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The Prairie Heights High School Theater Troupe took third place Saturday at the regional theater competition at Bethel University with their show, “Why Do We Laugh?” under the direction of Corrine Reed, TJ Missler and Mike Mullen. The troupe will move onto the state competition next, as the top three troupes from each regional compete at the state level in January. Pictured from left are cast and crew members Alyssa Adkins, David Claudy, Lizzie Derbyshire, Sammy Updike, Travis Elliott, Olivia Medina, Mackenzie Rood, Isaac Derbyshire, Mackenzie Blanton and Trey Best.

BRUSHY PRAIRIE — The Prairie Heights Theater Troupe has advanced to state competition with the production of Stephen Gregg's "Why Do We Laugh?"

Billed as both an easy show to stage, but challenging, “Why Do We Laugh” has all eight characters on stage at the exact same time, sometimes intermingling, sharing the lives of Meredith and Andrew at four different stages of their lives.

At age 6, Meredith loves to tell people that she hates her neighbor, Andrew. At age 16, she tells Andrew the same thing but goes to the dance with him anyway. At 45, Meredith and Andy have a great deal to tell each other; most married couples do. And, even at 66, Meredith is still learning about, and from, Andrew.

"We are super thrilled to be advancing! This is only the second time since we started competing back in 2010 that we have advanced," said Corrine Reed, Prairie Heights theater teacher. "The last time we advanced was also with a third place back in 2014."

The show was under the direction of Reed, along with assistance from TJ Missler and Mike Mullen. The local regional was at Bethel College, Mishawaka, on Saturday.

The troupe will move onto the state competition next. The top three troupes from each regional compete at the state level on Jan. 21-23 at Indiana Wesleyan University, Marion.

"The students have been working on their character development since August for this piece, so I'm super proud of all their hard work and dedication to make this happen," Reed said.

There's going to be a celebration on Tuesday then a break from the piece until after the holidays.

"We are planning a celebratory cast party for tomorrow, then will let the piece sit until after Christmas break when we will begin rehearsing again for the competition, which takes place Jan 21-23 at Indiana Wesleyan University," Reed said.

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