From Bright Lights To Broadway World

Lydia Wood, Staff Reporter

As the sounds of ABBA fill the theatre, Alyson Kessinger dances around the stage, playing the role of Sophie Sheridan in the Broadway hit show, “Mamma Mia.” When Alyson Stepped on stage she was not expecting what might come from her performance.


 Growing up with a mother who was a voice teacher meant that Alyson was always singing. Alyson has spent her life inside the theatre. Encouraged by her mother, Alyson started out performing in musicals at 5 years old as Gretel in the ‘Sound Of Music.’ 


“I think after that I wanted to do another one so I did another one, and then I wanted to do another one so I did another one. And I think it was just this effect of me doing shows and realizing I really love it.”


Before Alyson came to Aledo she went to a Fine Arts school for about eight years, which only grew her love for the stage. 


“I think that really only made my theatre craze worse, because I just wanted to do show after show after show. I think after seventh and eighth grade is when I really realized that I want to do this for the rest of my life because I love it so much.”


Over the course of events of last summer, Alyson was able to figure out what the heart of the show “Mamma Mia” was about. 


“I think ‘Mamma Mia,’ on the surface it’s like ‘oh she found her dad,’ but really it’s about family and in the end she’s ok with having three dads and this big elaborate family. It’s a pop rock show with ABBA, but in the end I think it’s about family and not taking for granted the people around you.”


She also had the chance to work with people who shared her same passion for musical theatre and had done this their whole life.


“I played leads (before), as children like in children’s shows. This was like my first adult role in an adult show. The experience was very cool because they’re all really mature and so it was a really positive environment for me to work in. They were all there to work hard and encourage each other.”


Alyson, because of her performance in this production, has been nominated under the category of  Best Actress for a Regional Broadway Dallas World Award. If Alyson wins this award, she will continue to advance onto the next level against other people in Texas.


“From band to choir to theatre, if you talk to someone they’ll (tell you) music is our life. There’s something about music that progresses and tells a story. So I think singing in musical theatre is probably my favorite part. The purpose of theatre is educating an audience about something.”