Known for their child-friendly plays, Porkchop Productions, a professional theatre company founded in 1991, put on three shows at Theatre on the Green on Wednesday, April 18. Their play, a version of “Goldilocks,” offered the audience a different ending to the popular children’s fairytale “Goldilocks and the Three Bears.”
Goldilocks, played by Laura Blanchette, finds the house of the three bears, Papa Bear, Mama Bear and Baby Bear. While looking for a pencil to “borrow,” she ends up taking complete advantage of them. She leaves with Baby Bear’s bright red bike, but alas, without a pencil.
On her way to school Goldilocks causes a lot of mischief and ends up in the courtroom of Judge Trudy, played by Stacey Maxwell. In the end, she is convicted for breaking the Golden Rule. She pleads guilty, asking for forgiveness for her misbehaviors.
Audience participants, who acted as witnesses in the play, were Teresa Whiteman of Faith Christian Academy, along with preschoolers Sydney McCall of First Methodist School and Harry Simpson of St. David’s School. Many people attended the first showing. In fact, the auditorium was so packed, the balcony had to be opened.
When interviewed, Lindsay Bennett of the Cheraw Arts Commission, answered these questions:
Q: How many times has Porkchop Productions been in Cheraw?
A: Porkchop Productions has been coming to Cheraw for more than 14 years, with four productions per year. In addition, they instruct the Cheraw Arts Commission annual summer theatre camp for students. Campers learn basic acting skills and become familiar with the world of theatre.
Q: How does the Cheraw Arts Commission benefit from sponsoring Porkchop Productions?
A: The Cheraw Arts Commission does not benefit itself from the productions, but we are providing an opportunity for young audiences to see “live” theatre performances. We have been able to present a theatre experience for school children at an affordable price for 14 years. It is our mission to provide such cultural opportunities for our community.
Q: Is there anything you would like the readers of the Cheraw Chronicle to know about Porkchop Productions?
A: The Cheraw Arts Commission is fortunate to have Porkchop Productions, a professional theatre group, to come to our area and present these shows. They performed extensively for schools, libraries, youth groups and special events throughout the southeast.
When interviewed, Teresa Whiteman answered these questions:
Q: Was this your first time attending a Porkchop Productions play?
A: No, I have been attending as long as they have been coming to Cheraw.
Q: Do you personally know the actors that were in the play?
A: Yes, I have known them since they first started working the Cheraw Theater Camp. Both of my daughters have been in the summer theater camp since the beginning. My oldest, Laney, is now 24 and still loves to come back to help. My youngest, Robin, 16, first performed with her sister in the camp production wearing a poodle skirt and singing. She was three years old at the time. Age requirements have changed since then.
Q: Is there anything else you would like to add?
A: Cheraw’s theater camp is a wonderful experience for anyone who would like to learn more about performing. There is an age requirement for beginning camp, but no one is too old to participate! There is a performance of the theater camp on the Friday camp ends. Admission is not very much. My girls and I have loved the experience they have gotten through the camp. Laura said they are trying to extend the camp hours for the older group this year to include theater games and impromptu activities that may help them in life with interviews or public speaking. Porkchop Productions has a play they perform about bullying that is now being performed by other companies. Their plays are written for elementary age students, although there is another level of humor for adults. Each play covers a topic these students face. A lesson is learned in each play. If you check their website, you can see they base each play on something from the state standards. They are keeping up with what is needed to fulfill these standards! Thank you for the opportunity to tell more about these wonderful women and Porkchop Productions.