Morrow County Thespians, actors, and musicians are fortunate to have a stage on which they can bring their performances. That stage, the Morrow Little Theatre, is located at 102 East Main Street in Cardington and it will be offering several productions this year.
Joey Powell, who along with Ken Barnett, both Mount Gilead High School graduates and current residents, organized the theatre in 2008 when they drew up the constitution and by-laws.
“Ken and I tired of driving to other cities to do shows,” explained Powell, who had participated in high school productions. Barnett had been part of the Mount Gilead Jay Cees and the “Encore” troupe in Mount Gilead. A
MG High School graduate, he earned his degree in education from The Ohio State University and taught English and theater in his alma mater for 22 years. He also directed productions in several area theaters. Known for his acting, he said he preferred directing to “memorizing those lines.”
With the by-laws and constitution written they organized and produced their first production “Christmas in the Village” in December, 2010, performed on the Mount Gilead High School stage.
Seeking another venue they searched and found the building at 1020 East Main Street, Cardington, which they rented from the village and last year. They performed “Steel Magnolias” from that stage last summer. Included was Barnett’s popular one man show on Mark Twain.
They pay all utilities on this building which means an income is vital.
Several fund raisers are scheduled in addition to stage productions.
Among them are a 5K run, rummage sale and an auto show. Their summer production will be “Beauty and the Beast” on July 21, 22 and 23. The curtain will rise at 7:30 on the two night productions and 2:30 p.m. on the Sunday matinee. Auditions for the production will be held Sunday April 30, Monday, May 1 and Tuesday May 2 at 6 p.m.
Powell said they hope to have a comedy night and perhaps award a scholarship to a local talented performer sometime this summer.
Powell said that although he loves to perform on stage he gets greater satisfaction from the director’s chair. He became acquainted with Barnett when he auditioned for a play being directed by Barnett.
“As I got to know him better I really liked his style of directing,” said Powell. Now, he too, likes the director’s part. “I like being the director and tell the story through my eyes – how do I want the audience to feel when I leave?” he said.
The Morrow Little Theatre now is fortunate to have the expertise and guidance of Sally Kilburn who has an extensive background in both music and drama productions. She is currently the theatre’s business manager. Working with Barnett, Powell and Kilburn are a dedicated group of talented Morrow County performers.
Morrow County’s high schools have a multitude of students who are show cased annually in their school productions. The Morrow Little Theatre invites them to share their talents on the stage at 102 East Main Street in Cardington.
Please go to the group’s web site at Morrowlittletheatre.org for more information.
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