreal. I couldn't have been more excited to be playing the same role as my idols.
    • How does it feel to be nominated? Being nominated again is truly a humbling and scary opportunity. I'm so excited!
    • What would you say to a younger student who might be nervous or unsure about participating in the performing arts? Fake it till you make it, be confident in your ability to succeed.
    • What has this experience taught you about the value of arts education and extracurricular activities? It's enlightening, and I think everyone should have a chance to do live theatre. It really expands your mind to its limits.

     


     Fairview Jacob Pearce Bobby G Awards

    JACOB PEARCE

    Nathan Detroit, Guys & Dolls
    Fairview High School
    Class of 2016

    • College plans: Studying International Affairs and Theatre at George Washington University 
    • Your Directors: Janice Vlachos and Lanny Boyer
    • First role: I played Bully the bullfrog in Bully the Bullfrog, The Musical. I was 6, and in the 1st grade.
    • Actor Quote 4 Jacob Pearce Bobby G AwardsWhy do you perform? To help people to escape from daily lives, and provide that same kind of escape for myself. 
    • Ideal scene partner: I would love to do a scene with Emma Watson, because she seems like such a fun person to work with. Plus just meeting her would be awesome. 
    • Favorite moment from your show: Every day, I got to ad-lib a little bit while Adelaide (Carrie Douglass) had a quick-change. Getting to improvise every performance was such a blast. 
    • What did it mean for you to be cast in this role? It meant I could fully immerse myself in my character’s life and for a few hours each day get to live life from his perspective. 
    • How does it feel to be nominated? Appreciated and honored. 
    • What would you say to a younger student who might be nervous or unsure about participating in the performing arts? You will be challenged so much in so many ways, but all of these challenges will shape your life in such a positive way. Do not pass up the opportunity to live the life of another and to carry people away from the turmoil of their everyday lives. 



    Durango Curtis Sallinger Bobby G Awards


    CURTIS SALLINGER

    Emmett Forrest, Legally Blonde, The Musical
    Durango High School
    Class of 2018

    • College plans: I’m a sophomore
    • Your Director: Ben Mattson
    • First role: I was a flyboy in the musical Neville at the Durango Arts Center when I was 5 years old.
    • Actor Quote 5 Curtis Sallinger Bobby G AwardsWhy do you perform? Because I love how much you can discover about yourself and your life by portraying someone else. I love sharing the wonderful art of performance, and I love the home, the family, and the trust a theatre creates.
    • Ideal scene partner: I would love to do a scene with Brian D’arcy James because he is a phenomenal actor and so versatile and seems like such a fun genuine guy.
    • Favorite moment from your show: I very much enjoyed Elle’s proposal at the end. (Spoiler!)
    • Fun moment when something went wrong: I ran on-stage after a very hectic off-stage incident getting my mic checked and - fully committed and 100 percent serious - I called to Elle, but Elle didn’t come out of my mouth. Instead, I said, “SAM!!!!” I said, “Man I’m stressed out, Elle, what are you doing here?” and continued on. It was real smooth.
    • What did it mean for you to be cast in this role? It’s such an amazing experience to work with a cast and put on a show. I just don’t know how to describe it. It’s an amazing feeling.
    • How does it feel to be nominated? Unreal. I came to the Bobby G Awards last year and watched my brother (Evatt Salinger) win for Outstanding Actor. I watched the guys, dreaming I could be one of them someday. That dream is coming true, and it's exhilarating.
    • What would you say to a younger student who might be nervous or unsure about participating in the performing arts? It is so much fun. You get so much support. You develop a place in your school where you can go for help with anything. The only negative aspect is it's really time-consuming. But putting in long hours doing something you love, in my opinion, is worth it.
    • What has this experience taught you about the value of arts education and extracurricular activities? The diverse group of friends you make from all grade levels is something that makes life in school so much easier. The performing arts at our school is so important to so many people and it develops a family that you’d never expect from a school environment. Arts education is essential, and should never be taken for granted.
    • Last word: Guys, it’s hard to do theatre. I get that. But it's also extremely fun. Don’t let negativity and scorn discourage you from pursuing something you’re passionate about. It’s also extremely important that you’re not afraid to cry or show emotions. Never lose touch of your feelings, or yourself.

