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When students from Lynn Ellis’ third-grade class at Bromley East Charter School come to the Prairie Playhouse production of “Annie,” where Ellis plays the cranky Miss Hannigan, some …
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When students from Lynn Ellis’ third-grade class at Bromley East Charter School come to the Prairie Playhouse production of “Annie,” where Ellis plays the cranky Miss Hannigan, some end up being pretty surprised.
“I’ve heard that some of the kids tell other people, ‘She’s not really like that,’” Ellis laughed. “Some of them have started calling me ‘Miss Hannigan’ during the school day now. But the students love to see me on the stage. It’s a totally different perspective.
“Miss Hannigan is a lot of fun to play,” she said. “She’s very sassy.”
Ellis will take the stage for the final three performances of the Prairie Playhouse production of “Annie” this weekend at Prairie View High School. Several of her 23 Bromley East Charter students have already seen her in the production. Ellis said she doesn’t bring theater into her classroom any more than usual these days but utilizes skills from the stage in other ways.
“I think as a teacher when you engage the kids, there is a sense of theatrics,” she said. “The kids always laugh because I always talk with my hands.”
She said community response to “Annie” has been great and the cast and crew are very pleased with the turnout for performances. Ellis said this weekend will be bittersweet. She looks forward to working with the cast again after a couple of weeks off, but she’s sad this weekend is the last for the production.
“We have an absolutely fabulous cast,” she said. “Everybody is very easy going, and we have a good time. We get into our characters and feed off each other. We have really positive energy.
“I think it’s a great family production,” she said. “It relates to everyone.”
Ellis, her husband, Jeff, and their son moved to Brighton in December 2006 from Ohio for Jeff’s work. She is in her fourth year teaching at Bromley East Charter School.
“We love it here and don’t ever plan to move,” she said.
Ellis said she’s been involved in theater in some way or another for quite some time.
“I’ve been doing theater since I was in sixth grade, and that’s a long time ago,” she said.
She took on a variety of roles in community theater in Ohio and was thrilled to find another local theater company in Brighton. Ellis said she’s enjoyed working with Prairie Playhouse and is proud of the quality productions they produce.
“Prairie Playhouse is awesome community theater, and it’s been nice to have that outlet,” she said. “It forces me to create a balance and it’s a lot of fun to have that outlet as an adult.
“Theater, and especially community theater, is an opportunity for people in the community to share their talents,” she added. “Community theater brings so much to Brighton.”
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