06/09/13 10:15am
06/09/2013 10:15 AM
KATHARINE SCHROEDER PHOTO  |  The Riverhead Blue Masques rehearse a scene in 'Fiddler on the Roof.'

KATHARINE SCHROEDER PHOTO | The Riverhead Blue Masques’ production of ‘Fiddler on the Roof’ earned a Teeny Awards nomination for choreography.

The 11th Annual Teeny Awards will be held at Southold High School today. The awards, presented by East End Arts and sponsored by Suffolk County National Bank and Riverhead Toyota, showcase the best in local high school theater.

The red carpet begins at 1:30 p.m. Tickets are $25 at the door.

Southold, with 11 nominations, and Riverhead, with 10 nods, lead the way for local schools.

Check back this evening for a list of winners.

The nominees for all the North Fork high schools are listed alphabetically by school below:

DRAMA

Lead Actor in a Drama

Eliminas Abromaitis, Riverhead, “A Christmas Carol”

Jonathan Troiano, Riverhead, “A Christmas Carol”

Jamie Tuthill, McGann-Mercy, “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?”

 

Lead Actress in a Drama

Nicole Chiuchiolo, McGann-Mercy, “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?”

Brionna Cook, Riverhead, “A Christmas Carol”

Amanda Osborne, Riverhead, “A Christmas Carol”

Jordan Tapley, Riverhead, “A Christmas Carol”

 

Supporting Actor in a Drama

Andrew Nucatola, Riverhead, “A Christmas Carol”

Patrick O’Brien, McGann-Mercy, “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?”

 

Supporting Actress in a Drama

Danielle Allen, McGann-Mercy, “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?”

Emma Bernhardt, Riverhead, “A Christmas Carol”

Erin Plitt, Riverhead, “A Christmas Carol”

Jessica Sisti, Riverhead, “A Christmas Carol”

COMEDY

Lead Actor in a Comedy

Zach Fisher, Shoreham-Wading River, “Don’t Drink the Water”

Sean Mannix, Shoreham-Wading River, “Don’t Drink the Water”

Oliver Orr, Mattituck, “Are Teachers Human?”

 

Lead Actress in a Comedy

Maggie Daley, Shoreham-Wading River, “Don’t Drink the Water”

Gayle Gammon, Southold/Greenport co-production, “Trixie, Teen Detective”

Mally Fogarty, Mattituck, “Are Teachers Human?”

Rachel Lohrius, Shoreham-Wading River, “Don’t Drink the Water”

 

Supporting Actor in a Comedy

Tom Batuello, Mattituck, “Are Teachers Human?”

Anthony DeVita, Shoreham-Wading River, “Don’t Drink the Water”

Ryan Zlatniski, Mattituck, “Are Teachers Human?”

 

Supporting Actress in a Comedy

Nicole Chiuchiolo, McGann-Mercy, “You Can’t Take it With You”

Gwyn Foley, Mattituck, “Are Teachers Human?”

Sydney Campbell, Southold/Greenport co-production, “Trixie, Teen Detective”

MUSICAL

Lead Actor in a Musical

Sam Bracken, Southold, “Grease”

John Drinkwater, Greenport, “Guys and Dolls”

 

Lead Actress in a Musical

Laura Logan, Shoreham-Wading River, “Sweeney Todd”

Susanna Kelly, Southold, “Grease”

Brianna Pagano, Greenport, “Guys and Dolls”

 

Supporting Actor in a Musical

Matt Drinkwater, Greenport, “Guys and Dolls”

Jack Dunne, Southold, “Grease”

 

Supporting Actress in a Musical

Lea Gianbruno, Shelter Island, “Legally Blonde”

Michaela Manno, Southold, “Grease”

Shelby Pickerell, Southold, “Grease”

Outstanding Performance

This category recognizes students who “shine brightly” in roles not eligible for adjudication in the leading or supporting categories.

Alexandra Lasot, Southold, Teen Angel in “Grease”

Lara Mahaffy, Southold, Ursula in “Trixie, Teen Detective”

Choreography

Victoria Carroll, Riverhead, “Fiddler on the Roof”

Southold dance captains, Southold, “Grease”

Outstanding Ensemble

Mattituck, “Once Upon a Mattress”

Playbill/Poster Art

Stephen Spinelli, Shoreham-Wading River, “Sweeney Todd”

Gretchen Walter, Southold, “Trixie, Teen Detective”

Judge’s Choice Award

This noncompetitive award is given for a scene, musical number, dance number or group that the judges feel stands out enough to warrant special recognition.

