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Performing Arts

Durango High School Troupe 1096 scores big at Bobby G’s

The cast and crew of Durango High School Troupe 1096 have earned big nominations at this year’s Bobby G High School Theatre Awards. (Courtesy)
DHS receives four top-tier nominations for production of ‘Urinetown’

The student actors and crew of Durango High School Troupe 1096 know how to put on a show.

And now, they’re in the running for some serious recognition courtesy of the annual Bobby G High School Theatre Awards, put on through the Denver Center for Performing Arts.

Ava Allen and Gillian Reynolds teach choreography for Troupe 1096. (Courtesy)

The awards – the Bobby G’s for those in the know – are focused on bringing schools across Colorado together to celebrate the amazing work educators and students are doing, said Troupe 1096 Director Ben Mattson. How it works, he said, is once a school registers with the organization, four adjudicators score the show on a variety of technical and performance categories, while providing in-depth feedback and giving workshops to students.

“The feedback and workshops alone are worth the price of admission, but some years, the work you do gets recognized and you are able to attend the award ceremony in Denver,” Mattson said. “This ceremony is based on the Tony Awards, and becomes an extravagant night of performances, speeches and awards.”

Jenny Fitts Reynolds and Benjamin Mattson have been nominated for this year’s Bobby G awards. (Courtesy)

DHS submitted its February/March production of “Urinetown” for consideration. In the show, a terrible water shortage, caused by a 20-year drought, has led to a government-enforced ban on private toilets. The citizens must use public amenities, regulated by a single malevolent company that profits by charging admission for one of humanity’s most basic needs. Amid the people, a hero decides that he’s had enough and plans a revolution to lead them all to freedom.

If you go

WHAT: Durango High School Troupe 1096 presents “You Can’t Take it With You.”

WHEN: Four performances: 7 p.m. May 9-11; 2 p.m. May 12.

WHERE: Durango High School, 2390 Main Ave.

TICKETS: $15. Available online at https://tinyurl.com/2mdh53rh.

MORE INFORMATION: Visit troupe1096.weebly.com.

Mattson said more than 50 schools registered with the Bobby G’s this year, and 24 schools got nominations. This year, Troupe 1096 scored high with “Urinetown,” and received four top-tier nominations:

  • Outstanding Achievement in Musical Direction for Petra Lyon.
  • Outstanding Achievement in Choreography for Ava Allen, Gillian Reynolds, Jenny Fitts Reynolds and Benjamin Mattson.
  • Outstanding Achievement in Direction for Benjamin Mattson and Jenny Fitts Reynolds.
  • Outstanding Overall Production of a Musical for the entire cast, crew and DHS.

This final category is the most prestigious, Mattson said, and is the Bobby G equivalent of being nominated for “Best Picture” at the Oscars. Now that the nominations are out, an awards show will be held May 17 at the Buell Theatre in Denver, where Troupe 1096 will get to perform a selection from “Urinetown.”

Five schools receive this nomination, Mattson said. Along with Durango they are Castle View High School, Cherry Creek High School, Denver North High School and ThunderRidge High School. (Notably, he said, DHS beat out Denver School of Performing Arts for this nomination).

Petra Lyon has been nominated for Outstanding Achievement in Musical Direction. (Courtesy)

“To be recognized along with these schools is a real honor and achievement in and of itself,” he said.

And while it’s always nice to be recognized for your work, Troupe 1096 isn’t done for the year: There’s still one more production to stage before the end of the season. “You Can’t Take It With You” will open May 9.


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