Junior Talent Show 2022: A review in pictures


Max Gutierrez

Every student in the junior class participated in the thrilling show on March 4.

By Josie Hohenrieder

On Friday, March 4, the Class of 2023 performed their Junior Talent Show (JTS). As one of Branson’s favorite traditions, the return of this show was much anticipated and very well received. The show included many jokes, several dance routines, a game of tug-of-war and much more. The night was themed “Saturday Night Live” and definitely lived up to this name.

Max Gutierrez

Fergie National Anthem

The show kicked off with Nathan Kwei and Margaux Barber, a long-time member of a cappella at Branson, singing Fergie’s rendition of the National Anthem. Patricia DePalma held the U.S. flag on the side of the stage. The duo serenaded the audience with their “pitch-perfect” voices, starting the show off with a fun and patriotic act.

Max Gutierrez

Teacher Skit

Executed by teachers Sergio Ovalles, Sabrina Wilson, Gisella Petrone, Whitney Livermore, Giles Scott and Peter Zdrojewski, the teacher skit was definitely one of the highlights of the night. Based on a typical classroom scene at Branson, this skit made jokes about the different types of students and an overambitious and passionate teacher. Undoubtedly one of the funniest parts of the night, these teachers entertained the audience with their unique take on life at Branson. 

Max Gutierrez

ADM Dance

The first dance routine, performed by Eva Lacy, Margaux Barber, Isabelle Ashley, Skyler Polhemus, Paige Witte, Anna Palfy and Elizabeth Houser, was a recreation of the Athletic Dance for Men (ADM) performances. It included solos from each of the girls, as well as synchronized moves that accurately represented the choreography that ADM typically uses. The seven girls hyped up the crowd, getting the whole audience involved. 

Max Gutierrez


The next skit of the night was a tug-of-war competition between Max Goldman and Charlie Farrell versus Alek Blumling and Nick Pfendler. After each of them tasted the world’s spiciest hot sauce, they fired up and competed for the tug-of-war title. The tough competition rallied back and forth, though their performances ended with no definite winner.

Max Gutierrez

Violin Performance

Adriana Nordlicht stunned the crowd with her serene and impressive violin solo. Marking the middle of the show, Nordlicht showed the audience how much talent the junior class really has.

Max Gutierrez

Squad Dance

The second dance of the night, performed by Kaitlin Gasner, Quinn Edington, Kate Hatfield, Jackson Hoeveler, Will Ashley, Zach Olrich, Will Schuler, Luke Shane, Ben Boas, George Gale and Peter Stovell, further showed off the grade’s natural talent with music. Through more solos and several routines, the crowd witnessed eleven more of the junior class’ finest dancers.

Max Gutierrez

Mr. Worldwide

The night had yet another dance performance, this time put on by Lily Maloney and Paloma Rincon, who both have previous experience in Branson’s dance programs. Dancing to a medley of Pitbull songs, Maloney and Rincon impressed the crowd not only with their identical and realistic costumes but also with their hip-hop skills. 

Max Gutierrez

Ball Dance

The male duo of Nathan Kwei and Finn Dossey put on a unique show for JTS by dancing with a beachball. With only a few slip-ups, the duo managed to put on a full routine without the ball hitting the ground. Their performance was definitely an unexpected yet impressive talent in this year’s show.

Max Gutierrez


Shun Graves walked the audience through a slideshow he made about his adventures with various political programs, one being for Republicans over the age of 50. He joked with the audience as he showed a pin they sent him in the mail, plus several letters that recently entered his mailbox. His jokes entertained the crowd, proving his talent in comedy during this show and adding to the overall SNL theme.

Max Gutierrez

Dance Trio

The last dance of the night was performed by Fiona Tran, Eva Baldauf and Alexandra Zak and replicated a frat scene, as well as an advanced choreographic routine. The three juniors showed off their dancing skills and facial expressions, all in this one performance.

Max Gutierrez

Self Portrait Demo

Weston Starbird led the crowd through his artistic thought process as he drew a self-portrait. Definitely one of the funnier routines, Starbird varied his techniques in both shows, choosing to venture beyond the shoulder-up portrait in the 4 p.m. show by drawing a full-body portrait in the 7 p.m. performance later that night. 

Max Gutierrez


The last performance of the night was a highlight, as juniors showed off their musical talent with their band, Noise Pollution. It consisted of Alexander Prongos on guitar, Jeffrey Huang on guitar and vocals, Parker Wilkinson on bass and vocals, Robbie Duncan on guitar and vocals, Cole Nadershahi on drums, Jack Collet on tambourine and Shail Belani on keys and vocals. This group of seven really impressed the crowd, as they got all the juniors on stage, with the crowd cheering in their seats and listening to them rock out for the finale of JTS.

Max Gutierrez


The night would not be complete without the emcees. Throughout the performance, pairs of juniors came on stage to introduce each act. It started out with Margaux Barber and Shun Graves in matching sweater vests, followed by Mia Shay and Kate Singer taking inspiration from Pete Davidson and Timotheé Chalamet, Alberto Diaz and Thayer Jacobs in full drag attire and finally Simran Baveja and Madison Esrey wearing their take on “business cow-sual.” Each pair of emcees amused the crowd, making them laugh and keeping them on their toes throughout the night. 

Max Gutierrez

The 2022 JTS was definitely a success. All of the hard work put in by the students and faculty who participated in and helped put on the event really paid off. 


“Last year I was very sad to miss JTS because I had heard so much from upperclassmen, but I am glad it’s back, hopefully for good this time,” Laila Elkhoury, a sophomore, said. “All of the acts were super creative, funny and entertaining, making it an event that I felt brought the community even closer.”