Sneak Preview of ‘SUDS’ at Civic!

March 13th, 2014

SUDS cast provides a special glimpse

Last week we visited a rehearsal of our newest studio production: SUDS and learned about the production, and even shared a playlist with songs from the show!

Now, as a special treat, we are so excited share some great sneak preview shots with you! All credit and thanks for these fantastic images goes to Chris Wooley (Heads & Tails Photography)!

The photos below showcase our fantastic actresses: Krista Vaughn as Cindy, Beth Raleigh as Dee Dee, and Phedre Burney-Quimby as Marge.

SUDS, the funny, quirky, groovy show, opens tomorrow – Friday, March 14 – in the Firth J. Chew Studio Theatre. We still have tickets available for this weekend, so come join us and sing along!

Check out the set – and those costumes!

We have some fantastic set designers and costume designers here at Civic.
Here is a bit of what they have in store for you with this production:

SUDS at Civic

Cindy, Dee Dee, and Marge in the Laundromat. Credit: Chris Wooley

SUDS at Civic

What a fun set! Credit: Chris Wooley

SUDS at Civic

Come see Cindy: It’s her birthday!

 

What do you think? Let us know in the comments below!

Civic’s 2014 – 2015 Theatre Season

March 12th, 2014

Tradition! From the desk of Jim Humes

Wow! Civic’s 2014-2015 Season is right around the corner, and we have been busy getting ready to unveil next season’s brochure. Our design team at Design Spike, Inc. gave us a sneak preview of the new season’s artwork. If only I could share it with you, but what fun would that be? Perhaps I’ll let you see just one show….let me think about it. After all, we don’t want to give too much away. How about we show you a sneak peek at the season?

We are excited. Really excited.

2014 2015 Community Theatre Season at Spokane Civic Theatre

How It Works

And it all started with Art Director Todd Zyph of Design Spike meeting with photographer Chris Wooley of Heads & Tails Photography to conceptualize our branding for the 2014-2015 season. The collaboration worked. Following the superb graphic design of Ginny Baxter, the artist who did our design work prior to this season, wasn’t easy. She has a style that is truly her own, and when she decided to take a position with another company, it was time to change. We didn’t really want to, because we love Ginny and her work. But once Design Spike agreed to take on the task, we were on board. We prepared ourselves for a change. After all, change is good, right?

Fortunately, Todd and Chris found a groove. Between hitting Civic’s costume rental shop and costume department and finding the right volunteers (both professional and non-professional actors) for the photos, Todd and Chris captured some amazing images! Those images are now works of art.

Still Work To Be Done

While there is still work to be done – layouts, text, proofing, correcting, printing, mailing, distributing– our goal is recognition. We want all brochures, posters and all collateral materials to be recognizable as coming from Spokane Civic Theatre and we hope they serve as reminder to become a member or purchase a ticket. After all, our patrons are a part of live community theatre at its best.

Our Thanks

I would like to thank everyone (staff and volunteers) that helped with Spokane Civic Theatre’s new season look. Many hours have been donated by Design Spike®, Inc. and Heads & Tails Photography – and, honestly, we couldn’t ask for better community partners.

Civic Veteran Patrick Treadway is “Barrymore”

March 11th, 2014
Patrick Treadway

Patrick Treadway    (Barrymore)

Spokane Civic Theatre veterans, Patrick Treadway, Todd Kehne, and Mary Starkey take on Interplayers Theatre’s latest production of Barrymore.

In this two-person play, we follow John Barrymore, a Hollywood legend, in 1942 – shortly before his death.

E.J. Iannelli provides a summary in his review in The Inlander‘s March 6-12 issue:

“An unabashed alcoholic, he had his lines spoon-fed to him via cue cards when he reached the point where he could no longer commit them to memory. He collapsed during a radio broadcast and soon died, at age 60, from cirrhosis of the liver and complications of pneumonia.

Todd Kehne

Todd Kehne (Frank)

When the curtain rises on William Luce’s 1996 play, directed at Interplayers by Mary Starkey, it isn’t John Barrymore in his early 20s we encounter, but rather a late-days Barrymore who wheel s in a drinks cart, reciting saucy limericks. He’s supposed to be preparing for a last-ditch theatrical revival of Richard III. But his inability to remember his lines or plug the stream of anecdotes (or indeed the jug) — despite the best efforts of his disembodied prompter, Frank (Todd Kehne) — is working against him.”

