ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Tristan MacLean is having the time of his life.
For the past six months, the 18-year-old Albuquerque native has been working with Up With People while touring around the world.
“Last semester we traveled along the East Coast and three cities in Mexico,” MacLean says. “Then we went to Cuba and it was mind-blowing.”
Up With People is an education organization with a mission of bridging cultural barriers and creating global understanding through service and a musical show.
This year, which marks the organization’s 50th year, Up With People is bringing its production, “The Journey,” to the Duke City.
“Ever since I saw that we were coming to Albuquerque, I was happy,” MacLean says. “I’ve wanted to show off my hometown to the cast.”
According to UWP, the live, two-hour performance includes both original and popular music and is a dynamic blend of feature soloists, full cast production numbers, fast-moving choreography and colorful costumes.
“The show will celebrate the 50th anniversary of Up With People, while acknowledging that UWP’s mission is an ongoing journey, and is as relevant in 2015 as it was in 1965,” says Eric Lentz, UWP executive producer. “The show will feature historical highlights from throughout Up With People’s existence, including pop medleys from the last five decades, and a medley of iconic UWP international dances.”
MacLean heard about UWP from his mother. He didn’t know exactly what he was going to do after high school, so he joined up.
“I love performing and doing community service,” MacLean says. “It worked out for me.”
MacLean has earned some college credit and will be going to Fort Lewis College in Colorado in the fall.
“I don’t know what I’ll be majoring in quite yet,” he says. “I’m thinking the major will be technical theater.”