Updated: May 4
This production of Harper Lee’s Pulitzer-prize winning novel is unique in that numerous family members are involved in the show together. Two of the lead characters are played by a daughter and mother, Eliza Trammell as Scout Finch, her Mother, Allison Trammell, serves as the Narrator as grown-up Scout, and Wes, the Dad and husband of the duo, plays Nathan Radley, and Master Carpenter for the set build. Two brothers fill the roles of Jem Finch by Bronson Click and Walter Cunningham, Jr. by Liam Click. Mother- daughter pair, Lori Boatfield as Miss Stephanie Crawford, and Sophie Boatfield as a Ewell Kid and Scout’s Understudy join the stage. Chris Hemphill works as Sound Designer and Technician, with daughter Presley as a Ewell Kid. Artistic Director Kate Griffith with her Mom “Mama Sue” Bilke use their talents as Costumers.
The Narrator, Allison Trammell, plays Jean Louise Finch, or adult Scout, who describes this experience, “The Whole Backstage Theatre has become a second home for my family. Since Eliza was a very little girl, she has had a passion for performance and Wes and I have loved every minute of watching her grow onstage and further develop a love for theatre. She has been involved at the WBS for the last 4 years and this place has become our favorite place to be. As parents, usually we are found watching Eliza perform as we work backstage on crew or usher, or Wes working in the scene shop as his passion lies in set design and build. In this show, however, we all three set foot onstage together in a unique opportunity that we will always cherish. The WBS is a special place to my family. Every time we walk in the door, no matter the reason, it feels good-like home. That is solely because of the people that make up this theatre family. Every show brings a new experience and new relationships and once it is over, the family has grown, by feeling connected, loved and that you belong. Performers celebrate each other, encourage and support one another. From the many greetings when you show up to the traditions backstage and the happy tears and goodbye hugs in the end, it is a place that will beckon you back to do it again and again.”
Lori Boatfield who plays Miss Stephanie Crawford, neighbor to the Finch family, said, “Sharing my love of theatre with my children brings me such joy. This theatre has become one of their favorite places. I’m blessed to be onstage with my daughter, Sophie, especially in a show that is so important in its message. While I thought she would learn from me, the reverse has also happened – I’ve learned from watching her and I’ve taken some wise advice on character movement and inflection. I’m so proud of her and the hard work she’s put into being an understudy in this show.”
Narrated by the adult Scout Finch, this story recreates the adventures and questions of the intuitive children, Scout and her brother Jem, as they grow and reveal their own acceptance of others, and realize a logical and unprejudiced sense of justice in 1930’s rural Alabama. They watch their attorney father, Atticus, played by Jeff McLaughlin, dedicate himself to proving innocence for an unjustly accused man, all the while knowing what the verdict would likely be. Published more than 60 years ago, “To Kill a Mockingbird” continues to herald awards as an international standard on booklists and stage productions.
Pictured, left to right, sitting: Allison Trammell, Eliza Trammell, Wesley Rorex, Director; Second Row: Jeff McLaughlin, Lori Boatfield, Sophie Boatfield, Wes Trammell, Chris Hemphill, Presley Hemphill, Bronson Click, Liam Click