A Broadway star who graduated from Saugus High School returned to her hometown of Santa Clarita on Friday and Saturday to help students from Valencia and Saugus polish up their performance skills as part of a series of workshops on drama and music.Don’t miss a thing. Get breaking Santa Clarita news alerts delivered right to your inbox.
Mandy Gonzalez led the workshops, where the students were given over 12 dance numbers to memorize over Jan. 29 and 30.
“We do an intensive program here for the students,” said Gonzalez, “because it’s something I would have wanted (as a student).”
Students from the theater and choir programs at Valencia and Saugus High Schools were instructed by professionals from Young Performers of America, while some were taken into a separate auditorium for personal coaching in a master class put on by Gonzalez.
“There’s a lot of students here with a lot of talent,” she said.
The workshops culminated in a pair of performances on Saturday night aimed at raising funds for the drama and music programs in the William S. Hart Union High School District.
“It’s a great thing for the community,” said Gonzalez. “Over the course of two days, they’ve grown so much. it’s been insane.”
Gonzalez orchestrated the workshops with the help of longtime friend Christine Tavares-Mocha, the choir director at Valencia High School.
“The kids are extremely talented,” said Tavares-Mocha. “It’s amazing to watch them grow over such a short time.”
Gonzalez hopes to continue the classes next year, and hopefully expand.
“We kind of kept it to the two schools,” she said, “but we’d like to come back next year and have all the schools participate.”Do you have a news tip? Call us at (661) 298-1220, or drop us a line at email@example.com.