By Anna-Marie Menhenott
MARTIN COUNTY -- For as long as Kevin William Paul and Talia Suskauer can remember, theater has been in their blood.
Kevin, 17, and Talia, 16, will showcase their talents during StarStruck's 'Shrek The Musical,' based on the Oscar winning DreamWorks film.
"I really wanted to play the role of Shrek," said Kevin. "He's such a dynamic and fun character. Even though he's an ogre, there are so many aspects to his personality that I could a lot of cool stuff while playing him."
The play brings the hilarious story of everyone's favorite ogre to life on stage.
Shrek is the unlikely hero, who set offs on a quest with his loyal donkey, to rescue the beautiful and slightly fiery Princess Fiona, played by Talia.
"I fell in love with Fiona when I first saw the movie when I was younger," Talia said. "I think I'm very similar to the character and I try to incorporate that into my performance."
The show isn't the first for either performer. Kevin, a student at The Pine School in Hobe Sound, has been in numerous plays, including Danny in a production of 'Grease' and Tateh in 'Ragtime.' His first gig was playing Troy in a production of 'High School Musical."
He doesn't plan on stopping with his portrayal of everyone's favorite ogre.
"I love to give back to the community," said Kevin. "I've helped develop an organization with Artists for a Cause, a local nonprofit, which functions at my school. It's great to be able to give back; it's something I really enjoy."
Talia, who is a student at Dreyfoos School at the Arts in Palm Beach County, is a seasoned veteran when it comes to performing.
She fondly recalls her first recital while barely out of diapers, "I sang a song from 'The Wizard of Oz' when I was four," she said. "This is my eighth show with StarStruck and I'm in love with the character."
Talia has also starred in Guys and Dolls and is a Theatre major. She plans on getting her bachelor's in musical theater and hopefully turning her talent into a profession.
'Shrek The Musical' is directed by the creative team of Jennifer and Peter Jones. Maria-Elena Alfieri is the choreographer.
The play can be seen July 5-7 at StarStruck Performing Arts Center and Theater, 2101 S. Kanner Highway, Stuart.
For tickets, call (772) 283-7787, visit www.starstruckfl.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org.