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‘The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee’ is H-I-L-A-R-I-O-U-S

Catawba’s performs the comic musical “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee”

By Catawba student Shannon Harris

Catawba College Theatre Arts Department presents the fun and exciting “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee” in the Florence Busby Corriher Theatre at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 29 through Saturday, April 1.

Set in the fictional Putnam Valley Middle School, “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee” follows six eccentric spelling bee contestants as they compete against one another. The middle-schoolers are accompanied by adults who are just as unique. Throughout the course of the show, the preteens share information about their lives at home. Some of these revelations are endearing, while others are absolutely amusing.

When asked about why she decided to direct this show, student director Peyton Glendinning says she felt it was “the right step for me as a young director, mostly because the show is a linear plot line that all takes place in one location. “Knowing I would be in the FBC, I was attracted to the minimal technical demands of the show. This way, I am able to focus on staging, character work, and overall storytelling.”

Glendinning also shares that she was drawn to this show because of “the lively nature that the show entails. The show is ridiculously entertaining and just plain fun to work on and watch. The characters are dynamic and while they seem larger than life at times, it is easy to relate to what they’re going through in the world of the play.”

The cast includes Maddy Auchter from Houston, Texas; Dr. Bradley Stephenson from Raleigh; Reshaud Brown from Greenwood, S.C.; Brant Fife from Waynesboro, Va.; Jacob Hammill from Gold Hill; Daniel Morrison from Greensboro; Prentice Clark from Charleston, S.C.; Amery Barton from Charlotte; and Taylor Kroop from Boynton Beach, Fla.

Student production staff includes Peyton Glendinning, from Panama City Beach, Fla., director; Chaz Cable from Weaverville, stage manager; Nicky Vassello from Hillsborough, assistant stage manager; and Dalton Fulmer from Arcadia, assistant stage manager.

“The show speaks to an awkward stage in life that everyone went through,” Glendinning concludes. “We get to see the young spellers navigating the leap from childhood to their teenage years. In the end, it reminds us about times in our lives where we’ve had great successes and disappointments and how those experiences have come to shape who we are now.”

Tickets for the show are $10 for adults and $7 for students. To purchase tickets, visit www.catawba.edu/theatretix, call the box office at(704-637-4481 between 2-5 p.m. on weekdays, or email boxoffice@catawba.edu

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