The very first Open Mic Night sponsored by the Cheraw Arts Commission (CAC) was more than well received last Thursday. Lindsay Bennett, executive director for the CAC, is already talking about planning another one for the summer.
The variety of talent displayed at the Theatre on the Green March 13 was complimented by the variety of age groups that participated. Some of the young performers were just 11 years old, and they received well deserved standing ovations. There were high school students and young adults. And others were, well … full grown but young at heart.
There were solo singers, those who played the guitar and sang, dancers, piano players and even a clarinet performance accompanied by piano.
The theater, which holds approximately 250 people, was not packed to capacity, but there was a great turn out. Nearly 30 people performed, and lots more assisted with lighting, sound equipment and other details.
Rebecca Prevatte served as the master of ceremony of the event, making all the performers feel welcomed to the stage. In homage to the infamous Ellen Degeneres and friends selfie from the Oscars, Prevatte and Alterius Pratt sent out their own selfie on Twitter during the evening’s performance.
Surrounded by moving multi-colored lights, Dustin Burch danced to a Michael Jackson song that energized the entire theater.
Marshall Hendricks was not the only performer to admit to being nervous, but he managed to pull it off. His performance of Christmas Day 1976 was both moving and memorable.
Another big hit was Trinity Fortenberry’s performance of the cup song, You’re gonna miss me when I’m gone, that has become popular from the movie Pitch Perfect.
David Sides, Cheraw’s director of tourism and leisure services, said he thoroughly enjoyed the evening.
“I found myself wondering what I might could do for the next show,” said Sides.
Sides said he not only appreciated the display of talent, but the atmosphere of the show.
“There was such a feeling of community spirit. It made me think of how it must have been, years ago, when people gathered at the theater to entertain one another; instead of sitting in front of the TV or some other technological devise.”
The evening’s line up included: Rakin McQueen, Tom Davidson, Ya’Londa Freeman and Friends, Miracle Bowles, Caylen Michaels, Audrey and Dakota Durmmond, Karen Kissiah, Lawton Harris, The Crawford Trio, Alterius Pratt, Trinity Fortenberry, Marshall Hindricks, Naja Freeman, Dustin Burch, Persia Harrison, Cora Harrison, Hannah Thomas, Margaret Jean Harris, Emma Dean, Khalil Crowder and David English.
— Karen Kissiah can be reached at 843-537-5261.