Katie Hamilton Meier, a third-year harpist and student at the School for the Creative and Performing Arts, performs at the 2003 premier event of Taking the Stage at the amphitheater at the Behringer-Crawford Museum in Covington.

Photo courtesy Bethany Starling / Behringer-Crawford Museum

Young Players Take to the Stage

COVINGTON Offering a venue for area youth to showcase their talents, the Behringer-Crawford Museum will host Taking the Stage, a teen-performing, open-microphone event at Devou Park, on Tuesday, June 15 and Tuesday, July 27.

Program organizer Pat Burns says one of the key features about the program, which debuted last year, is that it provides area teens with an interest in the arts the opportunity to get together and see what their peers are doing.

"If you play sports, you meet people with those same interests, but if you play an instrument or act, you don't necessarily meet those people," Burns says. "This lets them know what other kids who share their interests are doing."

Among the 29 acts that performed at last year's Taking the Stage were dramatic monologues, singers performing original work and musicians who performed on instruments that ranged from lap dulcimers to harps.

Sandra Hamilton, the Adoption Home Studies Coordinator at the Children's Home of Northern Kentucky, saw her daughter perform last year. Katie, 15, a student at Cincinnati's School for the Creative and Performing Arts, played the harp.

"It was really nice, such an open door for kids," Hamilton says. "It was especially nice for those kids who wouldn't get to entertain otherwise."

Burns says there are currently 11 acts scheduled for the June 15 event. Some of those are repeat performers like Brittany Whitaker, a Holmes High School student who will once again be performing gospel rap.

Bethany Sterling, education director for the Behringer-Crawford Museum, sees Taking the Stage as a terrific way to extend the museum's reach.

"It really increases the audience," Sterling says. "It reaches out to teens. So much of what we do here is geared toward children and adults."

Sterling says last year, Taking the Stage was met with encouraging response.

"It's a very positive experience," Sterling says. "Some of the kids were really professional."

Sterling says last year a scout from Northern Kentucky University's drama department attended the event and signed a performer.

The program is held at the Devou Park Pavilion from 6 to 9 p.m. Admission for teens and students is $2, $5 for adults. Behringer-Crawford Museum members are admitted free of charge.

The event is sponsored by Adkisson Insurance Agency, Inc., Summit Medical Group, Coldwell Banker-West Shell and The City of Covington.

For more information on Taking the Stage call 859-341-4828, or contact Pat Burns at

Posted 6-14-2004

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