(Orem, Utah) -- Director Kathryn Little is determined to infuse SCERA Center for the Arts with all the charm that defines the musical based on the animated Disney film, “The Little Mermaid” as well as Hans Christian Anderson’s original love story.

Little, the director of Acting Up, SCERA’s national award-winning high school company, will use her troupe of 36 advanced musical theatre students to unfold a show she believes will be “completely magical.”

The family musical will play Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays from March 15 to March 30 at 7:30 p.m. in Showhouse II at SCERA Center for the Arts, 745 South State, Orem. Reserved seat tickets are available at $10 for adults, $8 for children age 3-11, $8 for seniors 65 and older and $6 in advance for non-profits and official church groups of 20 or more. All are available at scera.org, by calling 801-225-ARTS, or in person at the main office at SCERA Center, open 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. weekdays and Saturdays from noon to 6 p.m.

SCERA performs the Little Mermaid - Acting Up

 “When I thought of design, my first choice was Shawn Mortensen for the scenic design and Elizabeth Griffiths for the light design. They are both ideal to help me saturate the stage with glitter, confetti, and all the atmosphere of the human and mer world that we expect from this story of Ariel, a mermaid willing to give up her voice for legs and love,” she explains. With expert work from scenic painter Rachael Gibson, the stage will be filled with larger than life rocks and huge columns painted “under the sea” style to represent Triton’s kingdom. SCERA invested in a Fobble, a bubble machine that uses fog so the bubbles can actually be seen from the audience, and will be using some fun new technical elements and lighting effects like fireflies, flash rope and LED.

Kelsey Seaver is costume designer, and has custom-made all new mermaid dresses for Ariel and the Mersisters with metallic scaled spandex and a huge ruffle to represent the fin. Sebastian is head to toe in red glitter.  Props Designer Christy Norton has of course made a dinglehopper and snarfblatt and dressed the grotto in “human things.” Set dressing on the rocks features coral, ocean grasses, starfish, and various sea creatures.

Brodee Ripple is serving as choreographer. One of the fun added numbers is “Positoovity,” a song for Scuttle which has the cast members tap dancing.  Another upbeat song added for Flounder is called “She’s In Love.”

As the music director as well as show director, Little is readying her performers to present the singable score with such well-known favorites as “Under the Sea,” “Kiss the Girl” and “Part of Your World.”

At its center, the story focuses on true love, parent-child relationships, and recognizing people for who they really are. Her leads include Joshua Carr as Prince Eric; Sierra Palmer as Ariel; Harrison Kaylor as Flounder; Hadley Knight as Ursula; Emma Elison as Sebastian; Taylor Sims as Scuttle; Avery McGee as King Triton; Mason Watts as Grimsby; Beth Barney as Flotsam; and Michael Mason as Jetsam.  

“The Little Mermaid” is the crowning performance for a troupe of young SCERA triple threat performers selected from auditions and mentored by Little. Members of Acting Up give up sleeping in almost every Saturday morning to come and rehearse at 7:30am. As part of their service to the community, Acting Up presents free musical firesides and outreach shows to audiences from Utah Valley to Salt Lake City.

Last year, Acting Up traveled to Fullerton, California to compete in the advanced division of the Musical Theatre Competitions of America. They received the honor of placing 1st for their 12-minute musical revue of Tom Kitt songs and 4th for an ensemble piece from the musical Footloose, competing against other top high school teams from across the nation. Seven trophies were also awarded to individual members of Acting Up for outstanding solo, duet and dance performances.

Acting Up recently had two masterclasses from Disney director/choreographer Linda Love Simmons from Los Angeles, and will travel to Chicago this May for the CS Music Convention and Vocal Competition, where members of Acting Up will attend masterclasses, perform and receive scored evaluations, written feedback and are eligible for scholarships.

Auditions for the 2019-2020 Acting Up team will be held on Saturday, May 11 from 9am-4pm. Visit www.scera.org/actingup  for more information. There will be a pre-audition informational meeting for parents and kids on Saturday, May 4 @ 11:00am.

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Operations Manager/Marketing & Development

SCERA Center for the Arts

745 South State, Orem, UT 84058