Meet the talented stage moms (and dad) of Tryon Little Theater 

Published 11:55 am Tuesday, July 18, 2023

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Gala Fundraiser and performance of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella to benefit TLT’s Youth Shows


TRYON—One would think that rising child stars are born with a love of theater, but in Tryon Little Theater’s case, it also comes from their parents being involved in TLT’s Youth Theater performances, and “passing the love on!” Here are a few stories about the kids’ theatrical backstage supporters of this show!

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Co-costuming head Kelly Sparks loves helping with costumes and making new friends at TLT.  In her youth, she performed in TLT’s Guys and Dolls, Little Mary Sunshine and Grease, and this is the third youth show in which she’s been helping behind the scenes with costumes. Her daughter is in the ensemble and loves being a member of the cast and acting.

Kersten McGeary

Kersten McGeary, also co-head of costumes, has enjoyed performing in theatrical productions. She has directed her six children at the Mountain Stage Theater in Saluda in The Wizard of Oz and Annie and four of her children are participating in the show.  

“I would love TLT to have a kid’s program year-round,” says McGeary. “Wait till you see Cinderella transformed in a single spin on stage!”  

Natalie Wilson loves being part of the youth show’s backstage support. Her twin sons love the opportunity of being part of the ensemble. Although she is not an actress herself, her husband Edwin is quite a thespian. He played in Oliver, Peter Pan and The Sound of Music in TLT Youth shows.  

Brittany Toker

Brittany Toker has a very musical family of four children who love performing in TLT’s Cinderella as well as playing instruments together. One of her daughters, Ella plays the Godmother in the show and was in TLT’s Matilda, and her daughter Lyla and son Will are in the ensemble. 

“I’ve always loved singing and performing and so do the kids. It’s a gift to encourage each other and work together,” Brittany says.  

Carole Durham McEntire, whose granddaughter, Ella Baron is in the show says, “Acting with TLT Youth Shows was my favorite time of the summer as a child, first acting in Annie Get Your Gun and Finian’s Rainbow in the early 1970s.” Carole’s daughter, Melissa McEntire Baron was in TLT shows (Barnum, Tom Thumb, and The Wizard of Oz).

Kelly Sparks and Natalie Wilson

Tickets are still available for TLT’s Gala Fundraiser and performance of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella to benefit TLT’s Youth Shows on Wednesday, July 26 at 6:30 p.m. Hors d’oeuvres, wine and beer will be served followed by the show at 7:30 p.m. The deadline to purchase tickets is Sunday, July 23. Tickets for the balance of shows running evenings from July 27 through July 29 at 7:30 p.m. and July 30 at 3 p.m. are also available at or by calling (828) 859-2466.


Submitted by Cathy Fischer