The Best Christmas
Pageant Ever 2012
Meet the Cast (in order
Bradley- Sara Hively
Hively (Beth)- is honored to be a part of this cast. This is
her first production with Park Players, however she spent last
Christmas with Mr. Clay and Mr. Brad at ACTA playing
Jennifer in The Christmas Toyshop. Other
performances include Christine ( I Remember Mama),
Mouse (Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing), Ms. Teavee ( Willy
Wonka, Jr.), Young girl ( The Music Man). Sara spent her
Saturdays in the autumn at Mr. Brad Water’s acting class. She
is so grateful for the time she spent with him, and all that she
was able to learn from him. She will take it with her as she
grows as an actress and as a person. Merry Christmas and may
God bless you and keep you this holiday season!
- Cece Kelly
Cece Kelly- Cece is very excited to play Alice in
this production of The Best Christmas Pageant Ever!
This is her first Park Players production. She appeared this
summer as Ramona in StageDoor Youth Theatre’s Miss Nelson is
Missing. Cece was born in Birmingham, Alabama and is a 5th
grader at Cherokee Bend Elementary School. Cece likes dancing,
basketball, volleyball, reading, and travelling with her family.
She really enjoys acting and hopes to do more in the future!
Cece’s dream cast would be working with Johnny Depp, Jack Black,
Eddie Murphy, and Jennifer Lawrence. Cece would like to thank
her family for their love and support. She is grateful she got
to meet Brad and is thankful to him for giving her this
opportunity. She is also thankful to Clay for everything! She
hopes you all enjoy the show!
Nicole began her theatre career at Southminster
Day School during her first grade play. This is where her desire
to be on stage was sparked by her music teacher Jane Holbert.
Nicole has been seen locally on many stages, including: Red
Mountain Theatre, Briarwood Presbyterian Church, Birmingham
Children's Theatre and Virginia Samford Theatre as well as
Southminster Day School. Nicole has previously been in "The Best
Christmas Pageant Ever" with The Birmingham Children's Theatre.
She is thrilled to portray "Maxine" in this current production.
Her favorite role, thus far, was her portrayal as a kitten in
"CATS" with S.T.A.R.S. at the Virginia Samford Theatre. Nicole
attends The Altamont School and hopes to pursue a career in
music or theatre. She also is a member of the volleyball team as
well as the youth choir at Altamont and Briarwood Presbyterian
Church. Nicole's hobbies include photography, wake boarding and
snow skiing. She dedicates this performance to Brad Waters.
Dorian Donnell Davis
Dorian is excited to be a part of the Park
Player’s production of The Best Christmas Pageant Ever,
for in his words “There is nothing more exciting than being on
stage”. Dorian Donnell Davis is a 5th year student
at Creative Montessori School where he was introduced to theatre
and acting under the direction of Jessica Walston-Alldredge and
where he now takes classes under Morgan Walston, ASFA student
and younger sister of Mrs. Alldredge. Dorian made his main
stage debut at age eight in The Bards of Birmingham production
of Shakespeare’s A Midsummer’s Night Dream where
he played the role of the young lover Lysander. Dorian has
since been seen as Silvius in As You Like It;
Young York in Richard III; Ferdinand in The
Tempest; Duke Orsino and Sir Toby Belch in Twelfth
Night; and he is presently cast as Hamlet in
Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead all produced and
directed by The Bards of Birmingham’s Artistic Director Laura
Coulter. Dorian also played the role of Jack in Alabama School
of Fine Arts Summer Camp’s 2012 production of Who Said
Jack Doesn’t Know Beans. Dorian enjoys soccer and cub
scouts and is looking forward to becoming a Boy Scout in May.
