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Culture notes: Tri-Cities High nails honor of staging ‘Color Purple’; Act 3 prepares Holocaust musical written by high schoolers

‘Color’ of courage
East Point’s Tri-Cities High School Visual and Performing Arts Magnet Program has the heady honor of being the first U.S. high school awarded rights to perform Alice Walker’s “The Color Purple.”

A frequent contender in the annual Shuler Hensley Awards for high school musical theater at Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre , Tri-Cities is in the first week of a two-week run of the challenging Broadway musical, tapping the talents of nearly 100 students.

Shows at the Viola Turner Theater are at 7:30 p.m. Friday, 2 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday, 5 p.m. Sunday and 7:30 p.m. March 28-30. General admission: $15 adults; $10 students and seniors. Adult tickets only available in advance via; purchase others at door with ID. 2575 Harris St., East Point. 404-669-8200, ext. 150. HOWARD POUSNER

Act 3 develops Holocaust musical

In the arts, even in a rough economy, sometimes angels make unexpected landings.

An audience member impressed by a staged reading of a Holocaust-related musical last May at Act 3 Productions  solicited a $25,000 grant from a foundation that will help the Sandy Springs community theater troupe develop a full-scale production. Both audience member and foundation wish to remain anonymous.

“By Wheel and By Wing” tells the true story of the Parneses, a Jewish family of 10 living on the Polish-Ukraine border at the outbreak of World War II who survived the Holocaust by staying ahead of the invading Nazis.

Led by Roswell playwright-songwriter-educator Corey-Jan Albert, the musical was created by students from Galloway, North Springs, Paideia, Riverwood, Roswell and Walton high schools, as well as the University of Georgia, with cooperation from surviving family members.

Plans are proceeding for the full-scale staging on June 21-July 7, with the $25,000 in underwriting helping pay for professional musical arrangements, staging and costumes and performer stipends.

Act 3 is holding auditions May 8-9 for Equity and non-Equity actors and singers of all ages, with callbacks May 10. Auditions are by appointment only; e-mail HOWARD POUSNER

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