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Kelsey Basham told Actos, Models and Talent For Christ (AMTC) that she was ready to move to New York City tomorrow if asked. Had her mother been with her, it’s a good possibility there would be conditions added to the answer. Basham is moving to New York but just for four short weeks next summer to work as an actress with AMTC.
The daughter of Kelly and Rick Basham of Leitchfield, she auditioned in Louisville last October and was called “sassy” by the casting directors. She was told at the audition that she would be called back and AMTC did call, ready to represent the budding actress who has been a member of Pine Knob Theater’s cast for three years. Basham claims her mother started her on acting at a young age by allowing her to watch the entire showing of “Titanic” in a movie theater when she was only three months old.
Since then, all she’s ever wanted to do is act. She has been part of the Nutcracker play held at the middle school with a Tennessee troop that visited for two years, she was the catapillar in “Alice In Wonderland” and Augustus Gloop in “Willy Wonka” and she has been in a Christmas play at Leitchfield Christian Academy.
As a sophomore at Grayson County High School, she was disappointed to learn that there is no drama club at the high school level.
Basham attended the Shine event in Louisville after encouragement from Jeff Armstrong, a fellow actor at Pine Knob Theater. Armstrong attended a similar event in Florida last December and found success through the program.
At the event in Louisville, Basham performed a monolouge from her character Ruby Mae in “Lucy And Ruth’s Diner-LARD,” an original play developed by Honus Shain for Pine Knob Theater.
Her efforts paid off. Basham earned a scholarship, one of four high school students out of thousands, that will pay for nearly everything for four weeks in New York City in June 2003. She will live the life of an actress, rehersing, learning new characters and how to deal with rejection and how to politely decline parts that don’t fit her values. Once she arrives, Basham will be classified into a category such as beginner or professional.
She will be chaperoaned while in New York, with family members trading weeks off to stay with her and the trip is as much an advetnure for the family as it is for Basham. While Basham is focused on creating a future career, her mother is worried about subway tickets and apartments versus hotel costs.
“We’ll have to find someone who knows something about New York,” said Kelly. Anyone with advice can email kelseyerinbasham @hotmail.com.
For Basham it’s a dream come true, next to her dream of becoming an actress and meeting Betty White, who is her idol. She hopes to become famous and then return to Pine Knob Theater and draw a crowd, returning some of the encouragement she received from the local group.