The Yadkin Arts Council will stage a production of “The Bad Seed” at the Willingham Theater this weekend. Performances will be at 7:30 p.m. on Friday and Saturday and 3 p.m. on Sunday. Tickets are still available by calling 336-679-2941 or visiting www.yadkinarts.org.
“When I first saw the film version of ‘The Bad Seed’ in the mid-1950s, I was blown away. I had never seen such a psychological portrayal of a bad kid. I vowed then (even though I was only 12 years old and had no idea that I would ever be involved in theater) that I would re-visit this amazing little story in some way,” said Artist Director Ron Stacker Thompson. “Directing this production of ‘The Bad Seed’ has allowed that to happened. I’m thrilled, and I know you will be too!”
The play tells the story of little Rhoda Penmark, an adorable child with some dark and deadly secrets.
The cast includes Patty Grant as Christine, Ella Howell as Rhoda, Kitsey Burns Harrison as Monica, Morgan Harrison as Leroy, Todd Gerber as Tasker, Mary Jane Elliott as Ms. Fern, David Petty as Bravo, Jacob Fleming as Emory, Joe Gusten as Kenneth, Marisa Estelrich as Mrs. Daigle and Jim Knight as Mr. Daigle. The stage crew includes Sarah Bennett, Brittany Calloway, Douglas Coghlan and Andrew Mirmanesh.
“The cast of ‘The Bad Seed’ is a wonderful blend of folks who are new to the stage at the Willingham Theater and seasoned performers who are drawn to stepping into classic drama again and again,” said Patty Grant. “And every one of us, the adults in the cast, are spellbound by the captivating performance of young Ella Howell, the child around whom the story spins. Her performance is electrifying.”
“This is my first time being in any kind of show, and I’m so impressed with the professional quality of everyone’s participation,” said Mary Jane Elliott. “Ella is so convincing as Rhoda, I sure wouldn’t want to meet her in a dark alley!”
Jim Knight, another newcomer to the Willingham stage, is proud to be returning to Yadkin County for this production.
“Even though I presently reside in Pfafftown, I have a definite connection to Yadkin County; my family made Yadkinville and Jonesville home for over 10 years. My father opened the first drug stores in both towns in the 1950s — Knight’s Drugs,” Knight said. “I think ‘The Bad Seed’ audience will enjoy the creepiness of the story of how an 8-year-old central character can be so innately corrupt and innocently dangerous. I believe the production is guaranteed to send several chills up the spines of each audience member — just in time for Halloween!”
Kitsey Burns Harrison may be reached at 336-679-2341 or on Twitter and Instagram @RippleReporterK.