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Wrapping Up a Phenomenal Year on Stage

With every passing year, the productions of the Hanover Central Thespian Society get more ambitious and more exciting.

During the 2017-2018 academic year, Society members and Director, Steve Gustas left audiences in awe following the spring production of Agatha Christie’s “The Secret Society.”  In addition to the main production, students also participated in their own production of “Help Wanted,” directed by Senior, Michael Karpik.  If that wasn’t enough of a challenge for the students, there were an additional 6 micro-plays addressing the issue of bullying.  Those plays were directed by:  Michael Karpik, Anna Zurisk, Nerissa Fezler, Ashley Owen, Lynda Hinojosa and Simone Wydra.  Was that enough?  No, not for this talented crop of thespians.  Just a few weeks prior to their fall production, they were approached by Lake County Parks Department and Volunteer Coordinator, Dawn Robertson to fill in a gap left by another school.  The students participated in an audience participation/murder mystery play entitled, “My Alma Martyr.”   The dinner is an annual thank you to 100+ park volunteers. 

two students on stage

 Jessica Wiersma and Noah McWilliams in "The Secret Adversary."

With those events stoically completed, the Thespian Society members began, almost immediately, to prepare for their February production of “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.”  The lively musical included, not one, not two, but three full reproductions of the legendary car at the heart of the story.  It still was not enough for our intrepid performers and crew.  During the final performance, members of the society raced through the audience and collected spare change and donations to provide the first ever, Thespian Society Scholarships for graduating seniors, many of whom have participated in numerous productions and made the Society the heart of their Hanover family for four years. 

student singing on stage

Michael Karpik sings in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang

Teacher with six students

Shown with Thespian Society Sponsor Steve Gustas are scholarship award reciptients, Laila Verduin, Anna Zurisk, Michael Karpik, Katie Anderson Jenna Johanknect, and Angela Gonzalez.   

The Hanover Central Thespian Society capped off the year with the 4th annual Triple AAA (Applause, Applause, Applause) Awards during the final week of school.  Following a tradition set the last several years, Society members were met on the red carpet by ‘Nancy O’Dell,’ a.k.a. Michelle Duffy, to answer questions about the awards, their favorite performances, and the all important questions about their designer outfits for the evening.  During the Triple AAA party, awards are given and Society officers for next year elected. 

student laying red carpet

The Red Carpet goes down for the Triple AAA Awards 

two girls holding hands

 Anna Zurisk and Nerissa Fezler at the Triple AAA Awards

This year’s recognized performers were:

Best Actor:

Secret Adversary: Cole Schultz

Student Run Productions: Anthony Klobucar

Chitty Chitty Bang Bang: Noah McWilliams

 Best Actress:

Secret Adversary: Jessica Wiersema

Student Run Productions:  Kylie McAllister

Chitty Chitty Bang Bang:  Laila Verduin

Students in auditorium

Noah McWilliams, Katie Anderson, Laila Verduin, and Jessica Walters

 Best Newcomer:

Olivia Sroka

Best Techie: 

Ryan Taylor

Best Costume:

Simone Wydra, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Music Box scene

Worst Costume:

Michael Karpik, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Jester costume

Best Choreographer:

Anna Zurisk

Best Dancer:

Laila Verduin

Officers for the 2018-2019 School Year are:

President: Noah McWilliams and Ariana Arce

Vice-President:  Simone Wydra

Secretary:  Nerissa Fezler

Treasurer: Lynda Hinojosa and Cole Schultz

Communications Director: Rebecca Oliver

Historian:  Jessica Walters and Ashley Owen

girls in fancy dresses at award show

Ariana Arce, Rebecca Oliver, and Angela Gonzalez



group of students on stage

Attending the awards were:  Bella Hathaway, Joy Glywa, Madison Sulik, Lynda Hinojosa, Madison Kegly, Katrina True, Rebecca Oliver, Ariana Arce, Lily Bacher, Michael Karpik, Ashley Owen, Autumn Piferetti, Madison Setzer, Laila Verduin, Anna Zurisk, Katie Anderson, Angela Gonzalez, Cole Schultz, Noah McWilliams, Simone Wydra, Nerissa Fezler, Jessica Wierzma, Olivia Sroka, Sophia Taborski, Lauren Demoff, Earlyn Long, Kylie Mcalister, Christina DeLange