Students Kaitlyn St. John, Peter Schafer, and Summer Sedgley

Congratulations are in order for nine Ridgefield High School students who were recognized for excellence in theatre at the annual Washington State Thespian Excellence Awards. Members of Ridgefield Thespian Troupe 8635 won awards in multiple categories. Two of those students qualified to compete at the international level, and in a school first, one student was elected to the state student board.

Like so many other competitions, the event had to be held virtually this year. However, competing online didn’t prevent Ridgefield High School students from excelling. Two Ridgefield students received scores of “superior” to earn gold medals in their categories: seniors Kaitlyn St. John in the solo musical theatre category, and Peter Schafer in the monologue category. By winning their categories statewide, both students qualified for the International Thespian Excellence Awards in June, also known more colloquially as the “Thespys”.

Seven Ridgefield High School students also achieved scores of “excellent” to earn silver medals at the 2021 awards: sophomores BriAnna Robbins, Ella Ross, and Summer Sedgley; juniors Avari Harrison and Sophia Miller; and seniors Cameron McGravey and Peter Schafer. “I am so proud of these students,” said Kaitlyn Etter, who teaches Theatre and Dance at RHS, as well as Drama at View Ridge Middle School. “They all richly deserve recognition for their creative talents, but also for their perseverance and focus during a difficult and challenging time.” Congratulations to Ridgefield Thespians Troupe 8635 on its impressive wins, and best of luck to Kaitlyn St. John and Peter Schafer at the international competition in June!

10th grader Summer Sedgley selected to serve as State Thespians Officer

Ridgefield High School sophomore Summer Sedgley was selected to serve as a State Officer for the Washington State Thespians organization for the 2021-22 school year. State Thespian Officers, or STOs, serve as the student voice for Washington Thespians, which is the state level chapter of the Educational Theatre Association. Sedgley is one of only four students statewide elected as an STO. 

Sedgley completed a lengthy application and interview process to become the first student from Ridgefield ever to serve as a State Thespian Officer. In the coming year, Sedgley and other student board members will assist with developing and running state festivals, writing the newsletter, and managing social media for Washington State Thespians, as well as participating in outreach across the state. 

“One of the main goals of RHS Theatre and Thespian Troupe #8635 has always been to create leadership opportunities for our students and to build leadership skills,” said RHS theatre teacher Kaitlyn Etter. “Summer's election to this state-level office is a testament to our program's growth, and the growth of our students. This is a great opportunity for Summer, and she is an excellent choice for this position! I'm so proud of her!”

Students selected to be STOs are strong leaders in their troupes who positively impact Washington Thespians for their peers across the state. STOs work alongside Washington Thespians’ Adult Executive Board to plan, implement, and serve during all conferences and events. 

The Washington Thespians is the state chapter level of the Educational Theatre Association (EdTA). The EdTA is the home of the International Thespian Society, the honor society for educational theatre.