The mission of the Woodinville High School Theatre Company is to provide a safe place for all WHS students to participate in cultural learning and creative expression by honing their acting, musical and technical theatre skills. We utilize rigorous course work, live performances and hands-on skills learning to bring high-quality productions to the community at large.
The Woodinville High School Theatre Company will continue to bring exceptional quality live theatre to the greater Woodinville community, while educating our students in the appreciation of the performing arts, empowering them to believe in their ability to create art and offering a safe, supportive and inclusive place for them to pursue social-emotional learning.
We believe in the power of theatre
We believe our work should be inspiring, engaging, and full of compassion, joy, humor and wisdom.
We are dedicated to excellence
We strive for professionalism and outstanding artistry in all our efforts.
We believe in the educational power of the arts
We believe the arts are central to learning and that they challenge, enlighten and enchant.
We respect and embrace the uniqueness of all young people
We strive to foster creativity, imagination and independent thinking; we look to assist our students as they face life’s challenges and discover themselves and their place in this world.
We provide a supportive, nurturing, safe environment for all who pass through our doors
We treat everyone with equal respect, courtesy and care.
We are dedicated to financial strength
We believe continued financial strength is paramount to our continued success.
We value the passion and commitment of staff and volunteers
We strive to support and nurture our staff and volunteers throughout all aspects of our organization.
We value our community
We create in order to offer high-quality entertainment, an escape from the everyday life and a celebration of our community
Josh Butchart has been running the department since 2013. Mr B, as the students call him, came to the Woodinville High School Theatre Company after teaching for 7 years at Beverly Hills High School. He holds a Masters degree in Educational Leadership and Policy as well as his Educational Leadership / Principal credential from the University of Washington. He truly is a master of the theater, and has teamed up with students, production staff and parents to create exceptional productions for the Woodinville High School Theatre Company. He elevated the Company to new heights with recent productions such as Romeo and Juliet, The Crucible, The Visit, Les Mis, Mamma Mia!, for which he received the 5th Ave Award for Best Scenic Design in June of 2019, and most recently Bright Star.
Prior to Mr. B, the WHS Theatre Company was under the direction of two other influential instructors. Hjalmer Anderson was the company's first director in 1983. Hjalmer set a strong reputation for the department by producing outstanding shows throughout the school year. He directed over 200 productions at Woodinville High School. Some of his favorite were Death of a Salesman, Look Homeward Angel, The Crucible and Rumors. His most memorable musicals were: Kiss Me Kate, West Side Story, Guys and Dolls, Fiddler On The Roof and Oklahoma!. Hjalmer directed at Woodinville High School for twenty three years, until he stepped down in 2006. Hjalmer now represents the Woodinville Reperatory Theatre as Co. President and Artistic Director.
After Hjalmer left, Leslie Herlich took over the department as the new director. Her students liked to call her "H." She received a Bachelor of Arts in Theater Arts degree from SUNY Geneseo, where she also received certification in drama, speech, and English. For 3 years she taught at the International School of Stockholm, and for another 17 at Holy Names Academy in Seattle, Washington. After leaving Holy Names, H taught four years at Mt. Si High School before finally coming to Woodinville in 2006. From 2000-2002, Mrs. Herlich honorably served as the Washington State President of International Thespians. One of H's most cherished memories is taking her students with her to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in Europe. Before stepping down, Mrs. Herlich was awarded Outstanding Educator by the Fifth Avenue Theater. Her daughter handed her the award as her students cheered her on.