Bright Star

Inspired By a True Story

Music, Book, and Story by Steve Martin
Music, Lyrics, and Story by Edie Brickell

Orchestrations by August Eriksmoen

Vocal Arrangements by Rob Berman

Produced by Joey Parnes, Sue Wagner, John Johnson Zebulon LLC, Jay Alix & Una Jackman, Len Blavatnik, James L. Nederlander, Carson & Joseph Gleberman, Balboa Park Productions The Shubert Organization, Jamie deRoy/Catherine Adler/Cricket Jiranek 

In Association With Rodger Hess, A.C. Orange International, Broadway Across America, Sally Jacobs & Warren Baker Diana DiMenna, Exeter Capital, Agnes Gund, True Love Productions And The Old Globe

Inspired by a true story and featuring the Tony®-nominated score by Steve Martin and Edie Brickell, Broadway’s BRIGHT STAR tells a sweeping tale of love and redemption set against the rich backdrop of the American South in the 1920s and ’40s. When literary editor Alice Murphy meets a young soldier just home from World War II, he awakens her longing for the child she once lost. Haunted by their unique connection, Alice sets out on a journey to understand her past—and what she finds has the power to transform both of their lives. With beautiful melodies and powerfully moving characters, the story unfolds as a rich tapestry of deep emotion. An uplifting theatrical journey that holds you tightly in its grasp, BRIGHT STAR is as refreshingly genuine as it is daringly hopeful.

Bright Star
is presented through special arrangement with and all authorized performance materials are supplied by Theatrical Rights Worldwide 1180 Avenue of the Americas, Suite 640, New York, NY 10036.

November 9, 10, 11, 12, 16, 17, 18, 19.

Thursday and Friday shows are 7 p.m. only. Saturday shows are both 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. Sunday shows are 2 p.m. only.

Director – Megan Wilkins


Chandler Beard
Alice Murphy

Alice Murphy is only the third character I’ve ever portrayed, but I have never felt more at home in a role. I am honored to have been given the opportunity to present her to our community. “Everything I am, or hope to be, I owe to my angel husband[sic]. -Abraham Lincoln”

Michael Matherne
Jimmy Ray Dobbs

Michael Matherne is an avid participant at Strauss Theatre Center, and lover of burgers. Michael is a videographer for KNOE Creative Services and also serves as the Promotional Producer for Strauss Theatre Center. Recent roles you may have seen Michael perform include: Robbie Hart (The Wedding Singer | Strauss Little Theatre | 2023), Frank Butler (Annie Get Your Gun | Strauss Little Theatre | 2022), Jesus (Godspell | Strauss Little Theatre | 2019).

Ben Matherne
Billy Cane

Ben has been performing on the STC stage since the age of 7. Most notable appearances include Winthrop Paroo in The Music Man (2014) and Ensemble in The Wedding Singer (2023). He is currently a Freshman at the University of Louisiana Monroe, pursuing a BFA with a concentration in Graphic Design.

Keith Beard
Daddy Murphy / Set Designer

Keith has had roles in several Strauss productions the past three seasons. He is also famous for his fabulous sets. He feels blessed to be playing father to his daughter-in-law in "Bright Star."

Laura Smith
Mama Murphy

Laura is a retired Medical Lab Scientist. She was in the ensemble many past Strauss shows and was most recently Clairee in Steel Magnolias. Laura is “Nana” to her six grandchildren and she enjoys spending time with them and traveling.

Ken Bryan
Mayor Dobbs

Ken’s first show with Strauss was My Fair Lady where he had the privilege of working with his oldest daughter Hannah. In Bright Star he is joined by Hannah’s talented younger sister Molly in her first show here. Thank you Strauss.

Ben Simmons
Daddy Cane

Ben is a lifelong resident of Monroe. You may have recently seen him onstage in recent productions of “Arsenic & Old Lace” and “Memphis”. In his spare time Ben moonlights as the archenemy of He-Man and is determined to discover the secrets of Castle Greyskull.

