CHOREOGRAPHER PROFILE: JILLIAN KEHNE

Jillian-Kehne

JILLIAN KEHNE: CHOREOGRAPHER OF A LITTLE NIGHT MUSIC 

What do you enjoy most about choreographing a show?

For me, choreographing a show is about working with the creative team and actors that we have to put together movement that is creative, puts the actors in their best light, and is coherent with the story being told. The fun lies in the people you get to work with to accomplish those goals and this cast and crew has been very fun to work with.

What was the greatest challenge in choreographing A Little Night Music?

A Little Night Music is not really a “dance show”, so I feel like my job has been mainly about helping to underscore the story. I did some YouTubing for Waltz Tutorials in preparation, but mostly just tried to focus on movements that would accentuate the story and compliment our actors.

Do you have a favorite song from the show?

The music is beautiful and I find myself humming many of the songs at home after rehearsals – You Must Meet My Wife, A Weekend In The Country, Everyday a Little Death, and many of the rest.

ANNOUNCING THE 2017 SUMMER MAIN STAGE PERFORMANCE CAMP

Ladies and Gentlemen, Boys and Girls !  We are thrilled to finally reveal our Main Stage Performance Camp Production!  Each summer, we have seen talented teens rise to the challenge of rehearsing and staging a show in under 3 weeks.  We wondered…could our impressive community of teen performers tackle the impressive feat of staging a Regional Premiere Production??  The answer, of course, is a resounding YES!  

WANDA’S WORLD

CHET Wandas World (Savana Santos)

This summer, we invite you into a wonderful world- WANDA’S WORLD.  The story of a girl, who like most middle-schoolers, just wants to fit in.  It’s a touching story of acceptance, self-awareness, and confidence, with fun and clever songs you’ll be singing all summer long.  We can’t wait to see this exceptional show come to life on our stage!

Auditions: June 12-14, 2017. You’ll want to prepare a contemporary song (not from the show) and wear clothes you can dance in, and bring sheet music for a provided piano accompanist. More information about auditions will be announced closer to the dates.

Rehearsals: July 3-20, 2017, 9 AM – 5 PM

Show Dates: July 21-30, 2017

Tickets go on sale June 1, 2017!

CHET Wandas World (Grant Farmer, Dayton Job, and Andrew Cliatt)

WANDA’S WORLD is a feel-good, family musical for the “tween” in all of us. It tells the story of Wanda Butternut, the popular host of the hit TV talk show, Wanda’s World, where kids call in to get advice from Wanda to solve their problems. Wanda is beautiful, confident and always knows what to say… in her fantasy. In real life, Wanda is a middle school girl with a big birthmark on her face, who is terrified to deal with the first day of school in a new town. Gradually, with the help of an extraordinary teacher, she overcomes incredible odds and learns to follow her own path.
Photos Courtesy of Quincy Community Theatre
Photos by Chet Coonrod

DIRECTOR PROFILE: LENNY BART

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Lenny Bart: Artistic Director of Spokane Civic Theatre, Director of the upcoming production A Little Night Music

Were you nervous going into the audition process? 

I don’t usually get nervous, but I’m always concerned that we’ll get enough people with the proper skill set to fill all of the roles. I usually get very excited, because that is the first step in the rehearsal process, which I love!

Do you have a favorite relationship/ character dynamic in the show? 

This is a tough question, because some are favored because of their humor, others for their pathos, but if I had to pick, I would say the three generations of the Armfeldt ladies. There is Desiree, the protagonist of the piece who represents the current time, her mother, Madam Armfeldt who represents the past, and Fredrika, Desiree’s daughter, who represents the future, and how she was written in as an observer, who is able to decipher the positive and negative aspects of the past and present to make clear, informed choices for her future.

What do you like about directing musicals vs. plays? 

Well, I may make some enemies here, but I prefer to direct plays over musicals, because the stories and characters are often more defined in a play. We are able to focus on the conflicts and spend more time analyzing them and solving staging issues. What I do love about directing musicals, is that it takes the collaboration aspect of the theatre and magnifies it.  We must now work with a music director, a choreographer, musicians and dancers.  All very exciting and rewarding.

Send in the Clowns is such an iconic song.  What does it mean to you? 

