2017 Blue Star Awards Winners Honored at Starlight Theatre

2017 Blue Star Awards Winners Honored at Starlight Theatre

CATEGORY:
Education 

2017-05-25

TAGS:
Blue Star Awards  Kansas City 

2017-05-25 CATEGORY: Education 

TAGS: Blue Star Awards  Kansas City 

 

For the 15th consecutive year, Starlight Theatre has publicly applauded the outstanding achievements and talents of local high school musical theatre students. Tonight’s 2017 Blue Star Awards Ceremony gave hundreds of area teens an opportunity to perform musical numbers on Starlight’s Cohen Community Stage while their teachers, peers, parents and others cheered them from the seats. Many of the students took home Blue Star Awards in recognition of their high school theatrical accomplishments.

A total of 52 public and private high schools throughout Kansas City and surrounding communities, producing a record 59 musicals, participated in the Blue Star Awards during the 2016-17 school year. The red-carpet ceremony was the program’s culminating event.  

During the course of the evening, many of the young performers and their schools were called to the stage to accept Blue Star Awards in 22 performance and technical categories. The evening’s top honor, “Outstanding Overall Production,” was awarded to Blue Valley High School for its production of Bye Bye Birdie

The award for “Outstanding Artistic Contribution by a Student” was presented to James Sisson for his direction and music direction of Liberty North High School’s production of Disney’s Mary Poppins. Fellow Liberty North student, Courtney Carr, won the “Technical Achievement Award” for her stage management of the same show. 

Patterned after Broadway’s Tony® Awards, the Blue Star Awards at Starlight recognize exceptional achievement in musical theatre at the high school level. The educational awards are sponsored in part by Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas City. 

The May 25 Blue Star Awards Ceremony included musical performances by the six schools nominated for Outstanding Overall Production, as well as medleys of songs performed by the 12 nominees for Outstanding Actor and Actress in a Lead Role. The ceremony included a video montage featuring footage from all 59 productions in this year’s competition. 

Special guest award presenters included Samantha Steinmetz, a professional actress who graduated from Blue Valley High School. While attending Blue Valley, she won the Blue Star Award for “Outstanding Actress in a Lead Role” in 2009 for her role as Dorothy Brock in 42nd Street. At tonight’s ceremony, Steinmetz provided the Blue Star Awards students with sage advice and assisted in presenting several of the evening’s biggest awards. 

Other guest presenters were Keith Brumley, resident scenic designer and technical director of the Lyric Opera; Megan Crigger, director of creative services in Kansas City’s Office of Culture and Creative Services; Chip Miller, assistant artistic director of Kansas City Repertory Theatre; Joette Pelster, executive director of the Coterie Theatre; Paul Schofer, president and CEO of the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts; Jason Seber, assistant conductor of the Kansas City Symphony; and Phil Witt, WDAF-TV news anchor.  

Each year at the ceremony, two $2,500 Rising Star college scholarships are awarded to the high school male and female seniors who have had the greatest impact on their high school theatre departments and demonstrated outstanding theatrical achievement. This year’s scholarship recipients were Emma Cunningham of Blue Springs South High School and Ian Fleming of Raymore-Peculiar High School.

Finally, for the ninth straight year, the winners of the Blue Star Awards for “Outstanding Actor in a Lead Role” and “Outstanding Actress in a Lead Role” will travel to New York City to participate in the National High School Musical Theatre Awards, also known as the Jimmy Awards, on June 26 at The Minskoff Theatre on Broadway. Representing Kansas City, Starlight Theatre and their respective schools will be 2017 Lead Actor and Actress Blue Star Award winners Joey Myers of Central High School and Stephanie Ainsworth of Blue Valley High School.   

2017 Blue Star Award Recipients

Outstanding Overall Production
Blue Valley High School
Bye Bye Birdie
 

Outstanding Artistic Contribution by a Student  
James Sisson for Direction/Music Direction
Liberty North High School 
Disney’s Mary Poppins
 

Outstanding Actress in a Lead Role
Stephanie Ainsworth as Rose Alvarez
Blue Valley High School
Bye Bye Birdie
 

 Outstanding Actor in a Lead Role
Joey Myers as Edward Bloom
Central High School
Big Fish
 

Outstanding Actress in a Supporting Role
Maddie Robert as Lois Lane (Bianca)
Blue Valley North High School
Kiss Me, Kate 
 

Outstanding Actor in a Supporting Role
Jaggard Williams as Ali Hakim
Truman High School
Oklahoma!
 

Outstanding Actress in a Featured Role
Emmy Caywood as Mrs. Corry
Liberty North High School
Disney’s Mary Poppins
 

Outstanding Actor in a Featured Role
Jack Norton as Hugo Peabody
Blue Valley High School
Bye Bye Birdie
 

Outstanding Female Ensemble Member
Ady Shaw as Alice
Blue Valley High School
Bye Bye Birdie
 

Outstanding Male Ensemble Member
Brendan Ohlmeier as Villager/Russian
Paola High School
Fiddler on the Roof
 

Outstanding Ensemble
Blue Valley High School
Bye Bye Birdie
 

Outstanding Orchestra
St. James Academy
Disney’s Mary Poppins
 

Outstanding Scenic Design and Construction, Tier I ($0-$1,850)
Winnetonka High School
In The Heights
 

Outstanding Scenic Design and Construction, Tier II ($1,851+)
Liberty North High School
Disney’s Mary Poppins
 

Outstanding Lighting Design
Liberty North High School
Disney’s Mary Poppins
 

Outstanding Technical Crew
Costume Crew
Central High School
Big Fish
 

Outstanding Costume Design and Construction, Tier I ($0-$1,350)
Leavenworth High School
Jekyll & Hyde
 

Outstanding Costume Design and Construction, Tier II ($1,351+)
Central High School
Big Fish
 

Outstanding Hair and Makeup Design
Blue Valley High School
Bye Bye Birdie
 

Technical Achievement Award
Courtney Carr
Liberty North High School
Disney’s Mary Poppins
 

Rising Star Scholarship Recipients

Blue Springs South High School
Emma Cunningham

Raymore-Peculiar High School
Ian Fleming

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