Center Stage Performing Arts bringing “It’s A Hit!” & “Pocahontas” to Milpitas

By , in Children Community Events on .
Photo courtesy of Center Stage Performing Arts



The first 2 weekends in November will be busy ones for Center Stage Performing Arts, as the company’s putting on 2 new shows: “It’s A Hit!” and “Pocahontas.”

“It’s A Hit!” comes from the company’s Broadway Babies program, which exists to highlight child performers between the ages of 5 and 7. The story centers on a small town baseball team. When a new girl in town joins the team, she’s welcomed at first. But when she says she wants to be the pitcher, problems start arising. It’s a story structured around 5 innings of baseball, wherein the team learns the value of true sportsmanship, beyond just winning or losing.

Performer Sequoya Reader’s favorite part of being in “It’s A Hit!” is the dancing, because, as she put it, “You get to move around.”

Some of the cast members have performed before, while for others this is their first-ever show. Cast member Jizelle Shehadeh said about her past work: “I performed tap-dancing and ballet on a stage.”

Adrielle Inez said, “I’ve done ‘The Velveteen Rabbit’, ‘The Wizard of Oz’, and some other ones.”

But this show stands out, said performer Kylie Harris, “Because you get to dance and have fun.”

“Pocahontas”, which has a wider age range in its cast, isn’t derived from the famous Disney version, but tells a story that the cast and crew promises to be deeper and more unique. In it, we get to know Pocahontas and her father, the powerful Algonquin Chief Powhatan. The naturally peaceful Pocahontas has many local friends of whom her father approves, but also other friends over in Jamestown — where people are sick and starving — of whom her father disapproves. It’s a story about the distrust that exists between two different peoples and ways of life, with Pocahontas serving as the bridge to unity and peace.



Photo courtesy of Center Stage Performing Arts



Performer Danica Cunanan mentioned a song from the show called “No Common Ground”, which highlights the story line’s central themes: “It’s like nothing in common. We’re not equal, we’re not the same, we don’t look the same…They’re different people; they’re different colors. They don’t understand each other.”

The cast members were virtually unanimous in praising the show’s positive message of overcoming differences and achieving cross-cultural harmony. Cast member Cole Rumsey summed it up by saying, “I’m taking this off a famous quote: Don’t judge a person by his face. I’m taking that off the quote ‘Don’t judge a book by its cover.’”

Amaya Gomez, who plays Pocahontas, hopes audiences go home with another message in addition to the one offered by the play itself: “If they have kids, [I want them] to think that they want their kids to join musical theater. To have them walk out like, ‘Oh this would probably be fun.’”

The cast of “It’s A Hit” features Adrielle Armendariz, Kylie Harris, Sienna Harris, Victoria Mejia, Sanchi Mishra, Sequoya Reader, Jizelle Shehadeh, Zaid Shehadeh, and Keira Toguchi. The show goes on November 2 at 7PM and November 3 at 2:30PM.

The cast of “Pocahontas” features Amaya Gomez, Kavish Shah, Danica Cunanan, Cole Rumsey, Naomi Coriell, Kristina Martinez, Maddox Rumsey, Adrielle Inez, Mary Napolitano, Lucia Savory, and Kylie Harris. The show goes on November 9 at 7PM and November 10 at 2:30PM and 7PM.

Both shows go up at The Milpitas Community Center (457 E. Calaveras Blvd). Tickets can be purchased at the door or here.



Eric Shapiro
Eric Shapiro is a writer and filmmaker. He is the author of six critically acclaimed fiction books, among them the novella "It's Only Temporary" (2005), which appeared on Nightmare Magazine's list of the Top 100 Horror Books, and numerous short stories published in anthologies alongside work by H.P. Lovecraft, Ray Bradbury, Stephen King, Chuck Palahniuk, and many others. His nonfiction articles have been published on The Daily Dot, Ravishly, and The Good Men Project. His first feature film, "Rule of 3" (2010), won awards at the Fantasia International Film Festival and Shriekfest, and had its U.S. premiere at Fantastic Fest. His second feature film, "Living Things" (2014), was endorsed by PETA (People For The Ethical Treatment of Animals) and distributed by Cinema Libre Studio. In 2015, he won the 19th Annual Fade In Award for Thriller Screenplays. He was a founding partner of Ghostwriters Central, a writing and editing firm which received positive notices from The Wall Street Journal, Consumers Digest, and the TV program "Intelligence For Your Life." Eric has edited works published on The Huffington Post and Forbes, as well as two Bram Stoker Award-nominated novels.
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