Mountain Home Thespians Earn Awards at Arkansas State Thespian Festival


Thespians during the Closing Ceremony of Arkansas Thespian Festival

Madison Miller, Reporter/Photographer

This weekend, 1400 students from all over Arkansas gathered at ASU in Jonesboro to perform for adjudication and spend time with like-minded theatre individuals. Many students were given awards for their ‘excellent’ performances. 

Awards of Excellence for acting and musical theatre were given to Rayne Tilley, Aidan Wilson, Elizabeth Britt, Grace Avants, Emily Strain, Miranda Heitman, Nate Duval, Sierra Trogdon, Daisy Woodbury, Isabelle Babin, Myia Treat, Makena Wright, Levi Priborsky, Laura Wheat, Joia Traver, Mia Green and Kira Tilley. 

I asked Daisy Woodbury about her ATF experience.


“My overall experience was fantastic, I got to spend my last festival with all the people I love and I got to perform with one of my best friends Isabelle Babin. Isabelle and I performed a song called Ohio from the musical Wonderful Town and earned an excellent rating.””

— Daisy Woodbury

Three students have earned superiors for their talents. Amberly Schaffer, Ray Robertson, and Suzanna Pickers received Superiors for their costume and scenic designs and have qualified for competition at the International Thespian Festival in June at the University of Indiana. 

I asked Ray Robertson about her ATF performing experience.

“It was fun. It was 10:35 at night, I had been waiting 2 hours in a hallway with no chairs, and when I was finally able to come in it was a hotel room, I walked in to see three women under a blanket with no shoes on a sofa.” They said, “Hey we don’t want to be here, neither do you, take your shoes off and get comfortable.” “I presented for 6 minutes total, and they did not ask me any questions, I thought they hated my designs. One lady did not even speak or look at me. After I was done, they looked up and said: “Bye-bye, you can go now”. I left feeling terrible and with sore blistered feet from standing in high heels for two hours. So based on that it was a big surprise that I won a superior.”

Also at ATF, Colleges interview and give out scholarships. Senior Ashton Kincade was awarded the Educational Theatre Association Technical Theatre Scholarship. 

Most importantly, Mountain Home’s very own Theatre director also earned a special award this weekend. It is a Troupe’s responsibility to nominate their director. “Last year in October I nominated Mrs. Maupin for the award,” said Daisy Woodbury. The award, The Arkansas Educator Gail Burns award is in recognition for her outstanding professionalism, high expectations, and leadership in theatre education. It also represents the fact that she has made a significant impact on the lives of her students, school community, and her peers and colleagues in our association. 

Daisy Woodbury presented the award herself to Mrs. Maupin. Daisy says in her speech-

“Thank you for being my mentor, my teacher, and most importantly my best friend.”

This example of the admiration of the student and the dedication of the teacher perfectly encapsulates what ATF is all about, it’s about hard-working students and teachers who love theater.