Summer youth performances at Tryon Fine Arts Center

Published 4:37 pm Friday, June 17, 2011

Several of the actors in “Pippin,” playing at TFAC July 7 – 10. (photo by Lorin Browning)

July will be a busy time for the young thespians, directors and theatre technicians of Tryon and the Upstate of South Carolina. Tryon Little Theater and the Tryon Youth Center will present summer youth performances July 7 – July 10, and again July 28 – 31 on the Tryon Fine Arts Center stage.

Characters in “Tom Sawyer,” to play at TFAC July 28-31, whitewash a fence. (photo by Lorin Browning)

Director Chris Tinkler and musical director Lena Duncan have been in rehearsal for the musical, “Pippin,” opening Thursday, July 7 at 8 p.m. for four performances. Performers range in age from 13 to 21.

Follow the young Prince Pippin on his quest to find the secret of true happiness and fulfillment. He searches in the glories of the battlefield, worldly temptations and intrigues of political power. In the end, he finds joy in the simple pleasures of home and family.

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This hip, tongue-in-cheek, anachronistic fairy tale captivated Broadway audiences and continues to appeal to the young at heart everywhere.

The score by three-time Oscar-winning composer/lyricist Stephen Schwartz (“Godspell,” “Children of Eden” and the animated films “Pocahontas,” “The Hunchback of Notre Dame” and “The Prince of Egypt”) entertains with everything from ballads to rhythmic dance numbers.

One of Mark Twain’s most beloved characters of American fiction comes to the TFAC stage in “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer.” Mischief abounds, whether he’s sneaking out of Aunt Polly’s house at night to visit the graveyard, conning his pals into white-washing a fence, grabbing a smooch from Becky Thatcher or facing the murderer Injun Joe, Tom Sawyer’s hijinks have delighted generations of readers. Set on the banks of the mighty Mississippi River, the story has a timeless, small-town charm.

Tryon director Marianne Carruth brings this adaptation to life with the youth (ages 8-12) of the community. Adding to the fun of this production will be a foot-stomping musical performance by professional musicians Phil and Gaye Johnson.

This will be the sixth year this younger group has done a production in Tryon. For the first time, costume designs for “Tom Sawyer” will be by a Tryon teen, Alexa Hughes. In another first, Tryon teen Sara Seagle will serve as assistant director. Both young women are TLT youth alumni. “Tom Sawyer will be on the TFAC stage July 28 – 31. Performances are Thursday and Friday at 8 p.m., and 3 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.

Tickets for both youth shows are available by calling 828-859-2466 to leave a message or email ticket requests to Tickets go on sale two weeks prior to opening at the TLT workshop, located at 516 S. Trade St. (Hwy 176) in Tryon.

TLT box office hours are 10 a.m. – 1 p.m., Monday through Saturday. Additionally, tickets will be on sale at TFAC one hour prior to performances, pending availability.

The Tryon Fine Arts Center is located at 34 Melrose Avenue in Tryon.

Visit for more information.

– article submitted by Mark Monaghan

View more photos here.