To me, is is a song about self awareness, and our ability to see the ramifications of our actions, and to understand the follies of our ways.  Many people who know the song, but don’t know the play often mistake it for being an upbeat song, when Desiree realizes the impact her life choices have on her current situation.  There is humor, sadness, and  truth all rolled into one song, and we in the audience are moved, and probably begin to think about our own life choices, and that is part of the power of theatre; to make us think about our world and our place in it.

Did you have a concrete concept for this show beforehand?

This is one of the few times I’ve directed a play without having first seen or even read prior to be directing it.  I have known about the show, have seen the Bergman film it is based upon, and know a few of the songs from the show, but it is exciting to go completely fresh into something.  I also don’t like to look at other productions or videos of productions, because we inevitably copy what we’ve seen, and I like to try to keep a production true to a “unified vision” based on my analysis of the script.

What is a unique aspect about directing community theatre I’ve been fortunate to have had the opportunity to work in professional, community and educational theatre, and I find community theatre has a bit of all three rolled into one, which I really love.  Often times, the caliber of performer is as high as in many professional productions, and this cast is no exception.  I’m working with incredibly talented people here!   And I get the opportunity to share my experiences with some of the younger, or less seasoned performers in, hopefully, assisting them in improving on their craft. It is the best of all worlds.

Announcing the 2017-2018 Season!

MAIN STAGE

West Side Story

Musical: September 22-October 15, 2017

Book by Arthur Laurents, Music by Leonard Bernstein, Lyrics by Stephen Sondheim, Based on Conception of Jerome Robbins, Based on Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet

From the first notes to the final breath, West Side Story is one of the most memorable musicals and greatest love stories of all time. Arthur Laurents’ book remains as powerful, poignant and timely as ever. The score by Leonard Bernstein and Stephen Sondheim is widely regarded as one of the best ever written. The world’s greatest love story takes to the streets in this landmark Broadway musical that is one of the theatre’s finest accomplishments.

Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet is transported to modern-day New York City as two young, idealistic lovers find themselves caught between warring street gangs, the “American” Jets and the Puerto Rican Sharks. Their struggle to survive in a world of hate, violence and prejudice is one of the most innovative, heart-wrenching and relevant musical dramas of our time.

A Christmas Story, The Musical

Musical: November 17-December 17, 2017

Book by Joseph Robinette. Music and lyrics by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul. Based on the motion picture A Christmas Story distributed by Warner Bros., written by Jean Shepherd, Leigh Brown and Bob Clark.

Set in the 1940s in the fictional town of Hohman, Indiana, the musical follows 9-year-old Ralphie Parker and his quest for the Holy Grail of Christmas gifts—an Official Red Ryder carbine-action 200-shot Range Model air rifle. Rebuffed at every turn with a similar echoing response, Ralphie plots numerous schemes to achieve his desperate desire for the coveted BB gun.T he delightfully versatile score ranges from gentle ballads to show-stopping full-ensemble numbers such as “Ralphie to the Rescue!”, “A Major Award,” “Sticky Situation,” “Up on Santa’s Lap,” “Somewhere Hovering Over Indiana” and the inevitable “You’ll Shoot Your Eye Out!” A Christmas Story, The Musical will bring an exciting new dimension to those who have seen the movie and will certainly stand on its own for those who haven’t.

Cactus Flower

Play: January 12-January 28, 2018

By Abe Burrows

Based on the play Fleur de cactus by Pierre Barillet and Jean-Pierre Gredy, the comedy focuses on the relationship between young, wild Toni and her older, married lover Julian, a dentist. Convinced the two have no future together, Toni attempts suicide, and a guilt-ridden Julian rashly proposes he leave his wife so the couple can be together. However, Julian has never revealed to Toni that his “marriage” is actually an elaborate lie concocted to keep Toni at arm’s length. Toni refuses to break up his household without first meeting and talking with Julian’s soon-to-be-ex, so Julian enlists the aid of his shy spinster assistant Stephanie to pose as his non-existent wife. Complications arise when Toni decides the two must find her a new beau so everyone concerned can live happily ever after.

Ten Nights in a Barroom

Musical: February 16-March 4, 2018

Book, Lyrics, and Music by Fred Carmichael

Based on the Drama by William W Pratt

10 Nights in a Barroom, a Melodrama/Comedy with musical olio interludes, takes place in the fictional town of Cedarville. A visitor stops at the new tavern, the Sickle and Sheaf. The proprietor, Simon Slade, is a former miller who gave up the trade for the more lucrative tavern. This rare combination of music and nonsense leaves the audience asking for more. All of the well remembered scenes are intact: Little Mary as she pleads with her fallen father in the bar, the evils of alcohol claiming the owner of the saloon, Little Mary’s death scene and the regeneration of drunkard Joe Morgan. New suspense is added as Goldie Hills, a saloon singer with a heart of gold, is tied to a mooring post by villainous Harvey Green and sings “I Am More to Be Pitied Than Censured” as the water rises.

