WTOP Top Kid: Great Falls teen writes play during pandemic

There are thousands of amazing kids in the D.C. area, and 15-year-old Great Falls, Virginia, resident Tess Rowan is one of them. She is making a difference through her passion for theater.

She has turned the change and challenge experienced during the pandemic into an opportunity to create — and she is writing a musical.

“I started theater when I was 5. And my parents have always encouraged me to be a part of the arts. I found so many friends through theater, and it’s just always been a great part of my life,” Rowan told WTOP.

She got bitten by the stage bug early and hasn’t looked back.

“The first time I had one of my plays recognized, I was 14, and it was for a play called ‘Mr. Stranger.’ It won the Dramafest contest at Stagedoor Manor, had the awesome opportunity to direct and continue working on that play to be later on be published.”

She has written and directed two plays. Now, Rowan is working on her third, called “Static: Noise of a New Musical.”

“I knew I wanted to bring it to the stage,” Rowan said.

The pandemic has made things hard, but Rowan is still working.

“I’m still in the writing phase with the show, and a lot of it right now, with COVID, is trying to make audience members who would be at the theater in person feel like they’re a part of the show through creating an online platform and community,” Rowan said.

Rowan’s Indie GoGo campaign is online.

She also has a YouTube channel.

This article is part of WTOP’s TOP Kids program, where kids in the D.C. area are recognized for the amazing things they do. The winners are awarded $500. The program is sponsored by Northwest Federal Credit Union. Nominate a TOP Kid you know here.

WTOP’s Will Vitka contributed to this report.

Melissa Howell

Melissa Howell joined WTOP Radio in March 2018 and is excited to cover stories that matter across D.C., as well as in Maryland and Virginia. 

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