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Students win battle with Bard

Brianna Florian, Meghan Price and Amanda Florian were finalists at the 29th annual Shakespeare Competition at Wingate University on Tuesday. All three are juniors at Central Academy of Technology and Arts in Monroe, where they study theater. (RICK CRIDER / Enquirer Journal)

Students from Union County Public Schools strutted and fretted their hour upon the stage Tuesday at the 29th annual Shakespeare Competition at Wingate University. The students came from Forest Hills High School and Central Academy of Technology and Arts.

Three juniors at Central Academy of Technology and Arts were chosen from among roughly 30 county students as finalists in the competition.

Amanda Florian read one of Desdemona’s monologues from “Othello.” Florian competed last year, but this was her first year being chosen as a finalist.

“I was really excited,” she said. “I was so happy to hear my name.”

She chose the monologue because she “wanted something out of the box and creative.”

Her sister, Brianna Florian, read one of Katherina’s monologues from “The Taming of the Shrew.” This was her second year competing as well and her first year being chosen as a finalist.

“I think I did really well,” she said. She said she had a great experience.

She was drawn to the monologue because of the character of Katherina.

“I wanted a challenge,” she said.

This year was Meghan Price’s third year competing in the competition and her first year as a finalist. She performed one of Helena’s monologues from “All’s Well that Ends Well.” It was her third year performing the piece.

“(I did) the best I’ve ever done,” Price said. She was drawn to the piece because of “the desperation of it.”

“I always have fun doing it,” Price said.

All three students plan to compete again next year.

This was Forest Hills High School Senior Kaitlyn Lingerfelt’s first year in the competition.

“I think I did okay,” Lingerfelt said. She read Sonnet 130 and a Portia monologue from Julius Caesar.

“It was a unique experience,” Lingerfelt said. She hopes to pursue musical theater in college.

The students from CATA had very little class time to prepare for the competition, Larry Robinson, a theater teacher at CATA said.

“They did a really good job,” Robinson said. He said he had several strong students who did not make it into the final round.

Robinson has been bringing a group of students to the competition since it began.

“The kids enjoy it,” Robinson said. “It’s become a yearly ritual.”

Brian Garcia of Providence High School in Charlotte won the competition. He won a Wingate scholarship and an all-expense paid trip to New York City to compete in the National Shakespeare Recitation Contest in April.

The competition featured more than 300 high school and middle school students from Union, Mecklenburg and Cabarrus counties.

Written by: Carolyn Steeves
Posted: Mar 05, 2012 by Deb Christensen

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