Chaffey High School 2020 graduating senior, Zohary Gonzalez, has won the Rapattoni Drama Scholarship; the awardee will receive a $1,500-dollar scholarship for Outstanding Performance and Dedication in Chaffey High School Theatre. Due to the suspension of school for Covid-19 concerns, the award was presented online by the Principal of Chaffey High School, Christina Martinez, via a Power Point presentation.
According to Dave Masterson, Chair of the Visual and Performing Arts Department and recently retired, longtime Director of CHS Drama, “Zohary was selected for this recognition due to her scholarship, theatrical talent, commitment and dedication to the productions at Chaffey High School.” Zohary ranks in the top 25% of her senior class at Chaffey High School and has a 3.17 grade point average.
Dave continued by recalling, “Zohary’s first role for us at Chaffey Theatre Company was in the Fall of 2016, in the ensemble, as a townsperson in Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella. (12,200 patrons) She followed that show as an enchanted object and townsperson in the Spring of 2017 in Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, (14,400 patrons); as a junior in 2018, Zohary portrayed Emily Hobbs, a lead in the Christmas retelling of the film classic Elf Jr. The Musical (5021 patrons) staged in smaller Merton E. Hill Auditorium, while Gardiner W. Spring Auditorium was being renovated. Miss Gonzalez’ 2019 Spring role included a star turn as Marcy Park in the hilarious The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee. (4802 patrons). Lastly, in a shortened school year, in the Fall of 2019, but in a fabulously restored newly opened Gardiner W Spring Auditorium, she portrayed Mertina, a Mersister in Disney’s The Little Mermaid (15,035 patrons).”
Obtaining the rank of Thespian in Chaffey’s International Thespian Society Troupe 5535, Miss Gonzalez is a well-seasoned performer, having entertained over 51,000 patrons of Chaffey Theatre since first stepping onto her alma mater’s stage.
This is the 9th annual scholarship provided by Niki Brown Rapattoni, CHS class of 1958 and her husband, the late Andy Rapattoni, CHS class of 1957.
The two of them met in the Gardiner W Spring Auditorium in 1956 while attending their senior play. The high school sweethearts were married 57 years and are avid supporters of the CHS Alumni Association and Chaffey Theatre. (Andy was the 2010 CHS Alumni Tiger of the Year and spoke at that years’ Baccalaureate ceremony and Niki was slated to be this years’ 2020 Tiger.) When asked about the scholarship, co-benefactor Niki replied, “We are thrilled to once again provide this scholarship to Zohary Gonzalez, a deserving CHS graduating student who has excelled in Drama and plans to continue her pursuit in the Performing Arts with a vocal emphasis at The Young Americans College of Performing Arts.
Masterson declared, “The Rapattonis walked these grounds in the ‘50s, and began a lifetime of dedication and determination to support great causes and have continued ‘paying it forward.’ Zohary is a most deserving recipient of this annual scholarship and I know she will repay it forward just as her benefactors have.”
Zohary is the daughter of proud mother Pilar Gonzalez of Ontario.
Previous winners were: 2012-Gabriel Navarro; 2013-Vincent LaVigna; 2014-Jade Winter White; 2015-Jonathan Guevara; 2016-Adam Granados; 2017-Anthony Nelson; 2018-Ashley Flores; 2019-Jasmine Padilla; 2020-Zohary Gonzalez