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By Amye Stivender
Colleton Preparatory Academy Choruses filled the Colleton Center Auditorium last Thursday night as they presented their first original musical, “A Cup O’ Life”. Set inside a coffee shop, the students brought to life two fun-filled acts with a short intermission in between. The Colleton Prep Elementary, Middle, and High School Choruses joined together to create a unique and musical piece that was not only entertaining but personal to the students who created it. Under the direction of Jennifer McMillian, the students created their own musical which McMillian said, “we really created it on a whim at the end of the year last year when discussing what we wanted to do for this year.” McMillian said that they looked at skits as a guideline and let the creativity flow as they built this year’s musical. McMillian described the journey as a “fun process.” Act One was a mixture of songs by all choruses, including solos and duets by seniors Tenna Marie Kinard, Natalye Kinard, Brynn Nettles, Olivia Burns, and sign language by Sloman Dean. Act Two had a middle school chorus solo by Walker Nettles, senior John Flemming on the Guitar for “Sounds of Silence”, and two additional seniors join the list of soloist, Gracie Griffin and Emily Martin in “You Raise Me Up.” The night was bittersweet for several seniors who starred in the first musical McMillian directed at Colleton Prep over seven years ago. Seniors Natalye Kinard, Olivia Burns, and Haley Wilson have all been with McMillian since the beginning. Kinard said, “She has built this group,” when talking about McMillian and reflecting over her years in Chorus. Kinard was showcased in the musical as herself and Coach Nat Stoner, “My favorite part about the musical is the teacher’s skit because it’s really funny.” Senior Haley Wilson said the best part about this year’s musical is “the fact we got to write it makes it more personal.” A little more behind the scenes were CPA Seniors John Flemming and Connor Pye. Flemming said that he worked with lights and background and his favorite part about the production was, “The set because we helped design it.” Pye also helped with construction and was running lights the night of the musical however his favorite part was, “Working with all the little kids,” he said. With the Elementary Chorus making up the largest of the three choruses, McMillian had a stage full of young and talented students. “There are more people to thank than I can even name but I want to thank the parents and grandparents who allowed their kids to take part in the musical, and the volunteers who helped with the musical and get the kids to rehearsal” McMillian said, “and to my coworkers who are amazing and have let me rearrange schedules, none of this would be possible without them.” Parents and family were able to purchase a DVD of the musical from Cook Productions at the end of the show for a lifetime of enjoyment.