If you are what you should be, you will set the whole world ablaze!

— St. Catherine of Sienna

Actor Profile – Alice Beittel

Role: Prudy Pingleton

BOD Background: O’Dowd Productions: The Miracle Worker, Sugar, The Laramie Project, Ohlone Theater Festival: Little Shop of Horrors, Monologue from A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and scene from The Women

Describe Your Favorite Memory from BOD Drama:
I loved playing Shadow the DJ, in The Laramie Project. My favorite thing about theater is the opportunity to become personas entirely opposite from myself. With a seemingly endless creative liberty, it was exciting to work on Shadow’s physicality, voice, and speech patterns.

Describe Your Role in Hairspray:
Taking after her namesake, Prudy Pingleton is quite a prude. Her excessive properness appears in her strict and disciplined parenting methods and rigorous denouncement of integration and racial equality. Prudy dedicates herself towards bettering her daughter, Penny, even if that means calling upon extreme measures. Ultimately, Prudy realizes the importance of allowing Penny to chase after her beliefs and embraces the changes happening in the sixties.

What Part Of Our Charism Does Hairspray Embrace?
While Hairspray is an outrageously hilarious musical, it also illustrates the power of fighting for one’s dreams and hopes for the world despite daunting adversity. The characters and the finale song “You Can’t Stop the Beat” embody O’ Dowd’s charism of “Strength of Character” as they maintain the tenacity to confidently work towards a more equal and just world on and off television.

Why Should Students Take Drama Class?
Bishop O’ Dowd’s drama department teaches essential life skills that serve anyone and everyone. Taking drama class and participating in shows has taught me the imperativeness of hard work, commitment, passion, and determination, skills that serve me in academics and athletics. The lessons learned and values instilled will stay with me for the rest of my life.

Actor Profile – Shavonne Rogers

Role: Motormouth Maybelle

BOD background

“I took Performing Arts my freshman year. I performed in RENT at Ohlone Competition and Little Shop of Horrors at BOD. the school. ”

Describe Your Favorite Memory from BOD Drama.

“It would have to be the 2014 Ohlone College Theatre Festival, when we performed RENT. The entire process was extremely chaotic, but, in all honesty, that’s what made it fun. Running back and forth from the drama room to the theater, grabbing chairs, people falling on the way back, riding on a golf cart to carry chairs down small hills at Ohlone, and getting yelled at because we were playing tag on our breaks. The laughter and hard work we all went through together will never be forgotten.”

Describe Your Role in Hairspray.

“Motormouth Maybelle is a soulful, confident, and wise woman. She owns her own record shop and regularly hosts parties for the black community, but always welcomes other nationalities to join in. She wants everyone around her to feel as comfortable as possible. Motormouth strongly believes in integration and takes positive steps towards changing society.

What Part Of Our Charism Does Hairspray Embrace?

“Social Justice. Throughout the show my character fights for equal opportunity on the Corny Collin’s Show. Her family only gets one day a month because of their skin color. She constantly fights for equality.”

Why Should Students Take Drama Class?

“In drama class, students are able to gain a wide range of skills you cannot gain elsewhere in school. We encourage creative thinking. You are able to be yourself and allowed to have more than one answer to a question. Drama teaches amazing communication skills through fun exercises and games. Theatre develops confidence through acting, singing, and writing. People need to communicate clearly in society. The biggest reason why students should take drama class is because of the commitment it teaches you. You have to commit to understanding your character so you can portray that character correctly. These skills are useful in all careers.”

Hairspray Has Been Cast!!

After countless hours of singing, dancing and acting over four days, The BOD Drama Department is proud to announce the cast for this spring’s highly anticipated musical comedy, Hairspray.

Nora Hurley is cast in the leading role of Tracey Turnblad. Henry Loran will play Edna Turnblad, Drew Downs will play teenage heartthrob Link Larkin, and Shavonne Rogers will perform the role of Motormouth Maybelle.

Taking place in 1962 Baltimore, Hairspray is a musical with music by Marc Shaiman, lyrics by Scott Wittman and Shaiman and a book by Mark O’Donnell and Thomas Meehan, based on the 1988 John Waters film Hairspray. The songs include 1960s-style dance music and “downtown” rhythm and blues. Hairspray is a social commentary on the injustices of parts of American society in the 1960s. The musical’s original Broadway production opened on August 15, 2002 and won eight Tony Awards. In 2007, a film version of the musical was released starring John Travolta.

Hairspray opens Friday, April 24 and will perform three weekends, concluding Sunday, May 10. For a ticket order form, please go to the drama page on the school website.

