The Weavers of Willy Wonka
By Jana E. Pye, Editor, email@example.com
Once upon a time, a little girl named Amy fell in love with theater. When she was a teenager and in college, Amy began acting…enjoying every moment of the costumes, the stories, and the ability to make an audience see a story come to life.
Fast forward to marrying her handsome prince named Scott, and having three great children, Bradley, Maitland and Emily- “Emi”, Amy found herself back into the magical world of theater once again- and she is practically glowing with happiness.
The ladies of the Weaver family have transformed their dining room in Darlington into Willy Wonka’s prop factory to prepare for the Florence Little Theater’s summer production of “Roald Dahl’s Willy Wonka, Jr.” which will be shown July 15-17 and 22-24.
“This is so much fun!” said Amy, busily working on golden tickets, Wonka Bars, fizzy lifting drinks, cotton candy (made from tinted fiberfill) and the long contract that Willy Wonka will unfurl on stage for children to enter his magical, delicious factory. Amy and Maitland are working on props for this youth production, and Emi, age 9, will be “Matilda,” one of the Candy Kids.
Amy had put her acting aside when she began raising her family, and when her daughter Maitland turned 11 and wanted to audition for a show at the Florence Little Theater, she inwardly jumped for joy.
“My husband Scott plays drums,” said Amy. “And our son Bradley (age 22) does too,” said Amy. “I was thrilled that Maitland wanted to get involved. And now Emi loves it, too!”
Maitland recently graduated from Mayo High School for Math, Science and Technology and will leave attend Clemson University this August; she plans to be a veterinarian in the future. She was in 14 shows with Florence Little Theater (FLT), and hopes to be involved with the Clemson Players, along with her new roommate that is a theater major.
“I have enjoyed theater so much,” said Maitland. “It’s been really fun sharing this with my family.”
This is Emi’s ninth play with FLT, and said she enjoyed Shrek the Musical the most.
“I was Tinkerbell in that one,” recalled Emi. “I loved that show!”
Emi loves to write plays as well as perform in them, and when she grows up she dreams of being on Broadway.
Amy and Maitland have been working hard on the props together, and Maitland especially enjoyed the “Candy Cart”.
The creativity and hard work that goes into each production takes a lot out of the performing family, as the adult shows go from audition to opening night in three months, with the junior shows taking only two.
But the hard work is worth it when the magic begins each opening night.
“Seeing the faces of the children is especially rewarding,” said Amy.
Although she was behind the scenes for many years with her children, she now also performs with the FLT “Schoolhouse Players,” performing to school children and adults that are with the Florence Disabilities. “They are the best audience,” says Amy. “Their smiles just melt my heart!”
Be sure to see the FLT production of “Roald Dahl’s Willy Wonka, Jr.” Performances:
July 15 – July 16, 2016 at 7:30 p.m., July 17, 2016 at 3:00 p.m.
July 22- July 23, 2016 at 7:30 p.m., July 24, 2016 at 3:00 p.m.
For more information, visit: www.florencelittletheatre.org or call: 843-662-3731.