Original piece propels CHHS students to third at state competition

Published 7:17 pm Friday, December 7, 2012

Hope Hinson, drama teacher at Charles Henderson High School, never pictured her first year on the job would be so exciting.

Over 20 students traveled to the Trumbauer State Theatre Festival in at the University of North Alabama in Florence over the weekend, and brought home high finishes.

Jonathan Carswell won the dramatic singer competition with his rendition “When I First Saw You” from the musical Dreamgirls.

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Carswell said he loves singing and acting, and that it would be hard to choose a favorite.

“Man, that’s a really hard decision,” said Carswell. “I love them both, so I wouldn’t want to pick a favorite. They are so intertwined with one another and if I had to pick just one, I couldn’t do it.”

Two Charles Henderson High School students made the audience burst out in laughter and nearly won first place in a duet.

Carswell and Greyson Motes finished third in the comedic duet competition using a piece written by them.

Hinson met with the group to discuss what act they wanted to perform, and the group decided to use the one penned by the duet.

“It just came really natural to them,” Hinson said. “They play off one another so well. The things we were looking up, just didn’t really fit them. So they began to plan out their skit, and it wound up better than anything we had found.”

Carswell said that the skit was a spin on how he and Motes view themselves, and how the outside world views them. The duo said that they are “nerds” and everything in the skit is true.

“The story is an about two guys who are really big nerds,” said Carswell. “They are really in to Pokémon, Yu-Gi-Oh and Star Wars. They are nervous at first because they get picked on at school, but they are able to do it all in the end.”

Hinson was happy about the placing of Motes and Carswell, but even more excited about the foundation set by the good showings.

Hinson said the drama program at Charles Henderson could use the efforts of the group to keep growing.

“They have put the standards really high,” said Hinson. “The younger kids have something to aim for, and we will get there.”

Next year’s Trumbauer state finals will be held on the campus of Troy University.