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NTPA presents “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee,” Aug. 11–14

In its 25-year history, North Texas Performing Arts (NTPA) has served 2,000,000 students, patrons, members and sponsors and has given more than 20,000 performances.
Putnam County Spelling Bee Photo

In its 25-year history, North Texas Performing Arts (NTPA) has served 2,000,000 students, patrons, members and sponsors and has given more than 20,000 performances. NTPA is extending its mission of developing the character of youth through quality performing arts education and family entertainment with its North Texas Performing Arts Community Theatre.

“The goal in bringing a community theatre to Plano is to develop a sustainable program that engages the local community and delivers consistent, high-quality programming,” NTPA Director of Marketing and Public Relations Lauren Barnes said. “The community theater will immediately provide a wider variety of programming to North Texas residents and will continue to refine programming and services to meet the growing demand for quality performing arts entertainment in the area.”

NTPA boasts a 25-year legacy that began in Plano with Plano Children’s Theatre. Likewise, NTPA Community Theatre has found a home within the City of Plano with its first season of programming performed at the Cox Building Playhouse.

NTPA Community Theatre’s premier production, “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee,” is August 11–14. The musical comedy centers on an annual spelling bee where six young people in the throes of puberty, overseen by grown-ups who barely managed to escape childhood themselves, learn that winning isn’t everything and that losing doesn’t necessarily make you a loser.

Marcus Miller, who plays William Barfée, one of the adolescent spellers in the production, has been a part of NTPA since 2008. Miller moved to Wylie and joined Plano Children’s Theatre (PCT) because it gave him an avenue to meet people and have a sense of a community. Miller aged out of PCT in 2013 when he turned 18 and has stayed a part of the NTPA family as a summer camp teacher.

Now 21, Miller said he’s happy for the NTPA Community Theatre because it allows him an opportunity to be back on the stage. “I’m excited the new community theatre because it expands the options for local actors,” Miller said. “NTPA now provides opportunities for every actor, no matter what age.”

Additional upcoming NTPA Community Theatre productions include Our Town in October, Scrooge in December and Blythe Spirit in January. Audition information and performance tickets can be found at

NTPA History:
• In 1991, Plano Children’s Theatre was founded by Sara Egelston Akers.
• In 2005, McKinney Youth Theatre was founded.
• In 2011, Fun House Theatre and Film was added to the program with longtime
PCT director, Jeff Swearingen as Artistic Director.
• In 2012, Frisco Youth Theatre was founded.
• In 2015, PCT was re-branded to North Texas Performing Arts to encompass its ever-growing
• In 2016, NTPA – Dallas was founded.
• In 2016, NTPA Community Theatre was founded.

25th-Anniversary Events:

Les Miserables | September 9–17 at the Courtyard Theater
• Havana Nights Gala | October 21 from 6:30–11:30 p.m. at the Sheraton Hotel in
Wizard of Oz (the first show done by Plano Children’s Theatre) | November 17–20 at
the Courtyard Theater
Scrooge | December 15-18 at the Courtyard Theater