Dorian’s favorite past time activity is reading and he has been
known to take book to the circus, to the theatre and even to
Bradley - Greg Hively
Greg is very excited to be back with
Birmingham Park Players for the production of The Best
Christmas Pageant Ever. His most recent roles include
Hobart Kemp in Ramona Quimby, Doc in Birmingham Park
Player's Production of Second Samuel, Mr. Hyde in I
Remember Mama, Jack in The Christmas Toyshop and
Salesman #5/ensemble in The Music Man. When he is not
on stage, he is working as an optometrist in Moody, where he has
practiced for 12 years now. He would like to thank his lovely
wife Suzanna for her support, his daughter Julianne for the
constant laughter, and his children Sara and Taylor for
introducing him to acting in the first place! They are his
inspiration! Most of all Greg would like to give thanks to God
for continually putting him in new places and situations to meet
new friends and experience new challenges.
- Becky Johnson
Becky is thrilled to be sharing the stage with 3
of her 4 children. This is the first time she's ever had the joy
of performing with her kids. You may have seen her this year as
Jimmy Deeanne in Second Samuel, Vernadette in Dixie Swim Club,
or Eliante in the Misanthrope. She can next be seen as
in VST's production of 9 to 5, opening in January. She wishes to
thank her husband and kids for their support, the cast and crew
for pulling together in adversity to produce a quality show, and
God for his many blessings. She dedicates her performance to the
memory of Brad Waters, a great director and an even better
Slocum - Salena Whalen-Stalker
Salena made her acting debut in 2010, appearing as Dinah Grayson
in The Dixie Swim Club. Since then, she has appeared in
Second Samuel (2011), The Dixie Swim Club (2011),
as Lexie Richards, Showtime at First Baptist of Ivy Gap
(2012) and Radio TBS (2012). This is her first
performance with the Park Players and she is grateful to have
studied recently under the direction of Brad Waters. Salena
works in the Compliance Department at Children’s of Alabama.
Clark - Katrina Hyche
Although Katrina is a 15 year veteran in
theatre, performing in numerous church plays and skits, this
is her first appearance in a Park Players performance. She
is thankful to them for this opportunity to work with such a
talented cast. She also is involved as a puppeteer and
backstage director for puppet shows at her church. More
recently, she has enjoyed roles in Nick Nicholson's music
video "Grandpa's Still" and a part in a Doritos commercial.
In her spare time, she enjoys working out at the gym and
shooting her bow. She would like to thank her Mom for always
supporting her and especially her Lord and Savior Jesus
Christ for every performance. "All talent comes from God and
all glory goes to God."
McCarthy - Nancy Moore
is excited to be doing her second show for Park Players. She
works days as the Historic Clothing Manager for the American
Village and is also an historical interpreter portraying Dolly
Madison and Marcy Otis Warren (one of America’s first
playwright.) A graduate of Samford University in Theatre, she
thanks Park Players for this chance to ply her craft.
Armstrong - Yvonne Gauntt
Yvonne Gauntt has
been following in her mother's footsteps, doing community
theater off and on for most of her adult life, starting with
most of the works of Gilbert and Sullivan, proceeding to her
mother's love: musical comedy, and finally settling on
Shakespeare and other classic theater. Her most recent shows
have been The Misanthrope, Cyrano de Bergerac, Midsummer
Night's Dream, Much Ado About Nothing, and Taming of the Shrew,
all with Park Players. She is especially excited to be doing
this show with her daughters, Maggie and Patricia.
Herdman - Sam Purkey
Sam Purkey is 12 years old and a student at Leeds Middle School. He has been in
Dear Edwina as Scott and Seussical as The Mayor of Whoville at The Leeds Arts
Council. He is currently in The Raven as The Raven and Action News as Carl Muffintop in his school drama club. He would like to thank Brad for an amazing
opportunity. He would also like to thank Clay, Lysa, and Becky for believing
"The show must go on!" Finally, he would like to thank his family and friends
for all their support.
