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HHS spring musical receives 9 Gene Kelly Award nominations

HHS spring musical receives 9 Gene Kelly Award nominations
Zachary D'Amico

HTSD is proud to announce that the Hampton High School spring musical production, “Into the Woods,” has received nine Gene Kelly Award nominations:

  • Best Costume Design (Budget Level II)
  • Best Lighting Design (Budget Level II)
  • Best Scenic Design (Budget Level II)
  • Best Vocal Ensemble (Budget Level II)
  • Best Dance Ensemble (Budget Level II)
  • Best Crew and Technical Execution (Budget Level II)
  • Best All-Student Orchestra
  • Best Supporting Actor: Andrew Kaehly as “Cinderella’s Prince/Wolf”
  • Best Musical (Budget Level II)

Hampton participates every year in the Gene Kelly Awards through the Pittsburgh CLO. 

The Best Musical nomination gives the entire cast of this production the opportunity to perform a song from "Into the Woods" onstage at the Benedum Center on Saturday, May 28.  Additionally, the following students were selected as “semi-finalists” before nominations were announced and will also perform with the full group of supporting and lead actor/actress semi-finalists: Andrew Kaehly, Lindsay Liebro, Leah McConnell, Kai Suyama, and Lillian Ketler.

“Our students work incredibly hard and put high expectations on themselves to create successful shows that do not really feel like normal high school theatre,” said Mrs. Jennifer Lavella, Musical Choreographer and Co-Director.

About 85 students participated in the spring musical this year. They began planning for the spring musical in September and October when initial meetings and auditions were held. Rehearsals began in December, and students typically put in anywhere from 10-30+ hours a week in rehearsals. 

The entire set was built and painted by students, and the orchestra was nearly all students as well. Mrs. Lavella said both aspects are quite rare in high school theatre. 

Students led all the departments and ran refresher rehearsals, developed blocking, and created choreography. During actual performances, all the technical work was run only by students who called and executed all of lighting, sound, and set cues.  

“'Into the Woods' was very complex across the board for our actors, crew, and musicians alike, and it was evident that they not only worked exceptionally hard individually, but they became a cohesive unit that was in tune with one another and created a truly magical show,” Mrs. Lavella said. “We are so proud that that all of the pieces of our show (actors, crew, and orchestra alike) were recognized by the nominations that Into the Woods received from the Gene Kelly Awards, and we cannot wait to see our kids perform on the Benedum Stage!”