Theatre prepares for fall musical


Camille Kelly

Troupe members have been working hard to prepare for their performance of “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee.” Pictured, from left to right, are: Kiera Howington, Kayla McCarver, Alex Fenton, and Jessica Ridout.

Camille Kelly, Writer

The Bear Stage Players are producing the school’s first musical since the pandemic shut down performances. Show dates are scheduled for Oct. 21, Oct. 23 and Oct. 24, and tickets will cost $10. The musical, titled “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee,” will be directed by Ashley Dennison, head of the theatre arts department. 

The musical is about a group of young and quirky characters competing in a spelling bee. Dennison said she hopes when people see this performance that the storyline and characters will broaden their perspectives and impact how they perceive their friends, peers, and themselves.  

I think you are going to be impressed with how talented our kids are.

— Ashley Dennison

“I think the show is all about misconceptions,” Dennison said. “Based on the way a child acts, you tend to make assumptions about them. However, as you get to know and understand them, you will find that you’ve misjudged them.” 

The cast and ensemble have been working hard to bring the story to life by rehearsing every day from 4 to 6 p.m. after school and from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Saturday mornings. 

“I think you are going to be impressed with how talented our kids are,” Dennison said. “I talk them up a lot, but I don’t think people have seen how great they are.” 

According to Dennison and the cast members, this production is different from any show they have done before. The constant movement throughout the performance and the comedy mixed with the audience interaction brings something new to the stage. 

“I’m really excited for this show,” freshman cast member Kiera Howington said. “This is a whole new experience. I’ve done shows before, but never a comedy like this.” 

I’m really excited for this show.

— Kiera Howington

This musical will be one of the most interactive productions the Bear Stage Players have ever done. According to some of the actors, the audience involvement makes the show much more engaging for those who come to watch. 

“I chose this musical because it’s got a lot of heart,” Dennison said. “It forces the actors to play and be creative, and try, and mess up only to try again.” 

Tickets for “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee” will go on sale beginning Sept. 14.