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'The Secret Garden,'the Tony Award-winning musical by Lucy Simon and Marsha Norman, based upon the timeless children’s novel by Knoxville’s own Frances Hodgson Burnett – premieres at the Center for the Arts, Friday, Aug. 23, through Sunday, Sept. 8 in a
sumptuous production directed by longtime theater journalist Jeffrey Ellis.
favorites Lindsey Wortham, Mark David Williams, Robbie Craze and Caylor Miller
lead the cast and they are joined by CFTA newcomers including Austin Jeffrey
Smith and Bethany Cardenas in principal roles. Ashleigh Chambers and Andrew
Hansen, most recently seen in CFTA’s student production of Les Miserables,
will take on the central roles of Mary Lennox and Colin Craven in the musical.
classic tale of a young girl’s journey from India to England in the early years
of the 20th century radiates with the power of transformative love,
redemption and hope that has made the book a favorite of readers since its
first publication in 1911.
Secret Garden is quite unlike any other musical you may have seen. It’s
very dramatic, yet somehow fantastical, timeless yet contemporary. It’s
heartfelt and lovely: a story of love, loss, redemption and restoration. The
Secret Garden tells a highly personal story that is universal and eternal —
one that will resonate with every member of our audience, regardless of their
age,” says director Jeffrey Ellis, who is senior contributing editor for
BroadwayWorld.com and founder of Nashville’s The First Night Honors.
move you, it will leave its imprint on your heart and it is performed by a cast
of actors of whom I am inordinately proud and delighted to have had the
opportunity to collaborate with on this splendid show.”
Secret Garden is the
story of young Mary Lennox (played by Ashleigh Chambers) who loses her parents
to a cholera outbreak in India. She is then sent to live with her uncle, hermit
Archibald Craven (Mark David Williams), who lives on a large, foreboding
Yorkshire estate with his physician brother Neville Craven (Robbie Craze). Once
she moves into the house, Mary finds a collection of lost and enchanting souls.
Since her aunt Lily’s (Lindsey Wortham) death, Archibald has closed the house
to any family or visitors leaving his son, Colin (Andrew Hansen), alone. Colin
is sickly and bedridden and carries the weight of his mother’s death upon
himself. When Mary discovers a hidden garden once considered the pride of her
Aunt Lily, locked shut and overgrown with vines, she determines to restore it
to its prior glory with the help of mystical young Dickon (Austin Jeffrey
Smith), his sister Martha (Caylor Miller) and kindly, avuncular gardener Ben
Weatherstaff (Gary Davis).
Mary on her journey from India and playing integral roles in her life at
Misselthwaite Manor are “The Dreamers,” the name accorded the spirits of the
deceased members of the British Raj who fell victim to the cholera epidemic.
The Dreamers ensemble includes Stephanie Jones, Ro Coger, Callum Ammons, Jantu
Moore, Reagan Fitzwater, Meredith Aydelott, Suzi Proctor Richardson, Shelby
Smith and Teela Kelley. Bethany Cardenas and Spencer Germany are cast as Mary’s
parents, Rose and Albert, and Peri Watson and Carlos Santiago play her loyal
Indian retainers, Ayah and Fakir. Leah Pagel-Williams is Mrs. Medlock, the
housekeeper of Misselthwaite Manor.
features musical direction by Stephanie Jones and orchestral accompaniment led
by Royce Phillips. Melissa Becker is choreographer.
Secret Garden is
sponsored by Murfreesboro Electric.
Tickets start at $14 and are currently on sale at www.boroarts.org, by calling 615-904-ARTS
(2787), or at the
the Arts Box Office, 110 West College Street, in downtown Murfreesboro.
production is rated PG.
Secret Garden runs
Friday August 23 through September 8.
DATES AND TIMES
23rd, 2019 at 7:30 pm
24th, 2019 at 7:30 pm
25th, 2019 at 2:00 pm
30th, 2019 at 7:30 pm
31st, 2019 at 7:30 pm
Sun, Sep 1st,
2019 at 2:00 pm
6th, 2019 at 7:30 pm
7th, 2019 at 7:30 pm
8th, 2019 at 2:00 pm
$18.00; Seniors (65+)/Students/Military: $16.00; Children: $14.00
$2.00/ticket for groups of 10 or more. Call 615-904-2787 for group
For tickets and season passes, go to www.boroarts.org or call (615) 904-2787
The Center for the Arts
of The Center for the Arts is to enhance the quality of life in our community
by providing cultural and economic enrichment through the arts.
for the Arts opened to the public on December 1, 1995 and was
originally funded by the City of Murfreesboro and Rutherford County. In 2008
The Center became a non-profit 501 (c) 3 organization and now depends on the
generosity of the public for funding. Since it’s opening, the Center for
the Arts has been presenting theatrical productions, visual art exhibitions,
music concerts, dance performances and educational classes.
Secret Garden Cast
Craven: Mark David Williams
Craven: Andrew Hansen
Craven: Robby Craze
Austin Jeffrey Smith
Weatherstaff: Gary Davis
Winthrop: Suzi Richardson
Lennox: Spencer Germany
Wright: Meredith Aydelott
Wright: Jantu Moore
Shaw: Callum Ammons
Shelley: Ryan Hazen
Holmes: Stephanie Jones
Children: Charlie Bartlett, Evelyn Brown, Madelyn Brown and Teak Brown