Charlee Mize is the first student you see in the YPT Documentary. She stands confidently next to YPT actor Fatima Quander and invites the audience into the tale:
Fatima: Let us tell you a story!
Charlee: Yes, let’s begin.
"I was amazed when I saw the YPT Documentary," Charlee enthuses. "I was one out of a bunch of students that are playwrights. I felt chosen."
Charlee is in the 5th grade at Key Elementary in Washington, DC. This fall she participated in YPT’s In-School Playwriting Program at Fillmore Arts Center. "I wish I could do it again this spring!" she says. "Since it’s not offered, I think I’ll study Shakespeare, sculpture and geometry."
Her first play Soccer Dreams told the story of a girl who was not the best player on her soccer team, but went on to score a goal in the climactic moment of the story. This past fall, Charlee helped create a class play around the Native American myth of the origin of stories. "I wrote the main character’s monologue and dialogue and a part for the narrator," Charlee reports.
She is also working independently on a piece about a prisoner in Alcatraz. "I went to Alcatraz and I was amazed. I thought it was a cool subject," she says.
Charlee does not see herself as an actor, but she does enjoy performing as a musician and dancer. "I want to grow up to be a famous tap dancer," she says. "I enjoy hip hop too, but the riffs in tap are the best." She hopes to attend Duke Ellington School of the Arts.
Her advice for students who are afraid to write a play is, "Just write your feelings in the play and maybe that can turn out to be the main character and you can work your problem through."
When asked to describe herself, she says, "I think I’m honest, helpful and I think I make a great friend." Then she adds, "I also have a rockin’ personality."
For more Promising Playwrights click here.