Herdman - Neha Ramesh
Neha is thrilled to be in her
first production on American Soil. She has been seen as the
Cowardly Lion in the Wizard of Oz and as the narrator in
Thousand and One Arabian Nights. Neha moved to the Birmingham 10
months ago from Manchester England and loves to dance and play
the flute and piano when not on stage. She sends her love and
thanks to the rest of the cast and crew for this wonderful
Herdman - Alysa Newman
Softball is a family tradition, every spring
and summer Alysa, her sister Breanna & dad Jeff set the diamond
on fire, while mom Brandi cheers them on. Alysa also
participates in Basket ball, Baton, Gymnastics, and riding her 4
wheeler, watching TV, and Karate. This will be Alysa's debut
performance with Park Players and of Theatre in general. She is
very excited to create the character of Gladys Herman. This is
where Karate comes in handy.
Herdman - Alden Williams
Alden Williams is a high school junior at Arlington School,
a small, private, and very much incredibly awesome place.
In his spare time, Alden likes to read, see movies, and
watch things online. He is also into other generic hobbies
(eating, sleeping, etc.) He is currently studying as an
actor for the Park Players theater group. They also are
quite incredibly awesome. Alden has also been in two other
plays a long time ago, in a school far, far away (not really
-- Avondale Elementary School). In fourth grade, he played
the narrarator for the “The Three Billy Goats Calypso.”
also played Mr. Frank in “The Diary of Anne Frank” in fifth
grade. Upon hearing he was called in as an emergency
replacement actor in “The Misanthrope,” Alden promptly,
though temporarily, lost control of mental faculties and
babbled like a lunatic. He was, despite this reaction,
extremely pleased and was glad to accept. He then played the
part to many performances. He eagerly looks ahead to other
performances in other plays. He is happy to be in another
Park Player production, “The Best Christmas Pageant Ever.”
Herdman - Christian Johnson
Christian is so happy to make
his theatrical debut playing the part of Ollie Herdman for
the Park Players. From the moment he first read the book he
knew that if he were ever in the play he'd want to be a
Herdman. He would like to thank his family and the cast and
crew for supporting him in this show. Merry Christmas and
God bless you!
Herdman - Jacob McMahon
This is Jacob's first production. He is very happy to work
with the Park Players for his first performance. He attends
Our Lady of Sorrows School and likes to play Basketball.
Hopkins - Tuck Thornsberry
Tuck Thornsberry is a
homeschooled 3rd grader who enjoys Boy Scouts, baseball,
basketball, and bothering his big sister. He also likes to
sing and play computer games. This is his first play.
- Olivia Soileau
Olivia is truly exited to be in her
first Park Players production. She is exited to play the role
of" Beverly". She would like to thank Clay for giving her the
opportunity to be in this play. Olivia has been in 3 summer
acting camps and 1 real play already. This play is one of the
best she has ever been in. She was in choir in 4th grade and
loves to sing.
This is Maggie's
second Park Players production, having played Pickpocket, Poet,
and Soldier in Cyrano de Bergerac last May. She has also
performed in multiple Children's Dance Foundation shows and is
experienced in cartooning, singing and various acting skills
Hopkins/firefighter - Thomas McCarron
This is Thomas' fourth production with Birmingham
Park Players and he is excited to be in it. He was previously worked in Clay
Boyce's production of William the Bard and is currently working in Brad Waters',
Choir - Ursa Praytor
Ursa Praytor is a second grade student at
Creative Montessori School where she has been studying drama for
the past two years. In addition to school performances, she
also played a sprite in the Birmingham Bards production of
The Tempest. She is very excited to appear in her first Park
Choir - Harper Soileau
Harper is in the 7th grade at Leeds Middle
School. This is her first performance with Park Players. She has
enjoyed being a part of productions at ACTA in Trussville and
the Leeds Arts Council. Favorite plays include Oliver!
and Seussical, Jr. Harper wants to thank Clay and Becky
for giving her the chance to be a part of The Best Chris Pageant
Choir - Nyla Boler
elated about joining the cast of "The Best Christmas Ever."
