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The Student News Site of Millard West High School

The Catalyst

The Student News Site of Millard West High School

The Catalyst

The Student News Site of Millard West High School

The Catalyst

Anna Blumenthal

Anna Blumenthal, Entertainment Editor

Anna is a senior at Millard West and is returning for her second year on the Catalyst staff. She loves having an outlet to express her views on the world and share the stories of students at Millard West. Besides journalism, Anna is also the president of Millard West Theater, where she participates in productions and helps to plan out the season.

All content by Anna Blumenthal
The philharmonic and symphonic orchestras gather together to perform one last time for the season.“The second we started playing, I immediately started thinking about everyone who I’ve played next to and every memory that made [orchestra] that much better,” senior Josephine Geiger-Lee said. “It was bittersweet because the orchestra has changed so much, but also, I’m so proud of everything everyone has accomplished.”

Plucking at the heartstrings

Anna Blumenthal, Entertainment Editor
May 14, 2021
Senior Milina Mike styles hair for a prom event. “I grew up with cosmetology surrounding me constantly,” Mike said. “My parents have prepared me my whole life. I’ve learned a lot of technique and I have shadowed multiple students at the school to get an idea of what life will be like while I’m there.”

A cut above the rest

Anna Blumenthal, Entertainment Editor
May 3, 2021
Due to the rise in popular thrift shopping apps which allow for easy reselling, concerns about the gentrification of thrift stores have been on the rise.

The gentrification of thrift stores

Anna Blumenthal, Entertainment Editor
March 26, 2021
Netflix’s new series “Ginny and Georgia,” explores the complicated relationship between young mom, Georgia, and her 15-year-old daughter, Ginny, who is transitioning into adulthood.

Television’s next mother-daughter duo

Anna Blumenthal, Entertainment Editor
March 25, 2021
School suspensions have become a common form of school discipline, but these suspensions affect students disproportionately.

The school-to-prison pipeline

Anna Blumenthal, Entertainment Editor
March 10, 2021
Senior Golden Kelly sells chocolate bars in order to raise money for the National Honor Society fundraiser. “The fundraiser is a fun tradition for NHS because it gives everyone the chance to see what it is like to make sales and build connections around the school,” Kelly said. “It is especially exciting because we are selling something fun such as chocolate bars.”

A sugary-sweet fundraiser

Anna Blumenthal, Entertainment Editor
March 4, 2021
Senior Samantha Spencer stands with her original model and the full-scale completed set of her design for the play “Matt and Ben.” “I have created slides on my own time for fun of set designs I like and showed them to the Theatre Technology class,” Spencer said. “I have thought a lot about going into scenic design and maybe going into film, but I am not sure. I probably will always keep model making and miniatures as a hobby though.”

Setting the stage

Anna Blumenthal, Entertainment Editor
February 17, 2021
“Cobra Kai” follows Johnny Lawrence (William Zakba) and Danny LaRusso (Ralph Macchio) 34 years after the 1984 All Valley Karate Tournament.

A season packed with punches

Anna Blumenthal, Entertainment Editor
January 13, 2021
In order to reduce the risk of COVID-19 spreading, the Theater Department decided to livestream the play for people to watch on Striv. Audience members were invited to watch the show from their homes. “The biggest challenge was making it accessible to the audience,” director Brooke Phillips said. “We couldnt have people come in person so we streamed it live and setting that all up for the first time was really tricky. I picked this play because it is about a family escaping world wide disasters over and over.  Humans have survived wars, floods, dinosaurs, an ice age.  I wanted people to feel like we could survive this crazy pandemic.”

A production abridged

Anna Blumenthal, Entertainment Editor
December 9, 2020
“The Queen’s Gambit” follows chess prodigy, Beth Harmon, on her journey to become the top chess player in the world while struggling with addiction.


Anna Blumenthal, Entertainment Editor
December 1, 2020
Senior Ceibhionn Stevens sketches out the designs for her mural. “The planning process was less difficult than I imagined,” Stevens said. “I looked up art of theater through history to gather ideas and inspiration. Then I made several drafts and had a few ideas that I eventually dropped in order to make the mural open and bright and true to our theater troupe.”

Painting her passion

Anna Blumenthal, Entertainment Editor
November 20, 2020
“Emily in Paris” lands itself on the list of one of the cringiest series Netflix has ever produced.

Netflix’s new très tragique series

Anna Blumenthal, Entertainment Editor
October 13, 2020
This infographic shares the percentage of young voters in the past midterm elections compared to the overall percentage of the average voter turnout.

The importance of local elections

Anna Blumenthal, Entertainment Editor
October 8, 2020
Senior Vivien Gaines performs for judges at a local dance competition. “My style of dancing is mostly based around musicality and how I can portray the music with the movement,” Gaines said. “I’m a big fan of using music that isn’t traditionally used and playing around with how I can change the way the music is perceived with dancing.”

From student to instructor

Anna Blumenthal, Entertainment Editor
September 18, 2020
The Netflix miniseries, “Unorthodox,” shares the incredible true story of a young woman fleeing the Hasidic Judaism community in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.

Breaking away from tradition

Anna Blumenthal, Entertainment Editor
September 11, 2020
Dog bandanas cost around $8.00 for smaller dogs and $10.00 for larger dogs, and scrunchies cost around $5.00. “I choose patterns based on what is trending and also basic patterns, like flannel, that look great on dogs,” Horrocks said. “My favorite is a cow print fabric because I just love how it looks on my dog.”

