West Boca Halloween Activities


October 20th
Shriek Week at Sugar Sand Park, Runs through October 28th. Haunted House, Live Shows, Film Fest, Games, and Rides.
October 21st

Halloween at the Boca Y, 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. Costumes, decorations and activities. Y members: one bag of candy per person, Non-members: $5 adult, $15 child.
Fall Festival at The Shoppes of Loggers Run, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Hay rides, Kids magic show, games and crafts, scavenger hunt and character appearances. Free.
Pumpkin Patch, October 21st through 31st at United Methodist Church, 9087 Glades Road, Boca Raton.
October 23rd
Haunted House Rehearsal at Glades Road Library, 6 p.m. Bring your most creative and spooky ideas for our Haunted house held October 30th. Grades 6 & up. 45 minutes. Call 482-4554 to preregister.
October 24th
Learn the Thriller Dance! at the Glades Road Library, 6 p.m. Grades 6 & up. Call 482-4554 to preregister.
October 25th
Hallo-tween Spooktacular, Glades Road Library, 6 p.m. Listen to scary stories and write your own! Ages 8-12. Call 482-4554 to preregister.
October 27th

Hoot ‘N Howl, 6 to 8 p.m. at the Daggerwing Nature Center. Free Admission. Children of all ages with adult supervision. Games and crafts, learn about nocturnal animals, Night time boardwalk.
Trick’Em Treat’Em Costume Party at Patch Reef Park. 10 a.m. to Noon. Ages 2-5. $5 per child. Munchies, mayhem, games and more.
October 28th

Halloween Bash at Drop In Action Sports Complex.
Trick or Treat Tales, 3 p.m., Glades Road Library. Enjoy stories, songs, games and a craft about Halloween with a costume parade to follow. All ages. Call 482-4554 to preregister.
Peek-A-Boo!, West Boca Library, 10:30 a.m. Not so scary Halloween stories, dancing and singing for ages 1-2. Call 470-1600 to preregister. Also, October 30th and 31st at 10:30 a.m.
Celebrate Frankenstein, West Boca Library, 2:30 p.m. Grades 6-12. Learn about Mary Shelley’s infamous monster and his portrayals thru cinema, books and folklore. Call 470-1600 to preregister.
October 30th
Haunted House!, Glades Road Library, 6 p.m. Our teens will scare you in our walk-through Haunted House. Ages 5 & up. 60 minutes.
Halloween Crafts, West Boca Library, 3:30 p.m. Ages 3 & up. Wear a costume or just come as yourself and make a Halloween themed craft while listening to fun Halloween music.
Trick or Treat at Delray Marketplace, 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Free pumpkins and Family Fun. Kids 10 and under can trick or treat at the shops, decorate a pumpkin, enjoy face painting, music, a trackless train and more.

October 31st
Preschool Monster Mash, West Boca Library, 11:30 a.m. Gather with other ghouls, goblins, heroes, princesses and just regular kids for a monstrous time of Halloween stories, music and a craft. First come, first served. Ages 3 & up. Limit 20.

How a Spanish River Alum Made It In Hollywood

Janah Brooks Golden, Spanish River High 2003

We had the pleasure of speaking yesterday with Janah Brooks Golden about her unusual path from Spanish River High School to a successful career in Hollywood. We thought her story might be helpful to local youth and their parents.
Known as Janah Brooks Adickman when she was at Spanish River, is now a casting producer in Hollywood, California. She contacted us about a show – The F Word with Gordon Ramsay – she is working on right now for Fox Television. The show will feature families of four (or teams of four) who are amazing home cooks with no professional experience.

