Wiregrass Thespians Prepare For Second Year


Mrs. Swain

“You Can’t Stop the Beat” cast

Theatre teacher Misty Hornsby returns for her second year at Wiregrass Ranch High School (WRHS). Along with her is also her Thespian troupe 7142 of District 14. This year, the troupe will be taking “You Can’t Stop The Beat” from Hairspray as their large group musical, and “Hard Candy Christmas” by Dolly Parton as their small group number. Additional individuals will also go to district based on future auditions.

On  August 24th, 40 students showed up for the 16 available roles in “You Can’t Stop The Beat.” Rebecca Joseph earned the lead role of Tracy Turnblad. Jonah Hager will be playing Link Larkin. Additional lead roles include: Willy Chrispin playing Seaweed J Stubbs, Emma Heitzinger playing Penny Pingleton, Erika Domenech playing Amber Von Tussell, and JD McDonald playing Edna Turnblad.

Hornsby explains that more auditions will take place on October 6th, for categories like duet acting, monologues, or pantomimes. Five events in each category may be chosen to go to Districts.

In order to help students perfect their craft prior to districts, Hornsby invites theatre professionals to hold workshops for her students. There is a small fee to attend, and the money they make goes towards covering the Thespians fees. Students do not need to be in the show to attend them.

Jonah Hager, thespian president, explains the workshops.

” [They] are beneficial for increasing dance skills, learning about theater life, and fine-tuning audition material. I can say that the workshops have helped me tremendously,” said Hager.

District 14 Thespian Individual Events Competition will be held on December 10th at Wesley Chapel High School (WCHS). Students will perform there and be judged to see if they are eligible to go to States. The Florida State Thespian Festival is the world’s largest high school theatre competition, which all students hope to qualify for. State has approximately 8,000 of the best theatre students attend, at which all of the Wiregrass events received Excellent ratings.

Hornsby discusses her expectations for the upcoming year.

“Last year the troupe got 11 events that at least averaged a Superior rating, the highest possible rank, at Districts other than Critics Choice which is the overall best performance of the competition. They also got four Superiors at States. I expect to get at least an Excellent, the second highest rank, on every event that the troupe takes,” said Hornsby.

Rehearsals for the large group musical are on Mondays and Fridays, from 2-4pm in room 04-132. The scheduling with freshmen is putting pressure on them, as they have less time to rehearse and will have to work outside of school.

JD McDonald, a freshman and a new Thespian member stays positive despite the pressure.

“I am really excited about making memories and hopefully new friends,” beams McDonald.

The Drama club plans to perform Hairspray this April, roles are still available.