Village Christian Caps Theatre Arts Season With Jerry Herman Win at Pantages Theatre

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  • For many people, performing on stage at the legendary Pantages Theatre is a dream come true.

    For Theatre Arts students at Village Christian, that dream became a reality Sunday, May 22, 2016, at the Jerry Herman Awards, when VCS took home a pair of honors that capped an incredible theater season.

    Performing the last number of the night to a standing ovation, Village’s medley from Mary Poppins received Best Live Performance, sending the students and crowd into a frenzy. VCS also took home the Jerry Herman Award for Best Technical Crew to go along with the rest of the season’s haul, which included a Special Achievement Award from the John Raitt Awards for Youth and eight honors from the National Youth Arts Awards.

    “Having these kids, especially the seniors culminating five years with me, they just built and built to end this year at the Pantages stage performing,” said VCS Theatre Arts Director Thom Babbes. “I couldn’t have hoped for anything better. I couldn’t have given a gift to these kids any better than that.”

    Added VCS Head of School Tom Konjoyan: “To win the Best Live Performance at the Pantages Theatre in the Jerry Herman Awards was both a testimony to our Theatre Arts Department and a lifetime memory for our students. I am delighted that our students are surrounded by incredible professionals and mentors who are providing them with incredible experiences to develop their God-gifts and talents.”

    The National Youth Arts Awards will be officially handed out on May 29, when Village Christian will receive:

    • Outstanding Production: Mary Poppins
    • Artist of the Year: May Diddy (Sophia Zubritsky in Fools, Mary Poppins in Mary Poppins, Sarah in Any Given Monday)
    • Lead Actor in a Musical: Tiago Santos as Bert in Mary Poppins
    • Lead Actress (Junior Division): Savannah Argenti as Belle in Beauty and the Beast Jr.
    • Supporting Actor in a Play: Joseph Francis Galandeynes as Dr. Zutrisky in Fools
    • Supporting Actress in a Play: Agaby Abajian as Lenya Zubritsky in Fools
    • Supporting Actress in a Play: Josephine Hulburd as Risa in Any Given Monday
    • Direction: Thom Babbes for Mary Poppins

    In total, VCS was nominated for 26 other National Youth Arts Awards, two Jerry Hermans, and five JRAYs.

    Nominations spanned all four 2015-2016 Village productions: Fools, Any Given Monday, Durang Durang, and Mary Poppins, which, according to Babbes, became the school’s best-selling show with sold-out performance during the entirety of its run.

    “This was a magical year,” he said. “The buzz was amazing. The kids were amazing. The kids worked so hard. I just feel like a proud father. None of this would have happened without the support of our wonderful theater parents and the talent of my incredible choreographer Julietta Corti.”

    Said VCS Fine Arts Director Natalie Taylor: “I am extremely proud of the accomplishments of our Theatre Arts Department this year. Thom Babbes has transformed this department and has an amazing ability to grow and develop the gifts and talents of our students. I'm thrilled they were given the opportunity to perform on the Pantages stage. I look forward to seeing some of them on Broadway someday.”

    Below is a breakdown Village Christian’s additional nominations.

    Jerry Herman Awards

    • Best Scenic Design: Mary Poppins
    • Best Costume Design: Mary Poppins

    John Raitt Awards For Youth

    • Actor of the Year in a Lead Role: Tiago Santos
    • Best Featured Actress: Ashley Donaldson
    • Best Female Solo: Natalie Garcia
    • Best Male Dancer: Jack Yang
    • Best Male Cameo: Robbie Newgard

    National Youth Arts Awards

    • Outstanding Production: Fools
    • Lead Actor in a Play: Joseph F. Galandeynes as Lenny in Any Given Monday
    • Lead Actor in a Play: Tiago Santos as Mickey in Any Given Monday
    • Lead Actor in a Play: Will Shadley as Leon Tolchinsky in Fools
    • Lead Actor in a Play: Brandon Torres as Mrs. Sorken in Durang Durang
    • Supporting Actor in a Musical: Joseph Francis Galandeynes as George Banks in Mary Poppins
    • Supporting Actress in a Musical: Jade Patteri as Winifred Banks in Mary Poppins
    • Supporting Actor in a Play: George Shapiro as Count Yousekevitch in Fools
    • Supporting Actor (Junior Division): Otto Jones as Michael Banks in Mary Poppins
    • Supporting Actress (Junior Division): Sophie Charton as LeFou the Fool/Thief in Beauty and the Beast Jr.
    • Supporting Actress (Junior Division): Isabella Flores as Mrs. Potts in Beauty and the Beast Jr.
    • Supporting Actress (Junior Division): Mackenzie Konjoyan as Cogsworth in Beauty and the Beast Jr.
    • Supporting Actress (Junior Division): Cayley McKee as Jane Banks in Mary Poppins
    • Featured Actress in a Musical: Nicole Ciravolo as Mrs. Brill in Mary Poppins
    • Featured Actress in a Musical: Josephine Hulburd Schultz as Mrs. Corry in Mary Poppins
    • Ensemble: Fools
    • Ensemble: Mary Poppins
    • Ensemble (Junior Division): Beauty and the Beast Jr.
    • Costume Design: Shon LeBlanc for Fools
    • Costume Design: Amanda Wimer for Mary Poppins
    • Set Design: Tim Farmer for Mary Poppins
    • Choreography: Julietta Corti for Mary Poppins
    • Sound Design: Harold Reiser for Fools
    • Hair/Makeup: Krys Fehervari for Mary Poppins
    • Musical Direction: Stephen Van Dorn for Mary Poppins
    • Direction: Thom Babbes for Fools

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