Dial “M” for Murder

Play: March 23-April 8, 2018

By Frederick Knott

Tony Wendice has married his wife, Margot, for her money and now plans to murder her for the same reason. He arranges the perfect murder. He blackmails a scoundrel he used to know into strangling her for a fee of one thousand pounds, and arranges a brilliant alibi for himself. Unfortunately…the murderer gets murdered and the victim survives. But this doesn’t baffle the husband: He sees his hireling’s death as an opportunity to have his wife convicted for the murder of the man who tried to murder her, and that is what almost happens. Luckily, the police inspector from Scotland Yard and a young man who is in love with the wife discover the truth, and in a scene of almost unbearable suspense they trap the husband into revealing his guilt, thus freeing Margot.

Hello, Dolly!

Musical: May 18-June 10, 2018

Book by Michael Stewart, Music and Lyrics by Jerry Herman, Based on the play “The Matchmaker” by Thornton Wilder

Jerry Herman’s energetic Hello, Dolly! is a musical filled with charisma and with heart. Matchmaker Dolly Levi is a widow, a matchmaker, and also a professional meddler – but everything changes when she decides that the next match she needs to make is to find someone for herself. Set in New York City at the turn-of-the-century, Hello-Dolly! is boisterous and charming from start to finish. Hello, Dolly! features such memorable songs as “Before the Parade Passes By,” “It Only Takes a Moment,” “Put on Your Sunday Clothes,” and – of course – the title number, “Hello, Dolly!” Dolly herself is one of the strongest and richest starring roles for a woman ever written for the musical theatre, and famous Dolly Levis have included Carol Channing, Ethel Merman, Molly Picon, Mary Martin, and Barbra Streisand.

STUDIO THEATRE

Psycho Beach Party

Play: October 13-November 5, 2017

By Charles Busch

By Charles Busch, is an insanely (literally!) fun romp on Malibu Beach in 1962 — it’s what happens when Gidget, Frankie & Annette, and Alfred Hitchcock are given a shotgun marriage. Teenage tomboy Chicklet Forrest desperately wants to be part of the surf crowd. The one thing getting in her way, however, is her unfortunate tendency towards multiple personalities … and her most dangerous alter ego — voracious vixen Ann Bowman — has nothing less than world domination on her mind! Add men in drag, a B-movie star, and a villain of a mom who would make Joan Crawford cringe, and you’ve got a zany comedy that the Associated Press calls “fiendishly funny!”  What better way to spend your summer?

Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf

Play: January 19-February 11, 2018

By Edward Albee

George, a professor at a small college, and his wife, Martha, have just returned home, drunk from a Saturday night party. Martha announces, amidst general profanity, that she has invited a young couple—an opportunistic new professor at the college and his shatteringly naïve new bride—to stop by for a nightcap. When they arrive the charade begins. The drinks flow and suddenly inhibitions melt. It becomes clear that Martha is determined to seduce the young professor, and George couldn’t care less. But underneath the edgy banter, which is crossfired between both couples, lurks an undercurrent of tragedy and despair. George and Martha’s inhuman bitterness toward one another is provoked by the enormous personal sadness that they have pledged to keep to themselves: a secret that has seemingly been the foundation for their relationship. In the end, the mystery in which the distressed George and Martha have taken refuge is exposed, once and for all revealing the degrading mess they have made of their lives.

2.0 (Two Point_Oh)

Play: March 2-March 25, 2018

by Jeffrey Jackson

Elliot Leeds is dead—or is he?
A pioneering software mogul, Leeds makes headlines one last time when his private jet plunges into the Pacific. Months later, his grief-paralyzed widow Melanie discovers Elliot’s greatest creation: a virtual-reality simulation of himself that he masterminded before his demise. Programmed with advanced artificial intelligence, thousands of hours of his recorded thoughts and speech, and a digital re-creation of his face and body, “Elliot 2.0” is a talking, thinking, virtual soul. And though merely an image on the video screens of their wired, high-tech mansion, it—he—can answer questions, hold conversations, share memories, and perhaps even grow in intelligence and capacity. The question is… is he alive?

