Theatre Class of 2020, We Love You

Just in case you forgot.

Class of 2020, we would love to take this time to tell you how proud we are of you, and how loved you are. As we have gotten the tough news about the ending of this year, I thought it would be a good idea to look back at all you have done for this program. I know it feels like there are so many things you are missing out on. And your feelings are valid. This is horrible, and scary and unfair. But I wanted to make this to remind you of all the things you DID do. This class has been so important to the future of the department, and none of it has gone unnoticed. I have created this trip down memory lane just so I could brag about you, and make certain that this virus doesn't leave you feeling any less special than you really are.I have focused this on students that are currently enrolled in Theatre 7-8, or students that have been involved in theatre in some way for a significant portion of their high school years. Those Seniors are: Jordana Young, Evelyn Whipps, Bryce Coverdale, Dustin Grundmeyer, Autumn Johnson, Dana Huber, Derron Medrano, Kelly Giorgi, Sarah Beckers, Jen Coffman, Ethan Golden and Bethany Reiner.

So, if you're ready, its time to depart for our trip.

Grease - 2016

The class of 2020 was first involved in Grease way back in the Fall of 2016 which was their Freshman year! Grease was a ground breaking performance for Barlow, with it being the most viewed show at the time. Current Seniors involved in the show include Ethan Golden, Dustin Grundmeyer, Jordana Young, Autumn Johnson, Sarah Beckers, and Kelly Giorgi. Look at their baby faces!!!
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Guys and Dolls - 2017

November of 2017 was the next time the class of 2020 was showcased in a main stage production. This production was Guys and Dolls. Guys and Dolls was such a challenge for the department due to all of the new advanced dancing involved (Havana, Ahh!!!) But they overcame, as they always do. Current Seniors include Ethan Golden, Dustin Grundmeyer, Kellu Giorgi, Evelyn Whipps, Bryce Coverdale, Autumn Johnson, Jordana Young, and Dana Huber.
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State - 2018

At the 2018 State Festival in April, many of our students received incredible accolades, including current seniors Sarah Beckers and Evelyn Whipps. Sarah and Evelyn were both involved in the group musical number Coffee Break that actually showcased at State! That means they were essentially the best group at the competition and got to perform in front of over 1300 theatre students!
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Nationals - 2018

In June of 2018 many of our students traveled to the International Thespian Festival in Lincoln, Nebraska. This group of students included current Seniors Dustin Grundmeyer, and Sarah Beckers. Both of those students were involved in one-act called The Mad Breakfast. This opportunity is truly like no other, and we are so glad they were able to experience it!
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Steel Magnolias - 2018

In February of 2018 Barlow performed Steel Magnolias in the Little Theatre (Which no longer exists but was similar to a black box.) The cast was all upperclassmen, however two of our current Seniors were integral parts of the tech crew. Evelyn Whipps had her first run at being a Stage Manager, and Jordana Young was also on the crew.
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Mamma Mia - 2018/2019

In November of 2018 Barlow performed Mamma Mia! Which we all know ended up being a much longer run that we thought. First being performed for sold out audiences at Barlow in November, and then at the 2018 Oregon State Thespian Festival (But we'll get to that later). Mamma Mia broke records for Barlow, completely selling out our large auditorium, and it being standing-room-only! The cast of Mamma Mia included current Seniors Sarah Beckers, Ethan Golden, Bryce Coverdale, Dustin Grundmeyer, Kelly Giorgi, Evelyn Whipps, Jordana Young, and Dana Huber. As well as Amber Adams, and Austin Archuletta. Crew members included Autumn Johnson and Bethany Reiner.
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Mt Hood Conference Acting Festival - 2019

In January of 2019 a group of our students competed in the Mt. Hood Conference Acting Festival, including current Seniors Sarah Beckers, Evelyn Whipps, and Bethany Reiner. And in the Duo Acting category Sarah and Evelyn received superior medals in honor of being in the top 10% of competitors!
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NE Regional Acting Festival - 2019

In February of 2019 our students competed at the NE Regional Acting Festival, and no surprise, our kids did very well. Among the students that received a Superior Medal (top 10%) were current Seniors Sarah Beckers, Evelyn Whipps, Kelly Giorgi, Jordana Young, Dustin Grundmeyer, and Autumn Johnson.
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Bang Bang You're Dead - 2019

Later in February of 2019 the Advanced Theatre Class performed the one-act Bang Bang, You're Dead in the cafeteria. This one-act has been performed by Barlow before a few years prior, but this cast brought something really fresh and new to the piece. Including the lead Derron Medrano, as well as other current Seniors Dustin Grundmeyer, Bryce Coverdale, Dana Huber, Kelly Giorgi, Autumn Johnson, Evelyn Whipps, Austin Archuletta, Sarah Beckers, and Jordana Young.
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Clue: On Stage - 2019

In Late February into early March of 2019 (yes, thats how busy these kids are) our department performed an absolutely amazing on-stage version of the popular board game Clue. Our kids were absolutely amazing, and the show sold out over a month in advance! This show was performed at The Gresham Historical Museum as a dinner theatre, which was new for us. Current Seniors involved were Derron Medrano as Wadsworth and Ethan Golden as Professor Plum. Servers included Sarah Beckers, Bethany Reiner, and Dana Huber.
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Mamma Mia! At State - 2019

Shortly after Mamma Mia! closed, we got the news that Barlow was selected to be one of featured shows at the Oregon State Thespian Festival. This meant that the full cast, crew, band, and creative team began rehearsing Mamma Mia! once again in preperation for the April Performance. The prep was very stressful for everyone involved, but it was so worth it. I will never forget feeling the energy of over 2,000 theatre students watching our kids. It was truly remarkable.
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The Crucible - 2019

