Some 700 students from 31 high schools in four states participated recently at the 13th annual Southern Utah State College High School Shakespearean Competition.
Students came from as far away as Bakersfield, Calif., and Phoenix, Ariz., to attend the annual competition, which is one of the many offshoots to come from the SUSC-based Utah Shakespearean Festival."Every year, we're amazed at just how many high school students participate, and at the excellent work they bring to the competition," said R. Scott Phillips, USF marketing director. "These are the USF patrons of the future, and in some cases, even its actors, directors and technical crew."
The competition takes place in three divisions based on the size of a school - Westminster, Cambridge and Oxford - with first-place winners who are seniors winning $1,000 SUSC theatre scholarships in mono acts, duo scenes and best performance in ensemble scenes.
In the Westminster Division, Hurricane High School swept the competition with performances from "Merry Wives of Windsor." Melanie Nelson took first place in mono acts, with Tiffani Kidd winning first in duo acts and sophomore Corina Reed and Jeannine Tidwell earning the best performance in an ensemble scene award.
Richard Hill, HHS drama instructor and an SUSC graduate who also played Ariel in the 1989 USF production of "The Tempest," earned first place in directing, rounding out the sweep. HHS was sweepstakes winner with 82 points, followed by Lakeridge Junior High School (Orem) with 64 points, and Parowan High School with 62 points.
In the Cambridge Division, the competition was much closer, with West High School in Salt Lake City winning the sweepstakes with 85 points, followed by Spanish Fork High School, 81 points, and Provo High School, 80 points.
Robbyn Thompson, Provo High, took first in mono acts with a scene from "A Winter's Tale," while Jonathan S. Walker and junior Julie Marie Larsen of West High placed first in duo scenes with a performance from "Richard III." Evelyn Hassard of Spanish Fork High earned the best performance award in the Cambridge Division with work from "King Lear." John Whiting's direction of "Coriolanus" earned another first place for West High.
Mountain View High School of Orem took the sweepstakes, again closely contested, in the Oxford Division with 94 points. Horizon High School of Phoenix, Ariz., was close behind with 91 points and West Jordan High School was third with 88 points.
Timnah Card of Mountain View High took first place in the mono acts with a scene from "King John." Oliver Bigler and Maren McLean of Horizon High tied for first place in the duo scenes with a performance from "A Midsummer Night's Dream," and Sheryl Anderson of Mountain View High earned the best performance award for ensemble scenes. Tamara Adams of West Jordan High took first place in directing for "Richard III."