March 8, 2012         

DSBN Schools Score Hat Trick at Sears Drama Festival  

Three DSBN student productions are being asked for an encore performance after being named best in show at the 2012 Niagara District Sears Drama Festival held in Welland. Grimsby Secondary, Ridgeway-Crystal Beach High School and Stamford Collegiate will be packing their costumes, sets and props before heading off to Chatham to present at the Regional Sears Drama Festival in April.

During the awards banquet on March 2, festival adjudicator Kelly Daniels noted the exceptional quality of all the productions. Daniels said the level of talent showcased made it incredibly difficult to choose just one winner in each category. Awards were presented to individuals as well as production casts and crews.

“From the opening curtain to the final bow, audiences were captivated by these wonderful plays,” said Gerda Klassen, DSBN Arts Consultant. “Students and staff have put months of hard work into building sets, memorizing lines and rehearsing. They should all be commended for their careful preparation and professional performances.”

Festival coordinator Stewart Simpson said the event covered a “stunningly wide-range of theatre. Any one of these fine productions could have gone on to represent the Niagara region with distinction.”

The Regional Festival will take place at the Chatham Cultural Centre from April 23 - 28. Two productions at the Regional Festival will be invited to perform their plays at the Ontario Showcase happening in North Bay from May 9 - 12. This event is noncompetitive; however, a number of awards will be given at the discretion of the adjudicator. There are prizes for writing and technical skill, as well as scholarships and bursaries awarded to help recipients pursue careers in performing arts.

The following is a full list of DSBN schools and students that took home awards from the Niagara District Sears Drama Festival held at Welland Centennial Secondary School, from February 27 – March 1.

Peltoma Award for Outstanding Productions: 

The Man Who Laughs – Grimsby Secondary

Rhinoceros – Ridgeway-Crystal Beach High School

Lockdown – Stamford Collegiate

Best Experimental Play 

Alice in High School: A Semi-Musical Journey Through Decision-Making – Sir Winston Churchill

Best New Play 

2112, St. Catharines Collegiate

Best Play for Social Issues 

Rumour Has It, Eastdale Secondary

Best Visuals Award 

The Man Who Laughs, Grimsby Secondary

Mac Dodge Award for Best Student Directed Play 

Hannah Fuaco, Welland Centennial

Most Promising Student 

Kristiaan Hansen, Beamsville District


Awards of Excellence 

Set Design 

The Man Who Laughs, Grimsby Secondary


Rhinoceros, Ridgeway-Crystal Beach High School

Costumes and Props 

The Man Who Laughs, Grimsby Secondary


Lockdown, Stamford Collegiate

Supporting Actress 

Emily Oldfield, South Lincoln High School

Supporting Actor 

Dayne Schwarz, St. Catharines Collegiate

Best Actress in a Comedy/Musical 

Lauren Andrews, Sir Winston Churchill

Best Actor in a Comedy/Musical 

Ernesto Ruiz, Welland Centennial

Best Actress in a Drama 

Chrissy Pinnavaria, Stamford Collegiate

Best Actor in a Drama 

Jeremy Knapton, Ridgeway-Crystal Beach High School


Awards of Merit 


Ketrice Anderson, Fort Erie Secondary School


Michelle Kett, Grimsby Secondary School

Inanimate Object  

Dylan Kent and Brett Murray, Welland Centennial Secondary School

Courage under Adversity  

K.C. King, Fort Erie Secondary School

Best Song  

Miranda Niro, Sir Winston Churchill Secondary School

Best Video  

Robert Bradnam, St. Catharines Collegiate Secondary School

Comic Relief  

Kartell Beswick, Stamford Collegiate Secondary School

Transformation or “Change” 

Calvin Miller, Ridgeway-Crystal Beach High School

Live Sound   

Cast of “War”, Beamsville District Secondary School


The Cast of “Coming Home”, South Lincoln High School

The Big Risk  

The Cast of “Rumour Has It”, Eastdale Secondary School