    Brothers Bobby G Awards Sallingers
    ​Curtis Sallinger celebrated his brother Evatt's victory as Outstanding Actor at last year's Bobby G Awards with a body lift. This year, Curtis is nominated as a sophomore. Photo by Emily Lozow for the DCPA NewsCenter.



    Previous 2016 Outstanding Musical Nominee profiles:
    Cherry Creek High School
    Fairview High School
    Mountain View High School

    Denver School of the Arts
    Arvada West High School



    Bobby G Awards
    : Ticket information

  • Thursday, May 26
  • Buell Theatre 
  • 7 p.m.
  • Tickets: 303-893-4100 or BUY ONLINE


  • Selected recent NewsCenter coverage of the Bobby G Awards:
    Meet your 2016 Bobby G Awards Outstanding Actress Finalists
    2015-16 Bobby G Award nominations: The complete listBobby G Awards a triumph for Durango High School Video: Outstanding Actor Nominee Performances Video: Bobby G Award winners sing National Anthem at Rockies game Video: The Acceptance Speeches
    Video: A look at Durango's Outstanding Musical, Les Misérables
    Photos: The 2015 Bobby G Awards. (Download for free)
    Andre' Rodriguez's stirring Bobby G Awards speech
    Video: See how we introduced all 30 participating schools
    Video: Page to Stage highlights with Bobby G Awards winners
    Meet your Bobby G Awards nominees, in their own words
    Video: Coloradans on Broadway to high-schoolers: 'Be relentlessly yourself'
  • Meet your 2016 Bobby G Awards Outstanding Actress Finalists

    by John Moore | May 24, 2016

    The Bobby G Awards celebrate outstanding achievement in Colorado high-school musical theatre. The fourth annual awards and performance take place Thursday, May 26, at the Buell Theatre. Today we introduce you to the five students who are finalists for Outstanding Lead Actress.  The winner will advance to represent Colorado at the national Jimmy Awards in New York City.  

    Glenwood Springs

    ABBIE CHENEY

    Reno Sweeney, Anything Goes
    Glenwood Springs High School
    Class of 2017 

    • College plans: Pursuing a performing-arts degree
    • Your Director: Kate McRaith 
    • First role: Oh, man. The first role I played was a cabbage in my elementary school play. I stuffed some green burlap with newspaper and sang “R-E-S-P-E-C-T” by Aretha Franklin and did the can-can. I was pretty proud about that one! 
    • Bobby G Awards 2016 quoteWhy do you perform? I feel at home and powerful on stage. I am my best self, love the people I have met and love the audience-performer relationship. There is so much love put into a show and a character - that is what I find so amazing. 
    • Ideal scene partner: I would love to perform with Lin-Manuel Miranda, who is playing Alexander Hamilton in Hamilton on Broadway. I think any part of that would be amazing. It is such an original piece of work that has changed the way I see rap music and American history. 
    • Fun moment when something went wrong: When I was in 7th grade, I played Ms. Hannigan in Annie. Ms. Hannigan is a little raunchy, so I was wearing these tall heels. Of course, I fell. It was very embarrassing. But the character is supposed to be a little tipsy through the entire show, so I played it off in that way.
    • What did it mean for you to be cast in this role?  So much. When I started to educate myself on the show and its characters, I connected with Reno immediately. She not only is sexy, beautiful and has amazing songs, she has a dynamic about her that makes her such a deep character.  
    • Favorite moment from your show: Anything involving the full cast. I always feel so loved and appreciated by them, and a rehearsal can change any of my bad days. It was times like the after-show dinners at Village Inn, and the full-cast rehearsals that I remember most. I love my theater family. 
    • How does it feel to be nominated? So humbling. I am thankful for all the adults and students who help and encourage me. I am stunned at the support of my community and friends. I feel so loved.  
    • What would you say to a younger student who might be nervous or unsure about participating in the performing arts? The performing arts have truly changed my life. I have learned so much about myself and what I am capable of doing. As far as nerves, I always say that when you are on stage, it is your job to have a great time and do your best. I always have to tell myself that I am in control of where I spend my energy, so if you put all that energy toward knocking the audience out of their seats, then you are golden.
    • What has this experience taught you about the value of arts education and extracurricular activities? I always found that it was so important to have extracurricular opportunities. But after this, I value it even more. It is essential that not only programs are present, but students have opportunities to shine within them. 
    • Last word: Thank you to Mom, Dad, Papa, and all the friends back home who have supported me whole heartedly. You know who you are, and I hope you know I am so thankful for you. 
     