With wry wit, devilish satire, and a unique format (the actor portraying Elliot is only ever seen via a large video screen), Two Point Oh playfully wrestles with serious issues that confront humanity as we continue to push the technological envelope, exposing the ethical dilemmas that perhaps lie in wait for us—and not as far down the road as we might think.

Misalliance

Play: April 27-May 20, 2018

By George Bernard Shaw

In a middle class country estate in England a successful merchant lives with his dotty wife, daughter and son. The daughter’s fiancé is visiting them when the fiancé’s father, an aristocrat, arrives. The girl is obviously fickle and foolish and the boy, though intelligent, is a raw coward. Into their midst comes a sputtering airplane with a pilot who turns out to be an old school chum of the fiancé’s and a Polish woman acrobat. All of the males make up to her in succession. Then along comes a youth with a gun to kill the merchant father. The hub of the action is this: the girl falls in love with the pilot while the fiancé is so awed by the Polish acrobat that he willingly flies off with her, even though he is scared to death.

2017-2018 Season Tickets will go on sale March 1, 2017. Download the seat and date form here!

Single Tickets for the 2017-2018 Season will go on sale July 5, 2017

-All titles and dates are subject to change-

2017-2018 Season Announcement Party

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JOIN US FOR OUR SEASON ANNOUNCEMENT PARTY!

January 20, 2017
Free Admission
Spokane Civic Theatre

5:00 PM- Doors open for drinks, catering by Charley’s, and mingling with members of the Spokane theatre community in the lobby.
6:00 PM- 2017-2018 season announcement presentation in the auditorium.
Hang out in the Lobby after the announcement for more drinks and to learn about all the opportunities we have here at the theatre including: Volunteering front of house, in costuming, with set design and building; Sponsorship; The Academy; Directing and production opportunities!

Performances by:
Abbey Crawford
Jim Swoboda
Patrick McHenry-Kroetch
The cast of “The Rocky Horror Show”
an
d more!

Pre-order your 2017-2018 Season Subscription at the party, and receive $10 in Civic Swag to use to concessions! They wont be for sale again until March 2017!

Please RSVP here, so we can get an idea of how many people to except

Also check out the Facebook Event Page

IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE PROFILES: SAMANTHA STEYART, KELSI LYNN BLASER, CHRIS TAYLOR, GARY PIERCE

Samantha Steyart- Stage Manager/On Stage Sound FX

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What do you think makes It’s a Wonderful Life such an endearing tale?

It’s a Wonderful Life is a tale that most people can relate to in some aspect. Everyone has had that moment where something didn’t go exactly right or you needed help and someone stepped in to help you. Those moments are represented very well in It’s A Wonderful Life. It makes it realistic even though not everyone will know their angel. 

Who is your favorite character from It’s A Wonderful Life?

My favorite character is Mary Hatch. She has a heart as big as her husband and when she sees him struggle she knows that it’s now her time to help him. I love that she steps in to help when others are struggling to find the solution. When she helps keep the Building and Loan open by using the money for her honeymoon you see that she cares more about George than he even knows. 

Is there somebody in the cast you are looking forward to performing with?

I am looking forward to working with the children in this show. I think they will all do marvelous work and I can’t wait to see some of them in their theatric debut. I also am looking forward to working with Kearney! I’ve always seen her behind the scenes and to see her onstage will be amazing!

What makes you most excited about being a part of It’s A Wonderful Life?

I am making my Stage Manager debut with this show. It’s something that I’ve always been in awe of and having the chance to be the SM is something I am very grateful for. I am also excited to bring sound effects to life. It’s not everyday that you get to slam doors and walk in cornflakes! 

Kelsi Lynn Blaser- Mary Bailey

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What do you think makes It’s a Wonderful Life such an endearing tale? 

I think that the family element of It’s a Wonderful Life is what makes the story so endearing. I think Mary and the children really ground George and give him a heart that he wouldn’t otherwise have. I think George’s family makes his story much more relatable and lovable.

Who is your favorite character from It’s A Wonderful Life

Everyone loves George and Mary and Zuzu, but I’m personally very fond of Uncle Billy. I think his heart is a little too big and his brain is a little too small and it makes him a different kind of lovable.

Is there somebody in the cast you are looking forward to performing with? 

