"Do what you can, with what you have, where you are."
This quote by Theodore Roosevelt is exemplified in a group of young Columbia area actors who are using their time and talents to help make their world a better place. Columbia Children's Theatre's S.T.A.R. (Student Thespians Achieving Results) Program will present a variety showcase to benefit the Ronald McDonald House. Performances will take place Saturday, November 3, at 7:00 p.m., and Sunday, November 4 at 3:00 PM at Columbia Children's Theatre in Richland Mall, 3400 Forest Dr. in Forest Acres. Tickets are $8.00 and can be purchased on-line at columbiachildrenstheatre.com or at the door.
The CCT S.T.A.R Showcase will feature more than 30 acts ranging from scenes and monologues, acoustic guitar and a capella singing, to rousing musical numbers and gymnastics, all chosen and produced by the young actors themselves. Proceeds from the performance will be donated to support the work of the Ronald McDonald House, as selected by S.T.A.R. program members.
The brainchild of Pamela Chalfant and her daughters Carolyn, Kate, and Hannah, the S.T.A.R. program was designed to instill the importance of philanthropy in children at an early age by structuring a program that allowed them to advance The Common good through an activity that they were passionate about-in this case the love of performing in live theatre. Partnering with CCT's YouTheatre was a perfect fit where hundreds of student actors perform in plays and musicals every year.
"Although we are proud of our children's achievements on stage, we hope to have our children recognize that their talent is a precious gift and a blessing," said co-founder Pamela Chalfant. "One of our main goals for this group is to encourage the children to share their gifts with others. We are hopeful that the CCT S.T.A.R. Program will allow the children to become more altruistic."
While guided by parent mentors, the group is primarily self-governed by the students who all make presentations about area philanthropic organizations that would benefit from their efforts. Their first showcase last May raised more than $300.00 for the Oliver Gospel Mission.
Columbia Children's Theatre is a professional, resident not-for-profit theatre dedicated to providing quality live theatre experiences for families and young audiences, and is supported in part by The Little Gym of Columbia and Lexington, Midlands Kids' Directory, The City of Forest Acres, The Cultural Council of Richland and Lexington Counties, and the South Carolina Arts Commission, which receives funding from the National Endowment for the Arts.
Pictured: Back Row: Avery Cantey, Brennan McCort, Sydney Helms. Middle Row: Abby Bartman, Carolyn Chalfant, Ava Woody, Imani Ross-Jackson, Ethan Cash, Rachel Glowacki, Jenna Woody, Matthew Wright, Courtney Hope Diveley, Taylor Diveley, Noah Diveley. Bottom Row: Kate Chalfant, Gabby Duvall, Haley McCort, Hannah Chalfant, Jadon Stanek, Joshua Diveley.