Excelsior Springs Community Theater 1984

My father considered putting on plays a good project for the church youth groups. I remember one about a rummage sale that was put on in the basement of the parsonage on Chicago Blvd in the 1950s. Unfortunately, I can’t find any photographs. I remember a play he tried to put on with the Youth Fellowship in the 1960s where the actors just couldn’t get into the spirit of the play and it was canceled. Again, no photos.

My mother took acting classes at the local YWCA when she was a child and told me she learned how to fall down dramatically without hurting herself and that and her friend used to try and shock people sometimes when they were walking down the street by falling out. No photos.

But, when we lived in Excelsior Springs, MO in 1983 – 1985, my oldest daughters participated in several of the plays put on by the Community Theater. I remember Finian’s Rainbow and Peter Pan. There were lots of rehearsals in the evening and that we lived close enough to the practice place that they could walk downtown and back. This was good because we only had one car and it was often with my husband.  We all missed the theater when we moved.

finian's rainbow

Jilo was in the production Excelsior Springs 1984 production of “Finian’s Rainbow”.

In costume.
Jilo as Princess Tiger Lilly and Ife as a lost boy, in costume. The other’s are just in the photo.
Jilo and Ife ready for "Peter Pan."
Jilo and Ife ready for “Peter Pan.”  Excelsior Springs 1984.

14 thoughts on “Excelsior Springs Community Theater 1984

  1. Nice to have those memories and photos. I guess if the actors couldn’t get into the spirit of a play, they also wouldn’t have felt inspired to take any photos either 🙂

  2. Your bottomless shoe box produces another photo set to match the theme, Kristin. I think introducing children to drama and theatrics is as important as letting them discover the joy of making music. The thrill of pretending to be someone else on stage, even with only one line to remember, inspires a child’s imagination and brings out a sometimes hidden personality.

    1. It was a wonderful experience and I regretted when we moved and had no access to anything like that. For a small community of 10,000, Excelsior Springs had a lot to offer.

  3. Some wonderful memories here. I like the idea of the girls larking about with their falls.

  4. In high school I would always get a main part in the school play because I could read very well and the audition play-reading was fun. But then I usually flunked at the memory part on stage. I always had trouble remembering my lines! Took the fun out of plays for me unfortunately.

  5. always great to have children involved in theatre. The imagination is something we need to encourage & help them develop. Who knows what things they will imagine for the future?

  6. I directed grade school choruses & directed plays as well and the kids loved being involved in those things. One of the biggest problems I had, however, was parental apathy. Notes regarding concert & play dates & times would be sent home to parents in plenty of time for any arrangements to be made, yet when those dates arrived, some of my key people would simply not be there. I had to double – even triple cast plays, & make sure everyone in my choruses knew every part in case they had to be switched from one section to another at the last minute due to a no-show. But the worst was the kids trying to apologize for not showing up because their parents hadn’t made the effort to get them to the performance. I always made sure the kids knew I didn’t blame them, but what kind of a lesson were they learning from their parents?

    1. It wasn’t so much that they were uncooperative, some just didn’t get it and some were very sensitive to criticism, which my father was always pretty free with.

  7. Children will be children sometimes, and it’s always hard when they just don’t get in the spirit of things. But lucky you, what great memories and photos.

  8. Some families seem to be more into theatre than others I think. I’m glad you found photos of your own children’s plays as it sounds like you all really enjoyed the activity Kristin.

  9. Well I wish I knew your mother’s technique for falling having taken a header in the middle of the night last week right towards a sliding glass door while carrying my sick dog outside. Unlike your mom, I lay there in the darkness crying hoping someone would find me. I think I need to look into this falling down class. Could be useful as I get older.

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