The Stanly News and Press (Albemarle, NC)

January 9, 2013

Badin reenacts the past

Badin prepares for centennial play

By Ian Faulkner, Staff Writer

Wednesday, January 9, 2013 — This year marks the 100th anniversary of the town of Badin. As part of the year-long celebration, a play depicting the history of the town will take place at 7 p.m. Jan. 11-12 and 3 p.m. Jan. 13 at the Badin Elementary School auditorium.

The play is entitled “This Is Who We Are,” and it was written by local author Heather Ross Miller.

“I’m a fiction writer; I have a fiction reputation. I’ve published about 15 books, short stories, novels and a couple books of poetry.

“A lot of them use the aluminum smelting town of Badin as a background,” Miller said.

So when she was approached and asked if she would be interested in writing a play about Badin, Miller jumped at the opportunity.

“I didn’t want it to sound like a history lesson, so I made it a series of related skits, related to town development and based on local personalities and characters, in which we have an abundance,” Miller said.

“Personalities would get more of a story, so that’s what I did.

“Personalities give a face, a heartbeat to everything you write and I couldn’t be more pleased with how it turned out.

“I knew I could do the writing once I figured out the hero is the town of Badin and the villain is the passage of time.”

Miller is a native of Badin and went to school there. After retiring, she moved back.

“I’m very much rooted in this area and very much attached to it emotionally, through family and memory,” Miller said.

“We have sound, slides, props, local talent, the Uwharrie Players helped and Natasha [Wall] is great.”

“The audience is approached during the performance. We want the audience to feel apart of it.

“We’re hoping to shoot a video of the play, hope it works out.

“We’re so proud of our efforts. We want people to feel good about Badin.

“I’m tickled. I loved doing it and seeing it come alive on stage.

“I hope people will enjoy it and feel good about themselves,” Miller said.

Wall, an English teacher at North Stanly Middle School, is the director for the play. She is also a Badin native.

Hannah-Kathryn Wall, Natasha’s daughter, is one of the leads in the performance.

“My character’s name is Betty. She’s a Southern Belle. I can relate, I’m a little Southern Belle-ish,” Hannah said.

“I actually learned a lot about Badin from the play.”

Hannah talked about the West Badin Blue Devils Big 5, a former local basketball team.

“I found out my uncle was on the Badin Big 5,” Hannah said.

Badin natives and former North Stanly High School cheerleaders Susan Sharples and Georgette Edgerton serve as narrators for the play.

“We’re called storytellers in the play, because we’re telling the story of who we are,” said Sharples, who is also assisting with costumes for the production.

“We started working on the play Sept. 3. We thought we’d be here for every rehearsal. We didn’t take into account sickness or school functions. But it is coming together nicely.”

There will be a few special additions to the play to make the experience more impactful.

One of these is a slide show that will be playing during certain portions of the play.

“This will enhance the stuff not on stage,” Technical Director James Cotton said.

Additionally, images not featured in the play will run during the intermission.

Another feature of the play will be a special performance by Matt Steed, who will be dressed in full Native American regalia.

“This is quite an adventure for us,” Badin Mayor James Harrison said.

“We’re blessed to have all of this talent in the area.”

For more information on the Badin Centennial or the production of “This Is Who We Are,” visit