A Bigger Picture: The Students Behind Tonka’s Theatre Program

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Art courtesy of You-You Won

Art courtesy of You-You Won

You-You Won

You-You Won

Art courtesy of You-You Won

Grace Johnson, Staff Writer

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In the glitz and glamor of the theater, a lot of people can forget just how many individuals go into making the whole show happen. In Minnetonka’s own fall show On the Town, more than sixty young actors come together along with over a hundred crew members backstage to make the show happen, each person bringing their own personal skills and talents.

“It’s really amazing,” said Dante Colmenares, ‘19, “seeing everything everyone brings to the table for each show. Each person adds something to the show that no one else really could.”  

Fellow cast mates Ava Molzen, ‘18, and Jamel Anderson, ‘20, shared his views.

Molzen said, “I think it’s because there are so many different people bringing all their different stories and experiences and using them to craft characters that alone, we couldn’t have dreamed of.”  

Molzen described how she first came to love theater because of shows her family brought her to growing up, and how that inspired her to be on stage one day as well.  

“I wanted to be a part of it, theater helped me find myself.”

Similarly, fellow cast member Anderson said, “Without theater, I wouldn’t be the same person.  I’d be a lot less motivated, and quieter.”

Colmenares added later, “My first role (as one of the 101 Dalmations) really shot me in the right direction.  I felt like, ‘hey, no one else can do this like I can and it felt really great. Then I got to high school and saw a ton of other people could. It’s great to be able to do something like this together.”

Like any great puzzle, it is the odd shapes and differences between us that make it fit together to form a beautiful image. Not only in general, but especially in On the Town it is agreed by many of the cast that it’s their individuality and differences that make the show the strongest.  No matter what they may be, if you come from out of state, grew up jamming to show tunes, or had never touched a mic in your life before you entered these halls, it’s their own individual stories that make not only them, but each and every member of the Minnetonka theater community a group to watch.

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