Truckee’s Shannon Estabrook is hooked on theatre
“Oh God, he was so handsome. He always dressed so dapper and his shoes were always shined. I thought he should have been a movie star like Gary Cooper ” only very short!”
” Brighton Beach Memoirs Monologue Excerpt
Truckee High School alum Shannon Estabrook has a powerful addiction that will likely consume her adult life.
“I’m addicted to theater,” admits the 17-year-old Estabrook. “It’s really fun because everyone on the stage is in that amazing imaginary moment. How great to be a grown up and get to play with people!”
Estabrook, a January 2009 graduate, recently received top honors for the best monologue at the Lenaea Festival, hosted by the California State University, Sacramento School of the Arts Department of Theatre and Dance. Inspired by the Lenaea Festival of ancient Greece, the multi-programmed event features performances (monologues, one-act plays and musical theater solos) from more than 300 California high schools.
Topping a field of 237 high school competitors, Estabrook’s monologue from Neil Simon’s Brighton Beach Memoirs received a gold medal.
“Before you win the award, there are command performances where the best monologues are performed for everyone who attended the festival,” Estabrook recalls. “I was the first on the list and first to perform, so that was amazing and a shock!”
Estabrook has been a theater “addict” since she got her first whiff of greasepaint in a third grade production of Alice In Wonderland.
“I tried out for the part of Mrs. Rose and they made me Alice,” she remembers. “I was stoked out of my mind!”
Since her grammar school foray into theater, Estabrook has become a mainstay in Truckee High School’s drama productions. Most recently she was Olive in the female version of the Odd Couple and Patty Simcox in Grease.
“The best part is that when you are on stage you get to retreat back to your imagination,” she says. “I love the feeling of transforming myself for that time.”
Keen on pursuing her theatrical dream, Estabrook is applying to the prestigious American Musical and Dramatic Academy, which has campuses in New York City and Los Angeles.
Just like a Hollywood star at the Academy Awards, Estabrook is eager to thank her supporters. Assisting her with the award-winning monologue, former Truckee High School teacher Meara Retallack taught Estabrook for three years of drama and advanced drama. Additionally, Jim Sturtevant, director of last year’s musical production, figured prominently in Estabrook’s dramatic training.
“Shannon is great,” Sturtevant says. “I’ve always been impressed with her high level of commitment to her art and her follow through with everything she does.”
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