The MasterWorks Theatre Program

Many have pointed out that the quality of our performances is getting better each year, so I realized that it was time to invite a casting director from New York or Hollywood. John Kirby (more on John in a moment) said that he had worked with Beverly Holloway and thought she'd be ideal, and now she's excited to join us.

She cast The Ultimate Gift (Starring James Garner, Abigail Breslin, Drew Fuller, Brian Dennehy), Bobby Jones: Stroke of Genius (Starring Jim Caviezel, Claire Forlani, Malcolm McDowell, Jeremy Northam), and the soon to be released films The Least of These (Starring Isaiah Washington, Jordan Garrett, Robert Loggia, Andrew Lawrence), Like Dandelion Dust (Starring Mira Sorvino, Barry Pepper, Cole Hauser) and a new comedy from Director David Zucker (Starring Kelsey Grammer, Jon Voight). She's going to come for our final performances, talk to students about their work, her work, her faith and how God has opened doors for her in Hollywood.

John Kirby will be returning for his third year, this time to direct us in Moliere's Tartuffe. Since reading it in grad school I've wanted to produce this farcical look at hypocrisy. So many are kept away from entering into a relationship with the Lord because they see some of his followers as hypocrites. I hope that in producing Tartuffe laughter will help people consider logs that might be imbedded in their own eyes (Luke 6:42) and approach those who don't yet know the Lord with a bit more grace.

John is not only coaching the Old Testament version of The Word of Promise, as he did on the New Testament version, but this time around he's actually lending his voice to some of the characters! He's also directing the children's version of The Word of Promise. Congratulations, John. He coached another film with Jim Caviezel in Australia, and three other films he worked on are in post-production. For those new to John's work, he's considered one of the best acting coaches in Hollywood. He's worked on Narnia, The Count of Monte Cristo and Deja Vu to name a few.

Another returning faculty member will be Harvey Johnson, who directed the first two full-length plays for The MasterWorks Festival. This season he's going to head up the auditions for the honors recital and then coach the winners. Harvey continues to work professionally in the Pittsburgh area as a director and actor.

Another goal of mine is to bring in professional performers who can share a full-length play with the entire community in addition to their workshops. This year we'll be joined by Acts of Renewal, a husband and wife team: Carol Anderson and Jim Shores. I first saw Jim and Carol perform at a Christians in Theatre Arts conference in the late '90's, and they blew me away. Since then their work has been featured on TV and radio and they've performed alongside nationally recognized speakers such as Tony Campolo, Joni Erickson Tada, Brennan Manning, Gary Chapman and Sister Helen Prejean (author of Dead Man Walking). I'm not only excited about their gifts as actors and instructors, but they also have a very powerful story to tell.

Once again we'll be blessed with instructors Susan Somerville Brown and Patricia Mauceri. Susie, of CATS on Broadway, will be playing Josephine in HMS Pinafore, musical directing Little Women and directing/teaching Princess Ida (a lesser know Gilbert & Sullivan) before joining us in Winona Lake. Patricia, in addition to her contract role on One Life to Live, has been seen recently on Law & Order and went to Costa Rica recently to minister to the people there.

I'm overwhelmed by how the Lord is putting the right people together for what should be an amazing theatre program this summer. Be sure to let people know! This article can be found at RichDrama.com/MWF.

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