(Wo)Men on Boats Sailing to VTA

Ava Purcell, Staff Reporter

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   Chancellor’s drama department is never without something big on the horizon. Right now, a special select group is preparing for the Virginia Theatre Association’s annual conference.

   Men on Boats, a cast of all females, will be competing for many different awards at the event. These ten ladies are overjoyed to be attending the VTA conference, which invites many people from across the state to come together and embrace their passions. Norfolk, Virginia will host three and a half days of theatrical enjoyment, such as workshops, speakers, performance festivals, panels, competitions, and more! Some of guest speakers involved include Tommy​ ​Bracco​ ​(Spot​ ​Conlon​ ​in​ ​Newsies)​, and Tom​ ​Reynolds, Production​ ​Stage​ ​Manager​ ​for​ ​The​ ​Lion​ ​King​ ​on​ ​Broadway.

   This October 25-29, Abigail Nichols, Emma Masaitis, Margo Weber, Katelyn Siget, Gabriella Lanzone, Jaime Ericson, Elena Noll, Megan Allison, Alexa Rivas, and Olivia Royster will accompany Drama teacher and Director Mr. Armentrout on this yearly visit. Weber, a senior at Chancellor, shared her knowledge about the VTA conference with a member of our staff.

   “Basically, every group will perform in one of three rooms,” states Weber. “There’s a panel of judges watching, and each room will pick two of the best plays. From there, the top six are given awards at the award ceremony.”

   There are also solo events one can attend in between scheduled auditions and performances, such as workshops and sitting in on keynote speakers.

   “I think I’d like to go to another dance workshop,” states Weber. “Last year, there was a broadway instructor there. He had us all learn a dance, then relay it back to him. Last year, I was called on stage after repeating this dance and was told I’d have made the first cut if it had been a real audition; that was one of my favorite theater moments!” Margo gushed at the memory. She also expressed interest in sitting in on a certain keynote, Mike Faist, an actor in the broadway show Newsies.

   That isn’t all that the VTA has to offer – there’s also opportunities for college recruiting and participating in the Improvathon! Seniors are allowed to audition in front of college scouts with a monologue and/or a song depending on if one’s strength is theater or musical theater. Those in the technical field can showcase a portfolio as well for stage management.

   “I hope to audition for directing, but it hasn’t been done in the past so I’ll be working with Armentrout to try to make it work,” states Weber.  She continued to say that people from Chancellor are usually contacted by a few of the colleges on average, and that one person a few years back was contacted by every school except for one! Another opportunity Weber will be going after is the Improvathon, which is an event that groups together eight individuals from across the state, and they have a limited time to come up with an improvisation of a script.

   Weber and her team will be quite busy with what the VTA conference has in store for them. Chancellor is proud to send such amazing actresses to this event, and await the exciting stories sure to follow their return!

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(Wo)Men on Boats Sailing to VTA