Nine seniors representing the Shenandoah Valley Governor’s School advanced to the finals this weekend at the Virginia Theatre Association Secondary School One-Act Play Competition with their production of Almost, Maine by John Cariani.
The SVGS cast members included: Katarina Capaldi (Stuarts Draft High School), Joe Evans (Wilson Memorial High School), Sam Hart (Waynesboro High School), Marie Gilbert (Waynesboro High School), Mackenzie Griffith (Wilson Memorial High School), Christian Marshall (Stuarts Draft High School), Kylie Nabers (Robert E. Lee High School) and Collin Wheeler (Waynesboro High School). The production was stage managed by Megan Pelaccio (Robert E. Lee High School). All nine are seniors in the SVGS Theatre Program.
The cast of Almost, Maine performed on Saturday morning at the Norfolk Waterside Marriott and learned Saturday evening that their scores had earned them a trip to the final round. The six schools that advanced out of 53 would compete for the opportunity to represent Virginia at the Southeastern Theatre Conference in March in Chattanooga, Tenn.
Early Sunday morning, the cast moved their production to the nearby 900-seat Roper Theater at Tidewater Community College, where they performed with the other five schools in front of the entire conference audience.
In addition to the show’s overall recognition, two students received individual awards. Marie Gilbert of Waynesboro High School was named to the conference All-Star Cast, and Kylie Nabers of Robert E. Lee High School earned an award for Best Actress.
Cassy Whitacre, theatre instructor at SVGS, directed Almost, Maine as part of the senior studio acting class. Since the students had rehearsed exclusively at SVGS, the production had never been on an actual stage until the final round of competition.