This cast is full of lovely people who I’m excited to perform with! I always am excited to get to perform with Chris Taylor and it will be a blast to be the Mary to his George.

 What makes you most excited about being a part of It’s A Wonderful Life 

I am most excited to do a new style of show. I’ve never done a radio show before I think it will be a new and exciting experience for me! I also am excited to work with Lenny Bart for the first time since he was officially hired as Artistic Director. 

Chris Taylor- George Bailey

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What do you think makes It’s a Wonderful Life such an endearing tale?

It speaks to the conflicts that all of us go through. We want to be more than we are, but never want to dishonor where we came from.

 Who is your favorite character from It’s A Wonderful Life?

George 🙂

Is there somebody in the cast you are looking forward to performing with?

Lucy Paine. She is the cutest.

 What makes you most excited about being a part of It’s A Wonderful Life

There’s a great cast in place. It will be a privlidge….privledge…priv…<that word to work with them.

Gary Pierce- Clarence

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So what do I think makes It’s a Wonderful Life such an endearing Tale?

Rediscovering that you matter in this life.

Who is my favorite character?

Clarence.

Who am I looking forward to performing with?

Chris Taylor.

What makes me excited about being part of It’s a Wonderful Life?

The story,the caricatures, the Cast!!!

IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE PROFILES: MILLIE PAINE, ELIAS BALDWIN-BONNEY, GRAYSON PAINE, LUCY PAINE

Millie Paine- Young Mary

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What do you think makes It’s a Wonderful Life such an endearing tale?

I think it’s a classic tale because of the message it sends and how everyone can relate to it. Everyone gets depressed at times but then we’re shown that people love and care about us. I think it’s a great Christmas story because that’s what the holiday season is all about, loving and caring for one another. 

Who is your favorite character from It’s A Wonderful Life?

Clarence. He’s just a guy trying to do his job but he’s so kind about it. I like how he doesn’t force George to change his way of thinking, but rather showing him and letting him decide on his own. He’s a really nice person and I think everyone has a soft spot for Clarence. 

Is there somebody in the cast you are looking forward to performing with?

Chris, who plays George Bailey. He’s been my teacher before but I’ve never seen him actually act in a show. I’m looking forward to see how he represents such a well-written character. I really am looking forward to working with everyone though! 

What makes you most excited about being a part of It’s A Wonderful Life?

I’m looking forward to the overall experience. Seeing old and new theater friends and sharing a Christmas story with everyone around town. Though specifically, I’m looking forward to working with Chris, my siblings, Gary, and the entire cast to preform a great timeless tale.

Elias Baldwin-Bonney- Young George

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What do you think makes It’s a Wonderful Life such an endearing tale? 

It’s a Wonderful Life has ups and downs and twists and turns. All-in-all it makes for an incredible tale.

Who is your favorite character from It’s A Wonderful Life

George Bailey, no question. He gives up what he has so others can have stuff, like money.

Is there somebody in the cast you are looking forward to performing with? 

I am excited to work and learn from the adults in the play. I have never worked with adults before. Even though I am not performing directly with Chris, I am excited to watch and learn from him again. He has been my teacher in other plays that I have performed in at the Civic.

 What makes you most excited about being a part of It’s A Wonderful Life 

It’s exciting to be part of a story that’s been around for so long and is a classic tale. I just love acting, so I am excited to perform!

Grayson Paine- Young Harry

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What do you think makes It’s a Wonderful Life such an endearing tale?

It has a very true point that people can relate to, and it helps to show you just how special it is to be alive.

 Who is your favorite character from It’s A Wonderful Life?

Clarence.

Is there somebody in the cast you are looking forward to performing with?

Gary Pierce, who plays Clarence again this year.  He is really nice and fun to be around.

 What makes you most excited about being a part of It’s A Wonderful Life

I’m excited to see some old and new faces, and to cheer people up with the Christmas spirit.

Lucy Paine- Zuzu Bailey

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So what do I think makes It’s a Wonderful Life such an endearing Tale?

It sends a really good message about how everybody is important and how without you, the world could be different. 

Who is my favorite character?

George Bailey, because he really brings the story to life.

Who am I looking forward to performing with?

I’m looking forward to performing with Chris, because I’ve done Academy shows with him and it will be fun to be in a play with him because he’s very fun and nice.

What makes me excited about being part of It’s a Wonderful Life?

