anne mikolay

anne_mikolaySometimes, despite a school’s best efforts, a student production emerges a study in disorganization, impatience, and inflated egos. Not so at Middletown High School North. The school’s talent show, held on April 23rd, is proof that High School North consistently gets it right.

I thoroughly enjoyed myself at the Search Club Talent Show, and marveled at the scope of the talent presented. Who knew there could be so many gifted students in one high school? The MCs for the evening, Jessica Albano, Meaghan Donovan, and Barry Travis, handled themselves with grace and confidence, and set the tone for the evening. During the inevitable equipment failures, Jessica and Barry entertained the audience with light-hearted banter, and transformed potentially irritating delays into spontaneous comedy.

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The dance routines and drum performances were especially impressive. “Sweet Dreams,” the dance trio of Fiona DiGennaro, Kim Martinez, and Caitlin Antigua, definitely kicked things up a notch with an upbeat, flawless hip-hop routine. Their smiling faces and enviable energy were priceless. Ditto for the colorful “Blast from the Past” dance troupe of Jeralyn Fix, Amanda Svenson, Shannon Norton, and Joanna Picardo, who utilized props and 80s music to charm the audience.


Middletown High School North talent show performers gather on stage on Thursday evening, April 23rd.

The moment sophomore Dan Puma took the stage and picked up his drumsticks, his stated goal of proving there is more to him than a guitar was achieved. Dan’s guitar skills are well known; Thursday evening, he demonstrated equal skill on the drums. This kid was amazing, as was the drum circle of Brandon Wood, Josh Linder and Eric Ficcara.

Perhaps, however, the best talent at the show never made it into the spotlight: the Search Club students who successfully produced the evening. Kudos to Director/Stage Manager John Bennett, Producer/Sound Engineer Pat MacLane, Assistant Stage Managers Pooja Kumari and Angela DeCristafano, Lighting Manager Lauren Cisneros, Spotlight Technicians Matt Corrado, Evan Heath, John Magliulo and Mark Tenenbaum, and Refreshment Manager Sarah Manaut. Under the direction of faculty moderator Heino Habeck, this crew pulled off a feat even an adult would find daunting.

Whether it was the playful teasing between MC Barry Travis and the talent show judges, Matt Corrado’s skillful lighting of the rap duo act “Curb Crew,” or the many chants and cheers from the audience as fellow students and friends took the stage, one thing was quite clear in that theater on Thursday night: Middletown High School North is all about camaraderie, family, and friendship. High School North tirelessly supports the artistic endeavors of its students, and exhibits an admirable commitment to the arts, and the community.

Indeed, Middletown High School North consistently gets it right.

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Anne Mikolay

Anne M. Mikolay joined The Atlantic Highlands Herald as a columnist in 2008. Prior to penning “The Armchair Critic,” Anne wrote feature articles for The Monmouth Journal. Her work has appeared in national...