KW youth perform Austen’s “Emma”

Kitchener-Waterloo Youth Theatre is in the midst of rehearsing their upcoming performance of Jane Austen’s “Emma,” set to open on June 3 with performances until June 12.

Austen’s classic novel has been adapted by Michael Bloom and the production will be directed by Rachel Behling.

The Kaufman Arts Studio, located at 132 Queen Street South, Kitchener, houses both the rehearsals and performance for the company.

The K-W Youth Theatre provides the following synopsis of the play’s action, “Pledging never to marry, the mischievous Emma Woodhouse is nevertheless the ‘matchmaker of Highbury.’ Her newest project, Harriet Smith, has already received a proposal, but Emma insists she marry the eligible vicar Mr. Elton, while, an older family friend, Mr. Knightley, warns her to give up matchmaking. Emma is a fresh, witty and perceptive take on a timeless tale.”

The stars of the production include local students Laura Hayes as Emma, Christian Krause as Mr. Knightley and Blake Murry as Mr. Henry Woodward.

The K-W Youth Theatre provides creative outlets of all kinds for its young participants. At a rehearsal of the production, The Cord spoke to Rachel Annen, who designs the company’s costumes.

For this particular production, Annen explained that she uses “old costumes, and wedding dresses” in order to create an “Edwardian look” which will capture the essence of Austen’s time.

Furthermore, local youth Alexander William Reed is composing his own original score for the production.

This job includes writing and distributing the music to the rest of the cast members and musicians involved.

Reed is currently involved with a plethora of musical projects; he has begun work on the upcoming production of the Canterbury Tales for the Synchro Youth Theatre Company, as well as the upcoming production of Hamlet with K-W Youth Theatre.

Reed explained that he is also involved in a contest on which urges musicians to remix songs composed by Hans Zimmer and Rodrigo y Gabriela in anticipation of the upcoming installment of the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise, for which the famous Zimmer and Rodrigo y Gabriela provide the soundtrack.

The submissions will be judged by Walt Disney Records, with the contest winner receiving a cash prize of $1,000 as well as having their submission featured on Spinner.

William Alexander Reed may be bringing his musical talents to Wilfrid Laurier University in the near future, as the young composer expressed that he wishes to attend the institution once he graduates from high school.

A partner of the K-WYouth Theatre, Guelph Little Theatre, is presenting a performance of Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” June 2nd – June 4th.