For Immediate Release:
Contact: Tammy Southworth, High School Principal
Paw Paw, MI - At Last night's WAVE Awards for Excellence in High School Musical Theatre, Paw Paw High School's production of "Footloose: The Musical" won in three separate categories.
Out of six high school musical choreographers nominated, Sophia Marie Louden won the award for Outstanding Choreography in a Musical. Amelia Gibbs, chorus member and dance captain accepted on her behalf. From six nominees, Paw Paw Performing Arts Technical Director Kristopher Perkins won the award for Outstanding Direction in a Musical. Out of a field of 14 nominees, PPHS Senior Max Crawford won the Outstanding Lead Actor in a Musical Award for his role as Ren McCormack.
Loosely designed after Broadway's famed Tony Awards, the WAVE Awards are held at the Mendel Center on the campus of Lake Michigan College in Benton Harbor . The WAVE awards recognize, encourage, and promote high school theater. Individuals and productions from participating schools were nominated in 13 acting and technical categories.
Winners were announced during the ceremony, and all students and production staff received written feedback from a panel of arts professionals. Nominees also receive additional performance and scholarship opportunities.
Now in its second year at LMC, the WAVE Awards has grown to include students and art educators from Berrien, Van Buren, and Cass Counties in Michigan, and St. Joseph County, in Indiana. This year, nine high schools were evaluated by 12 adjudicators. About 550 students participated in the musicals that were reviewed.
Wednesday's event began with red carpet arrivals at 6 p.m., followed by the awards ceremony, including musical production numbers from Paw Paw, Bridgman, Dowagiac, St. Joseph, and Penn high schools, as well as Children's Music Workshop and Lake Michigan College Visual & Performing Arts.