Members of the cast of “Little Women the Broadway Musical”  (pictured above, left to right) are: Ben Lucas, Clint Dougherty, Erica Taylor, Mikaela Sons, Josie Watkins, Jennifer Thomas, Kylie Nuckolls, Deb Martin, Cameron Victor, and Todd Herron.

Josie Watkins is astounding as Jo in Liberty Theatre’s production of “Little Women.”

Other members of the March family include Jennifer Thomas (Beth), Kylie Nuckolls (Amy), Mikaela Sons (Marmee), and Erica Taylor (Meg).

The main entry of the Atchison County Memorial Building welcomes visitors. Recent renovations revealed many of the original architectural features.  

Aunt March, played by Deb Martin, right, takes Amy, played by Kylie Nuckolls, left, under her wing.

Ben Lucas, left, plays Jo’s (Josie Watkins) love interest, Professor Bhaer.

Meg, played by Erica Taylor, left, falls in love with the dashing John Brooke, portrayed by Clint Dougherty, right.

Cameron Victor entertains as Laurie.

Todd Herron, second from right, plays Mr. Lawrence, the neighbor who is easily irritated by the March sisters, but ends up falling for the kindred spirits, especially Beth.

If you haven’t been to the Atchison County Memorial Building in Rock Port lately, it’s time to take a trip down to the stately building at 417 S. Main. The inside, that also includes the Liberty Theatre, has undergone a glorious remodeling endeavor. Original archways welcome attendees through the front rooms, new light fixtures provide extra lighting for gatherings, and the beautifully renovated theatre now provides improved acoustics, a new lighting station, lowered stage, fixed ceiling and other improvements that make the theatre experience a much more enjoyable one.

Now is the time to stop by and take in the new sights and sounds of the refurbishment! Liberty Theatre is presenting “Little Women” this weekend with showings at 7:00 p.m. Friday and Saturday evening and at 2:30 p.m. Sunday afternoon. Based on the novel by Louisa May Alcott, “Little Women” is a production with music by Jason Howland, book by Allan Knee, lyrics by Mindy Dickstein, and presented with special arrangement with Music Theatre International. 

The much-loved classic is being told by several much-loved Liberty Theatre thespians who continually wow the crowd in every production. Imaginative Jo is portrayed by Josie Watkins, a 2019 Rock Port High School graduate whose stage presence and singing voice is that of one well beyond her years. Mikaela Sons of Rock Port, a Liberty Theatre regular also known for her singing voice and versatile acting abilities, plays Marmee, the loving mother with four smart and caring daughters. Erica Taylor of Rock Port plays Meg, the older, devoted sister who falls in love with John Brooke, played by Clint Dougherty of Rock Port. Both Erica and Clint are well-known for taking the Liberty Theatre stage and pulling off amazing, flawless performances. Jennifer Thomas of Rock Port plays Beth, the quiet, devoted sister who shares a sweet connection to Jo. Jennifer is a special treat for playgoers as this is her first time taking the Liberty Theatre stage, but hopefully not the last. Her absolutely beautiful singing voice and strong acting abilities are a perfect addition to this crew. Amy is the baby of the family and she is played by Kylie Nuckolls, a high schooler at Rock Port R-II. Kylie brings Amy’s sassy, but graceful personality alive and continues to grow her Liberty Theatre repertoire. Portraying Laurie, the boy next door who becomes the brother the girls have never had, is Cameron Victor of Nebraska. Cameron is a hoot who keeps everyone laughing (Liberty Theatre attendees will remember him as Cogsworth from “Beauty and the Beast”). But in this production, his seriousness and devoted friendship shines as he develops a special bond with the girls. Deb Martin of Tarkio plays Aunt March. Deb is the one who always takes the cake when it comes to funny, dry-humored parts and we are so glad to see her on stage in this production as the fussy, but devoted aunt. Ben Lucas of Rock Port takes the stage for the first time, having previously worked in the sound booth at Liberty Theatre. He plays Professor Bhaer, who falls in love with Jo. Todd Herron of Rock Port plays the stubborn neighbor, Mr. Lawrence, who detests having to deal with the March girls, but ultimately falls in love with their caring hearts, especially Beth’s, as we all do.

Though the set is a simple design, we know nothing is simple in theatre and this production would not be possible without the behind-the-scenes workers, including: set design/painting, Michelle Goolsby; lights/sounds, Scott Deatz and Molly Hallowell; accompanist / vocal coach, Jordan Andrews; stage manager, Jan Carpenter; costumes, Ibsen’s Costume Gallery; choreography, Gabby De-Rosier; and orchestra: Chris Alexander (keyboard), Amanda Mather (flute/piccolo/clarinet), Bradley Sheeley (clarinet), Abby Palmer (trumpet), and Amy Haddock (percussion).

Be sure to catch this wonderful story so beautifully told through the hearts and mouths of our local theatre lovers!