    Steamboat Springs

    KEALA FRAIOLI

    Elle Woods, Legally Blonde, The Musical
    Steamboat Springs High School
    Class of 2017

    • Postgraduate plans: Performing at Disney World
    • Your Director: Jamie Oberhansly
    • First role: I was cast in first grade as Ngana in South Pacific!
    • Bobby G Awards 2016 quoteWhy do you perform? It’s what I love, and I always feel at home when I am onstage.
    • Ideal scene partner: I would love to act with Lily James because I love Cinderella, and the remake she was in was amazing.
    • Favorite moment from your show: This show was definitely packed full of some great memories but for sure closing night was the best with everyone just leaving everything out on the stage and the energy was so high. My vocal chords were so shot, so I would be backstage pantomiming everything. It got to the point where people just stopped asking me questions so they didn't have a butchered, full body-sign language response!
    • Fun moment when something went wrong: I broke a snap on my dress that I change into on stage during dress rehearsal. And then, come opening night, we forgot to fix it. I just crossed the fabric over itself hoping nobody would see the pink dress underneath before I changed.
    • What did it mean for you to be cast in this role? It was such a humbling experience. I couldn't have asked for a better cast and crew to help me with my first leading role.
    • How does it feel to be nominated? This is the most amazing feeling in the world. I couldn't be more on cloud nine!
    • What would you say to a younger student who might be nervous or unsure about participating in the performing arts? Go for it, and if it doesn't work out, then  find something new. And if it does work out, get ready for the most incredible experience ever!
    • What has this experience taught you about the value of arts education and extracurricular activities? We are so fortunate to have such an amazing director. Even though we may not get funding from the school, we always find a way to keep the arts alive in our community.
    • Last word: A big thanks to anyone who has helped put on the Bobby G Awards. This truly is a great opportunity for everyone who is fortunate enough to participate in it.


    Ponderosa

    CHARLOTTE MOVIZZO

    Charity Hope Valentine, Sweet Charity
    Ponderosa High School
    Class of 2016

    • College plans: University of Northern Colorado
    • Your Director: Kelly Cole 
    • First role: I was The Aristocats for a Christian Youth Theatre summer-camp production in 5th grade. I played the role of Abigail the Goose.
    • Bobby G Awards 2016 quoteWhy do you perform? Because it is my passion. I enjoy the process of becoming another character, and escaping my own life for a little while. 
    • Ideal scene partner: It would probably be Eddie Redmayne. I think he is an amazing performer, and he puts so much passion into all of his work. I would learn a lot from him. 
    • Favorite moment from your show: When I was in the elevator with Oscar. It was a hilarious scene, and it took everything I had not to break character.
    • Fun moment when something went wrong: I had several quick-changes throughout this show. One of the most difficult was one where I had to get out of a dress and character shoes, and into a blouse, skirt and go-go boots - in about 30 seconds. One night, for some reason, my dress zipper got stuck, and I couldn't get out of it. We struggled with the zipper for all of 30 seconds until we had to literally rip the dress to get it off. When I went to put the skirt on, that zipper wouldn't work, either. At that point, my scene partner had been improvising for a good minute. I decided I needed to enter, so I walked on holding my blouse closed with one hand, and holding my skirt up with the other! 
    • What did it mean for you to be cast in this role? It was very exciting to get to play a role that not only fit my vocal range, but had the stage time of an ingénue, and the personality of a character. Charity is quirky and sweet - and was a blast to play. 
    • How does it feel to be nominated? I am so honored to have the opportunity to represent my school at this event. 
    • What would you say to a younger student who might be nervous or unsure about participating in the performing arts? The performing-arts community is an extremely accepting and supportive group of people. There are so many different roles, both backstage and onstage that you are sure to find something you enjoy. 
    • What has this experience taught you about the value of arts education and extracurricular activities? Much of the education that occurs in high school happens in extracurricular activities. Within the arts, there are opportunities for leadership, cooperation and problem-solving that provide great learning experiences.

