The 46th Annual Danny Awards

Alexa VanHooser, Reporter

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Clovis Unified’s best and brightest took the stage May 16th at the 46th annual Danny Awards: a celebration of the theatrical efforts of local students.

Despite being a local awards show, the district spared no expense, greeting the nominees with a fully-equipped red carpet and commencement ceremony. Nominees dressed to the nines, giving the event an aura similar to that of a dignified award show. Despite this, the overall atmosphere of the ceremony reflected a spirit of camaraderie, as compared to competition.

The ceremony began with a vibrant excerpt from Clovis West’s  nominated production of The Addams Family. As the night progressed, awards were won by students throughout the district; after each category was announced, performances of each nominated play continued. Clovis High brought home a series of awards for dramatic achievements.

Notable recipients include: Annie Butchert (junior), Best Actress in a Musical; Madelin May (junior), Best Supporting Actress; Brianne Avina (junior), Best Actress; Cameron Fernandez (junior), Best Supporting Actor; and Serena Myers (junior), Clovis High Director Award. Cameron Little stole the show winning Clovis High Director Award, Lighting Technical Achievement Award, and Dan Husack Scholarship. Seniors Zach Bowes, Jason Fogal, and Little all won the Technical Achievement Award as well.

Fernandez, the recipient of the Best Supporting Actor award for his role as Tony Kirby in You Can’t Take it With You, felt lightheaded and almost fell as his name was called. After three years in the Clovis High drama program, Fernandez finally received the recognition he deserved.

“Drama means the world to me,” said Fernandez, “It helped me through tough times – especially in elementary school – when I felt like I had no friends and everyone was against me. I want to pursue acting professionally, whether it’s onstage or on the silver screen.”

The vibrant performances gave the audience a taste of not only what the drama department had to offer this year, but helped them understand why students were nominated. Several scholarships were also awarded to various students involved in production off-stage in areas such as lighting and sound. Though the ceremony was packed with song, dance, and recognition, it also manifested as a tearful goodbye for the more than 20 seniors moving on from the district’s stages. However, many of those students shared their decision to remain in the theater world, pursuing higher-level degrees in theater or stage production.

Regardless of the category, a similar sentiment echoes among other recipients, such as Annie Butchert, who received the Best Actress in a Musical Award for her title character performance in Peter Pan.

Butchert, who has appeared on the stage since she was a little girl, continued her passion for drama her sophomore year. For nearly four months, Butchert worked tirelessly on the show, and her effort was reflected through her nomination and later success.

“It’s such a great feeling to know the amount of work we put in paid off,” said Butchert. “Drama is an amazing environment for me to explore my abilities as an actor; I feel at home there, like I can be myself completely.”

 

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The 46th Annual Danny Awards