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Forces of Nature: Holley Dagenhardt plays Elizabeth in EATING BLACKBERRIES

"Nothing is ever really lost, or can be lost" —Walt Whitman, Continuities

As approaching wildfires threaten their California home, a single mother and her teenage son must also confront the man-made obstacles to their future happiness. An American Association of Community Theatres NewPlayFest world premiere, EATING BLACKBERRIES plays in the Jeffers Theatre at HCT from April 5th through April 20th.

From Kinky Boots to killer choreography, Kay Award winner Holley Dagenhardt is always at home on the Jeffers stage. In EATING BLACKBERRIES, she plays struggling writer and protective "mama bear" Elizabeth.

A longstanding resident of Hickory, Dagenhardt is a Registered Dietitian & Nutritionist who holds a Bachelor's Degree in Public Health from UNC-Chapel Hill, and a Master's Degree in Nutrition from Appalachian State University. It's no surprise, then, that she describes herself as "the actor most likely to have water and healthy snacks in her rehearsal bag, to share with others."

Dagenhardt's recent on-and-offstage roles at HCT include Choreographer for RIDE THE CYCLONE, Jean in POTUS, and Ensemble/Milan Stage Manager in KINKY BOOTS, for which she received a Kay Award for Outstanding Character Actor. Other appearances at HCT include THE JUNGLE FUN ROOM and THE BEST CHRISTMAS PAGEANT EVER.

In addition to her work at HCT, Dagenhardt has appeared in BEAUTIFUL: THE CAROLE KING MUSICAL, MAMMA MIA! and STEEL MAGNOLIAS at The Green Room Community Theatre, where she was also Co-Choreographer for LAST STOP ON MARKET STREET and the MTA-nominated HELLO, DOLLY! Other credits include HUB Station productions of BRIGHT STAR and MADAME BUTTERMILK (which Dagenhardt also choreographed) as well as numerous commercial, TV and film appearances.

In addition to her favorite role as mother to her own two children, Dagenhardt is an avid hiker, gardener and yoga practitioner. She is excited to be playing such a "smart, strong lead female" in this world premiere of EATING BLACKBERRIES, and to continue being a part of the quality theatre found here in her hometown.

Performances of EATING BLACKBERRIES are Fridays and Saturdays, April 5th through April 20th at 7:30 PM; Sundays, April 7th and April 14th at 2:30 PM; and, Thursday, April 18th at 7:30 PM. 

Tickets are $16 for adults, $10 for youth and students.

Tickets are available online at, or by phone at 828-328-2283. The theatre box office is open from 12-5 PM Wednesday through Friday, or one half-hour before a performance.

EATING BLACKBERRIES is rated PG-13 for adult language and situations.

EATING BLACKBERRIES is produced in association with the United Arts Council of Catawba County. The Hickory Community Theatre’s 75th season is sponsored by Paramount Automotive, SunBelt Xpress and Green Park Dentistry. HCT is a Funded Affiliate of the United Arts Council of Catawba County and receives additional support from the North Carolina Arts Council, a division of the Department of Natural and Cultural Resources. (Photo by Eric Seale)

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