Tennessee Williams Tribute Kicks Off With Stella Shouting Contest


Gina Nguyen

Junior Elijah Dosda screams "Stella" in fury as he throws the rug.

Gina Nguyen
Junior William Sutton dramatizes his performance by dumping his jug of water on himself and tearing through his shirt.

“Stella..?!” senior Jaylen Hopson says after he finished screaming at the balcony where Stella stands overlooking the crowd.

MSMS students crowd the road in front of Holly Hocks as they wait for the Stella Shouting Contest to begin.  They happily catch beads being thrown from the balcony.  Just before the show begins, students crowd in front of the store to watch as their classmates walk up to the infamous mat to compete.

The Stella Shouting Contest comes from the play “A Streetcar Named Desire” by Tennessee Williams, the famous playwright from Columbus. This contest, which is in its 11th year, is just one event in a full weekend of events to honor and celebrate the hometown playwright.

This year’s contest, consisting of 24 participants, was made up of 20 MSMS students and four Columbus residents.  Each student went up to the rug with and screamed “Stellllaaa!” three times, the loudest and most energetic that they could.

“I’m excited to see the new faces and seeing the new students participating in what we and their grand-seniors did when they were here,” senior Luong Huynh said before the contest began.

All throughout the contest, MSMS students gathered together and were the most energetic there, even cheering on one of the child contestants who was nervous.

Gina Nguyen
Junior Amyria Kimble comforts and encourages a young girl to shout “Stella” as she is too shy to at first.

After the children competed, it was time for the five semifinalists to be announced and to recreate their second Stella scene. Geneva Hamilton, Will Sutton, Cameron Thomas, Noah Taylor and Alicia Argrett were named the five semifinalists. Each semifinalist was given a bag that included many different prizes to commemorate their time competing, and the overall winner was given the Stella trophy, which they can keep for a year, and other prizes that they can use around the city of Columbus.

“I was really skeptical of whether I wanted to do it or not because it was like over 100 people watching, but I decided to do it anyway. When it was my turn, I screamed so loud my back started hurting, and to my surprise, I actually placed top five. It was a wonderful experience, and I would most definitely do it again,” semifinalist Cameron Thomas said.

The final drumroll was played, and Noah Taylor, a Columbus resident, was named the overall winner.

“The Stella contest was the highlight of my day. I really hate I didn’t go last year because it was so fun this year,” said senior Jessikah Morton.