Lufkin Middle School production of 'The Little Mermaid' set for Fri., Sat.

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - Lufkin Middle School's theater and choir departments' annual musical is becoming a "must-see" event. This year's musical, "The Little Mermaid," features a cast and crew of about 60 LMS students.

There will be performances of "The Little Mermaid" Friday at 7 p.m. and Saturday at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. in the LMS Auditorium. General admission tickets are $5 each, and reserved tickets are $7.

"It's our big event of the year," Teresa Ragland, the theater teacher at LMS and the production's director, said. "Our annual musical has kind of become our money maker."

Brandon Nichols, the choir teacher at Lufkin Middle School, will serving as the musical director for the production, and Ragland will be handling the stage direction duties in addition to the overall direction of "The Little Mermaid."

Ragland said that LMS students have been working on "The Little Mermaid" for about two and a half months. LMS students auditioned for the production in the second week of school, and once they were cast, they started rehearsing in the third week of school.

"It's a big production," Ragland said. "We have a very elaborate set. The SFA School of Theater donated a lot of it - they just gave it to us."

Mark Porter, the SFA Theater Department's stage manager, and several SFA students helped Ragland and her LMS crew put the stage together. Ragland said that Central Freight Lines helped by donating a truck and trailer to move the set dressing materials to the Lufkin Middle School Auditorium.

"We couldn't have done this without all the help we've received from the community," Ragland said.

The LMS theater and choir departments have already done one production of "The Little Mermaid." They performed the musical for about 900 Lufkin ISD elementary students Tuesday. Ragland said they put the show on for free to teach the younger kids audience etiquette and encourage them to become active in the Lufkin Middle School theater or choir departments when they get older.

Ragland said among other things, funds raised by "The Little Mermaid" will used to pay for the school's Christmas musical. The theater and choir departments are combining their efforts again to produce and perform their first bilingual production, "The Poinsettia Story" on Dec. 18. Admission for that production will be $3, three canned goods, or a new toy, and all of those proceeds will benefit the Women's Shelter of East Texas.

Money from "The Little Mermaid" will also be used to help pay for the Lufkin Middle School's spring musical and an end-of-the year incentive trip to Splashtown in Houston.

For more information, call Teresa Ragland at (936) 630-4444 or e-mail her at

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