Theater man lives dream

Will Conerly

Contributing Writer

Schnell works on lights Photo by Will Conerly
Senior Jonah Schnell has worked on over 20 shows as a techinician. Photo by Will Conerly

For three years students became accustomed to listening to senior Jonah Schnell enthusiastically embellish, “It’s about that time of the week again” on Tuesday mornings while he conducted the announcements during second period.

However, his duties will be over Tuesday, May 10, the last day before senior checkout.

Schnell was nominated for the Eagle Award by Drama Department instructor Todd Schaefer. Which is presented to one senior who best emulates the criteria of scholarship, leadership, citizenship, character and community. Schnell said he was nominated, “because of all my hard work I’ve done for the school and the hours I’ve put in after school.”

Students may not recognize that Schnell, along with a technical team, makes lots of technical productions in the auditorium, like All-Write week run smoothly.

Schnell has worked over 20 shows, and he has worked with theater companies like New Line Theater, St. Louis Repertory Theater, Webster Conservatory, Kansas City Music Hall, Fontbonne University and Touhill Theater.

“I am very passionate about lighting. I love expressing my art through lights. Eventually, I plan to get my masters in lighting design. My ultimate goal is to be a professional lighting designer,” Schnell said.

Freshman year, Schnell jumped right into the theater scene. He started working with lights for Webster Groves High School’s production of “Frankenstein” in 2013. Then his interest grew when designed lights for the Mr. Webster Pageant.

Schnell works endless hours on theater productions and plans to study lighting design at Webster University. Schnell earned the Missouri State Thespian Conference Technical Scholarship, which is awarded to one student in Missouri for his/her excellence in the backstage side of productions.

“This past semester I designed ‘Hamlet.’ This show was selected to be performed at the Kansas City Music Hall. Designing for the Music Hall was one the best experiences of my life.”

Schnell said this because he was able to work in a Broadway style theater with professional technicians.

Upon graduating from Webster University, Schnell said, “I hope to live in New York and maybe do something with Broadway or theater, but I really just want to live in New York and do theater.”



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