High School Musical Cast
Troy Bolton (Jude Witner)
Jude is a tenth grade student at HAHS Arts and Humanities. He was last seen as Prince Eric in the Little Mermaid Jr and is has been an active theater performer since he can walk. He is a member of the HAHS Marching Cougars as a percussionist and loves to create web pages and original music. He dances with Drama in Motion and is excited to be in this show with some of his closest friends.
Gabriella Montez (Jadyn Culp )
Jadyn Culp is 16 years old, and is going to 11th grade at Hazleton Area Academy of Sciences. She has been dancing since she was 3. She started at the Performing Arts Center and then moved to the competition team at Tracey’s Academy of Dance. She currently dances at Drama in Motion. Jadyn has been performing on stage since she was 9. Her first play was the Wizard of Oz as the barrister. She recently was in the Wizard of Oz again as Dorothy, in which she was nominated for a NEPTA Award. Other roles she enjoyed were “Annie” in Annie, “Fiona” in Shrek, “Anna” in Frozen, “Kim” in Bye Bye Birdie, and most recently “Hodel” in Fiddler on the Roof. She is looking forward to working with the amazing cast and crew of High School Musical!
Sharpay Evans (Rebecca Michalochick)
Rebecca Michalochick is 17 years old and will be a senior at the Hazleton Area Academy of Sciences this upcoming school year. She is a member of the National Junior Honor Society as well as the Spanish National Honor Society. She has been doing theatre since she was 6 years old. Some of her favorite roles were Elsa in Frozen jr. at DMPW theatre and Annie in Annie jr. at the Pennsylvania Theatre of Performing Arts. She is thrilled to be a part of this cast and would like to thank Joelle, Cali, Noah, and Tim for this opportunity. Go wildcats!!!!
Ryan Evans (Nat Houser)
Nat Houser is excited to be a part of High School Musical playing the part of Ryan Evans. Nat is a 12 th grade Honors Society student at the Arts and Humanities Hazleton High School. He has performed as Jem Finch in To Kill a Mockingbird, Johnny in The Outsiders, Michael Banks in Mary Poppins, and Gavroche in Les Miserables at Drama in Motions studio. Nat is very passionate about sewing and fashion design as well as illustration, skating, and writing. They would like to thank the cast crew and directors for giving them this chance to put on a great show.
Chad Danforth (Thomas Beurmann)
Thomas Beurmann, 19, is a native Arizonian who ended up in Pennsylvania after 17 interesting years of events. This is his first show with DMPW, but he has done a few stage shows before. Thomas is extremely excited to bring Chad Danforth to life. Dunk-a-delic!
Taylor McKessie (Gabbi Howe)
Gabbi Howe is thrilled to be making her debut at Drama in Motion. She is 15 and in 10th grade at Hazleton Area Arts and Humanities. She has been involved in theater since 2017 with some of her favorite roles being Alex the Lion (Madagascar Jr.), Orphan Ensemble (Annie), Madame de la Grande Bouche (Beauty and the Beast Jr.), Winifred Banks (Mary Poppins Jr.), Anna (Frozen Jr.), Buttons (Newsies), Nala (Lion King Jr.), and most recently, Gramma Tala (Moana Jr.). You can see her in Descendants at Ovation Playhouse as Mal in September. She also enjoys reading as well as playing the piano, saxophone, clarinet, guitar, and ukulele. She wants to thank all of her friends and family for their support.
Kelsi Neilson (Milana Daiute)
Milana Daiute (Kelsi Nielsen) is 15 years old and is going to be a 9th grade student at Hazleton Area Arts & Humanities Academy. Some of her favorite roles include, Matilda in Matilda the Musical (DMPW), for which she received a NEPTA Award for Best Teen Actress, the Genie in Aladdin, Jr. (DMPW); Peter Pan in Peter Pan, Jr. (DMPW); Timon in Lion King, Jr. (DMPW); Kelsi Nielsen in High School Musical, Jr. (PTPA); Bulda in Frozen, Jr. (DMPW) and Pinocchio in Shrek, Jr. (PTPA). Milana plays the trumpet and the piano and sings in the school chorus. She also enjoys playing lacrosse, running cross country and being a part of the Freeland YMCA swim team. Milana is so excited to be back on stage with her friends and is thrilled to be a part of this fun production! Break a leg, everyone!
