Born out of The Rep's hugely successful Young Artists program and the imagination of Nicole Capri, associate artist and director of education at the Rep, comes “If You Sing It, They Will Come,” a musical revue of songs from the cinema. The polished performance is the product of the Rep's 4th annual summer workshop.
The Young Artists programs are always popular, as evidenced by the packed house on opening Friday. These talented young people impressed the crowd with their dance moves, powerful voices and overall cuteness.
Who knew that such a rich pool of talent existed right here in Central Arkansas? The show features more than 60 actors, ages 10 to 22. One of the several highlights was 8th grader Henry Melhorn's achingly adorable rendition of “Why Do Fools Fall in Love?” When 11th grader Zack Powers took the stage, his dance moves knocked our bobby socks off (watch your back, Justin Timberlake).
You could feel the goodwill; people cheered when the actors hit the right notes or completed a challenging bit of choreography. Beaming family members and enthusiastic friends packed the house and at the end rose in a standing ovation. Their pride was deserved, because these kids poured their hearts into the energetic show, and clearly enjoyed themselves in the process.
As I strolled down Main Street hand-in-hand with my skipping 6-year-old, past the closed storefronts and trees strung with lights, I thought about how much fun it is to see a play with a child — and to watch kids perform. My daughter, who had dressed to the nines for the occasion, was so transfixed during the performance that she didn't even delve into the contraband candy corn I'd seen her tuck into her purse. After the first act I thought I heard her say, “Let's go” — it was, after all, past her bedtime. “Ready to leave?” I asked. “No,” she whispered, “I said, ‘Bravo.'”