PUBLISHED: 5:27 PM on Tuesday, August 15, 2006
Youth present four shows with Perseverance
Summer Theater Arts Rendezvous
Perseverance Theatre's Summer Theatre Arts Rendezvous will conclude with performances through Sunday, Aug. 20.

The first production to open is Henrik Ibsen's "Peer Gynt" presented by the high school conservatory program. The production is directed by Matthew Huff, an Atlanta based director who has directed at Jewish Theater of the South and at Theater Emory. Huff received his MFA in Directing at the University of Texas at Austin and also taught acting and movement for STAR. The performance features Sadie Adams, K'hala Carpenter, Sarah Everett, Caralie Kennedy, Veronica Narvaez, Amy Nickerson, Zac Pease, Shane Prentice-Walz and Austin Tagaban.

"Peer Gynt" tells the story of a poor Norwegian man who sets out on a journey to find himself. Peer travels through Morocco, is shipwrecked, and encounters a troll king and his daughter. Yet after all his travels, Peer's quest brings him home.

Next, STAR will premiere "Sea of Strength" by Merry Ellefson, a play commissioned by Sealaska Heritage Institute that tells the traditional Tlingit strong man story. The play is also influenced by traditional Latseen training, the Battle of 1802 and other events experienced by the Tlingit people. Allan Hayton, a local Athabaskan director who has worked at Creede Repertory Theatre, Perseverance Theatre, Naa Kahidi Theatre, and the Alaska Theatre of Youth, will direct. Sea of Strength features Alyssa Blattner, Kayla Brown, Ashley Buck, Shelbie Butz, Desirae Harris, Jesse Pierson and Wilf Pierson.

STAR's third production is Shakespeare's "As You Like It." The production is directed by Juneau director and actor Ryan Conarro. Conarro appeared in "The Laramie Project" and "Twelfth Night" at Perseverance Theatre last season, and has directed for JDHS, Opera to Go! and various productions for the Alaska State Council on the Arts Artists in Schools program. The production features Laurel Araki, Lily Burger, Johnny Connolly, Madeleina Ellingson-Van Sickle, Abby Hemenway, Wesley McEwen, Reilly Schrader-Dee, Matthew Talley, Morgan Weatherly and Galen Wright.

"As You Like It" is the tale of Rosalind, the daughter of a banished duke, who fleas to the forest and dresses as a young boy to test the veracity of her lover's feelings for her.

The final production will be "Journey," an original mask and puppet show about a girl who falls asleep in the library while reading a book and ends up going on a fantastic dream journey. Michelle Seekamp directs the production. Seekamp earned a BFA in theatre from the State University of NY at Buffalo and an MFA in Ensemble Based Physical Theatre at Dell'Arte International School of Physical Theater in Blue Lake, California. In addition to directing the production, Michelle taught mask, clown and movement with STAR. "Journey" features the talents of Kiersten Blattner, Elle Campbell, Lynnea Glasen, Halena Isturis, Jessica Jones, Corwin Kelly, Tory Killbear, Kieran Poulson-Edwards, Avery Stewart and Sierra Tagaban.