Dan Kehde is a playwright, librettist and director who, for the past 15 years, has served as co-founder and managing director for The Contemporary Youth Arts Company of Charleston,WV, an organization dedicated to giving young artists hands-on opportunities to bring new works to the American stage. A nearly unfunded, for-profit theater company, CYAC has produced over 50 new works in the past 15 years including 15 new Scarpelli-Kehde musicals, more than thirty new plays and eight touring social action one-acts. Together with his persevering wife, Penny, Dan continues to work with the young people of CYAC while constantly striving to challenge the ever-changing lists of new actors that come into the company. Dan is currently working on new pieces of musical theater with composer/collaborator Mark Scarpelli, as well as continuing to create and produce three or four new plays of his own each year.
6 m, 5 w
Early morning July 1, 1863. Gettysburg, Pa. As thousands of troops from both North and South amass for what will become one of the bloodiest battles of the Civil War, five teenagers from several local farms escape to the safety of the surrounding hills. There's the level-headed Eliza and her little sister, Justine, who's strong-willed; Georgina, whose mother has sheared her hair to make her look like a boy; and Rachel and Jeremiah, a brother and sister from a wealthier family. As they witness the horrors of battle over the next three days, the teens are force...
4 m, 3 w, 2 girls, extras.
It's almost Christmas in a poor coal mining town in the early 1900s. When a foundling baby girl appears on the doorstep of the company store, Annie, the possessive wife of the proprietor, takes a shine to her. But Arly, who works at the store and makes Christmas presents for all the kids in town, learns that the real mother is Francine. She has kept her pregnancy secret from everyone, even her mean-spirited husband. She loves the baby, but is too poor to raise her and an older daughter. A cave-in at the mine sows tragedy and complicates matters further. Franc...