The original purpose of our contact was her effort to get the word out to those who might want to be on the show. You can apply directly on their The F Word Casting website. The deadline to apply is April 7th so move fast if you’re interested.
Her path to this career is not what we would have guessed. Ms. Brooks Golden graduated from Spanish River High in 2003. She went to University of Florida, completing a Master’s degree in Special Education in 2008. She thought she wanted to be a teacher but along the way she realized it wasn’t right for her.
She worked for a while with her father’s construction company (Ross Adickman is a founder and the CFO of Amicon). While doing that her love for food led her to start writing a blog about food, food shows on television, and cooking. Her sister was living in Los Angeles and invited her to come out and “see what it’s like.”
Two days after she arrived she found a job teaching cooking at Sur La Table. Then she got another job working as a personal chef for an celebrity she would not identify. She had various other jobs, sometimes three at the same time.
A friend was doing casting for a well known cooking show and introduced Janah to the world of reality TV casting. That led to doing casting for 13 seasons (two a year) for the show Cutthroat Kitchen, and for other shows including NBC’s Biggest Loser, Bravo’s Recipe for Deception, Food Network’s Guy’s Grocery Games and Iron Chef Gauntlet (airs in April).
That friend who helped her get started became her wife in 2015 and is also her business partner in their company, Front Foot First, which does reality TV development and casting.
Of course she’s only getting started, now in her early 30s. She hopes to have a longstanding career creating groundbreaking content. And she still has a passion for food.
I asked her where she likes to eat when she comes back here. One restaurant stood out in her mind – Mario’s Osteria. She ate there a lot while she was growing up – then it was closer to Town Center. Other Boca favorites include Sushi Ray, Trattoria Romana and Anthony’s Coal Fired Pizza. In Miami she likes Alter with Chef Brad Kilgore and Eating House (Giorgio Rapicavoli).
Janah’s advice to kids (and parents) is simple: If you’re not happy with what you’re doing, move on to something else and find your path.

Marquee Theater Company presents Dreamgirls at West Boca Performing Arts Center


Written by Jacqueline Faustin, a senior at West Boca High, and a member of the school’s musical theater troupe.
Marquee Theater Company proudly opened their latest performance, Dreamgirls, at the West Boca Performing Arts Theater (in West Boca High School) this past Saturday, January 21, 2017. Director Andrew Shultz and choreographer Ben Solmor did a noteworthy job accurately and respectably chronicling this captivating tale.
Dreamgirls depicts the story of three women who all search for happiness and success in the music industry. With the help of their manager, they get the chance of a lifetime performing as backup singers for a national star. As they delve deeper into the twisted music industry, they abruptly learn just how high the cost of fame truly is.
The up-and-coming Marquee Theater Company is fortunate enough to have an across-the-board strong cast for this show. Their authentic energy, palpable throughout the entirety of the show, never faltered. This unique attribute was most definitely thanks to Alex Lugo (Deena), David Berry (Jimmy Early), and Kendra Williams (Effie). All mentioned characters exhibited remarkable stage presence that made a lasting impact on the audience.

Dreamgirls is on for two more shows at West Boca High – Friday, January 28th at 8 pm and Saturday, January 29th at 2 pm. Buy tickets online at the Marquee box office.

Alex Lugo truly is meant for the stage. Her presence alone creates an appealing and captivating ambiance; the audience can’t help but admire her as she effortless sings and gracefully acts. She has the inimitable talent to truly bring out empathy from the audience, making them really feel for her character.
David Berry presented a hilariously eccentric, yet charming charisma with his role as “Jimmy Early”. He kept his energy level high throughout the duration of the show, and this could be seen specifically in his number, “The Rap.” His character indubitably created a comedic relief for the show.
Kendra Williams stole the show with her performance as “Effie.” Williams, whom has been previously seen as Joanne in Rent, has an unequivocal aptitude for the theater arts. She portrayed her character with such emotional depth and authenticity that it is hard to believe that she, herself, is not Effie. Her show-stopping performance of “And I’m Telling You I’m Not Going,” the closing of Act I, had the entire audience on their feet with profuse applause before she was even finished belting her last note.
The ensemble importantly added magnetism to the show. Though some characters lacked believability, overall, they truly enhanced the large group numbers. Harmonies were beautiful when they were not too soft to hear. Their costumes and wigs added to the credibility to the show without drawing too much attention from the characters themselves.
Dreamgirls is a show that you do not want to miss out on. Its entrancing storyline was notably told through a cast full of impressive “Dreams.” Marquee Theater Company may be up-and-coming, but it definitely is not one you should look past.