Chanley Patterson
Margo Crawford

Chanley Patterson has been on the stage since the age of seven, playing roles ranging from Tessie in Annie to Elle Woods in Legally Blonde. The role of Margo in Bright Star is particularly special because it reminds her of the simple, timeless love shared between her grandparents in the 1940s as her grandfather “Paw” returned from World War II. Theatre has been a love for Chanley her entire life, and it is a JOY to be back on the stage with some of her closest friends.

Kylie Daigle
Lucy Grant

Kylie is excited to be back on the Strauss stage, her home away from home. When not at the theater, Kylie enjoys rewatching tv shows, crying over Taylor swift, and game nights with friends. Some of her featured credits include Company (April), The Wedding Singer (Ensemble), The Addams Family (Alice), and Phantom of the Opera (Meg).

Taylor Michiels
Daryl Ames

Taylor is no stranger to the Strauss stage, appearing in over a dozen shows and directing a few at both Mainstage and SYAA.  The Pineville transplant and proud Louisiana Tech Bulldog is the Database Manager for the ULM Foundation by day and an aspiring Survivor castaway by night.

Richard Graeber
Dr. Norquist

This is his 8th show here on the Main Stage. Debuting in The Wizard of OZ in 2011 and most recently In Hamlet and Disaster!. He has also appeared in the dinner theater performances and in the Strauss Youth Theater. He and his wife have been Patrons for over 20 years and encourage you all to join the Strauss Theatre “family” to allow these quality shows to continue and to showcase the great talent in Northeast Louisiana

Jeremy Wilson
Stanford Adams

This is my second production at Strauss Theatre Center. I have been doing theatre altogether for some twenty years. In all that this will be my first musical.

Coy Lyles

I’m a senior at West Monroe High School. This is my first show ever at Strauss MainStage! I’ve been doing shows over at SYAA for about a year and a half now and it’s been such an amazing and cool experience getting to be in a more advanced production and meeting so many new and talented people. I hope you all enjoy the show as much as I have enjoyed the process of putting it all together to portray this beautiful story.

Sabrina Curtis

Sabrina has performed in many shows next door at SYAA and at ULM, but this is her first production at Strauss! She is so excited to be back onstage for one of her favorite shows and with her brother Wesley. Sabrina is an occupational therapy assistant and is currently finishing her bachelors degree at ULM.

Sydney Morris

I’m Sydney Morris and I’m a Freshman at ULM majoring in psychology planning to become a forensic psychologist. I’ve been doing theatre for over ten years now, and I’m so happy to be a part of this show!

Satene Breaux

Hey my name is Satene I am 18 and I am a Pre-RadTech major at ULM. I have been doing theater for about 10 years and love everything about it!

Cullen Clark
Ensemble, Jimmy Ray us

I grew up in Monroe and have recently enjoyed getting into theater. I’m excited to perform in my first musical and lucky enough to get to experience it alongside my wife.

Molly Clark

Molly is new to Strauss but not to the stage! She previously played Nicole in The Prodigious Snob, but that was long ago and she is excited to be apart of Bright Star 2023. Her favorite thing about theater is the community and the costumes. She wants to give a special shout out to her parents for always cheering her on and believing she can do anything.

Wesley Curtis
Ensemble, Billy us

Wesley Curtis is 18 years old and has been doing theater for too long. His favorite hobbies include People pleasing, Dungeons and Dragons, and managing the website for SYAA. Hope you enjoy the show!

Zoe Gatson
Ensemble, Alice us

I am so excited to be a part of Bright Star for a second time! This is such a thrilling tale and I’m honored to have the chance to tell this story once more.

Nicole Goode

Nicole is a Monroe native and has been performing at the Strauss since Fall 2015. In her so-called real life, she works at the Ouachita Parish Public Library and at Kohl’s Department Store. She’s excited to be back on stage.

