Hickory-Allison Andrews, the drama teacher at Bandy’s High School, is excited to be returning to the Hickory stage as “Mother” in Ragtime, the Musical. This compelling and dramatic show will be on stage in the Jeffers Theatre from May 11th through the 27th.

Based on the 1975 novel by E. L. Doctorow, Ragtime, the Musical tells the story of three groups in the United States in the early 20th century: African Americans, represented by Coalhouse Walker Jr., a Harlem musician; upper-class suburbanites, represented by Mother, the matriarch of a white upper-class family in New Rochelle, New York; and Eastern European immigrants, represented by Tateh, a Jewish immigrant from Latvia. Although there are many conflicts among these groups, the final message is one of brighter hopes for the future.

Andrews is a familiar face in the local theatre scene. Some recent roles include Beggar Woman/Lucy Barker in Sweeney Todd, Miss Andrew in Mary Poppins and Enid Hoops in Legally Blonde. She had the lead role of Karissa in the HCT 2016 reprise of Junk for which she received the outstanding actress award from the Southeastern Theatre Conference in 2017.

When asked about what drew her to audition for this production of Ragtime the Musical, she said, “I chose to audition for this show because it is one of the shows that helped grow my love for theatre. I saw the show several years ago and the music touched me in a way that is almost indescribable. I also adore the compelling story. Even though the musical is set over 100 years ago, there are moments within the plot that mirror moments in society today.”

She went on to express why this role is special to her. “The role of Mother means a lot to me. Even though I have not had any children of my own, I can relate to my character in that I am a teacher and am responsible for helping grow the minds of young people in our community. She also goes through such a strong character arc throughout the show. She starts out meek and afraid of what’s to come, but makes bold choices that alter her life for the better. I am excited to take on such a strong woman in a production and look forward to sharing her strength, courage, and love with our community.”

Performances of Ragtime the Musical are Fridays and Saturdays (May 11, 12, 18, 19, 25 & 26) at 8:00pm, Thursdays (May 17 & 24) at 7:30pm and Sundays (May 20 & 27) at 2:30pm.

Tickets for Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays are $20 for adults, $18 for seniors and $10 for students and youth 18 & under. Thursday night tickets for adults and seniors are $16, students and children are $10. Tickets are on sale online at hickorytheatre.org or through the Theatre box office, in person or by phone at 828-328-2283. Box office hours are 12-5 Wednesday through Saturday.

HCT is a Funded Affiliate of the United Arts Council of Catawba County. The 2017-2018 Season is sponsored by Paramount Automotive and A Cleaner World. Ragtime is produced by The United Arts Council of Catawba County, The City of Hickory Community Relations Council and David and Susan Walker.

Photo: Allison Andrews plays Mother in Ragtime, opening May 11th at the Hickory Community Theatre Performances run through May 27th on the Mainstage in the Jeffers Theatre. Photo by John Koval.