Bright Star: A Bluegrass Musical


Joy Herrera, Staff Writer

Arcadia Stage has continued finding ways to innovate despite the pandemic, and their latest exploration is Bright Star: The Musical. This production is especially exciting because it is the first time that Arcadia Stage has been together since the quarantine began. The musical was filmed in the Performing Arts courtyard with COVID-19 protocols being followed. It is a departure from the usual quarantine methodology of each member filming separately in their own homes, but it is no less heartfelt or safety-minded. The production was filmed by Apache News and will be streaming live on Mar. 26, 27 and Apr. 2, 3 at 7 p.m. (tickets are available at

Bright Star is full of bluegrass style songs by Steve Martin and Edie Brickel, all set in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina in 1945 to 1946. The musical follows the story of a literary editor, Alice (played by Sage Guzman) who meets a soldier returning home from World War II. Alice, throughout the musical, embarks on a quest to find and understand her past with flashbacks to her childhood in 1923. Other leading roles of the play include Jimmy Ray Dobbs (played by Sean Hancock), Billy Cane (Evin Gregor), Mayor Dobbs (Ryan Hancock), and Margo Crawford (Rachel Luu). Fans of musicals, dramas, and really, anyone who likes the theater, will enjoy this hopeful look into the past. 

“I think that my favorite part of this musical is the message that it sends out which is to have hope because the ‘sun is gonna shine again.’ I think everyone can take away something from this tragic yet heartwarming story,” said senior Sean Hancock, who is both the stage manager for Arcadia Stage and the actor who portrays Jimmy Ray Dobbs. 

Arcadia Stage has embodied this spirit of hope as well, with the entire cast and crew working to keep the production safe. Each actor was tested for COVID-19 beforehand, and wellness checks were performed prior to each day back on campus. Despite the difficulties, the crew has come together to produce a high quality musical and a feat of passion. 

If you are interested in watching this bluegrass musical from the comfort of your own home, all tickets are available at Individual tickets will be sold for $10 and a family package for $30, which will allow several people to watch the performance on different devices. Make sure to get your tickets while you can and support Arcadia Stage!

The trailer is available here.


Graphic courtesy of ARCADIASTAGE.COM