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Arts center welcomes theatrical directors
6 Theat direc. pic
Performers and theatrical educators Colleen Quigley Green, left, and Leigh Ann McIlvain have joined the staff at the Bowen Center for the Arts to develop the center’s musical theatre program. - photo by Photo/Michele Hester

The Bowen Center for the Arts announced on Friday the addition of theatrical directors Colleen Quigley Green and Leigh Ann McIlvain to its staff.


Green and McIlvain will develop the center’s musical theatre with a focus on children’s musical talents.


“We went around to the schools earlier this year and asked the teachers what they’d like to see in the community for the children,” said Marcia Chelf, director of the Bowen Center for the Arts. “Musical theatre for young people and adults is what they all told us.”


Trained performers with a wealth of theatrical education experience, Green and McIlvain are ready to supplement the local arts community by developing the theatrics programs in Dawson County.


“We have a large number of thespians in this community,” said Chelf. “The program will start small with baby steps, but the hope is to expand.”


Both Green, with a bachelor’s degree of fine arts in musical theatre, and McIlvain, who holds a music education degree from Shorter College, come to the Bowen Center from the Holly Theatre in Dahlonega.


Green, who lives in Dawsonville, served as the Holly’s executive artistic director for the past seven years and has performed, directed and choreographed more than 30 productions in the last 10 years.


McIlvain, of Cumming, was named musical supervisor for the Holly Theatre two years ago and also has been a part of more than 30 productions, ranging from acting, singing, directing, choreographing and orchestrating, in the past 10 years.


“Unless you practice your craft, you can not teach it the way it should be taught,” said Green, who along with members of her family played a vital role in the Holly Theatre’s success over the years.


Green and McIlvain are very excited about developing a musical theatrical program in Dawson County, which begins in January with three courses for children as young as 6 and up to adult age.


The initial workshops include a 10-week course for students, ages 9-17 that teaches improvisation and acting, music skills and how to work with an ensemble. The group will execute a performance of Godspell Jr. to conclude the course.


A beginner’s class for children ages 6-10 teaches the basics of music, acting and dance and prepares the children for a Kids Kabaret final presentation.


Act Your Age is a 4- to 8-week session for adults, which includes improvisation, musical theatre and auditioning, to name a few.


“We’re so excited they are here to develop our musical theatre program,” said Chelf, who added the community can expect great things to come from this collaboration.


For more information, call the center at (706) 216-ARTS.


E-mail Michele Hester at