Zeke Baylor (Cody Scholl)
Cody Scholl- 13 years old, 8th grade at Drums Elementary. This is Cody’s 6th play. His favorite roles were Bruce in Matilda , Chief and Mr. Darling in Peter Pan, Olaf in Frozen Jr. and Maui in Moana Jr. Along with his love of acting Cody also competes in shot put, discus and javelin for Hazleton Track and Field. Cody hopes you enjoy the show!!
Martha Cox (Tegan O’Donnell)
Tegan O’Donnell is 15 years old and a Sophomore at the Hazleton Area Academy of the Sciences. She has been involved in music and dance since a young age. She has studied all genres of dance for the last 13 years, and been playing piano for 9 years. She also plays field hockey for the Hazleton Area High School. In her free time, she loves skateboarding, painting, and spending time with her friends and family. She is thrilled to be in her first DMPW show and wants to thank Joelle, Cali, Noah, and the entire cast for the warm welcome!
Jack Scott (Aiden Denion)
Aiden is an 11th grade student at the Hazleton Area Academy of Sciences. His most recent performance was as King Triton and Chef Louis in Little Mermaid Jr. In his free time he enjoys spending time with friends, swimming, and reading. Aiden is glad to be apart of this team and cannot wait to be apart of a lot more productions in the future.
Ms. Darbus (Joelle Witner)
Co-Founder of PTPA in 1997 and DM Performance Works in 2009, Joelle is a stage veteran who has performed in, directed, and choreographed over 150 productions. She performs with the regional show band 70s Flashback as the female lead singer and owns Drama in Motion Studio of Performing Arts where she has been teaching dance for over 30 years. She is thrilled to reprise her role as Ms Darbus alongside some of her very favorite youth performers as well as share the stage with her son, Jude. Support the arts and live theater!
Coach Bolton (Tim Solarek)
Tim Solarek (Coach Bolton) is a veteran of the NEPTA theater scene, appearing in numerous local productions over the past several years. Some of Tim's favorite roles include Aldolpho (Drowsey Chaperone); Lt. Kaffee (A Few Good Men); Philip Lombard (And Then There Were None); E.K. Hornbeck (Inherit the Wind); Jerry (Zoo Story); Sam Byck (Assassins); and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart ( Amadeus). He is co-director of the Performance Works Youth Academy.
Ms. Tenney /ensemble /Taylor u/s (Meagan McBride)
Meagan is a 16 year old honor student at HAAS. This will be her 6th production with DM Performance Works. She was in Frozen Jr., Aladdin Jr., Mamma Mia, Alice in Wonderland, and Beauty and the Beast. Meagan will be playing Dewdrop in The Nutcracker this November. She takes all different forms of dance at Drama in Motion under the direction of Phyllis Columbo, Joelle Witner, and Cali Solarek. She has also performed for local theaters, the Nuremberg Community Players, and MPB. Meagan would like to thank her family for always supporting her. She would also like to thank everyone associated with High School Musical and DM Performance Works.
Moderator / Ensemble (Mary Yanuzzi)
Mary Yanuzzi - Mary is 14 years old, and is going into 9th Grade this fall. This is Mary's 12th theatrical performance. Other shows she has been a part of are: Peter Pan Jr., Frozen Jr., and Matilda. She has taken dance lessons since she was 3 years old, and is currently taking dance and vocal lessons at Drama in Motion. Mary is very happy to be a part of this wonderful production and hopes everyone enjoys the show!
