Mentor Theatre Closes Curtain on 98th Season

Mentor High School’s Thespians Wrap Up Successful Year with Award Recognitions



The Mentor Theatre Senior Class of 2022 takes their final bow at the annual Inductions ceremony.

Doug Slovenkay, Contributor

At long last, Mentor Theatre’s 98th season has come to a conclusion.

This year, thespians brought to life three different productions centered around the theme “Murder Mysteries”: The Bad Seed (November 5-7), The 39 Steps (February 4-5), and The Mystery of Edwin Drood (April 7-10). All three productions brought their own unique storylines and characters to life, and effectively resonated with audiences in their own, special ways. As the season dwindled to a close, the cast and crew responsible for staging these shows were given multiple opportunities to have their hard work honored and recognized.

"The Mystery of Edwin Drood" was a spring musical with hundreds of possible endings!
“The Mystery of Edwin Drood” was a spring musical with hundreds of possible endings! (N/A)

Rotary Awards

The Rotary Awards are an annual event sponsored by the Rotary clubs of Painesville and Mentor in which students from six local high schools (Mentor, Lake Catholic, Fairport Harbor, Perry, Harvey, and Riverside) are recognized for theatrical excellence. A select group of Rotarians attend each school’s productions and formulate individual nominees in the following categories: Best Male Lead, Best Female, Best Male Support, Best Female Support, Best Male Sub-Support, Best Female Sub-Support. For each category, there is one winner chosen for their portrayal in a play, and another chosen for their portrayal in a musical. In addition to individual awards, the Rotary Club also gives some more general awards, such as Best Drama/Comedy and Best Musical. The following Mentor High School thespians were nominated for individual awards, with the names of those who won the award in which they were nominated being emboldened:

Best Male Sub-Support in a Drama/Comedy: Owen Keller

Best Female Sub-Support in a Drama/Comedy: Ashlyn Slocum

Best Male Support in a Drama/Comedy: Doug Slovenkay

Best Female Support in a Drama/Comedy: Cordelia Klammer

Best Male Lead in a Drama/Comedy: James Goodman

Best Female Lead in a Drama/Comedy: Grace Prentice

Best Male Sub-Support in a Musical: Jack Webster

Best Female Sub-Support in a Musical: Kerri Ward

Best Male Support in a Musical: Khoury Ward

Best Female Support in a Musical: Claire English

Best Male Lead in a Musical: Vince Muranda

Best Female Lead in a Musical: Cordelia Klammer

Mentor Theatre’s Rotary Award winners show off their hardware

In addition to the awards ceremony, each school performs a brief excerpt from each of their shows at some point during the night. This gives each school an opportunity to showcase their hard-work and talents to those who may have been unable to attend their performances, as well as giving the students a unique opportunity to reprise roles that had seemingly been put to rest when their respective shows concluded.

Mentor Theatre performs a segment of “The Mystery of Edwin Drood” at the Rotary Drama Awards at Harvey High School

Mentor Theater Awards Night and Induction Ceremony

The theatre season concludes in-house with an awards night dedicated solely to Mentor thespians hosted in the Fine Arts Center. This ceremony is a little bit less traditional then the awards presented by the Rotary Club, with emphasis instead being placed on giving the students a fun, end-of-the-year send-off and reminiscing on the hard work that went into making the year a success. Awards included anything from who has the most calming personality to whose brother was the best clapper while in the audience. Additionally, students who have qualified for and have been granted membership into the International Thespian Society, an honors organization for theater students, are inducted into the program on this night.

Mentor Theatre senior Class of 2022

At the conclusion of the ceremonies, seniors of the program officially say goodbye by quite literally leaving a lasting imprint on the program by dipping their hand into a bucket of paint and putting their handprint onto a wall in the dressing room. This moment, while bittersweet for all involved, is one that provides seniors with an excellent opportunity to symbolically put their high school theatrical careers behind them alongside their handprints that night, and move on to whatever the future has in store for them.

The little scene senior wall in the Fine Arts Center dressing rooms