Ronald D. Hill, principal of the Manti LDS Seminary, brings almost a half century's experience in theater as a performer and director to his new summertime appointment as director of the Mormon Miracle Pageant.

Hall succeeds Madksene Rux, who had been pageant director for 20 years. This year's pageant performances are July 13-15 and July 18-22.Hall recalls his first stage appearance as a boy of 6 in a play whose title he doesn't remember.

Since then he's had lead roles in plays and musicals at Cedar City High School, Manti High School, College of Southern Utah, Weber State College and Brigham Young University.

He's also directed and acted for Sanpete, Sevier and Utah Valley community theater productions. He's sung with the Tabernacle Choir and been an entertainer at Bryce Canyon and with an Air Force groups while in the service.

He's performed or directed in shows as different as "Brigadoon," "A Day, a Night and a Day," a Book of Mormon play, and "Fiddler on the Roof."

"My first career has been teaching, my second career theater," Hall says.

After obtaining a bachelor's degree in secondary education at BYU, Hall taught music, drama and history at Payson Junior High School for six years.

He obtained a master's in cinematic arts from BYU, with emphasis on directing and then was a seminary teacher at Payson for another six years.

He subsequently worked in Richfield as seminary principal; Pasco, Wash., as a seminary and institute coordinator; and was transferred to Manti in 1980 as seminary principal.

Through all these moves, he's continued his involvement in theater.

And what of his new involvement as director of the Mormon Miracle Pageant?

"I've initiated a few minor changes in this year's production," he says. "I have some other small changes in mind. But I think it's great theater - moving, inspiring, playing on several themes. I hope I can do it justice."

Hall and his wife, the former Martha Jane Jones, met while he was working at KSL and she was modeling dresses at KSL. They are the parents of six children and have 11 grandchildren.

And what is his hobby, if it isn't theater? "I raise quarter horses," he said - another throwback to his childhood days on a ranch in Garfield County.