Complete Cast List

Maddy Allison, Jourdan Amen, Maddalena Baldo, Alice Beittel, Gaia Bostick, Rod Brown, Deirdre Carson, Morgan Cluff, Josie Boyd Conn, Christine Curulla, Taylor Daniel, Kalimah Davis, Corinne Deturk, Drew Downs, Sasha Durst, Meilani Edwards, Sean Ekstrand, Nathan Engel-Holmes, Banna Esaias, Tristan Ferioli, Zoe Foster, Cece Garofoli, George Goodhead, Isabel Hallock, Anya Hardiman,Elena Hausser, Juliana He, Nora Hurley, Fanya Imholz, Hunter Johnson, Christian Jorgensen, Cassidy Kepp, Henry Loran, Amasha Lyons-Clark, Mia Lyon, Cameron McLaurin, Maile Morrish, Maria Morrish, Seth Moure, Charley Nordin, Julian Nesbitt, Marcos Orozco, Cameron Park, Maddie Parsnick, Maya Payne-Schomaker, Ruby Perez, Arianna Pride, Sophia Rodriguez, Nathalie Rivera, Shavonne Rogers, Emma Shilliday, Shawn Schulz, Aliyah Turner, Beatrice Velline, Jasmine White, and Hannah White.

Hairspray The Broadway Musical – Auditions

Welcome to the sixties everyone! BOD Drama has announced the dates for Hairspray auditions. They’re happening the first week back from Winter Break, January 5, 6 & 7 in the theater. Auditions begin at 3:30 PM, except for Tuesday at 2:00 PM. If you sing, or dance or act, there are many fun parts available so come on out and share you talent for what promises to be a spectacular event. If you have questions, please contact Ms. Oliver, Mr. McNeil or Mr. Kohles.

Hairspray Auditions – Jan 5,6,7

Watch more videos on our YouTube channel »

Actor Profile-Henry Loran

Shows at BOD

-Little Shop of Horrors

What is your favorite memory of BOD drama?

“You may remember that ginormous puppet plant musical last fall. I struggled with memorizing my lines. In fact, I didn’t know them until a week before the show. I was sweatin’ bullets, for sure. But when I got in front of our first audience, everything clicked. The scene ran so smoothly. There was a lot of excitement and hugging backstage after that. My prayers were answered.”

Describe your role in One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest

“Randall. P. McMurphy is an awesome character. He’s hilarious and a rebel. He’s charismatic. He’s part conman, part comedian, with a little sly dog added to the mix. For my first lead, I couldn’t be happier playing this role.”

How does the play coincide with the BOD charism?

“The play takes place in a mental institution. The inmates and staff form a unique community of diversity. McMurphy tries very hard to bring social justice to that community.”

Why should students take drama at BOD?

“Without drama classes, I wouldn’t have a place for my outgoing personality. It’s the perfect place to clown around, create characters, play games, and still learn valuable skills for the future. Our drama department takes theater very seriously.”

Actor Profile for Emma Braden

Shows at BOD-Sugar, Little Shop of Horrors, The Laramie Project.

What is your favorite memory of BOD drama?
“I enjoyed dressing in 1920′s fashion in Sugar. The movement of the dresses made them a lot of fun to dance in. Marcelling my hair was laborious but it was fun.”

Describe your role in One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest.
“Nurse Ratched is the cold-hearted, autocratic head nurse with a warm facade that enables her to control the entire ward with an iron hand.”

How does this play fit in with BOD’s charism?
“The play portrays despicable behavior that results from not recognizing and respecting human dignity, thereby violating joy and suppressing social justice with characters that lack strength of character.”

Why should student take drama at BOD?
“The drama department creates a tight-knit family where expressing passion and individuality is not merely acceptable but encouraged. Being a member of the department gives me a sense of belonging to something greater, bringing me fulfillment from an openness of expression.”

Actor Profile-Christian Jorgensen

Shows at BOD-Sugar, Almost Maine, How to Succeed In Business Without Really Trying, Little Shop of Horrors, The Laramie Project.

What is your favorite memory of BOD drama?

“When I came into auditions the older actors embraced me because I was a freshman boy and there hadn’t been one who auditioned for the past two shows. One of the seniors, Matt Tiemstra, was so thrilled he literally picked me up and carried me on his back all over the theater in front of the all the other students, announcing my arrival into the department. I was terrified by his enthusiasm but soon came to understand and love that kind of excitement expressed so easily in drama. ”

Describe your role in Cuckoo’s Nest

“I play Dale Harding, the intellectual. Harding is snarky, sarcastic and, at times, effete. He’s a fun character to play. I identify with him at every rehearsal. I’m practically playing myself in the show!”

How does Cuckoo’s Nest fit with the BOD charism?

“The charism says Finding God in All Things calls us to Strength of Character. This is especially true for this play. Many of the characters, mine included, are pushed aside by society. Throughout the story, the characters learn to find their own specific strengths.”

Why should students take drama?

“I think drama gives you valuable skills. Not just on stage and in the classroom, but skills applicable in the work place. Friends you meet in drama are some of the most creative and outgoing people you will ever meet at this school.”

Actor Profile-Maddie Parsnick

Shows at BOD-Almost Maine, Little Shop of Horrors, The Laramie Project

What is your favorite memory of BOD drama?

“In The Laramie Project, there was one night when my acting partner, Alice Beittel, and I did our scene, the one which we play two 70 year old women. I felt like I truly had become my character 100%. When we came off stage, she told me the same feeling happened to her. We were so happy and proud of our work.”

Describe your role in One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest

“I play Candy, one of Randall McMurphy’s close friends. She’s a real party girl, always out for a good time. She’s a fun person, very comfortable in her own skin and very different from the other characters. So far I’m enjoying playing her.”