She is a fourth grade student at Robinson Elementary School
- Eastlake. She has performed in numerous church, community,
and school theatrical productions. She is a member of the
Robinson Elementary School Chorus and the Birmingham City
Schools All City Choir. In addition to theater, she enjoys
reading, playing basketball, and shopping. She studies
drama and theatre under the tutelage of Brad Waters and
Choir - Emma Thornsberry
Emma is very excited to be in her first production with the Park
Players. Emma is a homeschooled 6th grader who likes to read, sing, make
jewelry, play basketball, draw and build with Legos.
Choir - Patricia Gauntt
Patricia is in the second grade at Shades Cahaba
Elementary School. Her favorite color is pink. Her favorite animal is puppies.
She is so excited because she finally gets to be in her first show with Park
Choir/ Soloist - McClain Miles
McClain moved from North Carolina this summer with her family,
and is a sophomore at the Alabama School of Fine Arts, concentrating in drama.
She's excited to be making her Birmingham theater debut with Park Players! Her
most recent role was "Belle" in Carson High School's Beauty and the Beast.
Other roles include "Becky Thatcher" in Tom Sawyer the Musical, "The Cat"
in Honk!, "The Narrator" in Joseph and the Technicolor Dreamcoat,
and "Adrianna" in Comedy of Errors. She's looking forward to beginning
rehearsals for 9 to 5 at The Virginia Samford Theater.
Choir - Zylayah Johnson
Zylayah is appearing onstage for the first time in this
production and she couldn't be happier. She loves being a part of the Park
Players and hopes to do even more theatre in the future. She hopes everyone
enjoys the show! Merry Christmas! Unto us a child is born!
Hobie - Malik Johnson
Malik is proud to be a part of this production with the Park
Players. It is his first time ever onstage and he loves that his mom and 2 of
his siblings are onstage with him. He has had a lot of fun working on the show
and hopes you have a lot of fun watching it. God bless you and merry Christmas!
- Brad Waters
Brad is very
excited to be directing his third show for Park Players. He’s
also glad to be working with Producing Artistic Director, Clay
Boyce, as the Managing Artistic Director. There are lots of
exciting things happening at Park Players and he encourages
people to participate. “It’s all about community, “he says. “We
hope our growth – our own space, offering classes, etc – is
always about being able to provide more to our communities of
artisans and patrons. My thanks to my Mom, Gail and everyone
else that is helping us to succeed.
Brad Waters passed away after casting this show. Clay Boyce
would like to thank him for giving him such a wonderful cast to
work with and everyone
involved with Park Players will miss him, his smile and his
- Clay Boyce
Clay is the Artistic Director and
founder of Park Players. He is thrilled to be working with this
talented cast and crew that Brad brought together. He was
awarded the "Outstanding Achievement in Directing" for his work
on the play William the Bard at the Alabama Community
Theatre Festival this year. He was last seen on stage as
Boolie in the Virginia Samford Theatre's production of
Driving Miss Daisy. Some of his favorite roles have
been George in Of Mice and Men, the Beast in
Disney's Beauty and the Beast, the title role in Hamlet
and Victoria's dad. He would like to thank his wife, Vicki, his
daughter, Victoria and all his close friends (you know who you
are!) for all the love and support they have given him through
the years! I couldn't have done this without you!
And thank you to this group of young adults and parents for all
their hard work and time on this production.
- Lysa Carter
Best Christmas Pageant Ever
will be the first (hopefully, of many) Park Players show
that Lysa will stage manage. Her theatrical/stage
hand/props/wigs & make-up, directorial involvement include
productions of Steel Magnolias, House of blue leaves, Peter
Pan, zop, Oliver, Les Miserables, Barber of Seville, Aida,
Etta James, Johnny Lang, Willie Nelson, and the list goes
on... Lysa would like to thank Her very large family,
Jesse Bates (director of the next park players production) &
Thomas Cavano, who taught me about theatre & what it takes
to make a living in the business of show. also a profound"
Thank You" goes to all of those neglected during the
creation of this play, you know who you are. And finally
Brad Waters for including me in his dreams & projects which
led me here, with this incredible group of thespians.
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