This very adult comedy was described by correspondent, Sandra Hosking in her March 5, 2014 Spokesman Review article, as “containing much humor, including fun word play and a few bawdy limericks.”

Mary Starkey

Mary Starkey (Director)

Larry Wooley, President of the Board, Spokane Civic Theatre, saw Barrymore over the weekend and shared:

“Being a fan of Mary Starkey, Patrick Treadway, and Todd Kehne I made it a must-see this season.  I suggest you do as well.  The laugh-out-loud rhythm of comedic timing between Todd & Patrick is absolutely worth every bit of admission.  Don’t miss this production!”

Barrymore closes this weekend, so get in to see this fantastic team at work!

(See more Treadway when he returns to Civic in the 2014-15 season, as director of The Servant of Two Masters.)

‘SUDS’ Will Have You Singing Along

March 8th, 2014

SUDS is a Trip to Another Time

This week, SUDS rehearsal in the Firth J. Chew Studio Theatre was quite the fun experience!

A Peek at the Set!

Just a taste of the grooviness on the set of ‘SUDS’! (We’d show you more, but we don’t want to give it away!)

Walking into the space, there were a few small groups scattered about, practicing chords, discussing notes, and placing props on set. The mood in the Studio was light,and it was apparent that this was going to be a fun cast and production.

Simply taking a seat, and breathing in the set and props begins to transport one back to the past – the colors, fabrics, and design definitely scream the 1960s!

If you aren’t familiar with the play, SUDS opens with bright-eyed, pie-in-the-sky Laundromat attendant, Cindy, on her birthday. She mentions that her life is grand, and that nothing can go wrong on someone’s birthday… Well, it’s all peachy until the postman shows up and rains on her parade!

This was the cast’s first complete run-through of the performance, and the months of practice felt like it was paying off. The cast members play well off of each other, and the facial expressions that Charles Fletcher throws around are spot-on – and hilarious.

Inside the Black Box

Krista Vaughn

Krista Vaughn

For those who haven’t been to the Firth J. Chew Studio Theatre space before – it’s what is commonly called a “black box theatre”. This means the space is more intimate than a traditional stage; our’s seats 85. The audience is so close to the action that they feel part of the production.

Krista Vaughn, who plays Cindy (the birthday girl), shared that “there are some unique challenges that come with performing in such a space…particularly acting to three sides rather than just one, but they all add to the experience. For a show like SUDS, which takes every opportunity to directly engage its audience, I think a black box is the best possible place to perform it.”

Melodies and Melodrama

Delvone-Bullis

Delvone Bullis

This “rocking 60’s musical”is sure to have you tapping your feet to old favorites, and director Delvone Bullis (in his Studio debut!) invites you to singalong! A steady stream of hits are highlighted in this musical – a few to look forward to include: Please Mr. Postman, You Don’t Own Me, It’s My Party, Secret Agent Man, Doo Wah Diddy, and there are a lot more where that came from! So much so that we’ve created a playlist for you to brush up on tunes from this production, so you’ll be ready!

When asked what her favorite part about participating in SUDS was, Krista had this to say:

“…it’s probably the flexibility I’ve been granted as an actress. Part of that is the writing, and part of it is our wonderful director (Delvone Bullis). With comedy, you can go so many different directions, and I’ve just loved being able to stretch myself and explore the different possibilities this script presents.

SUDS is a melodrama, which means I have to hold nothing back, and it’s quite the fun, freeing experience. And, of course, I’ve always loved 60s music! The Beatles are my heroes!”

Why should you go see SUDS?

SUDS is just plain ‘ol fun! It’s got a great cast and crew, a hilarious script, and some of the catchiest songs ever written. I can’t think of a single person who wouldn’t enjoy themselves if they saw it.” - Krista Vaughn (Cindy)

Get ready for a good time! We’ll see you there!

A quick note for families: There are a few moments of adult themes (namely, a failed suicide) and occasional innuendos, most of which will likely make no sense to children, but parents – we differ to your discretion.

