PACT awards three scholarships


The Portsmouth Area Children’s Theatre (PACT) awarded its annual scholarships to graduating members of their Senior Company recently, after their closing performance of “The Mystery of Edwin Drood.” This year, PACT awarded three scholarships to 2023 senior students. The scholarship recipients included Macie Jones, Mariah Murray, and Angel Stump.

“In 2012, as the Children’s Theatre program began to grow into what it is today, the PACT Scholarship Fund was established for graduating senior members of our company who planned to major/minor in the arts in college,” Executive Director Bailey Hartlage explained. “In 2022, we broadened the qualifications to include any college major/minor because we know there are many ways to live an artistic life besides studying the arts in higher education.”

Macie Jones is a Portsmouth West High School student who expects to go to Otterbein University for nursing.

“Macie has been involved with PACT since 2011, having been a part of 19 productions both onstage and behind the scenes. In recent years, she has mostly been backstage helping move sets, run spotlights, and doing anything else the production team needs to make the production a success,” Hartlage said of Jones. “We are so proud of Macie and all of her accomplishments, and we can’t wait to see where the future takes her!”

Mariah Murray is a Wheelersburg High School student who plans on attending Ohio University for early childhood education and a minor in theatre.

Mariah has been involved with PACT since 2020 and has been in our five most recent productions. She has become an invaluable asset to our company in just the three years she has been with us, acting as a reliable featured ensemble member and role model to our younger cast members in every production she’s in,” Hartlage said. “We will miss her presence in our children’s theatre, but are so excited to see her future success!”

Angel Stump is a Clay High School student who plans on majoring in musical theatre at Marshall University.

Angel began her involvement with PACT in 2014 and has been in 17 of our productions since then,” Hartlage explained. “Whether she’s a lead, in the ensemble, or somewhere in between, Angel shines onstage and always gives a phenomenal performance. Her maturity and work ethic are characteristics we will certainly miss when it comes time for our next production. We are so proud of all of Angel’s success, and we can’t wait to see what her future holds!”

“One of the essay questions in the scholarship application is, “How do you plan to integrate the arts into your life after high school?” The various answers we’ve received throughout the years prove how integral the arts can be in anyone’s life. We, at PACT, want to ensure the arts are fundamental to the next generation, whether they work in the arts, STEM, education, business, or any other field. The arts are as diverse as the world we live in, and we are honored to support its lasting success by awarding these scholarships to our hard-working Children’s Theatre seniors.”

Hartlage has been with PACT for over a decade. Prior to her being named executive director a few years ago, she was a student within the program, so she is very familiar with the recipients of the scholarships.

“Every year, each of our students amaze me with their talent and dedication, and this year is no different.” Hartlage said. “I am so proud of each of these three young women and am eager to cheer them on in this next chapter of their lives! They are each pursuing three totally unique paths, but they share a love for the arts, and I have no doubt they will carry that with them for the rest of their lives.”

Reach Joseph Pratt at (740) 353-3101, by email at [email protected], © 2022 Portsmouth Daily Times, all rights reserved

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