West Boca High Takes "Blood Brothers" to Tampa

All photos credit G. Richard Booth
All photos credit G. Richard Booth

The West Boca High Drama Department’s “Blood Brothers” musical has been selected for the Florida State Thespian Festival in March. Out of all the schools in the state, only nine shows were selected for “main stage” performances. The Blood Brothers performance will be one of the two shows performed in the Carol Morsani Hall venue, which seats over 2600.
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We are so proud to announce that Blood Brothers has been selected to perform at the Florida State Thespian Festival in March in Morsani Hall at the Straz Center. Congratulations to Mr. Blank, Mrs. Crout and the cast, crew, and staff for all of your hard work.

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Don’t worry if you missed it. The school plans to do another run of performances in February.
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Review: Marquee Theater's Fiddler on the Roof

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We had the pleasure of seeing Fiddler on the Roof performed by the Marquee Theater Company. The professional show ran through October 16th at West Boca High’s theater. We caught it on the 15th.
They did a great job both in filling the house and in delivering their performance. The audience loved it.
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We saw lots of energy on the stage. The dream scene was particularly well done.
Tevye (Peter Librach) and Golde (Joanne Shultz) had outstanding chemistry. Erica Rose Dade glowed as Tzeitel.
Andrew Shultz and Ben Solmor yet again delivered quality theater to our local audience.
If I have a quibble, it’s Librach’s rendition of “If I Were a Rich Man”. I thought it was quirky but judging by the audience response I might be alone in that.
We hope our readers will forgive this late review. We saw one of the last performances of Fiddler on the Roof in October and any review would have been after the last performance.
We look forward to their upcoming performance of Dreamgirls, scheduled to start January 21st.
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Tickets are available at the Marquee Theater box office.

West Boca Rocks the Cappies

West Boca High celebrates the Cappies evening
West Boca High celebrates the Cappies evening

Boca High and West Boca High both did well at the South Florida Cappies Gala on Tuesday evening at the Broward Center. The Cappies is an awards program for high school theatre and theatre journalism. The South Florida chapter includes 28 high schools, mostly in Broward and Palm Beach counties.
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For the biggest awards of the evening, Boca High won the Musical award and Trevor Wayne won Lead Actor for their performance of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, while West Boca High’s Alexia Assuncao won for Lead Actress in a Musical from their show, Chicago.
Alexia Assuncao (front)
Alexia Assuncao (front)

Other local award winners included:

  • Kayla Goldfarb, Marjory Stoneman Douglas, Lead Critic
  • “Brothers”, Boca High, Ensemble in a Musical
  • Lee Alhanti, Marjory Stoneman, Creativity (Shrek)
  • Bridget Foley, Marjory Stoneman, Comic Actress in a Musical
  • Adams, Posner, Chapman and Guin, Boca High, Lighting
  • Kanterman, Morelli, Stricker and Crew, West Boca, Stage Management and Stage Crew
  • Samuel Cadieux, West Boca, Male Dancer
  • John Barnitt, Marjory Stoneman, Featured Actor in a Musical
  • Ryan Lim from West Boca for Male Vocalist

Ryan Lim
Ryan Lim

We previously wrote about the two Boca schools splitting 29 nominations.
Schools in the greater Boca area that participate include Boca High, Deerfield Beach High, Marjory Stoneman Douglas High (Parkland), North Broward Prep (Coconut Creek), Saint John Paul II High (on Military Trail near Lynn University), and West Boca High.
West Boca High celebrated their evening:

Let's Hear it for Footloose!