It’s a fun play to do, and it will be neat to work with some of the cast members from last year but also new faces because even though I’ve done this show before, it will be different because everyone is special and helps make it a unique show.

IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE PROFILES: BEN DYCK, LULU STAFFORD, DAVE RIDEOUT, KEARNEY JORDAN

Ben Dyck- Mr. Potter

ben-dyck

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What do you think makes It’s a Wonderful Life such an endearing tale?

The themes. The message of hope. This is a time of year that is difficult for many for a number of reasons. This story resonates with those who feel downtrodden during the Holiday Season and offer a message of hope for those in difficult situations.

Who is your favorite character from It’s A Wonderful Life?

I don’t really have one.

Is there somebody in the cast you are looking forward to performing with?

I am most looking forward to performing with my kids! This will be my 6-year-old twins, Owen and Voisie’s first theatrical experience. To be able to share my passion for the theatre with them for the very first time is about as good of a Christmas gift that I could hope for. 

What makes you most excited about being a part of It’s A Wonderful Life?

We have a wonderful cast and crew working on an inspired classic. I am very much looking to working in the format of radio-styled reader’s theatre with such a talented group. The format and venue make this theatrical experience exciting and unique. 

LuLu Stafford- Rose Bailey

lulu-stafford

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What do you think makes It’s a Wonderful Life such an endearing tale? 

I love this tale, it is my all-time favorite story. It brings hope to those of us who feel George’s despair and anxiety of ones failure in him/herself to struggle through each day. It reminds me that no matter how down hearted I may be, there is someone, somewhere who does actually love and needs me, whether it’s reveled to me or not.

Who is your favorite character from It’s A Wonderful Life

I had the honor of portraying Violet in Riverside Civic Light Opera’s, original musical production of It’s A Wonderful Life. She is a character and fond memory I will treasure in my heart forever! I was given a palatable solo that I sang to George and a heart wrenching  (for Violet ) duet, with Mary, realizing George will “never see me”. Violet is the epitome of my life; I see him, but he doesn’t see me. Her and I are relate-able in unattainable love, the facade of loneliness and the true heart of gold she has. Violet remains, to this day, my favorite character, who, by the way, was played by Gloria Grahame, a favorite actress, in the movie!

Is there somebody in the cast you are looking forward to performing with? 

I am looking forward to presenting this timeless classic with every cast and crew member who is dedicating their time to share this story and keep hope alive.

 What makes you most excited about being a part of It’s A Wonderful Life 

I can’t stress enough how humble and lucky I was to be part of a live stage, original musical, portraying a beloved, relate-able character and often too,  feeling as George felt in his direst moment. Saying yes to this production was a no-brainer.  I feel blessed to share this tale again, that is so dear to my heart! 

Dave Rideout- Joseph

dave-rideout

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What do you think makes It’s a Wonderful Life such an endearing tale?

I’d rather not overthink a story that somehow makes me cry even when I read it, but probably because we all have times when we wonder whether the world would even notice if we were gone, and it is such a joyous, vicarious thrill to see that George Bailey had such an impact that we have hope for ourselves.

 Who is your favorite character from It’s A Wonderful Life?

Beyond the major characters, I enjoy Violet’s moments the most.

Is there somebody in the cast you are looking forward to performing with?

I have had great experiences working in the past with most of the adult members of this highly talented cast in the past, except for Michael and Lulu, so I will be looking forward to working with them the most.

 What makes you most excited about being a part of It’s A Wonderful Life

I am most excited about working with Lenny Bart for the first time, and to see whether performing it in front of an audience makes me cry.

Kearney Jordan- Violet

kearney-paine

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So what do I think makes It’s a Wonderful Life such an endearing Tale?

It reminds us that we all matter, and that we all have value and the ability to impact the lives of others.   I think it speaks to the importance of community and supporting one another. 

Who is my favorite character?

I have a soft spot for Mr.Gower, the Drug store owner that George works for as a boy.  To me he signifies redemption and true gratitude.  His loyalty to George is lifelong.  He shows that we are not wholly defined by our worst moment, and even from the darkest place it is possible to find purpose and hope.

Who am I looking forward to performing with?

Goodness yes!  Michael Hynes, whom I last performed with 20 years ago, and Ben Dyck, who I have known for 20 years and have never performed with! Also the dear Lulu Stafford and my coworker, Chris Taylor, who are both also new to the production this year.  Seriously this is such a great, talented cast!

