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MSA Actors Demonstrate Synergy at Lenaea Festival

Cast of 'Defying Gravity' wins a top award at high school drama competition.

The Marin School of the Arts cast of the one-act play Defying Gravity brought home the prestigious Synergy Award last weekend at the 57th annual Lenaea Drama Festival at Folsom Lake College.

The festival, which attracted students from 50 schools, is one of the most respected judged events for high-school drama students in the country.

The play's cast was directed by Rodney Franz and comprised of Jordan Ford, Lara Garay, Ani Mack, Ali Evans, Annabella Mineghino, Misha Kuklin, Sam O'Byrne and Ellie Brind'Amour. Mineghino also won the Actor Award for One-Act Play.

Scott Adams, the festival's executive director, said the Synergy Award goes to the school that exemplifies the greatest level of professionalism and unity as a production team from arrival, time spent in dressing room, load-in through load-out.

"These are typically schools who require the least assistance from our staff, because they have their stuff together and are a pleasure to work with," he said. "In short, they exemplify the most synergy throughout their production time at Lenaea."

Also for MSA, silver medals were earned by Cierra Potter (musical theater for her song "I’m Not Afraid of Anything") and Gabriel Cowger (for the monologue The Red Coat).

"It was an amazing experience," said Dan Couvillon, an MSA parent volunteer. "The One Act play of Defying Gravity was mind-blowing. It left a number of audience members overwhelmed in tears.  True to their professionalism, the cast ended without a curtain call — yet, the audience spontaneously rushed from the theater to deliver a standing ovation as the actors and Rodney Franz moved to the Green Room. A completely magical moment."

In all, 14 MSA students from Novato High School participated.

Making the medal round is quite an achievement since there were 172 monologues, 84 scenes and 41 one-act plays in all.

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Kathryn Chipman February 08, 2013 at 02:35 PM
Congratulations MSA! You all work so hard and the Synergy award is well-deserved.
Tom Kelley February 17, 2013 at 11:16 AM
Great job Ellie & the entire Novato cast. Please remember us when you are famous. Tom & Jane

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