footloose1The Marquee Theater Company closed out their 2015-16 season yesterday with Footloose, the Musical. We really enjoyed the show. The musical, based on the movie, featured hit songs such as “Holding Out for a Hero,” “Let’s Hear it for the Boy” and “I’m Free/Heaven Help Me.” There were also new tunes including standouts  “I Can’t Stand Still” and “Somebody’s Eyes.”
Footloose is the story of Ren McCormack, a teenage boy who moves with his mother to the small town of Bomont. They are forced to leave Chicago after his Dad leaves them and move in with his Aunt and Uncle. Ren has a hard time adjusting especially when he finds out Reverend Shaw has convinced the town to outlaw dancing. Ariel, the Reverend’s daughter, is dealing with her own family tragedy. She and Willard help Ren in his attempts to change the law so the high school kids can have a school dance.
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Ariel played by Emily Tarallo and Ren played by James Giordano had great chemistry, particularly on their number “Almost Paradise.” We especially enjoyed Emily’s voice on “Holding Our for a Hero” and look forward to hearing her in future productions. The entire cast and crew, including 5 students from West Boca High’s Drama Department, did a great job. The dance numbers were a lot of fun and the music was upbeat.
The Marquee Theater Company has announced their 2016-17 season: Fiddler on the Roof (September 30-October 9), Dreamgirls (January 21-29) and Legally Blonde (May 6-14). To find out more about the Company, go to marqueetheatercompany.com.

West Boca High and Boca High Musicals Split 29 "Cappies" Nominations

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The West Boca High and Boca High Drama Departments racked up a total of 29 nominations for the South Florida Cappies.

The Cappies, “Critics and Awards Program,” is a program through which high school theatre and journalism students are trained as critics, attend shows at other schools, write reviews, and publish those reviews in local newspapers …

The South Florida chapter includes schools in Broward and Palm Beach counties. Nominations for West Boca High’s performance of Chicago included:

    • Hair and Makeup – Cristina Cautero, Amanda Helbling, Victoria Martin, Missy Varela
    • Costumes – Jewelia Carter, Elizabeth Yarris, and Crew
    • Sets – Ryan Hartman, Cristina Rodriguez, George Said, and Crew
    • Stage Management and Crew – Heather Goughan, Mathew Kanterman, Nick Morelli, Kayla Stricker
    • Male Dance Ensemble

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    • Featured Actress in a Musical – Sammi Frankenbush
    • Female Dancer – Carolyn Castillo

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  • Male Dance – Sam Cadieux
  • Male Vocalist – Ryan Lim
  • Comedic Actor – Matthew Madden
  • Supporting Actress – Hillary Corniel
  • Lead Actress – Alexia Assuncao
  • Best Song – Both Reach For The Gun
  • Best Musical

The troupe is also coming off an outstanding performance at the state Thespian Festival last month.
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Boca High also did well with 15 nominations for their performance of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.
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  • Marketing – Matez and Crew
  • Special Effects – Stewart, Ballarte, Piccin and Crew
  • Sound – Kachur, Lubin, Benedict
  • Props
  • Lighting – Adams, Posner, Chapman and Guin
  • Costumes – Hunsucker, Narino, Schmidt and Crew
  • Stage Management – Hunsucker and Crew
  • Ensemble in a Musical – Brothers
  • Featured Actor – Matthew Moore
  • Female Dancer – Allegra Mannarino
  • Female Vocalist – Channing Ramsey
  • Supporting Actor – Alec Taylor
  • Lead Actor – Trevor Wayne
  • Song – Those Canaan Days
  • Best Musical

Seniors from the Boca High production
Seniors from the Boca High production

Both schools are in the running for Best Musical, along with South Plantation High School, Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, and NSU University School, all in Broward. To see the full slate, click – 2016 South Florida Cappies Nominations.
In 2015 Boca High won 5 Cappies for The Drowsy Chaperone and West Boca High won 3 for The Addams Family. West Boca High won Best Musical in 2014 with Young Frankenstein.

