Actress has been lucky in openers

  • Follow

Aiken Community Playhouse's last two season openers have been good to Melissa Wilson.

Devon Hampton (right), who plays Sandy, meets the Pink Ladies during a rehearsal of the Aiken Community Playhouse's production of Grease. Melissa Wilson (second from right), who plays Frenchie, married Paul Wilson (Eugene) on Aug. 19.  Charmain Z. Brackett/Correspondent
Charmain Z. Brackett/Correspondent
Devon Hampton (right), who plays Sandy, meets the Pink Ladies during a rehearsal of the Aiken Community Playhouse's production of Grease. Melissa Wilson (second from right), who plays Frenchie, married Paul Wilson (Eugene) on Aug. 19.

Smokey Joe's Caf, last year's season starter, was Mrs. Wilson's first foray into the theater, and it was there she met her husband, Paul, who was running a spotlight.

On Aug. 19, in the midst of rehearsals for this year's season opener, Grease, the couple, who play Frenchy and Eugene in the show, got married at Hopelands Gardens and had a reception at the theater.

"We Go Together was our exit song," Mrs. Wilson.

"It was a nice exit; we waved, but there was no flying car," said Mr. Wilson, referring to the final scene of the John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John film of Grease.

Despite the nuptials, the duo didn't skip out on rehearsals Monday; they plan to take a honeymoon in October after the close of the show, he said.

The Wilsons aren't the only ones with chemistry on stage. There's magic throughout the cast, according to its members.

"This is the best cast I've ever seen or been with," said Devon Hampton, who plays Sandy and is dating Adam Shults, who plays Danny. "Not one person cannot sing and dance, and we blend. It's a place where a lot of people would love to be."

Director Bradley Watts said he's pleased with how well the show is coming together and couldn't have found a better cast.

A Grease fan since first watching the movie on cable as a child, Mr. Watts has seen numerous productions of the musical, including one in Japanese.

This is the second time he's directed the show with the playhouse, and he wanted to do something a little different.

"I wanted to do a multiracial cast," he said.

People have criticized him a little for that.

"It's a fantasy. You don't bust out singing in a cafeteria. Any race, color, age, no matter who you are, this show comes to life," he said.

Reach Charmain Z. Brackett at czbrackett@hotmail.com.

IF YOU GO

What: Aiken Community Playhouse production of Grease

When: 8 p.m. Sept. 7, 8, 14, 15, 21 and 22, and 3 p.m. Sept. 9 and 16.

Where: Washington Center for the Performing Arts, 126 Newberry St.

Cost: $17 for adults, $15 for seniors 60 and older, $12 for students and $6 for children younger than 12.

Phone: (803) 648-1438


Search Augusta jobs