New Horizon hosts hundreds of students for play preview

Contributed report

February 7, 2014

On Jan. 27 and 28, the New Horizon Community Theatre welcomed 200 local students to a special preview of their upcoming performance of “A Little Princess.”

Three of the seven scenes from the play were performed for the guests and followed by an open discussion, allowing for questions from the students.

The director of the production, Amy McDow, explained the motivation behind this new endeavor.

“We understand the importance of the arts and are committed to increasing opportunities for students to participate in and learn about theatre in our community,” McDow said. “With every production, we see students increase their self-esteem, creativity, determination, and problem-solving skills. While working on a show, they fine-tune their performance skills, function in a fast-paced environment, cooperate with others to meet goals, continuously multi-task, and all of this happens while they learn about literature, culture and history. I don’t know if all of our younger cast members realize how many life-skills they take away from a production, but they certainly enjoy the experience and return for more.”

The cast for these performances consists of Emily Stephens, Kitty Key, Audrey Rushan, Madelyn McWhorter, Melonie Prater, Sydney Friedman, Lily Boyd, Madison Tobias, Annie Outman, Lydia Brawner and Skinner McLane. Each of these cast members have devoted extra practice time and many are learning a second role to cover for those unavailable during the daytime. Even though these performances fall weeks before the show opens, the cast and crew are determined to provide the students with the best experience possible.

This production of “A Little Princess” is based on a combination of works by Frances Hodgson Burnett. It tells the classic story of Sara Crewe, whose character and imagination stay strong as she goes from a life of luxury to that of a penniless orphan. This version of the story was adapted, specifically for the New Horizon stage, by the director.

The show opens Thursday and tickets are on sale now. Performances will be held at the New Horizon Theatre in West Point. Tickets can be purchased online at or by calling the ticket hotline at 706-518-6234.