Category Archives: Arts

Mens’ Ensemble

At North Lakes Academy Upper School there has always been a Women’s Ensemble to help spread holiday cheer and add to the choir performances. This year, something new is being added to the mix: a Men’s Ensemble.

Leading the group is a double effort by Evan Klein(12) and Dan Johnson(12). Group members include Logan Haller(11), Dan Johnson(12), Evan Klein(12), Andrew Warren(10), and Josh LeClair(10).

When Haller was asked why make a men’s ensemble this late in the year, he responded with, “Well, why not, we’re guys that want to sing, so let us.”

The Men’s Ensemble practices on B days in the choir room at eleven o’clock. The song they’re working on right now is called “Pompeii” by Bastille, but they have many more songs they’d like to perform. They say that they won’t be completely prepared for February’s concert, but will be ready to perform for the Spring concert. They’re open to new members as long as you love to sing and are willing to give up some of your own time to be part of the ensemble. They’ve only just begun but the school thinks they’ll go a long way!

Christmas Musical… More Like Christmas Miracle for Fine Arts Students

On December 11th students from choir and band went to the Stepping Stone theatre to see a Christmas musical.  They had the additional privilege of having one of their fellow students in the cast. Makayla Bode (9) is playing the role of “Beth”, who is the featured daughter in the play, which happens to be one of the main roles.

Choir has not actually been on a field trip in the past couple of years. Many students were ecstatic that they finally got to go, and others wished they had stayed in choir for one more year.

“The one year I’m not in choir they go on a field trip,” said Maria Svenkeson (11).

Students who are taking band or choir this year seem to love their new teacher, Nicole Ottjes. The last concert she put together got Jackie Saunders, NLA’s executive director, to shed some tears.

“The performance was phenomenal, everyone did a great  job,” Saunders said.

As students began to arrive back to school after the musical it appeared that most had really enjoyed the performance. The Christmas musical was a nice break for choir and band students alike.

“I would go see it again,” said Naomi Scott (11).

The field trip was a hit, so hopefully North Lakes Academy will provide more field trips like this in the near future.


Written by Chelsie Rosa

NLA Visits Festival of Nations

Last Friday, over half of the student body went on a field trip to the Festival of Nations. The Festival of Nations was held at the Saint Paul RiverCentre and showcased a variety of food, exhibits, merchandise and performances from over 100 nations across the globe. Students had the opportunity to immerse themselves into a wide variety of sights, smells, tastes and cultures that they otherwise wouldn’t have known about. Students also had the option to purchase a passport to remember all of the countries and cultures they were able to learn about. Many students had a positive experience at the Festival of Nations.

Haley Hutchinson (11) said, “I ate food. That’s all I did. I ate pizza. It was good. Oh wait, I watched the dancers and they were really good.”

“Well I wandered around and I got lost but the food was good and it was really fun being able to be with friends.” Zoe Deal(10) commented about her experience.

Logan Haller (10) said, “The bazar was packed and so many kids had those loud bird whistles.”

Even though many students were annoyed with those loud bird whistles, students thoroughly enjoyed the Festival of Nations.

NLA’s 2013-14 Yearbooks are Now Completed

Both campuses of North Lakes Academy have been working very hard on creating a unique yearbook for students to enjoy. As of last Friday the yearbook was completed, including the final touches that Mrs. Luschsinger needed at add.

Editors Kaylee Krogstad, Rachel Lou, Abbey Millerbernd and Autumn Percy held the class to high expectations and put countless hours into editing the book before it was print ready. Along with the editors, the students also worked hard all year taking pictures and getting quotes from fellow students for the yearbook. They used their creativity to layout and design each individual page in very unique ways.

Throughout the year there was some struggle for the yearbook team, but in the end they pulled through. For spring sports at NLA, the weather had a huge factor on the late start for sports. The bad weather didn’t just affect athletes at NLA, but also the yearbook team. It was difficult for students who were creating the yearbook to get quality pictures with the late start to spring sports. However, the yearbook team didn’t let the weather affect the quality of the pages and refused to take no for an answer.

The yearbook team tried to get each student in the yearbook at least three times, which at times was a struggle. Naomi Scott, who was part of the yearbook team, explained that

“We [the yearbook team] even got the new students in the yearbook at least twice and their picture in their grade even if they came to North Lakes the week before deadline.”

The yearbook staff put countless hours of work into this years yearbook, and the students have had plenty of positive feedback on the final outcome. If you ordered a yearbook they should be here before school gets out June 5th.

The Upper School Gets a Library!

The North Lakes Upper School, after 4 years at it’s current location, finally has a library.

The creation of the library can be credited to Harrison Marchio, Isabel Thompson, Andrew Hunt, and Braedon Stem who thought of the idea in Civics class for an assignment. The assignment was to obtain support on a change they wanted to happen at North Lakes through a petition.

According to Marchio, the group wanted to make the library more known, because many students did not know about the small library located in one of NLAs english teacher’s, Chelsie Thielen’s, room.

The perfect opportunity for a space for the library came with the room switches to fill in NLA’s newly acquired areas. The library was placed in Mrs. Waterworth’s old room, which is located in the new upstairs commons. A small room for a class, but too big for a closet, the room was perfect for a library.