SUDS: The Rocking 60′s Musical Soap Opera Suds

Firth J. Chew Studio Theatre
Friday, March 14 – Sunday, April 13, 2014
By Steve Gundersen, Bryan Scott & Melinda Gilb
Directed by Delvone Bullis
Music Direction by Andrea Hall 

Sponsored in part by
R.H. Cooke & Associates and Hotel Ruby

Opens March 14!
All tickets are $27 and are available online or through
Spokane Civic Theatre Box Office:
1020 N Howard St, or 509-325-2507.

Whodunnit at Spokane Civic? See The Mousetrap and find out.

March 6th, 2014

Agatha Christie’s The Mousetrap Reigns Supreme
with This Whodunnit

Chris Wooley of Heads & Tails sent us these images of The Mousetrap cast in action at Spokane Civic Theatre. So, who looks like the guilty one to you?

Was it Major Metcalf?

Spokane Civic The Mousetrap006

He’s a retired army man who we don’t know much about.

Did Det. Sergeant Trotter have a menacing part to play?

Spokane Civic The Mousetrap004

…or is he just there to interview the suspects?

 Could Miss Casewell or Mrs. Boyle have done it?

Spokane Civic The Mousetrap005

… and what is that in Mrs. Boyle’s hand?!

Do Christopher Wren or Giles Ralston have something to hide?

Spokane Civic The Mousetrap002

…I wouldn’t want to meet Giles Ralston in a dark alley with a scowl like that! Maybe he’s just mad someone was murdered in his guesthouse?

Will Det. Sergeant Trotter get to the bottom of it?

Spokane Civic The Mousetrap003

Mr. Paravicini looks a little worried here…

Spokane Civic The Mousetrap001

… but Mrs. Boyle and Giles Ralston seem pretty suspicious as well!

If you know the answer, be sure to keep it to yourself!

To find out whodunnit, come see the show! Tickets are selling quickly, so get them before they’re gone!

The longest running play of any genre!
 
See it while you can!
Main Stage
February 28 – March 16, 2014
By Agatha Christie
Directed by Wes Deitrick
 
Sponsored in part by TicketsWest
Agatha Christie has been a household name in murder mysteries throughout the decades. This is the world’s longest running play of any genre – over 61 years! Be prepared to experience the secret twist ending and shhh… don’t tell anyone after you leave!

Spokane Civic meets The Fox

February 25th, 2014

Spokane Civic actors take to the stage for first Fox rehearsal!

Yesterday, actors from Spokane Civic Theatre held their first rehearsal at the historic Martin Woldson Theater at The Fox, in preparation for this weekend’s performance of Les Misérables. This production is quite exciting, as you probably know, because it is the first time Civic will be performing with the Spokane Symphony!

This collaboration of two of Spokane’s vibrant arts organizations is the first of its kind in the area! Bringing together some of the most talented musicians, vocalists, and actors in Spokane makes this a uniquely special experience.

The background and props had been transported to The Fox earlier in the day, and the stage crew was setting and adapting furniture arrangements on this new, larger stage. By the time cast members began to arrive, the set was already coming to life.

SCT’s Les Mis cast takes the stage. Photo: Larry Wooley

Making the evening journey downtown to The Fox was a bit cumbersome, as snow had engulfed most of Spokane throughout the day. Despite the extra effort it took to get to rehearsal, each bundled actor made his or her way to this renowned stage, many for the first time.

All prior thoughts of the day and the snow seemed to become immediately lost as the grandeur and scale of The Fox, and this performance, were taken in.

Mouths became agape.

Gasps and various exclamations were heard: “Oh, wow!” “Woah!”, and my favorite from one young actress: “Oh my gosh. I’m glad we lived this long to make it this far.” Another cast member, noting how much space the production now had, mentioned that they would just have to add some dancing! As more people entered, the excitement became increasingly tangible.

The cast ran through vocal warm-ups, following which they were introduced to Joe, the Fox’s extremely knowledgeable Stage Manager. Then, after ground rules, policies, and directions to the nearest restroom were given, Director Tia Wooley sent the actors to their places.

Listening to the cast members sing, even during warm-ups, was made even more enchanting when matched with the amazing acoustics at The Fox.