Hiromi Trio: Concert in Davie

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Fans of innovative music were treated to a special concert at Broward College in Davie earlier this week – Hiromi Trio: Concert at Bailey Hall Presents.
Led by Hiromi (full name is Hiromi Uehara or 上原 ひろみ), the trio includes Anthony Jackson and Simon Phillips. The three have been working together for several years now and it shows. You can see the connection on stage.

Image from the performance from the Hiromi Facebook page.
Image from the performance from the Hiromi Facebook page.

As we sat in Bailey Hall, Hiromi played piano with tremendous energy, even ferocity, on one side close to the front of the stage. Jackson sat comfortably and relaxed in the middle, back a bit, on the contrabass guitar. Phillips was on the right playing drums at varying levels of intensity depending on the moment.
While Hiromi is the star of the show, she chose some outstanding talent to accompany her. Anthony Jackson is an accomplished bassist. His credits include working with Madonna, Chick Corea, Steely Dan, Chaka Khan, Buddy Rich, Paul Simon, Dizzy Gillespie and many more. From Wikipedia: “He has performed live in more than 30 countries, and has recorded in more than 3000 sessions on more than 500 albums.”
Drummer Simon Phillips is no slouch either. He was with rock band Toto for 22 years and has played with Jeff Beck, Mick Jagger, Judas Priest, Tears for Fears, Whitesnake, David Gilmour, Frank Zappa and, as with Jackson, many more. “He was the drummer for The Who in their 1989 American reunion tour, and appeared on solo recordings by band members Roger Daltrey and Pete Townshend.”
image and map data by Google
image by Google

Hiromi is from Hamamatsu Japan, near Nagoya. She came to the US at the age of 20 and studied at the Berklee College of Music. She signed a record contract with Telarc at age 23 and has been touring since 2003. We spoke on the phone before the concert. She travels all over the world but has places in both Tokyo and New York City. She does not get to do much sightseeing on the road unless she has a free day, so she has little experience with the South Florida lifestyle. She does love to experience local cuisine and was looking forward to trying Cuban food.
Her music is commonly referred to as jazz or jazz fusion, though she doesn’t think her music fits so easily in such labels.
Our music expert said that it was outstanding. Hiromi put a lot of emotion into her performance. The music was both unique and interesting. The three blended their rhythms well.
Their new album, Spark, was just released in early April. It is available directly from her website, or on iTunes.
You can read a professional review of the album on All About Jazz, and see some bits of the music as well as Hiromi talking about it below:

Deals This Week: Valentine's Day and More

Here are some of the best deals available this week in or near West Boca, both for Valentine’s Day and otherwise.
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Boca’s Best BBQ has a breakfast deal: “Any breakfast plate for $9.99.”
From Stella’s Pizzeria: “We’re running a dine-in wine special on Valentine’s Day. All glasses and bottles are half-off! (Reg $7/$28 now $3.50/$14). And we’re still running the buy 5 get 1 free large pizza special as well.”
Boca Black Box is doing a Girls Night Out deal on Thursday:
Girls Night Out at Boca Black Box
The password is “peekaboo” (when you get to checkout) for advance tickets online at www.bocablackbox.com for this show only. We tried it and it saves you $7.50 on the front orchestra seats.
Also they’re doing the Jackie Mason Musical on Saturday the 13th and Sunday the 14th – comedy can be romantic!


Here are some offers from Groupon:
Deals at Sakred Nightclub (Palmetto & Powerline)
https://www.groupon.com/deals/sakred
$79 deal on hair straightening, 441 near Palmetto
https://www.groupon.com/deals/exquisite-stylez-by-joanne
$35 for adult swim fitness classes, in Mission Bay south of Glades and west of 441
https://www.groupon.com/deals/kiso-swim-school-2
Golf lessons at Osprey Point (South County Regional Park)
https://www.groupon.com/deals/stan-moore-performance-golf
Two weeks of unlimited Pure Barre for $39, in Westwinds plaza (Home Depot)
https://www.groupon.com/deals/pure-barre-west-boca-1