Photo provided by Jim Amidon
Elizabeth Hutson plays the positively evil witch Malificent in the classic Disney tale “Sleeping Beauty,” which opens Friday.
Photo provided by Jim Amidon
Elizabeth Hutson plays the positively evil witch Malificent in the classic Disney tale “Sleeping Beauty,” which opens Friday.
The Sugar Creek Youth Players will present the timeless Disney classic Sleeping Beauty at the Vanity Theater over the next two weekends.

Tickets, priced at $10 for adults and $6 for children 12 and under, are on sale at the Vanity Theater Box Office. Performances are scheduled for 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday and June 5-6, and 2 p.m. on Sunday and June 7.

Director Stephanie Pool has been working with a cast and crew of 43 young people, who range in age from five to 18.

"These kids have been an absolute blast to work with," Pool said. "And the fact that they range from age 5 to 18 gives me hope that the future of the theater is in good hands for years to come."

The play is based on the Walt Disney classic animated film, and follows the life of Princess Aurora from her birth to the fateful day when she pricks her finger on a spinning wheel and falls under Maleficent's evil curse. Disguised as Briar Rose, Aurora is doomed until she meets her true love. Prince Phillip, who courageously battles Maleficent's evil band in order to break the spell with a kiss - releasing Princess Aurora to become his bride.

"It's just a sweet, sweet story," said Pool of the production. "Sure, there are some evil villains, but there are also lots of fairies and woodland creatures. And it's fun to see these kids doing such a nice job on stage."

Sixteen year-old Jennifer Peacock is the show's musical director. "She's an amazing pianist and you can tell she's been involved with theater for a long time," said Pool. "She really knows how to direct the actors.

The part of Sleeping Beauty is played by Jamie Nunan, who along with Peacock, choreographed the show. Sam Vaught stars as Prince Phillip, while Jessica Pruett, Emily Cox, and Alex Carpenter play Flora, Fauna, and Merryweather, the three fairies charged with raising and taking care of Aurora until her 16th birthday.

Elizabeth Hutson stars as the positively evil Malificent.

"This production is pretty cool because it has so many different ages of kids, and they're getting to do so many things - acting, singing, and dancing," said Pool. "This production provides the kids with a well rounded theater experience. And many of the actors are playing more than one character, so they're getting a really neat opportunity to learn how to act differently for each character."

"People should come out and support these young people who have put in so much time and effort to make this a really wonderful play," added Pool. "Come see how much great talent we have in the youth of our community."

The Sugar Creek Youth Players production of Sleeping Beauty is jointly sponsored by Chase Bank and the law firm of Kirtley Taylor Sims Chadd & Minnette.

The entire cast and crew includes Tori Abston, Sammie Amidon, Lilly Bushong, Megan Buser, Alex Carpenter, Annee Clark, Matt Clark, Alyssa Corp, Emily Cox, Ellie Eberhard, Abby Elmore, Vanessa Foust, Delaney Gobel, Zoey Graham, Elizabeth Hacket, Alexandra Harris, Nicole Hay, Evan Hay, Madeline Hudson, Alex Hughes, Elizabeth Hutson, Hanna Lyon, Olivia McKenna, Maddie Myers, Jamie Nunan, Jessica Pruett, Jacob Pruett, Sophie Reimondo, Jack Reimondo, Lexi Riggen, Lindsey Riggen, Allie Roberts, Kenny Rusk, Conner Stockwell, Lee Stockwell, Brennen Sutton, Kendra Sutton, Betsy Swift, Davis Thompson, Amelia Vasquez, Sam Vaught, Kenya Vela, and Ariel Voelkel.

The Vanity Theater Box Office, located at 122 S. Washington St., is open from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. each day. Tickets can be reserved by phone at 362-7077.