Ensemble/soloist/Martha u/s (Cassie Zeleznock)
Cassie is 17 years old and will be a senior honor student at HAHS Arts and Humanities Academy, where she is a member of the Cougar Players and Chorus. She studies voice, and all forms of dance under the direction of Joelle Witner and Phyllis Columbo at Drama in Motion. Cassie has been doing theatre for over 6 years and has performed in over 20 productions. She was last seen in PWFT’s main stage production of Fiddler on the Roof in June. Her favorite role was Rafiki in The Lion King, Jr. at PWFT. Some of her other favorite roles were in Les Miserables, Alice in Wonderland, Jr, Hunchback of Notre Dame, and Mary Poppins. Cassie would like to say "Break A Leg" to the entire cast and crew! She would also like to thank Joelle and her team for always supporting her and pushing her to be her very best!!
Ensemble / soloist / Sharpay u/s (Brianna Malloy)
Brianna is 16 years old and entering her Junior year at Hazleton Area Arts and Humanities Academy. She formerly played in the Hazleton Area High School concert band and also participates in shows as a part of the Cougar Players. It is her 5th year doing theatre. Some of her favorite roles include Scout Finch in “To Kill a Mockingbird”, Nala in “The Lion King Jr,” and a soloist in “Godspell Jr.”
Soloist / ensemble (Alexis Lutz)
Alexis Lutz is 13 years old and will be entering 8th grade at Drums Elementary Middle School where she is an honors student. Most recently she appeared as Tamatoa in Disney’s Moana Jr. at the Pennsylvania Theatre of Performing Arts. She enjoys playing soccer, swimming, baking and spending time with her friends and family. Alexis is also part of the Chorus and Drama Club at her school, and is part of the youth group at her church. She is very excited to be back in the theatre and hopes you enjoy the show!
Soloist / ensemble (Sophia Andrae)
Sophia Andrae is 13 years old and going into the 8th grade at Valley Middle School. She has been performing in local theater since 2018 appearing in Frozen Junior and the Wizard of Oz at DPMW. Sophia also appeared as Ancestor 1 in PTPA’s production of Moana. Sophia enjoys playing soccer with the GHYSA and is a member of the Hazleton Area Track and Field team. Sophia is part of her church youth group and loves hanging out with her friends. She would like to thank her family for their support.
Soloist / ensemble (Julia Dessoye)
Julia Dessoye is an 8th grade student at Creastwood Secondary. Julia was most recently in The Little Mermaid as a mermaid, Frozen as Middle Elsa, Amanda in Matilda and Gertrude in Suessical through DMPW. She loves to run track, play field hockey, and hang out with her friends. She thanks DMPW and her amazing instructors for this opportunity and wishes her fellow cast mates good luck!
Soloist / ensemble (Callie Koons)
Callie is a kind and energetic 13 year old 8th grader at Crestwood. She is thrilled to be back on stage! Callie’s first production was The Wizard of Oz, as one of the “Lullaby League” when she was only 5 years old. Some of her favorite shows since then have been Aladdin Jr., Matilda and The Lion King Jr. Callie loves to be with her friends and enjoys piano, dance and field hockey! Thank you to everyone who has helped make theater such a wonderful experience for Callie!
Ensemble (Stella Byrne)
Stella Byrne (Ensemble) is 15 years old and a will be an 10th grade student at HAHS this fall. Stella loves singing, dancing, and volleyball. She has trained in Ballet, Ballroom, Jazz, and Gymnastics. High School Musical is Stella’s 10th show with DM Performance Works. She also was part of the cast of DMPW Fiddler on the Roof, The Little Mermaid (2021), Matilda, Frozen, Willy Wonka, Peter Pan, Alice in Wonderland, The Little Mermaid (2016), and Beauty and the Beast. Stella is proud to be a part of this cast and is looking forward to being a part of many more productions in the future.
Ensemble (Ruth Huey)
Ruth Huey will be entering 8th grade in the fall at MMI. She has been involved in theater since she was 7 years old and High School Musical will be her 24th play! She was most recently on stage with Little Mermaid Jr with Drama in Motion. Some of her favorite shows were Matilda with Drama in Motion and Newsies with PTPA. She is so happy to be back at theater!