A few venue-change wrinkles were being ironed out while the actors were on stage: retiming the movements of large pieces during set changes, boat-like noise from sound system feedbacks, and small lighting mishaps. All-in-all these were slight obstacles to overcome, and were conquered quickly, skillfully, and in a good humor.

Today, final costumes and other treasures make the journey to the Martin Woldson Theater at The Fox.

Stay tuned!

More behind-the-scenes news is on the way from Civic leading up to this exciting Symphony and Civic inaugural performance!

In the meantime, get your tickets to see it for yourself!

Tickets are still available (prices vary by seat selection) at The Box Office at Martin Woldson Theater, Spokane Civic Theatre’s Box Office, or online via TicketsWest.

2 for 1 – Christmas Schooner

December 19th, 2013

Last weekend…
For the closing weekend of The Christmas Schooner

Dec 19 – Dec 22, we will offer two-for-one tickets with a recent ticket stub from any of the following local theatres:
 

Interplayers Theatre Stage Left Circle Moon Theatre
Blue Door Theatre Lake City Playhouse Jacklin Arts Center
Ignite Community Theatre Spokane Children’s Theatre Liberty Lake Community Theatre
Stage West Community Theatre Lilac City Performing Arts Theatre Arts for Children
Not-All-There Players
 

Available through the Civic box office only. Bring a recent ticket stub from one of the theatres listed above to 1020 N. Howard Street and purchase two-for-one tickets for Thur, Dec 19, Fri, Dec 20, Sat, Dec 21 or Sun, Dec 22.
 

The Christmas Schooner

Book by John Reeger
Music & Lyrics by Julie Shannon
Directed by Scott Doughty
Music Direction by Janet Robel
Choreographed by Ingrid LaVoie

 

Tickets: Adults $30, Senior/Military $28, Students $22. Spokane Civic Theatre Box Office, 1020 N. Howard Street, 509-325-2507 www.spokanecivictheatre.com/tickets/

 

The Christmas Schooner is sponsored in part by Columbia Hearing Centers

The Best Christmas Pageant Ever

December 13th, 2013

Never Enough Christmas Pageants

The Best Christmas Pageant Ever opens this weekend, Dec 14 – 15, 2013, at Spokane Civic Theatre. This is an Annual Scholarship Benefit Performance directed by Chris Taylor and the Sunday performance is the main event in our 6th Annual Scholarship Fund Benefit. There will be a silent auction at 6PM and desserts catered by Celebrations Bakery.

Tickets for the Saturday performances will be $10 for ages 13+ and $5 for ages 5-12. All tickets for the Sunday evening Scholarship Benefit show will be $15.

Performed by Academy students, ages 8 to 17.

The Best Christmas Pageant Ever at Spokane Civic Theatre

What’s the play about? What is the overarching message?

This play is about 6 wild and rowdy kids called the Herdmans who infiltrate the yearly Christmas pageant. One of the kids learned that the minister gives out free desserts and that was all the Herdmans needed to hear. Because of their status as rough and tough kids, they get to bully their way into the main roles of the Christmas pageant (Mary, Joseph, the Angel of the Lord, etc.). All this suggests that this year’s pageant is going to be the worst ever, but, in a touching tribute to the true meaning of Christmas, the pageant ends up being the best Christmas pageant ever, and the Herdmans discover what it means to be selfless and caring.

What are the kid’s thoughts on the play?

The kids have really embraced their roles. I love how the actors are bringing a lot of humanity to their characters. These are kids in grades 3-8, so we’re not talking about kids with decades of stage experience, but they are really embracing why their characters say and do what they do without making them stereotypes or one-dimensional.

How does acting in a play like this influence the kids ? What makes theatre good for kids?

This is a great way for kids to gain experience with acting and public speaking, while at the same time having fun (hopefully :)) and giving back to their community. Many kids are afraid to raise their hand or go to the chalkboard in school because they’re afraid they’ll be wrong or get laughed at. For my money, this is the biggest obstacle that any student faces. These plays give kids the opportunity to gain confidence and not be afraid to make mistakes, which is the only way we grow.

How can we support the acting bug in the kids?