Mrs. Thielen has been collecting donations from parents for the new library. She’s received $300 worth of books for the library, and filled the bookshelves quickly. She has also been able to receive money and books from Donors Choose, a website where teachers can post what they need and receive donations from people who support the cause. In addition, Mrs. Thielen has also been collecting books over her years of teaching at NLA, and the majority of those collected books went into the library.

As for the supervision of the library, that is Mrs. Thielen’s task.

According to Mrs. Thielen, if the library door is open and there is a TA or teacher in the room, students can look around the library and check out books.

Acting Casting

Casting for this Year


Since February 4th, Laura Delvillar (known as Mrs. DvD) has been hosting auditions and callbacks for the casting for this years play. The cast is quite large, as it includes both upper and middle schoolers.  This includes Ashley Millerbernd(10), Kyle Spillman(10), Logan Haller(10), Skye Hampton(10), Spencer Hammerstein(11) Katie Christianson(12) and many others, including more middle schoolers.  Although Mrs. DvD doesn’t want to share too much of what the play contains. Although, some information can be shared. The play will about a comedic story of peasant who becomes a gladiator. There is an incredible amount of comedy within the play.

To give you a taste of the play’s comedy, here’s an example. Towards the beginning of the play, Haller and Hammerstein will have to cross dress as girls to get into the ‘palace’ to see the Princess (Christianson). It all ends up going downhill from there. They don’t have any remote social intelligence and fail to talk to any body without embarrassing everyone. However, Hammerstein is frequently complimented on his beautiful, feminine, skin. He also gives advice to the Princess as to how he got his beautiful skin. Basically, he tells her to shove a cream pie in her face and let it marinate for a while before taking it off.

Hammerstein is actually excited for this part. He even said, “I can’t wait to see what I get to wear!”

Both the play performance and practice dates are unspecified. Mrs. DvD is still casting all of the extras and some of the major roles. More information will be available as the casting progresses.

First Friday Freshmen Forum

Over the last Friday and Tuesday the freshmen were invited to the Freshmen Forum with Mrs. Saunders. This event is where Mrs. Saunders picks out classical movies for the freshmen to watch and discuss over. Mrs. Saunders said

“I love it when students start to see all the layers in a classic film for themselves.”

Eddie and the Cruisers was the first movie on the list. During which there was also popcorn available for 75 cents, all thanks to the seniors who were in charge of the booth.

There has been one problem that has occurred throughout the past years, scheduling. Last year freshmen forum was on a Friday, in that case you would’ve taken two periods out of your day to watch the movie. This year is different, the staff have decided that they will be taking one hour on Fridays and one hour on Tuesdays to watch the movies. Hoping not to jeopardize important class hours.

Mrs. Saunders started this event because since the ninth graders were coming from the middle school, she felt that they needed to know who she was. Since Saunders was becoming to be someone very important in their high school experience, she wanted to get to know them more. Mrs. Saunders also heard about how kids were watching junk T.V. and there was research about “visual literacy”. These two ideals formed together created the freshmen forum, which Doc Ford loves to attend. The first forum this year has been a great success with responses like “It was great” and “really fun”.

Below is a list of movie the freshmen will be watching throughout the year:


On The Waterfront

Rebel Without a Cause

The Buddy Holly Story

In The Heat Of The Night

Eddie and The Cruisers

Scorpion King (clips)

Viva Las Vegas (clips)

The Graduate (probably clips)

To Sir With Love

Rocky (Rocky 1 and clips)

Miracle On Ice (clips)

The Croods: Family Fun for Everyone

Stars: Nicolas Cage, Emma Stone, Ryan Reynolds

Genre: Family, Comedy

Rating: 9/10

The Croods is a heartwarming tale about Eep (Stone), the daughter of the last caveman family. She is a very curious girl but her father won’t let her go out and explore. He says to fear everything. Then, the Earth’s one, big supercontinent begins to separate, her cave becomes demolished and her family has to find a new home. Along the way, she befriends a man named Guy and his pet sloth named Belt. He is the guide on their journey to find a new home.

Should you go see it: Yes, it’s a wonderful family movie with lots of laughs.

Movie Review: “Trouble with the Curve” no trouble at all

Actors: Amy Adams, Clint Eastwood, Justin Timberlake

Genre: Comedy, Drama

Rating: 8.5/10

Trouble With the Curve is about a baseball scout for the Atlanta Braves named Gus (Eastwood). He is one of the best of all time. But, unfortunately, age is catching up with Gus. His daughter Mickey (Adams), is a very successful attorney in Atlanta. Gus and Mickey don’t have a good relationship and the movie shows the story of their relationship today. Along the way, we see how the relationship develops.

Should You See It: Yes

School Plays Tomorrow Night!

Tomorrow, March 22nd, NLA will preform its two school plays. The middle school is presenting “Little Red and the Riding Hoods” and the high school is performing “Scary Drama I”.

This night of comedy starts at 7pm at Crossroads Covenant Church. Tickets cost $6 for students and $8 for adults. Between the two one-act plays will be an intermission with cookies and refreshments.

“Little Red and the Riding Hoods” is the classic fairy tale with a modern twist to it, while in “Scary Drama I” a couple of teenagers and a few juvenile delinquents deal with a potential serial killer at a lock-in.

Cast member Mackenzie Hale (11) is looking forward to the performance. “We’ve been working hard the last couple of days to really pull it together. It’s been fun.”