Ensemble (Gabby Kopczynskie )
Gabby Kopczynskie (Ensemble) is a senior at Hazleton Area Academy of Sciences. She currently dances at Drama in Motion Studio of Performing Arts. She was in two shows with the DM Performance Works Factory, Mamma Mia and Matilda. She was also in the production of Mary Poppins and To Kill a Mockingbird put on by the Hazleton Area Cougar Players. Gabrielle is a member of the FBLA and the national honor society. She is so excited to perform high school musical with all her friends.
Ensemble (Gracie Youngcourt)
Gracie Youngcourt is an 8th grade student at Freeland Elementary / Middle School. She has been performing in theater for a few years in both DM Performance Works and the PTPA. Gracie takes dance instruction from Drama in Motion and has been dancing for 10 years. Aside from theater and dancing, Gracie enjoys singing and spending time with friends and family. Gracie is excited to be back on stage and hopes everyone enjoys the show!
Ensemble (Taryn Leonard)
Taryn Leonard is 12 years old and is a 7th grade student at the Commonwealth Charter Cyber Academy. Most recently, she appeared in DM Performance Works mainstage production of Matilda as Lavender. Additional performances include DM Performance Works production of Little Mermaid Jr as Sebastian, Frozen, Jr., Aladdin, Jr., Young Simba in The Lion King, Jr., Alice in Wonderland, Jr. and Peter Pan, Jr. She has also performed with the Pennsylvania Theatre of Performing Arts in their production of Willy Wonka. She studies dance at Drama In Motion under the direction of Joelle Witner, Cali Solarek and Phyllis Columbo. Additionally, Taryn is a member of the Freeland YMCA swim team and the Hazleton Area Youth Lacrosse League and has competed in several triathlons. Special thanks to Joelle, Tim, Noah, Cali and Phyllis for all their support and encouragement! Break a leg everyone!
Ensemble (Alyssa Geraci)
Alyssa Geraci is 16 years old and is going to be a junior at HAHS Arts and Humanities Academy. She has been studying dance at Elite Dance Company since she was 3 years old. High School Musical will be her first ever show! She is very excited to be doing this show and to have so many of her friends and family supporting her.
Ensemble (Isabelle Vajda)
Isabella Vajda is 16 years old and is a 11th grade student at HAHS. This is her first show with DM Performance Works and she is very excited to be back in theater! She enjoys dancing, shopping, swimming, baking, and hanging out with her friends. Isabella takes dance with Drama in Motion and will be performing in the Nutcracker this fall. She wishes the cast and crew the best of luck!
Ensemble (Hope Bridges)
Hope Bridges will be entering 10th grade this year at Hazleton Area High School in the Arts and Humanities program. She has been a part of many shows with DM Performance Works, including The Little Mermaid, Frozen, Matilda, Alice in Wonderland, Peter Pan, Aladdin, and Lion King Jr. Outside of the theater, she enjoys painting and dancing with Drama in Motion under the direction of Joelle Witner and Phyllis Colombo. She is very excited to be back in the theater and would like to say "break a leg" to all of her fellow cast members.
Ensemble (Zoey Force)
Zoey Force is in eighth grade at Berwick Area Middle School. Zoey was most recently seen as Ariel in Little Mermaid Jr. She was also Middle Anna in Frozen Jr and a munchkin in Wizard of Oz with DM Performance Works. Zoey also appeared as Moana in Moana Jr and Timon in Lion King Kids at the PTPA. She is a member of her school’s student council, chorus, and National Jr Honor Society. Zoey also plays soccer, volleyball, basketball and runs track. She is very happy and proud to be part of this cast.
Ensemble (Jocelyn Lukashunas )
Jocelyn Lukashunas 13 of Hazleton is a 8th grade student at Hazleton area middle school. She has been dancing for the past 6 yrs. with Drama in Motion and doing plays for the past few years. She has a strong passion to light up the stage with her beautiful and sassy smile. She enjoys spending time with her family and doing crafts.