How Does Cuckoo’s Nest’s theme fit with the BOD charism?

“Bishop O’Dowd believes in finding God in community in diversity. The play is inhabited by many diverse personalities in a unique community of their own. Throughout the play the people come to acknowledge their strength of character and the strength of others.”

Why should students take drama at BOD?

“Drama and Performing Arts teaches you life skills, for instance, public speaking, self confidence, perseverance, and positive teamwork. Taking class is a great way to meet friends who become a family because you share so many memorable experiences together.”

BOD Drama Announces Spring Musical!

The drama department has announced that Hairspray will be the 2015 spring musical. This will be a BOD premiere.

Hairspray is a musical based on the 1988 John Waters film of the same title. The songs include 1960s-style dance music and “downtown” rhythm and blues. In 1962 Baltimore, Maryland, teenager Tracy Turnblad’s dream is to dance on The Corny Collins Show, a local TV dance program. When Tracy wins a role on the show, she becomes a celebrity overnight, and meets a colorful array of characters. She then launches a campaign to integrate the show. Hairspray is a social commentary on the injustices of parts of American society in the 1960s.

The popular musical written in 2003 won eight Tony Awards out of thirteen nominations and ran for over 2,500 performances. A successful film version starred John Travolta, Zac Efron and Queen Latifah.

Performance dates will be April 24, 25, May 1, 2, 8, and 9 at 8:00 PM, and May 3 and 10 at 2:00 PM in the theater.

How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying

How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying by Abe Burrows, Jack Weinstock and Willie Gilbert is yet another look at society, in this case big business of the 1960's. A satirical musical comedy with music and lyrics by Frank Loesser, this popular, often revived show follows the comic pursuits of one eager man's unconventional rise to the top of the business world. The show made stars out of Robert Morse in the original, Matthew Broderick in 1994, and currently stars Daniel Radcliffe in the latest Broadway revival.

Performances begin April 27 and conclude May 13.



Adam Gildea

Shows performed at BOD

Sweeney Todd, Working, Fiddler On The Roof

What are your favorite roles?

"Some of my best experiences in drama came during the spring semester of my junior year. I was cast in two large roles; Motel the Tailor in Fiddler on the Roof, and Romeo in Romeo and Juliet for The Ohlone Competition. I was thrilled but nervous performing a monologue from the famous balcony scene. Both of these roles forced me to step outside my comfort zone. They were challenging but the experiences were very rewarding.”

What elements of the BOD charism do you find in Six Degrees of Separation?

"One of our charisms is social justice. This issue is prevalent throughout the play. For instance, I play a Mormon who, with his wife, come to New York City to pursue acting careers. We meet the character of Paul, a supposedly homeless man. In an attempt to help him, we offer him friendship as well as money and a place to stay.”

How would you describe life as a Bishop O’Dowd Drama kid?

"The drama department is a very tight-knit group. Doing shows and taking classes allowed me to connect with many different people from all grade levels. These are students I might not have met otherwise. Looking back at the past three years, I would have to say a lot of my closest friends I met in our drama department.”

Hayley Jackson

Productions at BOD

Godspell, Once Upon a Mattress, Sweeney Todd-The Demon Barber of Fleet Street

What are some of your favorite roles?

“Annie Sullivan is the most significant and challenging role I’ve dealt with. It’s demanding a lot from inside me. I’m finding the deeper we get into rehearsals, the more I’m beginning to feel like Annie. Being in the chorus of Sweeney Todd was also a highlight of my Bishop O’Dowd theater career. I’ve always been comfortable playing exaggerated and physical characters in the classroom, so it was a dream come true to twist and contort my body and face as a menacing ensemble member of 19th century London.”

How does the BOD charism relate to The Miracle Worker?

“The Miracle Worker displays a tremendous reflection of inner-strength: the strength to overcome seemingly unbeatable handicaps, the strength to love someone regardless of those handicaps, the strength to work to change the life of another. The play also embodies social justice because in order for the miracle of teaching a difficult student can happen, there has to be a give and take that occurs between the teacher and that student. My character cannot simply just do her job and teach Helen Keller words. She must first truly understand Helen. It’s the concept of working with rather than working for.”

Describe life as a BOD Drama Kid.

“Spending fourteen hour weekends rehearsing The Ohlone Competition or the daily three hour period of rehearsals in the theater does something unique to a drama kid. It unites us all in a way other activities may not. It’s a very emotional experience making yourself vulnerable to criticism. We all go through the experience together. I feel the work we put in is often underestimated and misunderstood by other students. I will always have a common connection with the theater students, several of whom are my best friends and I’m sure will remain lifelong friends.”

Unity Act - Night Rally - Cinderella - A 2 Part Playlist

This was a phenomenal finale to Night Rally festivities. It's a fractured fairytale about a modern day Cinderella, and really reflects the talent of the O'Dowd drama department.

Ticket Order Form


Order your tickets for "Hairspray Ticket Order Form". Download and fill out the order form.

Drama Teacher Profile


Profile of Drama Teacher Dennis Kolhes

SF Chronicle - Read article...

Finding God in All Things

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