Spotlight On: Our Tutors featuring in the cast of Tuck Everlasting
4-minute read // Published by Young Peoples Theatre, February 2023
Written by: Chelsea Willis
Pictured: Brianna Budden and Caitlin Maher (Photo by Riley McLean)
On of the most special parts about being involved in Young Peoples Theatre, is watching our students grow from young people, to established performers and then on to become tutors for the next generation of young performers. And then even more special, when we have the tutors back performing on our stage with their own students. Tuck Everlasting (Theatre for Young Audience Edition) sees that journey for two of our tutors, Brianna Budden and Caitlin Maher. Bree and Caitlin have been a part of the YPT community for many, many years and have graced our stages on numerous occasions, most recently playing Val (Brianna) and Diana (Caitlin) in our 2022 production of A Chorus Line (High School Edition).
These young team members are wonderful role models for our young students and certainly inspire a great work ethic, dedication and passion in our cohort. It can be difficult to manage being both a peer when you are in the cast and a leader as a tutor, but we are proud of the girls for walking this line with ease. We asked both Bree and Caitlin about their experience in the cast of Tuck Everlasting.
1) Tell us about your characters in Tuck Everlasting?
Caitlin: My character is Mae Tuck, she is the mother of the Tuck family.
Bree: My character is Betsy Foster, Winnie Foster’s mother.
2) What is it like taking on the role of a ‘mother’ or maternal figure in a production?
Caitlin: It’s been different but an exciting challenge, however, watching the movie and other stage adaptations of the show and seeing how other people have played Mae has helped me get into character more.
Bree: It’s been difficult as you can’t pull from life experience so it’s been challenging trying to find the right emotion and be mature while performing
3) As a tutor in the cast, you get to be a mentor to our younger students. What do you find the most rewarding?
Caitlin: I think that it’s so exciting to be in a show with students that I have tutored or worked on another show with in the past. It’s amazing to see how each of them have grown and developed over such a short amount of time.
Bree: The most rewarding is getting to see students that you have taught over the years develop and grow even more into their characters and gain confidence to perform.
4) How has YPT helped you be the performers you are today?
Caitlin: YPT has helped me due to the countless amount of opportunities that I’ve been given both on stage and off. Each opportunity gives me a new insight into performing that I think helps me become better and more confident.
Bree: It has given me confidence to get out on the stage and perform
5) Any advice for students wanting to get into performing?
Caitlin: Go for it! Every show that I’ve been in has been amazing and I’ve gotten something out of every single role I’ve played no matter what it has been.
Bree: Just do it, you’ll learn a lot, make lots of friends and overall you’ll have fun.
6) Why should people see Tuck Everlasting?
Caitlin: Tuck is such a different and exciting show to what I am familiar with being in. It has such an amazing story line with an underlying message. I love everything about the show from the music to the set, everything about it is so exciting to be apart of!
Bree: It’s a good family show that will take you on an emotional journey.
After Tuck Everlasting, Bree will begin working as the Co-choreographer on Disney’s Frozen JR. which plays at YPT in July and Caitlin will working as the Choreographer in A Pocketful of Stories which is due to be staged in August. You can also catch the girls as Tutors in our Theatre School where Caitlin teaches Musical Theatre and Drama and Brianna is a Senior Tutor for Jazz, Tap, Musical Theatre and Sing Act Move.
Tuck Everlasting (Theatre for Young Audience Edition) opens on 10 February at YPT Theatre. Tickets from $25 – book at ypt.org.au