Performing Arts

The performing arts at Manitou Springs High School provides students with a multitude of creative outlets and performance opportunities. Each year, students participate in school concerts, plays, musicals, recitals, and honor groups around the state of Colorado.

Danny Tramel – High School Orchestra, Advanced Orchestra
Danny Tramel is the orchestra director at Manitou Springs Middle and High School. He has conducted band and orchestra during his tenure at Manitou. Mr. Tramel is also a guitarist and trombonist in the 101st Army Band of the Colorado National Guard. His other musical exploits have included performing in country music singer/songwriter competitions across the nation. He has and competed in several events and has been a state and national finalist. Mr. Tramel has also enjoyed performing in bands and as a solo acoustic artist around the state of COlorado at various venues. During his free time, Mr. Tramel likes to fly fish, hunt, play music, wood work, and most importantly; hang out with his wife Stephanie and daughter Janette.

Abby Steen - Mixed Choir, Chamber Choir
After graduating from Manitou Springs High School in 2008, Abby attended The University of Denver for Vocal Performance. After graduating from DU with a bachelor’s degree in Vocal Performance in 2012, Abby moved back to Colorado Springs where she helped direct several middle and high school performances for Manitou Springs School District. Among these shows Abby collaborated with Wendy Harms and Nicole Berry on West Side Story and The Music Man Spring musicals. In addition to directing shows, Abby performed in several bands across Colorado Springs and loves singing jazz and big band music. After two years of studying at CSU Pueblo for her teaching license, Abby is excited to join the Manitou Springs Mustangs in the Fall of 2020 as the middle and high school choir teacher!

Taylor – Concert Band, Jazz band, Music theory
Taylor is a passionate music educator who has stayed with the music program in Manitou School District for most of his life. He began as a student here in Manitou and went through the band program in Manitou Middle School all the way through his senior year in Manitou High School. Taylor stayed close to home and studied music at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs, and then began teaching music at Ute Pass and through Arts14. Taylor started as the band director for Manitou High School and Manitou Middle School in 2018. In his spare time, Taylor likes playing in his band, writing and composing music, and most importantly; spending time with his lovely wife Jen.

Wendy Harms – Theater Arts, Technical Theater, Theater 105PPCC, Independent Study Technical Theater
Wendy Harms has been a theater practitioner ever since she wrote a play based on Peanuts cartoons and strong-armed her fellow 6th graders into performing. She was the director, of course. Now set on her life path, Wendy had joyous experiences in high school theater and continued on to California University at Long Beach for her BA in Children’s Theater. Next, she headed for the mid-west and the University of Kansas, where she received her MA, also in Children’s Theater. The world awaited, and Wendy became a professional costume designer, Equity stage manager, actress, marketing director and teacher of children from 3 – 73. Some 20 years ago, Wendy was invited to direct for MSSD 14, and soon after became the Artistic Director for MSAA. Now she spends her days creating programs with amazing cohorts for even more amazing students.


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