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Columbia Academy and Columbia Heights High School Theater Departments Earn Spotlight Recognition for “The Wizard of Oz”

The Columbia Heights High School (CHHS) and Columbia Academy (CA) Theater Departments were recognized for their accomplishments in musical theater by Hennepin Theatre Trust as a participant in the Spotlight Education program. As the Trust’s premier education program, Spotlight Education supports and honors Minnesota high school students and programs focused on musical theater.

Over 40 students and individuals participated in the schools’ production last month and earned a total of 12 recognitions. “Outstanding” recognition is the high honor, followed by “Honorable Mention.” “Shout-Outs” are a new distinction to give recognition to those students who caught the attention of the evaluators.

Overall Production | Honorable Mention
Ensemble Performance | Honorable Mention
Overall Technical Team | Outstanding
Light & Sound Crew | Outstanding
Outstanding Performance in a Leading Role | Sophie Kuether as Professor Marvel/Wizard of Oz
Honorable Mention in a Leading Role | Jeremiah Taris-Pierce as Zeke/Lion
Honorable Mention in a Leading Role | Lily Kleinschmit as Scarecrow/Hunk
Outstanding in Technical Leadership | Renee Demars Dehn as Board Operator
Outstanding in Technical Leadership | Amara Thompson as Board Operator
Evaluator Shout-Out | Mathias Wheeler
Evaluator Shout-Out | Yuli Cordova-Quizhpi
Evaluator Shout-Out | Loulou Sadrant

"I am so proud of all of the hard work that our CHPS students put into this production,” said CA Theater Teacher Tara Lorence, who directed the joint production. “With all of the challenges that this past year has brought, they persevered and put on an amazing show!"

Kuether will perform in the 2021 Virtual Spotlight Showcase, streaming live 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, June 15 during the pre-show event. For more information about the show, or to watch live, visit

For more information, contact the Activities & Athletics Department at 763.528.4511.