ALT Academy to revive classic 'Little Women'
By Chip Chandler — Digital Content Producer
A classic about the bonds of sisters will feature an extra dose of nostalgia in a new staging of Little Women at Amarillo Little Theatre Academy.
The drama, an adaptation by Thomas Hischak of the Louisa May Alcott novel, will be staged at 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 2:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, and 6:30 p.m. Sunday in the ALT Adventure Space, 2751 Civic Circle. All but the Sunday evening show are sold out; tickets for it are $12 for ages 12 and older or $10 for ages 11 and younger. Call 806-355-9991.
As usual, the spirited March sisters —Meg (Madeleine Nelson), Jo (Kaleigh Goetz), Beth (Abby Neeb) and Amy (Kaycee Humphrey) — are growing up in New England during the Civil War. Their father is off serving as a battlefield chaplain, leaving their mother, Marmee (Gracie Hurt), in charge. In Hischak's adaptation, though, the adult Josephine (Jenny Morgan) serves as narrator, offering a reunion for the adult Morgan and her former academy classmate, director Jason Crespin.
"It's been 16 years since I've done academy classes," Morgan said. "This is super special because Jason and I grew up at the academy together. ... It totally fills my heart to watch him direct a program that is so meaningful to these kids and so meaningful to us.
"He's building a community I know they will all treasure for the rest of their lives," she said. "I know I do."
Crespin chose the show — last staged by the academy in 2001 by Morgan and Crespin's instructor, Sara Youngblood-Ochoa — to help balance his season.
"When I picked (The Adventures of) Huckleberry Finn (in the fall), I knew Little Women would be a great counterpoint," Crespin said. "I really wanted a show to highlight our female talent."
That includes Goetz as the younger Jo, a role the 16-year-old actress had her eye on from the start.
"She was a more powerful character, and I thought she would be more fun to play because of that," Goetz said. "I liked her life story and how she matured, but not to the extent of losing herself."