The Greek Chorus, Shelter Island, “Legally Blonde”

Stage Management Recognition

(noncompetitive)

Mariah Brengel, Shoreham-Wading River

Ian Byrne, McGann-Mercy

Quinn Carey, McGann-Mercy

Helen Chen, Mattituck

Jaclyn Conway, Southold-Greenport co-production

Jaclyn Conway, Southold

Mayra Gonzalez, Mattituck

Melissa Hickox, Mattituck

Julie Lindell, Shoreham-Wading River

Anne O’Rourke, Mattituck

Stephen Spinelli, Shoreham-Wading River

Jerilynn Toole, Riverhead

Sean Walden, Greenport

Rachel Williams, Riverhead

Technical Design recognition

(noncompetitive)

Savannah Calderale, Southold, set design for “Grease”

Catherine Penn, Riverhead, costume design for “Arsenic and Old Lace” and “Footloose”

cmiller@timesreview.com

04/24/13 4:00pm
04/24/2013 4:00 PM
ROBIN BAY COURTESY PHOTO | The chamber choir from Bishop McGann-Mercy High School prior to performing at the National Festival Chorus April 21.

ROBIN BAY COURTESY PHOTO | The chamber choir from Bishop McGann-Mercy High School prior to performing at the National Festival Chorus April 21.

The Chamber Choir at Bishop McGann-Mercy High School in Riverhead was one of 10 East Coast groups that performed at the National Festival Chorus at Avery Fisher Hall in Lincoln Center Sunday.

“I couldn’t be prouder of the kids,” said Jamie Calandro, the director of fine arts at Mercy and the chamber choir teacher. “They worked really hard to get here and it’s nice to see their efforts rewarded.”

Sixteen high school students and two junior high school students at Mercy were selected to sing at the concert, which was conducted this year by guest maestro Richard Mathey and featured the award-winning Troy High School Orchestra. Works performed included “O Be Joyful in the Lord” by John Rutter, “Spiritual” by Ysaye Barnwell, and “Silver Wings”, by John Carter.

“Working with the other choirs and guest conductor was one of the greatest experiences I have had as part of chamber choir,” said senior Kaylee Navarra of Manorville. Ms. Navarra, 17, is a soprano who joined the group her sophomore year.

In preparation for the concert, the chamber choir traveled to Manhattan Saturday to rehearse with the nine other groups selected to sing at the National Festival Chorus.

“It was intense,” Mr. Calandro, 32, said of the rehearsal. “They [the students] were a little worried because we had so little time to learn the music, but they were so excited. They got to perform with everybody and hear exactly what it’s going to sound like. It was a higher caliber than anything they’ve ever been a part of.”

Danielle Allen, a junior from Aquebogue who has been a member of the chamber choir for five years and sings alto, said that rehearsing with the other groups was “a little intimidating” at first.

“The other choirs were all so talented,” Ms. Allen, 16, said. “The sound we produced together was absolutely beautiful.”

Patrick O’Brien, a 16-year-old junior from Riverhead who sings tenor and baritone and has been a member of the chamber choir for five years, said he met a lot of “amazing people” during the experience.

“I think I left a better musician,” he said.

For Mr. Calandro, who has been teaching choir for 10 years at Mercy, the concert is a high point in a decade of hard work at the school.

“It’s very humbling and flattering to be recognized on a national level,” he said. “This is definitely my favorite moment since I started the Mercy chorus 10 years ago.”

ryoung@timesreview.com

02/01/13 1:00pm
02/01/2013 1:00 PM
CARRIE MILLER PHOTO | Bishop McGann-Mercy High School principal Carl Semmler (left) and Shawn Leonard, a Mercy graduate and architect for the school's planned pond remediation project, at the foot of the pond on school grounds last week.

CARRIE MILLER PHOTO | Bishop McGann-Mercy High School principal Carl Semmler (left) and Shawn Leonard, a Mercy graduate and architect for the school’s planned pond remediation project, at the foot of the pond on school grounds last week.

Bishop McGann-Mercy High School is nearing completion of a pond remediation project that aims to bring dying wetlands back to life, while educating students about remediation and stormwater pollution.

If successful, school and environmental officials say, it will also help protect the health of the Peconic Bay system.

“What’s very cool about this endeavor is it’s going to take this drainage area and make it a living, breathing thing,” said Bob DeLuca, president of Group for the East End, a partner in the project.

The health of the more than 100,000 square feet of wetlands on the Mercy campus has been declining for some time, principal Carl Semmler said. He and Shawn Leonard, a 1985 Mercy graduate and the architect on the project, have unveiled the next steps in a plan they say will naturally filter pollutants from the pond before the water reaches the Peconic.

