Grant will support upcoming Playhouse production

CROSSVILLE – The Cumberland County Playhouse has received a $10,000 grant to help support an upcoming theatrical and musical production.

The funds, part of a more than $1 million awarded to Tennessee by the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), will be used to support the production of “The Secret Garden,” a musical based on the 1911 classic novel by Frances Hodgson Burnett.

The production will highlight the relationships between the story’s adult characters and children and employ special effects including puppetry, to bring India, Yorkshire, and the stage garden to life, Playhouse officials said in their grant application. By partnering with the Crossville Rotary Clubs, the Art Circle Public Library, and the Cumberland County Master Gardeners Association, the Playhouse plans to serve groups such as Kids on the Rise, Crossville Adult Reading Council, Crossville Para una Accion Solidaria, and at-risk and homeless youth.

The musical is about the need for community, family and nature. The production will have music by Sharon Burgett, lyrics by Diana Matterson and Susan Beckwith-Smith, and book by Jim Crabtree.,

The Playhouse, which routinely ranks among Tennessee’s top 50 tourist attractions, was the only Upper Cumberland group to receive NEA funds. Fourteen organizations were granted, including nearly $800,000 to the Tennessee Arts Commission. A total of $1.054 million was awarded to the support of a variety of arts and culture projects in the state.

The Secret Garden is set for the Mainstage Sept. 16-Oct. 23

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