By Jeff Murphy, February 17, 2021
Trailer produced by Maddy Harrison
WARRENSBURG, MO – University of Central Missouri Theatre and Dance will present a free virtual production of the play “Sucia: A Cinderella Story for the Real World ” by Nicole Jost. The production will be available to view live online on the UCM Theatre and Dance YouTube channel at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Feb.19 and Saturday, Feb. 20. The play is recommended for all audiences and virtual doors open at 7:15 p.m.
The link for the Friday show is and Saturday, No tickets or reservations are needed. Links to the shows also can be found on the UCM website and in the Events section on Theatre and Dance’s Facebook page.
Despite the challenges of the COVID-19, UCM Theatre and Dance continues to produce original and exciting theatre. For “Sucia: A Cinderella Story for the Real World,” Theatre and Dance is utilizing remote technology to ensure the safety of everyone involved, whereby the actors will be located in different locations but will perform together on screen. This will then be live streamed to the UCM Theatre and Dance YouTube channel.
“Sucia: A Cinderella Story for the Real World” is a nationally recognized new play in which a motherless Chicana girl known only as "Sucia" becomes the backbone of a new family in this fairy tale of magical realism. Despite dire financial straits and the demands of her domestic life, Sucia dares to chase her Ivy League dreams. With a brilliant blend of Spanish and English, this is a Cinderella story for 21st century girls who aren’t afraid to get their hands "dirty." Bonus: there are talking pigeons.
“I was really inspired by the family dynamic of the Cinderella story. I thought I could do a Cinderella story with no Prince. I also noticed that the older sister who takes on adult responsibility in the family is very common and something people can relate to," Jost said in talking about the play.
“Sucia” is directed by UCM Theatre and Dance Instructor Benjamin Gonzales. When asked about the production, Gonzales stated, "People should see ‘Sucia’ because it takes into account a real world view of one's ‘magical’ destiny. It also has talking pigeons and a chameleon-like mirror... It's fun for the whole family." “Sucia” is recommended for all ages.
Professional scenographer/designer and Assistant Professor of Costume Design at Kennesaw State University, Pamela Rodriguez-Montero, was invited to work with UCM students on all aspects of the design for “Sucia” Rodriguez-Montero’s artistry and mentorship was made possible by the generosity of the Meredith Harmon Sauer Guest Artist Series. The play also includes original music composition and sound design by Bachelor of Fine Arts Performance Major Trevor Jones and original digital animation by BFA Musical Theatre Major Gracie Heath.
The cast includes: Elizabeth Henks as Sucia, Alexis Swope as Tia, Cierra Gonzales as Hermana, Sabrina Ortiz as Hermanita,,Tijhana Hines as Pigeon 1, Jennifer White as Pigeon 2, Eleanor Panico as Mira/Scholarship Lady/Sewing Class Lady, and Carlos Gomez as Papa.
The Production Team includes Director Benjamin Gonzales; Production Manager Ken George; Assistant Directors Bailey Collins and Sabrina Ortiz; Scenographer Pamela Rodriguez-Montero; Stage Manager Madison Skiljan; Assistant. Stage Manager Stephanie Heathcock; Assistant Scenic/Art Design, Gracie Heath; Assistant Costume Design, Maryn Edwards and Allison Winsby; Assistant. Lighting Design, Kelsi Richardson; Original Music Composition and Sound Design, Trevor Jones; Hair Design, Shanna Sinow; Makeup Design, Heather Marsh; Master Electrician Luke Habjan; Props Master Caitlin Whitehead; Dramaturgs, Emily Layt and Demetrius Hampton; Costume Shop Manager Jennifer Van Buskirk; Publicity and Marketing Director Dr. Aaron Scully; Assistant Publicity and Marketing Director Mekdelawit Keller; Publicity and Marketing Team, Cloe Pohlman, Stephanie Heathcock and Katie Kaminski; Trailer Editor Maddy Harrison; Office Professional UCM Theatre and Dance Jane Tackett; College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences Administrative Assistant Heather Stringer; and Theatre and Dance Office Assistant Tony Smith.