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Submitted by Sheila Berkowitz
Twenty-one students, from Scotland and Clark Counties, performed in the production “We Are Monsters” sponsored by the Memphis Community Players, Inc. on June 24, at the Memphis Theatre.
“We Are Monsters” is a children’s musical that follows human kids into a monster cabaret (an old, abandoned theater) filled with quirky monster characters. The adventurous humans uncover vegetarian vampires and rock n’ roll werewolves, gradually realizing there may be more to these monsters than meets the eye! Most importantly these monsters and kids discover the importance of friendship and celebrating in the attributes that make each of us different and unique. They are no longer separated by fear but now joined in understanding and friendship. The book, music, and lyrics for the play are by Denver Casado and Betina Hershey.
Students between the ages of 8 and 18 participated in the five-day Drama Camp learning lines, blocking which reflects the authentic behavior of the characters, and choreography which is the sequence of steps and movements in dance. The camp was conducted by Maples Repertory Theater from Macon.
Appearing on stage were “Human characters” Kaylee Davis, Cammy Fredrick, Aria Mishra, and Iris Mishra. The “Monsters” were Brooklyn Fuller, Morgan Jackson, and Nevada Wood. Austin Ambrose, Hilary Hamm, Brooke Jackson, Adrienne Lucas, Lena VanGorkom, Bryleigh Ward, and Rucker Ward performed as the “Werewolves”. The “Vampires” included Aly Ambrose, Aria Ambrose, Addy Fredrick, Quinton Schaffer, Mason Trimby, and Elle Wentworth.
The three directors and choreographers are from the Maples Repertory Theater. Emily Long is a graduate of Millikin University where she obtained a BFE in Musical Theater with a Dance minor in 2020. She is the daughter of two music educators and enjoys nature walks, reading and doing puzzles. Bailey Angel holds a BFA Theatre Performance and a minor in Public Relations from Belmont University. Last summer, she worked as an education intern at Lexington’s Children’s Theatre in her home state of Kentucky. Meghan McGehee is a graduate of Kansas State University with a major in Theatre and a minor in Public Relation. She has worked with Paul Bunyan Playhouse, Commonwealth Shakespeare, and most recently the Manhattan Arts Center where she choreographed a children’s theater production of “Madagascar”.
Lynnette Dyer, member of the Memphis Community Players, was the Production Coordinator for the camp and performance. The MCP sponsored the event to promote and support fine arts in the community.