Titan alums are dream chasersFriday, February 10, 2012 By Clarissa Weers
After throwing their caps in the air and taking off their graduation gowns, a few PL South alumni have taken on the spotlight. “Hard work really does pay off,” said 2011 graduate Ronny Frias, who was recently featured in a dance video with Kirstie Alley. After moving to Kansas to attend Butler Community College and major in performance, Frias was referred by a friend to Alley’s “100 Days of Dance” campaign. Alley’s campaign is meant to encourage people to dance for 100 consecutive days in hopes of losing weight. Many at PL South might remember Frias for his starring role in the 2010 all-school musical “Beauty and the Best.” He also performed in Titanium and Step Squad during his time as a student here. He called his latest turn in the spotlight “a beautiful opportunity.” Only eight months after leaving the doors of PL South, Frias is on his way to achieving his dreams. Frias’ appearances with Alley have brought him minor celebrity status on YouTube. One video even appeared on the Ellen DeGeneres show. Frias was seen “busting a move” as a featured dancer on the “100 Days” web broadcast, but he encourages everyone to try dancing, saying “anyone can dance and do their own thing.” The opportunity to dance with Alley brought Frias not only a taste of fame but also some experience and knowledge for the future. Frias saw what it was like to choreograph in a studio, and that inspired him to want to open his own studio eventually. “I want to grow up and open up a studio and teach dance to all ages, including the handicapped,” he said. Frias added that he wants to do more than just dance. He wants to “show the world that you can achieve your aspirations.” Grainne McDermott, who went by Megan while at PL South, graduated in 2010 and also is out there pursuing her dreams. “I really love acting” McDermott said in a phone interview from her new home in Southern California. It was that passion that led McDermott to head to Hollywood to try her hand at professional acting. She was recently cast in an upcoming horror movie, “Bloody Homecoming.” “My acting coach found the breakdown of the script,” McDermott explained. “I saw that I fit the description of the character, Annie, and went to audition for it.” McDermott and her acting coach prepared for the audition by memorizing the lines and deciding how to interpret the character. “I went into the audition and gave it my best,” she said. Production on the movie ended in August, and the premiere date is expected to be announced in the new few months. McDermott hopes to continue acting in the future. “I want to make movies for people to enjoy,” she said. ”It would make me incredibly happy to keep doing that as long as I can.” McDermott encourages others to try careers that interest them. “[There’s] lots on the horizon -- you never know,” she said, adding that people should not get discouraged. “Enjoy the process, because it is a process!” Both PL South graduates are enjoying their limelight and the dreams they’ve begun to achieve, but they still support others trying to make it big. “Never give up, keep practicing!” Frias advised. McDermott suggested that PL South fame-hopefuls work hard and hope for the best. “Put your whole heart into your passion, and just go for it,” she said.