Accessories for people and animals

Anna Blumenthal, Entertainment Editor
September 3, 2020
The Kissing Booth 2 can be added to the long list of disappointments for 2020. While the viewers can laugh at how bad the quality of the movie is, it is definitely not a must-watch by any means.

Kiss this movie and 2020 goodbye

Anna Blumenthal, Staff Reporter
August 27, 2020
Some states make the way towards reopening while others continue to stay closed down. State officials have to make the difficult decision of what the best option is.

Reopening too rapidly?

Anna Blumenthal, Staff Reporter
May 11, 2020
Many local businesses and restaurants such as Scooter’s continue to stay open despite the pandemic. “Customers that still come to Scooter’s during this whole situation seem really grateful that we can provide some source of normalcy,” senior Olivia Oeth said. “We get a lot of calls asking if we’re still open, and there’s always a sigh of relief once we tell them they are allowed in for a drink.”

Working during a pandemic

Anna Blumenthal, Staff Reporter
April 16, 2020
Junior Ahnysia Jackson is photographed by Kody Horrocks while dancing on stage during the Lewis Central show choir competition. “Kody has always been a passionate person for arts, music, and people in general,” Jackson said. “As soon as she started photography she began to capture not only things she was passionate about but what everyone else loved too.”

An eye for photography

Anna Blumenthal, Staff Reporter
March 19, 2020
All the Bright Places stars Elle Fanning and Justice Smith and is now streaming on Netflix.

A film adaptation failure

Anna Blumenthal, Staff Reporter
March 5, 2020
Kathryn Bigelow is the only woman to ever win an Oscar for best director for her work on the film The Hurt Locker.

Where are the women?

Anna Blumenthal, Staff Reporter
January 31, 2020
On the left is a picture of the food that was promoted by the creators of the Fyre Festival in their social media advertisements. On the right is the “five-star” meal that attendees actually received.

Hidden behind a screen

Anna Blumenthal, Staff Reporter
January 28, 2020
The movie Bombshell explores the Fox News scandal in which the head of the company, Roger Ailes, was accused by over 20 women of sexual harassment. The story is told through the perspective of three different people: Gretchen Carlson who first sued him, Megyn Kelly and the fictional character of Kayla. The film was an emotional portrayal of a serious topic that continues to plague workplaces all over the country.

This movie will blow your mind

Anna Blumenthal, Staff Reporter
January 15, 2020
The new movie Richard Jewell takes the cake as the best movie of the month by far. I would highly recommend it to anyone looking for something to do over winter break.

Hero or villain?

Anna Blumenthal, Staff Reporter
January 7, 2020
Pictured above is Gavin Christiansen with his unusual pet which is a chinchilla.

Creepy, cute critters

Anna Blumenthal, Staff Reporter
December 18, 2019
Tom Hanks stars as Mr. Rogers in the new movie, A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood. The movie follows a journalist, Lloyd Vogel as he interviews Mr. Rogers for a magazine profile about heroes. 

The perfect childhood hero

Anna Blumenthal, Staff Reporter
December 6, 2019
The infographic shows surprising facts about Black Friday that demonstrate the insane amount of money spent during this day. Money spent on items such as flat-screen TVs and room decor could instead be used to feed all the hungry children in the world for 2 years. The sum of the money is so high that it’s larger than the GDP of 117 countries in the world. Money that could be used to clear up debt creates an even bigger problem of holiday debt.

Dying to get a good deal

Anna Blumenthal, Staff Reporter
November 26, 2019
Looking for Alaska on Hulu turned an older book into a fresh TV series with exciting characters, plot lines and adventures. This makes it the perfect new show to watch while stuck inside all winter.

Looking for a perfect new show

Anna Blumenthal, Staff Reporter
November 15, 2019
Senior Chloe Moore performs at various events in the Omaha area. Her programs have given her long lasting connections and opportunities that she loves to do. “Most events I’ve performed at are usually offered to me through programs I’m in,” Moore said. “It’s really nice to have connections to people in the music world.”

Growing up gifted

Anna Blumenthal, Staff Reporter
October 14, 2019
Each year, a new group of students flock into testing rooms to take the ACT or the SAT. This chart shows the SAT scores of students in relation to the amount of income of their family. There is about a 20 point gap between each level except for the first two and last two groups. In both of those areas, there is about a 100 point leap.

Test-optional fixes admissions

Anna Blumenthal, Staff Reporter
October 3, 2019
Hamilton attracts large crowds to the Orpheum Theater who have been dying to see this outstanding musical.

Hamilton is nonstop fun

Anna Blumenthal, Staff Reporter
September 25, 2019
Pictured above is an info graphic of gun control laws.

Holes in the gun control system

Anna Blumenthal, Staff Reporter
September 17, 2019
While walking through the gorgeous streets of Paris, junior Lily Manthey passes by Sacré Cœur. France was just one of five countries Manthey had the opportunity to visit while overseas for the UNL Honor Choir tour. “We went to multiple cities and towns in France, Switzerland, Austria, Germany, and Italy,” Manthey said. “It was so amazing to see Europe. I have never been there before, so it was life changing to  see the beautiful places and the history behind them.”

Honor Choir Takes on Europe

Anna Blumenthal, Staff Reporter
September 3, 2019
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood follows the story of different people in the movie industry during the late 60s. One of these people was Sharon Tate, a real life actress and victim of the Manson Family Murders. The movie contrasts her glamorous life compared the the poverty of others in the decade.

Once Upon a Time in Hollywood

Anna Blumenthal, Staff Reporter
August 26, 2019
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