How Theatre Impacts Our Lives
An interview with April Smith and Justice Haygood
April Smith, and her daughter Justice, are an active part of our Cape Fear Regional Theatre family. April is a patron ticket holder and member of the Board of Directors. Justice is an actress who started her experiences with CFRT in summer camps and workshops. Her very first experience in theatre was when she performed in 2013 summer camp production of The Little Mermaid. Since, she has refined her skills by taking Studio workshops such as Acting 101 and Auditions 101. This helped give her the experience she needed to play Lt. Ward in the 2014 summer camp production of Annie Jr., an ugly duckling in the 2015 summer camp production of Shrek Jr., and Anna in our most recent production of The Best Christmas Pageant Ever. After the New Year, you will find Justice performing in this season’s Classic Theatre Series production – The Wiz – where she will perform as a field mouse for thousands of people including all 11th graders in Cumberland County schools who receive complimentary tickets to this exciting performance! Here’s what April and Justice have to say about their experiences:
How does CFRT impact your lives?
April: I am constantly at the theatre watching shows, camp performances, class sessions, Board meetings, meeting the casts of different productions, or most importantly, meeting and greeting the supporters of the theatre at shows and community events. It has become a weekly part of our entire family and friends’ lives! We learn so much from each of the productions and get to see the beauty of live performances.
Justice: I really enjoy meeting new people and seeing previous friends in the classes and camps. It has really impacted my life by helping me be a more open person when it comes to meeting new people and to be more friendly and expressive. I am now a much better actress since the classes have taught me how to embody a character by giving it a name, attitude, background, and life.
Why do you think CFRT is important for the youth of our community?
April: CFRT not only provides a theatre education to our youth interested in performing, but it also provides help with public speaking and introduces youth to the power of theatre that they may not otherwise be exposed to. I find that most young people are amazed at live performances – it’s so different than going to a movie theatre. But many children won’t have the option to travel to New York City to see a show on Broadway. Luckily, children in our community don’t need to! CFRT brings that experience directly to our youth. Exposure is so important!
Justice: I think theatre influences kids’ futures by inspiring them to be an actor or actress. When I first started classes at the theatre, I didn’t know the first thing about acting – but now I’m in a bunch of plays!
We hope that you’ll come see Justice perform in The Wiz this January – this season’s Classic Theatre Series production where all 11th graders in Cumberland County schools will be introduced to the magic of theatre free of charge and often for the first time in their life! For just $10 per student, you can support these complimentary tickets to ensure the youth of our community have the opportunity to experience arts, culture, and live theatre – an opportunity they may not have without your help! Please donate today!