They will create what Mr. Leonard calls a “plunge pool,” a man-made pool that draining stormwater will enter “so that sediment can settle things like gravel or other pollutants,” Mr. Leonard said. The water will then make its way down a man-made stream, powered by the area’s elevation, before eventually entering surrounding wetlands, according to the project plans.

Surrounding the plunge pool, stream and natural wetland area, they will add plants to absorb nutrients such as nitrogen and phosphorus, pollutants known for their harmful effects on aquatic ecosystems, according to the New York State Environmental Protection Agency.

“The plants will be the natural filter,” Mr. DeLuca said. “Essentially, the hope is that the water will have high oxygen, lower turbidity and be healthier downstream.”

Since the project began in November, the area has been stripped of invasive plants, identified with the help of Riverhead Town and Group for the East End. Plant and tree life native to the area have been protected, with the state DEC inspecting progress of the project intermittently, Mr. Semmler said.

They will use the remediation project as an opportunity to teach students about the wetlands, integrating it into the science curriculum.

“We will be teaching children how to understand stormwater pollution, the cause and effects of it,” said Deborah Kneidl, director of institutional advancement for the school. “Ultimately, the goal is that we are training stewards for the future.”

“We actually got out there before the construction and took some baseline data on the site prior, so we can see how it changes throughout the different stages,” said Mercy graduate Jennifer Skilbred, educational coordinator for Group for East End, who has been helping set up the educational component. It will include field data collection and lab experiments.

Mr. Semmler said the plan is to build a laboratory adjacent to the wetlands so students can perform experiments close by.

“The ideal thing would be for a student to take a seed, grow it into a wetland plug and plant that plug,” Mr. Semmler said. “They can take the plug full of the pollutants and the poisons and then test the leaf structure of that plant to show how much poison or pollutants it absorbed.”

That means students will be maintaining the wetland with fresh plants while removing pollutants from the wetland, Ms. Kneidl said.

Mercy plans to invite other schools and universities to utilize the area, and is in the early stages of collaborating with universities, including Molloy College, Fordham University, and St. Joseph’s College. “I have spoken with one professor at each school and they have interest in being involved, getting their students to do research projects there. It is exciting stuff,” Ms. Skilbred said.

The project could also introduce students to alternate career options they might not have considered before, she said.

The project has been in the works since 2006, when Mercy applied for a DEC permit. It was granted the permit in 2008 and then applied for funding from the NYS Environmental Facilities Corporation. After its third application, it was awarded $750,000 in 2011 under the stipulation of a match commitment from Mercy alumni, bringing over $1 million in donations to the project, Ms. Kneidl said.

Mr. DeLuca said there is a lot to be learned from the project.

“The most important thing [is] that we come to understand what is going into that pond now,” he said. From that they can see the amount of pollutants that are entering western Peconic, endangering bay waters.

“The western part of the estuary has the greatest trouble. It is in that part that we have had brown tide algal blooms,” Mr. DeLuca said. “The more that we can do to help the better.”

The project is not without controversy, with at least one neighboring resident voicing concern. A project closely connected to the remediation project will fill in 17,000 square feet of adjacent wetlands to create a softball and practice field, with funding coming from private alumni donations. Those wetlands serve as an area for stormwater runoff, creating concern about possible flooding. The pond being remediated doesn’t currently pipe in stormwater runoff and, once it does, it will make up for the adjacent wetlands, Mr. Leonard said.

The remediation plan will also expand existing wetlands by about 53,000 square feet, making up for the lost wetland area, according to Aphrodite Montalvo, citizen participation specialist for the DEC, a stipulation needed in order to get the 2008 DEC permit.

“The DEC looks forward to the completion of this project and believes it will both improve the environmental quality of the area and serve as a valuable educational tool for the school,” Ms. Montalvo said.

Riverhead Supervisor Sean Walter has also expressed support for the project, calling it a “win-win” at a Nov. 20 public hearing.

The remediation is on schedule and expected to be completed by May 2013, according to Mr. Semmler, who calls the project “a true partnership to try and bring the community together.”

cmiller@timesreview.com

02/17/12 2:04pm
02/17/2012 2:04 PM

KATHARINE SCHROEDER PHOTO | Jamie Tuthill as Jim O'Connor in a scene with Danielle Allen as Laura Wingfield.

The McGann-Mercy Theatre Company presents Tennessee Williams’ classic 1944 play, ‘The Glass Menagerie’ at 7:30 p.m. tonight at the McGann-Mercy High School auditorium.

The play opened Thursday night and there will be another performance 7:30 p.m. Saturday. Tickets are $8. For more information call 727-5900, ext. 10.

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KATHARINE SCHROEDER PHOTOS