Minnetonka Theatre’s one act ‘The Normal Heart’ wins top honors at state

The cast of “The Normal Heart” took top honors at the 2017 State One Act Play Festival. Back, left to right, Joseph LaMere, Michael Werner, Antonio DeLaVega, Steven Oasheim, Nathan Rowbotham, Carlos Garces, Adam Ward, Ryan O’Neill, Laird Busselberg and Mack Swanson. Front, left to right, Rob Dow, Nate Pierstorff, Dante Colmenares, Amanda Tahnk-Johnson and Mary Pocock. Not pictured, Christine Hwang and Lauren Revsbech. (Photo courtesy of Minnetonka Theatre)
The cast of “The Normal Heart” took top honors at the 2017 State One Act Play Festival. Back, left to right, Joseph LaMere, Michael Werner, Antonio DeLaVega, Steven Oasheim, Nathan Rowbotham, Carlos Garces, Adam Ward, Ryan O’Neill, Laird Busselberg and Mack Swanson. Front, left to right, Rob Dow, Nate Pierstorff, Dante Colmenares, Amanda Tahnk-Johnson and Mary Pocock. Not pictured, Christine Hwang and Lauren Revsbech. (Photo courtesy of Minnetonka Theatre)

The Minnetonka High School Drama Department received the state’s highest honor of a starred performance Feb. 9 with the department’s production of Larry Kramer’s “The Normal Heart” at the Minnesota State High School League’s 2017 One Act Festival.

A searing drama focusing on the rise of the HIV-AIDS crisis in New York City in the early 1980s, the play is about the public and private indifference to the AIDS plague and one man’s lonely fight to awaken the world to the crisis.

The cast and crew members felt so passionately about the production and its message they hosted a public performance at which they raised $1,086 in donations for Open Arms of Minnesota. The organization cooks and delivers free, nutritious meals to people living with life-threatening and chronic illness in the Twin Cities.