Some children have an instinctive desire to create and be on stage. Some don’t. It’s important as teachers and adults to recognize and support whatever aptitudes your child has. Don’t discourage your children from acting because you think it’s not a lucrative career hobby. Each child has their particular gifts.

Christmas Schooner: Meet Peter Stossel aka Bryan Agee

November 19th, 2013

Journey on the Christmas Schooner With Us

Everyone looks forward to Christmas entertainment from the Charlie Brown Christmas to the Spokane Symphony’s Nutcracker to the Singing Nuns. Well, the theatre world is no different. Spokane Civic Theatre has chosen to celebrate the holiday season with a run of  a fairly new, less well known holiday musical, The Christmas Schooner. So, take  a journey with us and meet Peter Stossel otherwise known as Bryan Agee and find out what the Christmas Schooner is all about.

Headshot of Bryan Agee at Spokane Civic TheatreBryan:  The Christmas Schooner is loosely based on a true story from the late 19th century on the north shore of Lake Michigan. It’s about family, thankfulness, and the importance of traditions and leaving a legacy. It’s about rejoicing and enjoying your blessings, dealing with the pain of loss, and the delicate balance that those have in life.

Civic:   What is your role? How did you prepare for it? What other roles have you played?

Bryan: I am Captain Peter Stossel, the man who decides to start cutting and shipping the Christmas tress to Chicago. He is a family man, an entrepreneur, and a bit of an altruist.

Maybe this is a tad cliché, it feels like the role was written for me. I am a family man and entrepreneur, so I can directly relate to many of the conversations and tensions that happen where those intersect. Family businesses have very unique blessings and challenges–and my family has started a few. He is also head over heels for his wife, something else at which I have about a decade of practice.

Prior to this, I was the Bishop of Dinge and Legles in Les Miserables. Before that, I was the clock in Beauty and the Beast at Spokane Children’s Theatre.

 Civic:  What is the over arching message of Schooner?

Bryan: Life is full of joys and pains–live into them, and don’t be afraid to pursue your calling and/or serve others sacrificially. With it’s highs and lows, life is good.

Civic: What or who is your favorite character (besides yourself) in the production?

Head shot of Heidi Santaigo Spokane Civic TheatreBryan: That is a toss up. Alma (Peter’s wife) is a loving, strong, and slightly feisty character who really brings you into the story, and who you can’t help but love. She is obviously a pillar of the community, and a tireless servant (and she keeps a tidy and welcoming home). Gustav is Peter’s father, and provides a great deal of humor–sometimes very sage.

Civic: Any perfect moments where the audience should be on the lookout? Think Stars in Les Mis =)

Bryan: The two moments that really get me are:

1) half way through Act I when Peter is in the woods, wrestling with why he is so driven to undertake this trip (When I Look At You).

2) later in Act II when Alma and Gustav are struggling with how they each approach loss (Questions).

 Civic: What is your favorite part of the show?

Bryan: There is a really sweet scene between Peter and Alma that shows a window into their complete adoration of each other, and gives a great example of real life marriage–not one in a void, but one where both decide to choose loving each other continuously in the midst of whatever else life brings.

Time to Make Our Own Holiday Tradition

The Christmas Schooner

Book by John Reeger. Music & Lyrics by Julie Shannon. Directed by Scott Doughty. Music Direction by Janet Robel. Opens Nov 22 – Dec 22, 2013. So join us for this new holiday musical that follows the Christmas tree’s perilous journey into America’s homes and traditions. Notable musical numbers include: “We All Have Songs,” “Pass It On” and “Hardwater Sailors.” See you on Friday! Call 509.325.2507 to reach the box office and order your tickets or purchase them online. Happy Holidays!

 Image of the Christmas Schooner Billboard. Opening at Spokane Civic Theatre

Meet the Soul of Second Samuel

October 23rd, 2013

The People of Second Samuel

What makes Second Samuel work is plain old southern soul. It’s set in a time when life is slower and it’s set in the deep south where life is even slower. Everyone knows everyone and it’s everyone’s business to know your business. Eccentric characters that embody the small town style of living.  As Chris Taylor (you’ll read more about him in a minute) says, Second Samuel reminds us that “in all the hustle and bustle of everyday life, and in our desire to multitask and be as productive and busy as possible, sometimes it’s a good idea to slow things down and put all of our attention and focus into one task, one moment, or one person. We should take the time to really listen to people. We should pick one task and give it our best effort. If we can do that, everything else will take care of itself.” And that is the soul of Second Samuel.

