LEXINGTON, Ky (8/21/13)—The past couple of years schools around the nation have been cutting art classes to save money, leaving fewer kids with the luxury of being part of a theatre class or production.
Cayce Crowder, 23-year-old, is aiming to change that. She graduated from Morehead State University with a major in theatre and a minor in dance.
“After graduation, I was young and wanting to figure out who exactly I was and find a job that I would enjoy,” said Crowder. “That is when I joined in with the Missoula Children’s Theatre.”
Missoula Children’s Theatre started in the small town in Minnesota years ago when two men were on their way to California to produce a play. Their little red truck broke down in the town of Missoula, so the two men decided to hold auditions right there. After word got out, 200 kids showed up to audition for a spot in the theatrical event. After that day, it has grown into the largest children’s theatre in that world.
“A lot of people don’t understand my job when I try to explain to them what exactly I do,” said Crowder. “It’s me and another person and we travel across the nation, hop from town to town in a little red truck and we produce a full-scale musical productions that we bring to kids all over the world.”
Cayce and her plus one traveled for 18 months and every week they would visit a new town, cast a new group of kids, and by the end of the seven days have a performance to show for their hard work.
“It’s amazing what two people can do with a large group of kids in a week span,” said Crowder. “We are the people that come into these towns and tell children that have never been told that they are good at something that they have talent, and that is a life changing experience for both us and the kids.”
Although Crowder got to travel all over the country and see things that she never thought she would be able to, that wasn’t the greatest part of her experience.
“My favorite part is going to places that don’t have a theatre program and having so many kids interested,” she said. “They have never been told that they are good at something like this, so when they are and they memorize their lines a smile never leaves their face.”
Traveling without any friends or family by her side opened her eyes to the kind of person that she is and the direction that she wanted to continue her career in.
“Art has always been something that has been constant in my life,” she Crowder. “I know that without theatre I would have never been able to get through my parent’s divorce, past breakups, or any other junk that we all deal with.”
Crowder said that traveling and introducing theatre to children across the nation has not only made her a better person, but has helped those kids find an outlet that they can turn to when their life isn’t going as planned.
“My ultimate goal is to affect people in a positive way by using my talents,” said Crowder. “My future goal is to be a star, an actor, doing what I love to do all while making other people smile.”
For more information about the Missoula Children’s Theatre visit www.mctinc.org/About_MCT.
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