     


    Fairview

    SIENNA SEWELL

    Sarah Brown, Guys & Dolls

    Fairview High School
    Class of 2016

    • College plans: Studying Neuroscience at Washington University in St. Louis
    • Your Directors: Janice Vlachos and Lanny Boyer
    • First role: Baby Judy Garland at age 4 at Riverside Theatre Works in Boston
    • Bobby G Awards 2016 quoteWhy do you perform? It allows me to create other characters and step into their shoes for a moment.
    • Ideal scene partner: Johnny Depp. He always stretches the boundaries of his abilities and the characters he plays.  I swear, he can play anything. He is just an amazing actor.
    • Favorite moment from your show: The Havana Scene. The fight has such high energy because there are so many moments happening all over the stage. I get a bit tipsy in the scene and start climbing the tables and fighting off other people.  
    • When life throws you lemons: We moved when I was entering 5th grade. I had a theatre home and was just feeling really good about myself and my friends when my parents told me we were moving to Colorado.  y mom assured me she would find another theatre group for me to be involved in. She kept to her word, but it was still difficult to make the move.  We moved to Boulder, where there were lots of opportunities to be involved in the arts, and Fairview was probably strongest in its music and theatre programs. Academically, too, which was important to me.  I found my way again, and it has been the better than I could have ever dreamed.
    • How does it feel to be nominated? I'm in shock, and thrilled, and incredibly humbled by the recognition. I'm equally excited that our show was nominated for Outstanding Musical. We had such a united energy as a cast, and I'm glad it was recognized.
    • What would you say to a younger student who might be nervous or unsure about participating in the performing arts? Just try it. The arts will change your life. And remember, no one starts out knowing how to be spectacular on stage.  It is a learning process, and you are supposed to be unsure at first. For then, there is only room for improvement.
    • Last word: I am eternally grateful to my teachers at Fairview for their guidance and support.  They have pushed me to be my very best, and have held my hand the whole way. I am also blessed with a family who love the performing arts as much as I do, and have always been my greatest fans.  I’m off to college next year to pursue my love of science, but I know I will be somehow be involved in the performing arts as well. I understand that for me to be a whole person, I need to nourish both sides of my brain and soul.  It will be an incredible journey - even though I'm a bit nervous.

     


