Rare, live-stream opportunity listed for 'Newsies' this weekend!

Jennifer Stultz
Pratt Tribune
Kahrie Stegman of Pratt (middle) headlines a rave-reviewed muscial show 'Newsies' that will be live-streamed this weekend from Barclay College.

More than 1,670 tickets were sold to people who wanted to see Barclay College's recent musical production of the "Newsies," filling the Ross-Ellis Performing Arts Center in Haviland to COVID-19 capacity the past two weekends. Now, those who were not lucky enough to get tickets will have a chance to see the show in a special live-stream release this coming weekend, April 24 and 25.

"I am so proud of this cast and crew," said Barclay College Director of Fine Arts and ‘Newsies’ Director Randi Shetley. "We were not ready for the show to end!"

On that note, the college is providing two opportunities to watch ‘Newsies’ via live stream. Tickets may be purchased to the live-stream shows at www.barclaycollege.edu/newsiesonline for either a Saturday, April 24 at 7 p.m. or Sunday, April 25 at 3 p.m. (CST) viewing. Once a  ticket is purchased, an email will come from ShowTix4U with log in instructions for the show.

"On the day of the show, click the link in your email, then sit back and enjoy the performance from the comfort of your home," Shetley said. "The live-stream will be from one of two shows we recorded during the past two weekends of live shows."

While the president of Barclay College in Haviland, Royce Frazier, won't be on hand to welcome live-stream guests personally as he did to every performance April 9-11 and 15-18, the show quality and energy is bound to come through, as it did in the live performances.

"What I love so much about this cast is that there are always quirky or weird things that happen in a show like this, and they covered it so well," Shetley said. "They were so professional and so dedicated. It was just a God-thing how everything came together. I personally witnessed several miracles that took place, like a hurt knee being healed just before the curtain went up. We became such a family in the four months that we have been rehearsing this. It was just miraculous how we came together from different circumstances and prayed before every show. It was so moving, you know it was a secular show but I grew so much as a Christian and it was our goal to reflect the light of God in everything we did. It was amazing."

Barclay College student Kahrie Stegman, originally from Pratt, was the lead female in ‘Newsies,’ playing the role of Katherine Pulitzer.

"I never even planned to come to this school, but this production has been very special for me, my first full role in a major college musical. The fact that is was at a Christian college added another whole layer to theater that I had not experienced before," Stegman said. "Doing what we do for Christ gave it a very different feel, a very good feel. It was just amazing to be part of this."

Stegman said that after she graduated from Pratt High School in 2020, she had planned to study in Peru for a year, but the COVID-19 pandemic changed those plans. A friend invited her to be part of the musical "Mary Poppins" at Barclay but to do so she had to enroll in a class. Stegman said she decided she might as well become a full-time student while she waited for the world to open back up again after the pandemic. It was a choice she has not regretted at all.

"I had sworn my whole life that I would never go to college so close to home," Stegman said. "But now I'm so glad God put me here and I got to experience this. I love the unlikely friendships that have formed in the show and in life, and I absolutely have loved just being part of this cast. We eat, live, breathe, work together at rehearsals. It's just been a lot of fun."

Another Pratt actor who was part of the ‘Newsies’ cast was Gale Rose, former Pratt Tribune reporter and long-time thespian with more than 70 theatrical and/or musical productions in his repertoire. He said he also experienced a great level of fun and satisfaction from his involvement in the Barclay College production.

"Now that I'm retired I finally have time to be in the plays like this," Rose said. "I just enjoyed it to the fullest. I am so impressed with the theater, the facility at Barclay, the directors, the cast, the crew, the volunteers from the community - I was just impressed with the hard work of everyone involved. It was just an extraordinary thing to have this type of production here in a small town like Haviland. It took all of that to make this show come to life, and it was just amazing."

Rose, 70, said he enjoyed being surrounded by the youthful energy of most of the other kids in the cast. 

Shetley said half of the cast members were students of Barclay College, the other half were community volunteers like Rose, or younger students from area schools.