In May of 2019 Barlow students performed Aurthur Miller's The Crucible at Sandy High School. Why at Sandy, you ask? Because of the construction at Barlow, we were unable to use our facility, and had to ask for help from our local theatre friends at Sandy. It was a very interesting experience using a space that wasn't our own. But the students really made the most of this, and produced astounding shows that were a privilege to witness. It was also performed "in the round" meaning there were viewers on 3 sides, which really enriched the experience. Current Seniors involved were Ethan Golden, Dustin Grundmeyer, Jordana Young, Bryce Coverdale, Derron Medrano, Autumn Johnson, and Kelly Giorgi.
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Children of a Lesser God - 2019

The first show the next school year was Children of a Lesser God in December of 2019. COLG was ground breaking for our department, as the cast had to learn American Sign Language in order to produce a sensitive performance. (The stage manager even learned) And let me tell you, it was incredible. It was performed in Mr. Schroeder's classroom at the time, since the Black Box wasn't ready yet. The success of this show very much so a result of the resiliance of the current Seniors and their younger castmates. Current Seniors involved were Kelly Giorgi, Bryce Coverdale, Jordana Young, and Dustin Grundmeyer.
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Mt. Hood Conference Acting Festival - 2020

In January of 2020 our students attended the MHC Acting Festival and did very well (Again, no shock there. Our kids are amazing in competitions.) Accolades included Sarah Beckers being in the top 10% and receiving a Superior Medal in Solo Acting.
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NE Regional Acting Competition - 2020

In February of 2020 our students attended the NE Regional Acting Competition (more commonly known as Regionals) and absolutely killed it! 55 of our students attended, and did very well! The following are the current Seniors that received a superior score, placed in the top 10% and qualified for State: Evelyn Whipps in Solo Acting, Kelly Giorgi, Jordana Young, Dustin Grundmeyer,and Evelyn Whipps in Group Acting. These following students received a Regional Finalist Ribbon for placing in the top 20%: Sarah Beckers in Solo Musical, Evelyn Whipps in Group Musical, and Kelly Giorgi and Bryce Coverdale in Duo Acting. As we know, State was cancelled, but its still very important to celebrate the qualifications!
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Musical Comedy Murders of 1940 - 2020

Way back in September the Theatre 5-6 class as well as the Theatre 7-8 classes started rehearsing two shows during class time. Most Seniors ended up performing Musical Comedy Murders of 1940 in February. This show was performed at the Gresham Historical Museum just like Clue: On Stage, and was also a dinner theatre. It was a very successful show, and of course sold out! This show featured current Seniors Sarah Beckers, Jordana Young, Kelly Giorgi Dana Huber, Evelyn Whipps, Autumn Johnson, Derron Medrano, Dustin Grundmeyer, and Bryce Coverdale. We were also very excited to include our newest theatre student Jen Coffman who was the Stage Manager, as well as the Dark Figure. (We love you, Jen!!)
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The Complete Works of William Shakespeare: Abridged - 2020

While Theatre 7-8 was rehearsing MCM, Theatre 5-6 was rehearsing Complete Works. In early March, a cast of mostly Juniors performed Complete Works of William Shakespeare: Abridged in a make-shift black box in the library. Though this show was almost all Juniors, we did have one Senior Bethany Reiner. This show was so fun, and taught our kids a lot about flexibility. It was a great show, (If I do say so myself, but I'm a bit biased.) and we were so thankful that we got to perform just before everything got shut down due to the virus.
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Nationals - 2020

We all know that the 2020 International Thespian Festival has been cancelled, but I still want to give the proper recognition to the students that earned the privilege of competing at Nationals if they so chose. I have chosen to include all students that reveived this honor regardless of age.

Seniors - Bryce Coverdale, Autumn Johnson, Sarah Beckers, Dustin Grundmeyer, Jordana Young, Kelly Giorgi, and Evelyn Whipps

Other Students - Abigail Bethke, Audrey Thies, Courtney Bennett, Toby Neighorn, Andrew Schroeder, Briella Cabbage, Soulynn Perez, Mia Williams, Dustin Bell, Luke Palau, Acadia Coons, Bailey Lowry, Hannah Guilleux, Kylie Nuttall, Hunter Matheney, Marin Miller, Cooper Marr, Grace Sayles, Sophie Neighorn, Jenna Nuttall, and Kazmira McNeal

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It seems that we have just run out of road, and Memory Lane has come to a dead end. (Okay, that was a bit dramatic) But in all seriousness, that brings us to current day. The current situation is definitely not ideal, and I know that a newsletter can't fix that. I know that nothing can make up all that you have lost, but I hope that if you were feeling like no one cared about you, or we had forgotten about the class of 2020, you now understand that we see you. I see you. My number one concern is of course your safety, and the safety of those around you. So while you're belting Dear Evan Hansen, please remember to practice social distancing (remember, if someone can hear you signing, you're probably not 6 feet apart). Take your personal hygiene as serious as memorizing your monologues for Regionals. Sanitize your surfaces as much as Corny Collins sprays his UltraClutch Hairspray. And please remember to be kind to yourself. Let yourself feel all the emotions, and try to love yourself through it. We love you so so much

xoxo - heidi

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Thais Gibson-Doyle

You Will Be Found by Thais Gibson-Doyle

Heidi Thies on behalf of the Barlow VIPS

My name is Heidi and I am the Media Chai

Heidi Thies on behalf of the Barlow VIPS

My name is Heidi, and I am the Media Chair for the Barlow VIPS. The Barlow VIPS are a non-profit organization started to benefit the Sam Barlow Choir and Theatre Departments. It is filled with parents, supporters, and community members who have an interest in bettering the departments our kids work so hard for. For more information please visit our website or facebook page.