by Heidi L. Everett
Sartell playwright Meg Mechelke will soon hear her winning original play dance across the radio airwaves.
Great River Education Arts Theatre and KVSC-88.1 FM partnered in a call for original, never before performed, feature-length scripts to be produced and performed as a live radio drama. Mechelke’s play, Sasparella Trauffea is Dancing!, was selected by a panel of five readers.
Sasparella Trauffea is Dancing! is a high-spirited and compelling on-air retelling of the somewhat historical events of the Dancing Plague of 1518. It tells the story of the residents of a small town who must deal with the consequences of a runaway father, an ostentatious mayor, and, of course, the brazen dancing of the Trauffea girl. Add to the mix a lovesick confectioner and a hasty engagement, and you’ve got the recipe for a rollicking adventure of a radio show that the whole family will love!
Mechelke is a second-year student at the University of Iowa where she is studying English and theater. Her work has appeared both on stage and in print at the university and beyond.
Under the direction of GREAT artistic staff, a cast of 10 volunteer voice actors have been rehearsing via Zoom for the past four weeks and safely and professionally recorded the performance in-person at the KVSC studios at St. Cloud State University.
GREAT Education Director Kendra Norton Dando said, “The community has been engaged in every part of this project: from the original conception of the script competition, to script development workshops, to the panel selection, to auditions and rehearsing the show. And it’s exciting to hear this project – which has been in development for more than a year – come to life on the radio!”
This will be the fourth annual radio show project produced in partnership by the two organizations and the first that features new work by a local artist.
KVSC Station Manager Jo McMullen added “this project exemplifies KVSC and GREAT’s goal of serving our local communities with creative and engaging content. This project has been a gem! “
The broadcast of Sasparella Trauffea is Dancing! is a free event that anyone with a radio or internet access can enjoy on Saturday, April 17 at 7 p.m. Tune in via radio at KVSC 88.1 FM. The broadcast will also be streamed online at KVSC.com.
An encore presentation will air at 7 p.m. Wednesday, April 21.