Since late June, several area youth have been working to perfect their acting and vocal skills for an upcoming production of Grease.
The young actors and actresses are part of Canton Amateur Summer Theatre, a five-week production that culminates in the production in early August. Students learn about singing, acting, getting into character, dancing and a little about what goes on behind the scenes.
This is the second year of the program, which was started after Canton High School graduate Trevor Pierce approached Parks and Recreation director Brian Wilson with the idea.
At the end of last summer, Pierce and last year's musical director Madeline Smith sat down and discussed the program's future since the two would be out of town this year. They worked with Hannah Cole, who sang in the pit for last year's production of "You're a good Man Charlie Brown." The three chose the show and the production staff and Pierce is still involved with some administrative aspects of the program.
"I was thrilled to hear that seventeen kids wanted to be a part of the program," Pierce said. "I know that they have been working incredibly hard, and I have no doubt that this show will be just as good as last year, if not better."
Last year Michelle Meheran, 14, played Lucy in "You're a Good Man Charlie Brown" and is now learning the part of Rizzo.
"It just as fun as last year," she said.
Emma Frawley, 14, playing Marty is also participating for the second time and was also in Canton High's School's production of "The Pajama Game" this past year.
The summer program, an all-day camp, does offer plenty of light moments, some acting games and activities.
"It's like we get to do fun things, play games and also have the acting experience," Frawley said.
Kevin Roland, a 2010 Avon High School graduate studying acting at Emerson College, is directing this year's production. Helping him are Stage Manager Abby Moore, a 2012 Avon High School graduate, Producer Jillian Goeler, a 2012 Canton High School graduate and Cole, a 2009 Avon High graduate who is the show's musical director.
"I hope that if they continue to live in the area, Hannah, Kevin, and the rest of the staff continue to participate in the program," Pierce said. "I'm very happy with all of their work thus far. "
The production will take place Aug. 3 and 4 at 7:30 p.m. and Aug. 5 at 2 p.m. in the Town Hall auditorium. Patch will post more details as the production nears.