HIGHLANDS actors celebrated the CAT awards’ 21st birthday in style on Saturday night winning four awards.
These awards provide recognition of the contribution made by non-professional groups to the artistic life of Australia, an in particular, of Canberra and the region and encourage individuals in the performing arts.
This year Chevalier College cleaned up with three separate awards.
Jacob Sgouros won Best Youth Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical as Peter Allen in The Boy From Oz.
“It’s honestly pretty surreal. I think mainly it’s just nice to know that our belief in this show as something pretty special has been validated,” he said.
“Never before have I been a part of something so incredibly professional. I know it’s a clich‚ but we really did put so much effort into crafting a show that went beyond a typical high school performance and I think winning this award has verified that we in some way, succeeded.”
From the same production, Isabel Clarke won Best Youth Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical as Judy Garland.
“I was pretty excited and a bit shocked. I wasn’t expecting that,” she said.
“I was just happy that I was nominated for Judy Garland because she was a big inspiration for me during the show.”
With Jacob currently overseas, clips from the musical were played for the audience.
The Boy From Oz also won Best Production of a School or Youth Musical.
“I was so proud of us and it was just so nice to get recognised for all our hard work,” Isabel said.
Chevalier was nominated for six awards in total while Isabel was also nominated for her role as Belle in New and Used Productions’ Beauty and the Beast.
Best Ensemble in a Musical was won by the vocal trio from Little Shop of Horrors- Nell Shephard (Crystal), Liberty Thirsk (Chiffon) and Libby Malcolm (Ronnette)- by Pigs Fly Productions.
The trio also performed on the night and director Lou Vella said it was the second year in a row Pigs Fly had been asked to perform at the awards.
Last year Pigs Fly was also nominated for its production of The Importance of Being Earnest.
Little Shop of Horrors was the company’s first musical.
The company has had 13 nominations over the past two years and won two awards.
“To win back to back was just wonderful,” Mr Vella said.
“It highlights the immense talent we’ve got here in the Southern Highlands and it was a testament to all the hard work put in by the cast, the creative team and our wonderful band.”
Mr Vella also thanked assistant director Fiona Jowett and musical director Greg Oehm for their hard work in the production.
This year Pigs Fly Productions will tackle Calendar Girls which will open at the Mittagong Playhouse in September.