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Cottonwood Heights Journal

Disney’s ‘The Little Mermaid’ comes to Cottonwood Heights this July

Jul 01, 2019 03:15PM ● By Josh Wood

“The Little Mermaid,” produced by the Cottonwood Heights Arts Council. (Nathan Krishnan, by permission from the Arts Council)

By Joshua Wood | [email protected]

Disney magic will light up the stage at Butler Middle School this July. The Cottonwood Heights Arts Council’s annual musical production will feature a lively presentation of “The Little Mermaid.” The production team has been at work on the play since early March, and the play will hit the stage for seven performances starting July 12.

“It’s a show that we feel the community would really love,” said Caroline Whitmore, the production’s stage manager. “Brighton Sloan, who is the director, is doing an amazing job.”

Sloan has a strong track record and has developed a following among audiences and performers. “This specific production has an extraordinary production team that has many years of experience rolled into one group,” said Jannalee Hunsaker, co-producer of the play.

Around 400 people auditioned for parts in the play, which features a cast of over 40. The Cottonwood Heights Arts Council expressed their gratitude for the strong turnout. “The talent of the cast is significant,” Hunsaker said. “This cast, pretty much everybody is amazing.”

The lead role of Ariel is played by Benzley Tinney. The role of Eric will be played by Nathan Krishnan, who also did much of the artwork for the play. “There’s a lot of excitement,” Whitmore said. “We have an amazing cast. The cast is very dedicated.”

The annual musical has generated interest among performers and arts enthusiasts in the community. Whitmore worked in other communities before coming to Cottonwood Heights and has been impressed by the support she has witnessed for the production. “Cottonwood Heights has a love for the arts that I’ve found fascinating,” Whitmore said. “The arts council is excited as well.”

The annual musical is an important part of the arts council’s work. Ticket sales enable the council to fund other events and activities each year. “It kind of is the crown jewel,” Hunsaker said. “It takes six months to plan it out, and the musical has numbers that can involve a lot of people in the community.”

The production also includes local visual artists. The stage at Butler can feature large digital projections that serve as background imagery for each scene. This year’s musical will project artwork painted by hand by local artists. “I think in Utah in general there’s many people involved in the arts,” Whitmore said. “I think it’s great getting a lot of people involved.”

Tickets for “The Little Mermaid” can be purchased on the arts council page of the Cottonwood Heights City website (, at City Hall and at the theater prior to each production.

“It’s a classic story being retold by a community that loves ‘The Little Mermaid,’” Whitmore said. “I love ‘The Little Mermaid’ — the music is great, and I think people will love it. It’s a great way to get out during the summer.”

“The Little Mermaid” will be performed at the Cottonwood Heights Theater in Butler Middle School at 7530 South 2700 East on July 12, 13, 15, 18, 19 and 20. There will be day and night performances on July 20. The theater boasts state-of-the-art light and sound and seats 1,100.