Musical magic says "Bye Bye’ at The Vilar Center
Music set in motion, “Bye Bye Birdie” flies into the Vilar Center and onto the stage this summer in a whirlwind filled with laughter, fun, and local talent. Presented by the Vail Performing Arts Academy, the musical comedy, which addresses the gap between the older and younger generation, the craze for rock ‘n’ roll, and the phenomenon of Elvis, offers great opportunity for many talented children to shine.
Performances are Friday at 6:30 p.m. and Saturday at 2 and 6:30 p.m. at the Vilar Center in Beaver Creek. Tickets can be purchased at the door or by calling 845-TIXS.
The program welcomes second graders and high schoolers alike, as well as newcomers of all ages, every summer to learn what the Academy calls the four Cs – cooperation, confidence, creativity, and communication through the study of theater arts.
“I enjoy the production because I come away from it learning as much as the kids do,” said Beth Swearingen, director of the play. “I love their enthusiasm and watching how far they come – it’s so satisfying.”
The children represent a broad range in age that translates into a well rounded spectrum of light smiles that brighten up the stage.
“Their camaraderie is wonderful,” said Annah Scully, founder and producer.
“Bye Bye Birdie” will be the sixth performance for the academy and since then the enrollment has nearly tripled; Scully says that the quality keeps going up and up. Especially with the addition of Swearingen, who has performed in both “Cats” and “A Chorus Line” on Broadway, Linda Trotter, music director, Tommy Dodge, music coach, and Collin Mayning, dance choreographer, the academy has become a class act.
And along with the many people who have made the production possible, the Vilar Center has allowed the use of their theater.
“The Vilar Center has been excellent and without their help we couldn’t make this work,” said Scully.
For the young thespians the experience is an opportunity to let their creative juices flow. For Kayla Cheatham, 16 year-old Vail Mountain School student, playing Rosie is more of a hobby than anything.
“What is there not to enjoy – for me it’s like a hobby and I love it,” said Cheatham.
And she’s not the only one who feels that way.
“It’s just so much fun,” said 13 year-old Sean Pack. “I hope to be on Broadway someday – it’s my lifelong dream.
Their enthusiasm and their talent make these kids a triple threat; they can act, sing, and dance.