Before I became a photographer, my life pretty much revolved around musical theatre. I lived for dance classes, and auditions and rehearsals, and instead of top 40 music playing on my car radio, I usually had Broadway cast recordings playing on repeat. When I lived in New York City, I would buy standing room tickets to see Broadway shows 2, 3, even 4 times. Even though I’m not involved in the theatre anymore, it is still something very near and dear to my heart. So when my 8 year old niece started showing an interest in singing and acting, I was more than happy to take her under my wing and show her the ropes. We spent many hours together practicing songs, and working on audition material, and it wasn’t long before she was landing lead roles in local productions. And I have to say- as much as I loved performing myself, it was just as exciting, if not more so, to see my little niece up on stage shining like a star.
That little 8 year old is a senior in high school now, and has grown into an accomplished singer and actor, and an amazing young woman. This spring she will play the role of Belle in Beauty and the Beast at her high school in Colorado Springs, and in the fall she will head to Grand Canyon University where she will be majoring in Elementary Education and Theatre Education.
I’m so proud of everything you have accomplished Ellie! It’s been such a joy to watch you grow as both a person and a performer! I can’t wait to see how you combine your love for children and your passion for theatre!