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"Paw Paw"ditions Are Coming!

As we near the end of January, we simultaneously come closer to yet another round of auditions! This time it is for KVTA’s upcoming Young People’s Theatre production of Dear Edwina, JR. This show follows the adventures of Edwina, an outspoken girl from Paw Paw, Michigan. Edwina fancies herself an “advice giver extraordinaire”, and enlists her friends to help her put on a play in her garage in an attempt to receive an invitation to the Kalamazoo Advice-A-Palooza Festival.

All around the community, excited and nervous children prepare to wow Edwina staff with their polished vocals and captivating acting skills. The audition preparation process is a difficult one that forces auditioners to wonder what the staff is looking for and what the outcome will be. None of these prospective thespians is as excited or anxious for auditions to arrive, however, as Paula Sutter, Dear Edwina JR. director. It’s been years since she has directed a show with children, one of her favorite things to do, so she’s eager to get back to it.

A seasoned director and long-time KVTA veteran, Paula has lead the casts and staff of over 20 different shows over the years, including many YPT productions. In the past five years alone Paula has worked on The Little Mermaid, JR., Legally Blonde, Shrek the Musical, Peter Pan, JR., Mary Poppins, and White Christmas. Each of these productions was special in its own right, and they all were full-scale shows, full of the flash and flare that we theatre-lovers have grown accustomed to.

Dear Edwina, JR., Paula’s 25th show in her community theatre career, is unique from the rest in many ways. “It is not a big flashy show. [It’s] more on the simplistic side and modern,” says Paula. The former KVTA president feels that it’s important for young performers to get a well-rounded experience. “I would like to see children audition for this show because it is a simpler show. They need to see that not all theatre has to have a ton of bells and whistles to be fun.”

Not unlike Edwina, Paula had some advice to give to children wanting to audition for this show. “Be prepared as much as you can. Try to do your own research on the show. Try your best at your audition and SMILE!” And although she’s the director, Paula just wants auditioners to feel at ease during their audition. “We want you to be as relaxed as you can be in this type of situation. Just do your best, even if you mess up!”

Paula and her staff are looking forward to making this both a fun and educational experience for children who are in the show. “We hope to give them a learning experience while having fun and making new friends. Some of things I think theatre can help [children] learn are time management, commitment, and how to work on their character development, no matter the size of their role.”

Dear Edwina, JR. auditions are January 27th and 28th at the KVTA Studios (1 Stuart Dr. Kankakee, IL 60901). Audition information can be found by CLICKING HERE. Don’t miss your chance to be part of this unique and fun show with one of KVTA’s most experienced directors!

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