It's a musical theater first for Glenbrook South
Three District 225 students were honored in July by the Illinois High School Musical Theatre Awards, a program of Broadway in Chicago.
The recognition was especially sweet for Sloan Greenfield and Gavin Leahy of Glenbrook South, who brought home the school's first honors in the competition since it started in 2012.
Both were honored for their roles in the fall 2019 performances of "Rent": Greenfield as Mimi and Leahy as Tom Collins.
Greenfield said she was honored to be recognized.
"Being able to play Mimi has been one of the best times of my life, and it felt really good to have that validation and to know that my hard work and the amazing work of the cast and crew paid off," she said.
Greenfield has been a part of the musical theater community since she was in fourth grade, and said that, although she doesn't plan for it to be her career, she hopes to continue to participate in music and theater after she graduates high school.
Leahy graduated from Glenbrook South and is currently attending UCLA to study musical theater. He said playing Tom Collins in "Rent" allowed him to grow as an actor.
"I truly got the ability to create my own character and to deliver such an important message to the community," he said. "Receiving this award felt like the perfect culmination of all of my work in high school. I felt I was finally being recognized for something I worked so hard in."
Leahy hopes to continue to pursue his passion for acting after he graduates college.
Over at Glenbrook North, four students have been recognized as winners and nominees since 2012. One of them, alumna Carly Meyer, now is being recognized for a second time.
This year, Meyer's award is for her role as Miss Honey in "Matilda." She also won Best Actress in 2017 for her role as Hodel in "Fiddler on the Roof" and was a Best Actress nominee for her role as Ariel in "The Little Mermaid."
Meyer currently is attending University of Michigan and is studying musical theater.
Other GBN students who have been recognized by IHSMTA include Nathan Salstone, 2012 Best Actor for his role as the Phantom in "Phantom of the Opera"; Megan Orticelli, 2012 Best Actress nominee for her role as Christine in "Phantom of the Opera" and Katie Snyder, 2016 Best Actress nominee for her role as Aida in "Aida."
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, all entries were submitted by video. More than 200 people entered the competition and 24 were recognized.