    Mountain View

    SAVANNAH WOOD

    Reno Sweeney, Anything Goes
    Mountain View High School
    Class of 2016

    • College plans: Attending the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York
    • Your Director: Katie Marshall
    • First role: I was five years old and in kindergarten. It was just a small play written by my teacher, but I loved it nonetheless. The next was in my sophomore year of high school, when I was 15 and I was cast in the ensemble of Shrek the Musical.
    • Bobby G Awards 2016 quoteWhy do you perform? Because it is what I love to do, and it allows me to be myself. I am allowed to be unique, and I am accepted for being different. When I become another character, I become a better version of myself, and it inspires me every time I am on stage or reading a script. Performing is my home.
    • Ideal scene partner: I would love to be in a scene with Sutton Foster because she inspires me, and her work is so diverse. She engulfs herself in so many different roles that I think acting with her would not only be an amazing time but also a great experience.
    • Favorite moment from your show: I had actually been nervous about Opening Night from the very first rehearsal. But when the time came, the nerves were gone. Instead, I remember being backstage waiting for places to be called, and I could hardly contain my excitement. I was standing behind the curtain waiting for the music to begin and the energy I felt was exponential. Then the lights came up, the curtains opened and I heard the roaring thunder of a sold-out auditorium. Even now I can’t explain the feeling it gave me. I couldn’t stop thinking about how excited I was for people to see the hard work we all had put into this. I wasn’t just excited for myself, but for my castmates as well. They had all worked so hard and it was finally everyone’s time to shine. The energy and the applause, the smiles and the laughter really fed the show that night. It was such an unexplainably impacting show. I never wanted it to end.
    • Fun moment when something went wrong: Once during “Friendship,” Moonface and I got carried away in the improv dialogue in the song and we missed a vocal cue from the pit. But we just hopped right back on time with each other and finished out the song like it had never happened. The crowd didn’t notice, but we did.
    • What did it mean for you to be cast in this role? I was speechless. I had dreamed of playing Reno, but I never believed it would come true. I was so humbled to play her, and I worked so hard to carry out the role.
    • How does it feel to be nominated? I was sitting around with my fellow castmates that day, waiting for the results to be posted. When I heard the news I lost all control of my sanity. I screamed; I jumped; I ran to hug my directors. That turned into joyous laughter and eventually tears began to form in my eyes because I was just so excited to be presented this incredible opportunity.
    • What would you say to a younger student who might be nervous or unsure about participating in the performing arts? I was honestly terrified to join the performing arts, but I decided to just go for it, and I have never once regretted it. My biggest advice is that it’s OK to be yourself and, in fact, participating in the performing arts is actually a great way to get over any fears you might have. The performing arts are a great place to find yourself, be goofy, be silly, love loud and live passionately. I promise you will never regret it as long as you try. Our biggest regrets are not the things we did do, but the things we didn’t do.
    • What has this experience taught you about the value of arts education and extracurricular activities? This experience has taught me how important the performing arts are to the students in schools and carrying out the arts in our communities. Through our musical, we were able to meet many new members of the community through small performances we would do in senior centers and middle schools. Our show gave us something to strive for. For many of us, it turned out to be our saving grace. It is the one thing I look forward to doing every day.
    • Last word: I just want to say how grateful I am that I get to experience the Bobby G Awards and that I am part of this incredible community.

     



    Previous 2016 Outstanding Musical Nominee profiles:
    Cherry Creek High School
    Fairview High School
    Mountain View High School

    Denver School of the Arts
    Arvada West High School



    Bobby G Awards
    : Ticket information

  • Thursday, May 26
  • Buell Theatre 
  • 7 p.m.
  • Tickets: 303-893-4100 or BUY ONLINE


  • Selected recent NewsCenter coverage of the Bobby G Awards:
    2016 Bobby G Award nominations: The complete listBobby G Awards a triumph for Durango High School Video: Outstanding Actor Nominee Performances Video: Bobby G Award winners sing National Anthem at Rockies game Video: The Acceptance Speeches
    Video: A look at Durango's Outstanding Musical, Les Misérables
    Photos: The 2015 Bobby G Awards. (Download for free)
    Andre' Rodriguez's stirring Bobby G Awards speech
    Video: See how we introduced all 30 participating schools
    Video: Page to Stage highlights with Bobby G Awards winners
    Meet your Bobby G Awards nominees, in their own words
    Video: Coloradans on Broadway to high-schoolers: 'Be relentlessly yourself'
    2014-15 Bobby G Awards: Complete list of nominations 
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    ABOUT THE EDITOR
    John Moore
    John Moore
    Award-winning arts journalist John Moore has recently taken a groundbreaking new position as the DCPA’s Senior Arts Journalist. With The Denver Post, he was named one of the 12 most influential theater critics in the US by American Theatre Magazine. He is the founder of the Denver Actors Fund, a nonprofit that raises money for local artists in medical need. John is a native of Arvada and attended Regis Jesuit High School and the University of Colorado at Boulder. Follow him on Twitter @moorejohn.

    DCPA is the nation’s largest not-for-profit theatre organization dedicated to creating unforgettable shared experiences through beloved Broadway musicals, world-class plays, educational programs and inspired events. We think of theatre as a spark of life — a special occasion that’s exciting, powerful and fun. Join us today and we promise an experience you won't soon forget.