Opening this weekend at Spokane Civic Theatre on the Firth Chew Stage (entrance off of Dean), Pamela Parker’s Second Samuel plays from October 25th through November 24. Tickets are only $22 and can be purchased through Civic’s website, by phone: call 509.325.2507 to reach the box office or in person at the box office.

Second Samuel Play at Spokane Civic Theatre

June Cline

Played by Chris Taylor.

June is the town undertaker. As Second Samuel is a very small town, June takes great care in preparing bodies for their last respite. He’s quiet and introverted and the living make him a little nervous. June never leaves his funeral parlor or home – but when we first meet him, he has entered the town’s local brewery for a much needed adult beverage. Something VERY unexpected happened when June was preparing one of his bodies. What, do you ask? You’ll have to come to the show and see!

Mr. Mozel

Played by Ron Ford.

He is an ignorant man whose false security hides his own fear. His hatred of everything different than him comes out of his own self-loathing.

Mansel Dean

Played by Tom Sanderson.

My character is the guy next door. Ready to have a beer with you and laugh about the day’s events. But his simple views of life are challenged in this play. I’ve known a few people with these characteristics. I try to pull a little bit from each of them.

B Flat

Played by David Hardie.

B Flat is the soul of Second Samuel. He is this sweet kid who’s lived in this small town his whole life. He loves everyone he meets, and thinks this tiny town in Georgia is the greatest place on Earth. The most important thing so far has been B Flat’s physicality and how he carries himself. He walks through this town he loves so much with a clumsy grace I wish I had. He also smiles so much that by the end of a performance my cheeks hurt!

Omaha Nebraska

Played by Nicole Walker.

She owns a beauty salon. She’s bossy, gossipy, likes being in charge and talking. Tries to be in control of situations until the town secret comes to light and she can’t control the situation.

Marcella Dean

Played by Wendy Carroll.

Marsella is an opinionated, strong-willed farm woman who likes to think she can control her lazy, hard-drinking husband Mansel. Fiercely protective of B Flat, she joyfully butts heads with biased bully Jimmy Deeanne at every opportunity.

Ruby

Played by Donna Kresse.

Ruby was born and raised in Second Samuel. Omaha hired her right after high school, so working at the hair salon is the only job she’s ever had. She’s sweet and kind, but never sticks up for herself, which drives her crazy. Unbeknownst to her friends, Ruby has a fiery side that she keeps well buried, that is, until the right opportunity presents itself.

Jimmy Deeanne

Played by Lindsay Teter.

Jimmy Deeanne is a spoiled Southern debutante. She’s always gotten what she wanted, and has never been told no. She’s married to the town pastor, Bobby, which further elevates her status in Second Samuel. However, Jimmy does have a human side she keeps hidden. She often feels pressured to live up to the “perfect” ideal she’s created for herself. Her family puts a lot of pressure on her to be the best, and this stresses her out. She covers that anxiety with a harsh attitude.

The Second Samuel Townfolk On Why You Need To See The Show

June Cline:It’s a reminder of a simpler time, when we were more focused on taking care of each other, and that wasn’t all bad

Mansel Dean: This play is worth seeing because it challenges our ability to see through outward appearance and love people for who they are.

B Flat: People should come expecting to be surprised. It’s a funny play, but it’s also got a tender heart that might catch people off guard.

Marsella Dean: Who wouldn’t want to hang out in Second Samuel? Seriously, though, if this group of quirky town folk can learn to accept differences in each other we can all learn something from them.

 Jimmy Deeanne: Second Samuel is a small show with a big heart. It has been wonderful to see this cast of both seasoned professionals and new-comers create something so rich.

 

BOX OFFICE: 509-325-2507  •  1020 N. HOWARD STREET, SPOKANE WA, 99201  •  CURTAIN: TH-SAT 7:30 P.M.  SUN 2:00 P.M.