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2013-07-25 digital edition

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2013-07-25 / Community News

Milam Community Theater’s Set To Stage ‘South Pacific’


The nurses, played by Monica Schiller, Rebekah Ferguson, Elisabeth Thomason, Melanie Reed, Tia Rae Stone and Cheyenne Lee, help Nellie (Shelby Thomason, center) wash that man right out of her hair in an iconic scene from the musical, “South Pacific.” The nurses, played by Monica Schiller, Rebekah Ferguson, Elisabeth Thomason, Melanie Reed, Tia Rae Stone and Cheyenne Lee, help Nellie (Shelby Thomason, center) wash that man right out of her hair in an iconic scene from the musical, “South Pacific.” Rogers and Hammerstein’s Pulitzer prize-winning musical, South Pacific takes the Cameron ISD Performing Arts Center stage for four performances beginning Saturday, July 27.

The popular Broadway show is the second production of Milam Community Theater’s 20th anniversary season and a reprise of its first major musical.

South Pacific is based on James A. Michener’s Pulitzer Prize-winning 1947 book Tales of the South Pacific, combining elements of several of the stories.

The plot centers on an American nurse stationed on a South Pacific island during World War II who falls in love with a middle-aged expatriate French plantation owner but struggles to accept his mixed-race children. A secondary romance, between a U.S. lieutenant and a young Tonkinese woman, explores his fears of the social consequences should he marry his Asian sweetheart.

The issue of racial prejudice is candidly explored throughout the musical, most controversially in the lieutenant’s song, “You’ve Got to Be Carefully Taught”. Supporting characters, including a comic petty officer and the Tonkinese girl’s mother, help to tie the stories together.

“The first time we did ‘South Pacific,’ back in 1996, it was all we could do to get a cast,” said MCT Board President Kyle Deal. “We’re putting nearly 30 actors from all over Central Texas on stage for this show, plus dozens more back stage, not to mention a great pit orchestra. Betsi Chamlee directed our first effort and we’ve asked her back for this show. It will be a spectacle!”

In addition to Chamlee, MCT brought in JoAnna Langthorn to help with choreography and Nestor Rios as music director and as the conductor of the orchestra.

Performances will be 7:30 p.m. Saturday, July 27, 2 p.m. Sunday, July 28, 7:30 p.m. Saturday, August 3 and 2 p.m. Sunday, August 4.

Tickets are $15 each, $12 for students, and will be available at the door. Reservations are not necessary. For membership and other information, visit the group’s web site at MilamCommunityTheater.com.

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