Strong senior class helps lead HNS to third straight state title
HARTINGTON — The Hartington-Newcastle One Act Play team did it again.
For the third year in a row, the local One Act troupe won the Class C2 state title during competition Thursday at the Johnny Carson Theatre in Norfolk.
This also marks the eighth time in the last nine years Hartington has claimed the state title.
To win the title, the HNS cast and crew had to best a very good Loup City team, which ended up as the state runner-up. Pawnee City ended up in third.
HNS senior Sam Harms also earned an impressive honor of his own at the State event.
At the conclusion of this year’s performances, Harms was named the Outstanding Male Performer in all of Class C2. This marks the third year in a row he has walked away with the honor.
Harms and Shaye Morten were also named as the Most Outstanding Performers for the HNS One Act team.
Prior to this year, only one other person had ever earned three straight Outstanding Performer awards in any class. That honor belonged to Randolph’s Nick Bradley.
“It’s really an amazing accomplishment for Sam,” Director A.J. Johnson said.
Johnson saw Harms’ talent early on, and has worked to help him make the most of it.
“I thought he had some really good potential when I first saw him, and that freshman year he won State Speech in entertainment, so we knew the talent was there.”
Johnson said Harms also has, “an excellent work ethic, and a strong desire to make himself better.
“He works very hard, and it has paid off for him,” Johnson said.
Coach Johnson – and assistants Linda Kathol and Lindsay Stappert – began working with the cast and crew for the production of “Young Frankenstein” in September. The play, which features a cast of 46, evolved quite a bit over those three months.
“They’re funny,” Johnson said. “They have a lot of energy and they understand comedy and good comedic timing and how it must go.”