West Orange drama students shine at annual theater festival

Photo Courtesy of WOSD
Above are students in West Orange High Schools acting principles class and Drama Club with teacher Wendy Mapes.

WEST ORANGE, NJ — Students in the acting principles class and Drama Club at West Orange High School shone at the annual Governor’s Award in Arts Education’s theater competition, bringing home awards in best actress, best actor and scenes competitions.

The competition was held at Montclair State University on Jan. 6 and was sponsored by the Speech and Theatre Association of New Jersey. Students prepared monologues and scenes and presented them to a panel of judges who were professional theater artists.

WOHS junior Erin Arnold won first place for best actress, taking home the Governor’s Award. She will be recognized along with other Governor’s Awards recipients at the STANJ awards ceremony in May.

WOHS senior Dane Clarke II took second place in the best actor competition. West Orange High School’s “Ajax in Iraq” placed as a finalist for the scenes competition, and the five students who acted in the scene brought home awards for making the finals; they were Arnold, Sayeed Bennett, Clarke, Lourdes Korczukowski and Tori Riley.

WOHS theater teacher and Drama Club adviser Wendy Mapes accompanied the student actors to the competition.

“Congratulations to our West Orange High School students,” Mapes said. “They all did a superb job at the competition.”