By Camille Staats – Age 11
Hannah started TYA in the 4th grade, but now, six years later, she is still doing lots with TYA. Hannah Staats’ first show was the 2009 Story Book show, The Jungle Book. But she wasn’t new to theater. She had done three STC (Sheboygan Theatre Company) shows prior to that first show. Doing The Jungle Book was, at first, an excuse to do another show, but after being introduced to TYA she came back for more. She liked how the kids were all around the same age as her and how kids had opportunities to do things outside of performing. Hannah started to do creative team by doing set. And now, four years later, she has done almost every creative team position. Still there’s always new opportunities.
For the current show, The Mad Adventures of Mr. Toad!, Hannah was a co-stage director and had great fun. The preparation consisted of a meeting with all of the creative team to read the script, and meetings with just the directors and directors-in-training where they looked at the script and the book the script was based from, “A Wind in the Willows” by Kenneth Grahame. They analyzed the characters and prepared monologues for the auditions. Then, after the auditions, they casted the show. Hannah says she tends to have strong views on how the show should look, but when you’re on a team it’s a give and take situation. She’s learned how to improvise, because at rehearsal, things are always changing. Also she learned more about the preparation for a show. It’s fun to have an idea on the show, but then the cast brings their own personal character into the mix. Although it was hard work, she loved the experience.