STUDENTS PRESENT 'DEAR EDWINA' AUG. 3STUDENTS PRESENT 'DEAR EDWINA' AUG. 3

STUDENTS PRESENT 'DEAR EDWINA' AUG. 3

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Posted on July 23, 2013

The Mon Valley Performing Arts Academy, now in its 16th year, will wrap up its 2013 summer theater experience for young performers with a fully staged production of the children’s musical Dear Edwina at 4 p.m. Aug. 3 in Steele Hall Mainstage Theatre, on the campus of California University of Pennsylvania.

Hosted by Cal U’s Department of Theatre and Dance, the academy gives students ages 8-17 an opportunity to study musical theater. After acting, voice and dance classes and rehearsals, students present a musical complete with stage sets, costumes and props.

Thirty students are participating in this year’s academy, which opened on July 22.

With music by Zina Goldrich and lyrics by Marcy Heisler, the musical centers on 13-year-old Edwina Spoonapple, who has very talented siblings but doesn’t believe she is very special. On Sunday afternoons she offers advice to neighborhood kids through songs and dances that she orchestrates with friends in her garage.

“This is one of my favorite musicals. It’s about a neighborhood coming together,” said Dr. Michele Pagen, the academy’s artistic director and a professor in Cal U’s Department of Theatre and Dance. “Edwina just wants to earn a place on the fridge and be acknowledged for her skills.”

The performance is open to the public. Ticket price is $6 for adults, $3 for children. Tickets may be purchased at the door. To order tickets in advance, please leave a leave a message at 724-938-4220.

The Mon Valley Performing Arts Academy is fully accredited by the National Association of Schools of Theatre, the same organization that has accredited Cal U’s Bachelor of Arts in Theatre program since 2005. Mon Valley Performing Arts is one of just six such academies to hold NAST accreditation.