Members and supporters of the Greenwood Little Theatre recently gathered in the theater’s auditorium for the GLT annual meeting.
At the meeting, each director for the upcoming theater season introduced the plays that he or she will be directing.
Nichole Henry will direct the first production of the season, “M*A*S*H,” with assistance from her father, Robin Henry. It is scheduled to run Oct. 10-13. The story started out as a novel by Richard Hooker. It turned into a major motion picture, and then into one of the most successful television shows in American culture. In between all of that, Tim Kelly developed a stage play based on the novel. The stage play has been done many times because of the success of the franchise.
Auditions for “M*A*S*H” will be held at 7 p.m. July 15 and July 16 at the theater. GLT is looking to fill roles for 15 males and 15 females. Director Nichole Henry said they are going to be flexible with casting.
David Dallas will be directing “Annie,” with musical direction by Taylor Buchanan. It is scheduled to run Dec. 14-17 and Dec. 19-22.
Based on the popular comic strip by Harold Gray, “Annie” has become a worldwide phenomenon and was the winner of seven Tony Awards, including Best Musical. The beloved book and score by Tony Award winners Thomas Meehan, Charles Strouse and Martin Charnin features musical theater hits such as “Tomorrow.”
Dallas said he has a strong connection to the show.
“I have been involved in two different productions of ‘Annie’ and love the music and the story,” he said. “Also, I had the opportunity to perform with Andrea McArdle, who originated the title role on Broadway, when I was kid in the early ’80s. I am really looking forward to directing the show, particularly as part of the Christmas season.”
Auditions for ‘Annie’ will be held at the end of July and in early August at the Episcopal Church of the Nativity.
Cathy Roberts and her daughter, Katelin Roberts, will direct “The Outsiders,” adapted by Christopher Sergel from the book by S.E. Hinton. It is scheduled to run March 26-29, 2020. This stage adaptation deals with real people seen through the eyes of young Ponyboy, a “greaser” on the wrong side of life, caught up in territorial battles between the have-it-made rich kids “the Socs” and his tough, underprivileged family and friends.
As a public school teacher, Katelin Roberts is looking forward to incorporating the novel and play in her literature class.
“‘The Outsiders’ is a novel that is typically assigned for summer reading around eighth grade,” she said. “I’m going to encourage my students to write a review of the show and get them published in the newspaper. I think this will be a great way for them to see how literature and composition is used outside of the classroom.”
To finish off the season, Bobby VanDevender will direct “Sweet Bird of Youth,” a drama by Tennessee Williams. It is scheduled to run in June 2020. Show dates will be finalized at the beginning of 2020.
“It is a passion of mine to bring Tennessee Williams to the GLT stage,” VanDevender said. “I’ve been involved with so many Tennessee Williams productions at this theater, and ‘Sweet Bird of Youth’ has been on my list for a long time.”
This wrenching yet mordantly funny meditation on lost innocence and corruption reveals the dark consequences of the American search for perennial youth and fame. This steamy and haunting portrait of a fading movie star and the desperate silver-screen wannabe, Chance Wayne, evokes an era of repressive social strictures where love, passion and redemption are thwarted.
After the upcoming directors’ presentations, the group elected its new officers and members of the board of governors. The new officers for the 2019-20 Greenwood Little Theatre season are Nichole Henry, president; Will Perkins, vice-president; Mary Claire Martin, secretary; and Bobby VanDevender, treasurer.
The new board members for the Class of 2022 are Brandice Brown, Taylor Buchanan and Franklin Riley. Additionally, Eddie Amelung, Ja’Net Blackmon and John GeWalt will serve as replacements for board members who resigned before their terms were completed.
For more than 63 years, Greenwood Little Theatre has led the way in bringing local talent together to provide a quality, accessible and affordable theater experience for the community, by the community. The organization says it aims to enrich lives by providing quality volunteer-produced live theater and offer opportunities for artists and audiences of all ages.
An important part of the Greenwood arts and cultural experience, the members of the all-volunteer organization say the group “works hard at creating a theatrical experience that will be inspirational and educational and have a positive influence on and within the community.”
For more information on plays or auditions, visit www.greenwoodlittletheatre.com.