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PRHS All-Student Orchestra Wins Gene Kelly Award

Woodland Hills, North Hills dominate Saturday's awards ceremony.

The student orchestra that performed for the spring musical, "Les Miserables," brought home the school's lone Gene Kelly Award on Saturday night. 

"Les Miserables" received 11 nominations out of 13 categories for the prestigious awards, which were presented at Pittsburgh CLO’s 21st Annual Gene Kelly Awards ceremony at the Benedum Center for the Performing Arts in Pittsburgh.

Woodland Hills High School won the most awards -- six -- with its production of "The Phantom of the Opera." North Hills followed with five awards for "No, No, Nanette.

Two Pine-Richland students also received scholarships at the event.

Niles Brandon was awarded one of five Gene Kelly Cash Scholarships. The merit-based scholarships, totaling $10,000, were presented to high school seniors who have applied and been accepted to a school for the performing or technical arts. 

These scholarships are made possible through the donations of Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield, Donald Arnheim, Paul E. Block and Virginia Nicklas.

Patrick McMahon received one of eight Constance T. Rockwell scholarships that were presented by the Pittsburgh CLO Guild. The scholarships are awarded to high school seniors pursuing an education in the performing arts.  

The Gene Kelly Award winners are as follows:

Best Musical -- Woodland Hills, "The Phantom of the Opera," (Level 3); Hampton, "West Side Story," (Level 2); Pittsburgh Schenley, "Seussical," (Level 1)

Best Actor -- Luke Halferty, Central Catholic, "Fiddler on the Roof"

Best Actress -- Kirsten Hoover, North Hills, "No, No, Nanette" 

Best Supporting Actor -- Matt Augustyniak, North Hills, "No, No, Nanette"

Best Supporting Actress --Stephanie Higgins, North Hills, "No, No, Nanette"

Best Scenic Design -- Woodland Hills, "The Phantom of the Opera," (Level 3), Chartiers Valley, "Footloose," (Level 2) and Our Lady of the Sacred Heart, "Little Shop of Horrors" (Level 1)

Best Costume Design -- Woodland Hills, "The Phantom of the Opera," (Level 3), Central Catholic, "Fiddler on the Roof," (Level 2)  and St. Joseph, "Beauty and the Beast" (Level 1)

Best Lighting Design -- Woodland Hills, "The Phantom of the Opera," (Level 3), Chartiers Valley, "Footloose," (Level 2) and Our Lady of the Sacred Heart, "Little Shop of Horrors" (Level 1)

Best All-Student Orchestra -- Pine-Richland, "Les Miserables"

Best Ensemble -- North Hills, "No, No, Nanette"

Best Crew/Technical Execution -- Woodland Hills, "The Phantom of the Opera"

Best Direction -- Woodland Hills, "The Phantom of the Opera"

Best Choreography -- North Hills, "No, No, Nanette"

"The Gene Kelly Awards for Excellence in High School Musical Theater were launched in 1991 as a means to recognize and encourage student achievement and to focus the attention of the community and school districts on the importance of musical theater and arts education," according to the CLO website.

Pittsburgh CLO’s Gene Kelly Awards are co-presented by the University of Pittsburgh with additional support provided by American Eagle Outfitters Foundation, Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield, PNC Bank, Virginia S. Nicklas and the CLO Ambassadors.

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