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Sarasota Thursday, Jan. 24, 2019 9 months ago

Sarasota high school student writes "The Kid is Alright"

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Booker High 18-year-old's one-woman show is an autobiographical look at her life.
by: Amelia Hanks Community Reporter

It can be hard to believe an 18-year-old senior at Booker High School wrote and is starring in her own one-woman show, but it’s exactly what Maicy Powell has done.

Powell has been acting with the  Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe since she was 15. She started writing her play in September as part of the Young Artists Program showcase.

Her one-woman show, titled “The Kid is Alright” is an autobiographical play about Powell’s growth into an actress and singer. Powell will act and sing songs that  have shaped her life to this point.

Her older sister, Chandler Powell, will be a backup singer for Powell. They will be singing songs such as “The Greatest Love of All” by Whitney Houston and “I Wanna Be Where You Are” by the Jackson 5.

Powell said she’s always dreamed of doing something like this play.

“Since I was a little girl, this has been my dream,” said Powell. “I didn’t think that I would have the opportunity to do it this young. This theater has opened up so many doors for me that I just never even thought possible.”

Powell also hopes young black artists who come to see her show are inspired.

“The honest reason why I wanted to do the show is because I believe it is important for young artists, especially young black artists, to be able to show their talents and use the platform they’ve been given,” said Powell. “I love that at Westcoast I can learn about my history and black playwrights and help celebrate our culture.”

The Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe was founded in December 1999 by Nate Jacobs.

Powell started with WBTT as a part of the Stage Discovery Program, a summer musical program. In her audition for the program, she got so nervous she forgot her monologue, but was still able to perform the song she prepared. Her voice was enough. She made the program, and with it, got her start in acting and performing.  

Aside from her work on stage, Powell is also an ambassador in her community for Booker. School principal Rachel Shelley said when there’s someone who needs to represent the school during tours or out in public, she relies on the young talent.

Powell said her family, especially her parents, have helped her during the process of putting on the play.

“My mom, Nerissa Powell, and my dad, Maceo Powell, took care of the ticket sales for me, which I really appreciated so I could focus on the play,” said Powell. “I’m focusing all of my anxiety and I’m making it excited because I am really excited for this.”

Nerissa Powell said she first knew Maicy was a singer when she heard her in the shower when she was younger.

“I told her she needed to bring her shower voice out. She would let go in the shower,” said Nerissa Powell. “Once she let out her shower voice, she was much freer.”

Maceo Powell said Powell has always been an old soul.

“One day, she discovered the Johnny Cash song, ‘I’ve Been Everywhere,’ and she played it like, ‘Have you heard of this song?’” said Maceo Powell. “There’s no genre of music she hasn’t listened to.”

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