Olivia Harris

Hello everyone! My name is Olivia Harris, and I am a 17-year-old homeschool senior. Interestingly enough, this will be my second time performing in "Bright Star" the musical. The first time was also my first production ever! I am thrilled to be a part of this amazing show and hope that you all enjoy it as much as I have enjoyed preparing for it!

Thomas Hayes
Ensemble, Daryl us

It’s been such an honor to be able to play Daryl’s understudy. I feel privileged to have Bright Star be my first Main Stage show.

Alyssa Nobles
Ensemble, Margo us

My name is Alyssa Nobles, and I am so grateful to be apart of such an amazing show twice now! I was even more grateful to be the understudy for Margo. This is my first show with Strauss Theatre Center, but most definitely isn’t my last.

Simon Parker
Ensemble, Max us

Simon is so excited to be making his stage debut in Bright Star! In his free time, Simon enjoys baking, cleaning up after his roommate Michael, and playing video games.

Marcus Powell

My name is Marcus and I'm currently a junior at Neville High school and a member at SYAA. I've been doing competitive acting and dancing like..forever and I'm very excited to be a part of Bright Star at Main Stage!

Danielle Kelley Tolbird

A Baton Rouge native, Danielle Kelley Tolbird moved to West Monroe 7 years ago with her husband Grant. In that time, she has dedicated herself to the thriving arts community in NELA, serving on the Strauss board and joining the Bright Star cast for her third production. She is an active member of First West and works as the ULM Director of Strategic Communications.

Molly Toth
Ensemble, Lucy us

Molly is married with a two year old son, and is in grad school studying to be a school psychologist. This is her theater debut and is proud to be apart of the ensemble as well as Lucy’s understudy.

Ashlyn Underwood
Ensemble, Dance Captain

I’m a junior at WMHS, a member of SYAA and DBK Dance and Performing Arts. I’m so excited to have the opportunity to be dance captain and get to perform here on the Main Stage!

Meridian Wilkins

Meridian is happy to be back running across the stage and spending time with her theatre family and besties Kylie and Michael.

Piper Wilkins

Piper is so excited to be a part of Bright Star, as she loves singing all of the songs from the show. She loves to dance and wants to be a doctor and firefighter when she grows up.

Megan Wilkins
Director / Choreographer

Megan is honored to be directing/choreographing Bright Star and working with an amazing cast and crew. She is the Creative Director at SYAA and works as a Clinical Accreditation Specialist at Affinity Health Group.

Jeanne Patterson
Music Director

Jeanne Dickson Patterson is a full time piano teacher from Ruston, where she teaches piano at Cedar Creek School, A. E. Phillips Lab School, and at Strauss Youth Academy for the Arts here in Monroe. She has been musical director for several shows at SYAA and is excited to be making her debut as a musical director here at Strauss. Jeanne is the pianist at First Baptist Arcadia and is a member of the SYAA Board. She is married to Charles Patterson and they have one child, Chanley, who is Margo in this show!

Brady Cole
Technical Director / Sound Op
Matthew Scott
Production Stage Manager
Eliana Parker
Assistant Stage Manager
Nicole Morris
Props Designer
Jeremy Tucker
Light Op
Aeva Moore
Sound Op
Steve Martin

Stephen Martin is one of the most well-known and pervasive talents in entertainment. His work has earned him an Academy Award, five Grammy Awards (two for comedy, three for music), an Emmy, the Mark Twain Award and the Kennedy Center Honor. As an author, Martin’s work includes the plays Picasso at the Lapin AgileThe Underpants, and Meteor Shower. Also an accomplished banjoist, Martin created the Steve Martin Prize for Excellence in Banjo and Bluegrass, an award established to reward artistry and bring greater visibility to bluegrass performers.

Edie Brickell

Edie Brickell released the debut multiplatinum album SHOOTING RUBBER BANDS AT THE STARS with New Bohemians in 1988. Her recent works include a 13-track collaboration with Steve Martin titled LOVE HAS COME FOR YOU. The album won a Grammy for Best American Roots Song and inspired the musical Bright Star. Their second album, SO FAMILIAR, is out now.