Northview Theatre has its roots in programs originally created by Margaret Fairchild in September of 1928. It was during these years that Ms. Fairchild developed speech and drama classes for Sylvania Schools and became affiliated with the Ohio Speech League and the National Thespian Society for High Schools (now, the International Thespian Society). The program enjoyed many successes. According to Robert Wyandt in A Century and a Quarter of Education: Sylvania Public Schools 1841 - 1966, Ms. Fairchild states "in 1941, we won first place in the state one act play contest with Lawd Does You Understand? ... and entered the National Thespian Contest at the University of Indiana and received a superior rating."
The Northview Theatre program has enjoyed recent success as well. At home, we have enjoyed enthusiastic audiences and a wealth of community support including many sold out houses and a renovated performance space in 2011. The program has been invited to perform full length featured productions at the Ohio EdTA Thespian State Conference in 2001, 2005, 2007, 2011 and 2013. Northview Theatre also received a nomination to participate in the American High School Theatre Festival in 2008. Northview students have been selected to participate in the Ohio EdTA's "All Ohio Show," from 2006-2008 and 2010-2014. Most recently, Northview earned a 2nd consecutive Bronze Level Honor Troupe designation for the 2012 - 2013 school year and hosted the Ohio EdTA State Thespian Conference in March of 2013.
Some past directors (and years leading the program when known) include:
Nancy Brown, circa 1961
Mark Ferguson, 1980 - 1983
Brent Beerman, 1986 - 1989
Judy Beebe, 1995 - 1998
Don Wachowiak, 1998 - 2001
Cori Krause, 2001 - 2002
Matthew Kizaur, 2002 - 2004
Don Wachowiak, 2004 - present
The current Sylvania Northview High School Theatre Program is under the direction of Mr. Don Wachowiak. He is assisted by Mr. Jason Rahe, Technical Director and Mrs. Courtney Rahe, Assistant Director/Costumer. Mr. Jeremy Davis, Vocal Director, Ms. Emily Hage, Instrumental Director, Mrs. Karen Niewiadomski, Choreographer and Mrs. Linda Sankovich, Rehearsal Accompanist, join the directing team for Northview's full-length musical productions.
Northview Theatre produces two full-length productions each school year. In the fall, Northview Theatre produces a full-length musical, rotating between classic/traditional and contemporary titles. Acting roles for lead or featured characters are often very competitive. Technical positions are generally more available for the musical due to the number of positions required.
In the spring, a full-length play is performed. To give Northview's theatre students exposure to a variety of acting opportunities, the program attempts to rotate between comedies and dramas in various styles. Acting roles for the play are highly competitive as most plays have a cast of 8 - 12 people. Technical positions are competitive for the play as well.
In the past, Drama Club has produced a Winter One Act Festival where students have the opportunity to write and direct their own scripts. They also sponsor and produce the annual Red Carpet Awards.
New, for the 2015-2016 school year, a small cast summer musical was added. Auditions will take place in May, will begin rehearsing in July and will take the stage in late August. Competition for these roles is expected to be highly competitive and will be open to current 9-11 graders in May of the previous school year.
Photos courtesy of John Fenstamacher, INVU Portraits