VHS students “Walking on Sunshine”


Ropersmith has most of her songs up on SoundCloud, including her song Evergreen. Photo By: Kent Smith

Summer Yovanno

Ropersmith has most of her songs up on SoundCloud, including her song Evergreen. Photo By: Kent Smith
Ventura High School hosted the 17th annual Festival of Talent on Saturday, March 24. Brian McDonald, Rubicon Theatre Company Associate Artistic Director, directed the show for his tenth and final year.

Ticket sales of the event helped raise money for grants to teachers. According to McDonald, “The Festival of Talent has raised more than $500,000 for the VEPGrant program, which awards grants to [Ventura Unified School District] schools.”

McDonald added, “These small grants have enabled over 500 teachers to provide extra enrichment activities, to acquire new technology, or to undertake innovative projects with their students.”

This year’s Festival of Talent consisted of performances from choirs, bands, vocalists, cheerleaders, dancers, and a comedian.

Senior Wesley Gerard and his band, Ignorant West, performed an original song called “Sourin Jamz.” Gerard shared, “[The Festival of Talent] was a little rushed because [nobody] knew if it was really going to happen due to the rain, like if school got canceled on Friday there would have been no Festival of Talent.”

Prior to the Festival of Talent, VHS scheduled a minimum school day on Monday, March 19 for Tuesday, March 20 and no school on Wednesday, March 21 and Thursday, March 22 because the school had been on volunteer evacuation due to the predicted rain’s impact on the burned areas above the school.

Junior Serena Ropersmith sang an original song called “Evergreen” for her third year participating in the show. Ropersmith said, “There were a lot of good acts this year… I really liked some of the three piece dancers.”

Junior Leti Gutierrez performed with the VHS hip-hop team. Gutierrez stated, “I really liked that there were a lot of different acts, including so many varieties of singing and dancing.” Gutierrez had performed in the Festival of Talent when she was in third and fifth grade in a choir directed by Heidi House.