24 Hour Musical partners with Cancer Association of Anderson for Broadway-style benefit
[caption id="attachment_21462" align="alignright" width="325"] Show and cast reveal for "Spelling Bee"[/caption]
Anderson, South Carolina’s 24 Hour Musical took the stage July 11 with a production of “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee” to benefit the Cancer Association of Anderson. Featuring a 12-person cast and an extensive crew of Upstate theatre artists and volunteers, the show held two sold-out performances at Anderson University's Belk Theatre.
The full-scale, Broadway-style musical was put together in only 24 hours. Actors submitted audition videos throughout May and June. The creative team notified those who were cast, but the title of the 2015 show remained a secret until just 24 hours before the event. After a Kick Off Party and the show reveal, the team of nearly 50 volunteers immediately began an all-night work session, memorizing lines, staging, building sets, making costumes, and locating props for the show. Exactly 24 hours later, the show opened to a packed house.
Admission was free, with donations accepted. In total, the production raised $2,346.65 for the Cancer Association of Anderson.
Why take on the challenge of producing an entire Broadway-style musical in only 24 hours? “We believe everyone should have the opportunity to use their skills and talents to make a difference”, says Noah Taylor, co-founder and artistic director of 24 Hour Musical. "The unique event offers a challenge for local artists and an opportunity to use their passion to positively impact the community."
The Cancer Association of Anderson is funded entirely by donations from the public, grants, and funds raised by events. The CAA is the only local cancer charity in Anderson County. Its mission is to help reduce the burden of cancer on Anderson County residents by providing treatment-related financial assistance, information and referral and emotional support. In 2014, the Cancer Association opened new case files for 323 new patients and an additional 12 who had been in remission were moved back to active status. The staff served an average of 152 different patients per month. CAA provided free wigs and hats to women losing their hair during treatment, hosted two free support groups and operated two sessions of a six-week Survivor School attended by approximately 15 female patients who had completed treatment. CAA also sent 24 patients through AnMed Health’s Oncology Rehabilitation program of exercise and education for survivors.
"Spelling Bee" marks 24 Hour Musical's second annual production. In 2014, the inaugural production, "You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown," raised more than $1,500 for the Anderson Free Clinic. Taylor and team plan to continue the annual event, benefiting a different charity partner each year. The organization also offered other arts events in the past year, including a workshop with Broadway actress Bailey Hanks and Anderson's recent Shakespeare in the Park production.
Via: 24 Hour Musical; photos by Casey Bates
24 Hour Musical uses theatre arts to benefit the Anderson Free Clinic
Anderson, South Carolina's 24 Hour Musical took the stage August 9, with a production of “You’re A Good Man, Charlie Brown” at Anderson University’s Belk Theatre. The inaugural event was put together by theatre artists from around the Upstate to raise funds for the Anderson Free Clinic.
Throughout July, local actors submitted audition videos, and the creative team notified those who were cast in the show. The title of the show remained a secret until just 24 hours before showtime. The cast, creative team, and sponsors came together for a kick-off party on August 8 where the show was revealed, and the actors’ roles were announced. Rehearsals began immediately and ran through the night, while teams of volunteers simultaneously located props, made costumes, and built sets.
(Editor's note: Anderson joins communities around the country in producing a 24-hour theatre event to benefit a local charity. According to the New York Times, the first 24-Hour Musicals event was staged in New York in 2008; its drama-based cousin, the 24-Hour Plays, has been around since 1995.)
Anderson's 24 Hour Musical was founded earlier this year by Noah and Carlie Taylor. The nonprofit organization seeks to better the local and global communities through theatre arts, while creating unifying, uplifting community experiences and introducing new challenges for theatre artists.
"The 24 Hour Musical came about because we believe that each individual’s specific talents can be used to better our community,” said Noah Taylor, who is also the artistic director of the new organization. “As theatre artists in the Upstate, we felt that there were very few opportunities for us to do that, and that was something we wanted to change! We also felt that there simply were not enough opportunities for people like us to make theatre. We can only grow as artists when we have opportunities to work and explore our craft. We wanted to kick off something new and exciting that young theatre artists, like ourselves, could embrace."
“You’re A Good Man, Charlie Brown” was a success, with the theatre filled to capacity just 10 minutes after the doors opened. Admission was free, but donations were accepted. In all, the organization raised $1,530.50, enough to meet the Free Clinic’s one-day operating expenses of $1,451. According to Karen Mauch, the Clinic’s funds development coordinator, in one day at the Anderson Free Clinic:
• 35-40 patients will be seen by one of the Clinic’s medical providers
• 8-10 patients will be seen by a volunteer dentists
• approximately 200 prescriptions will be dispensed
• 2-4 other health care professionals (RNs and medical assistants) will triage patients
• 3-5 students preparing for careers in healthcare professions will gain clinical experience
• 10-15 community volunteers will assist staff with clerical duties and in the pharmacy
• Staff will schedule patient appointments and maintain patient records
"This donation means that for one more day, Free Clinic staff and volunteers will come together to provide care, medications and education to patients that will help them stabilize conditions that have often been ignored," said Mauch. "The Clinic is also excited to show the community that one does not need to have a healthcare background to help the Free Clinic in their mission to bring healthcare to Anderson’s underserved!"
As for the 24 Hour Musical, the board of directors is already planning for next year’s event. They hope to partner with a different charity every year and continue to impact the Upstate community with the arts. They also look forward to bringing more exciting, unique events to the area, as early as next spring.
To learn more about the 24 Hour Musical, visit www.24hourmusicalsc.org.
Via: 24 Hour Musicals