What makes me excited about being part of It’s a Wonderful Life?

I’m beyond fortunate to be spending this special time of year surrounded by my family and friends, doing what we love and sharing it with our community- creating memories many will cherish for years to come. 

IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE PROFILES: LENNY BART, THERESA HAUENSTEIN, MICHAEL METTERS, MICHAEL HYNES

Lenny Bart- Director

lenny-bart-bw

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What do you think makes It’s a Wonderful Life such an endearing tale?

It deals with the impact we can have on others in our lives.  It deals with the spirit of “Giving” of the self, and not of commercial endeavors.  It is the common man Vs. the Rich moneyed folks.

Who is your favorite character from It’s A Wonderful Life?

Well, George is so incredible, but I just love Clarence, and his wide-eyed optimism and desire to do good and help his common man.

Is there somebody in the cast you are looking forward to performing with?

I’m directing, and just looking forward to working with such a talented group of people.

What makes you most excited about being a part of It’s A Wonderful Life?

This is such a heart-warming holiday tale, and has been a big part of my family’s life during the holiday season, that I just love the opportunity to share with my new community, something that ushers in the holidays and makes us all feel good about ourselves and our fellow human beings.

Theresa Hauenstein-Producer

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What do you think makes It’s a Wonderful Life such an endearing tale? 

I love how this story reminds us that we need each other. Every life is connected to another. I also love the reminder it gives that if we can change our perspective just a little, even the darkest and most frustrating bits of life have meaning and value beyond anything we could imagine. 

Who is your favorite character from It’s A Wonderful Life

Clarence! He’s an angel after my own heart… He is a reminder that in order to help someone you have to get to know them. You can’t just look at someone’s situation and assume you know how to fix their problem. It’s important to know someone’s story and meet them where they are at. 

Is there somebody in the cast you are looking forward to performing with? 

As a producer I don’t get to perform, but I am excited to see this cast share this beautiful tale! It’s such an important story to share in our world today, and I know they are going to do a great job. 

 What makes you most excited about being a part of It’s A Wonderful Life 

This is such a classic tale that anyone can enjoy and be enriched by. It is an honor to share this holiday season and the message of ‘It’s A Wonderful Life’ with this cast and crew – and you!

Michael Metters-Horace/Mr Welch/Ensemble

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What do you think makes It’s a Wonderful Life such an endearing tale?

Selflessness coupled with the power of hope & community.

 Who is your favorite character from It’s A Wonderful Life?

TOUGH QUESTION! Aspire to be like George, and love Mary for her steadfastness through the storms. 

Is there somebody in the cast you are looking forward to performing with?

Been a looong time since I’ve done a show at the civic so don’t know anyone…but so look forward to working with everyone:)

 What makes you most excited about being a part of It’s A Wonderful Life

To be involved with theater community again, and playing in such a feel good holiday classic is an honor.

Michael Hynes-Old Man Gower/Billy Bailey/Ensemble

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So what do I think makes It’s a Wonderful Life such an endearing Tale?

I think it’s because it shows us that everyone’s life is important. And even though we might think we don’t matter much in this world… so many things that we touch or that we come in contact with might change the world as we know it if it weren’t for us. Sometimes we might not think that we make a difference…or that something we say or do is of any great significant and yet it might make all the difference in the world to the outcome of our own or someone else’s life. 

Who is my favorite character?

Why George Bailey of course!

Who am I looking forward to performing with?

Well for me it’s everyone on the cast list! Singing in a band, I don’t get much chance to do theater. So any opportunity I get is a real joy and I cherish the moments when I do get to be on stage! I’ve had the honor of working with several people that are in the show already. So I look forward to working with those that I haven’t.

What makes me excited about being part of It’s a Wonderful Life?

Well mostly for the reasons stated above. I don’t get the opportunity very often to do live theater so when I can it’s a real privilege. And I haven’t had the joy of working with Lenny yet and so I’m looking forward to that. Plus I took my mom to see this last year and we absolutely enjoyed the show so much that I thought… it sure would be great to be a part of a show like this where it’s a live radio broadcast as well as being performed in front of a live audience. And so now I get my chance!

Director Interview: Chris Taylor with A Charlie Brown Christmas

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M. Hoffman: Charlie Brown celebrated its 50th anniversary last year.  What do you think it is about the show that makes us return to it again and again?

C. Taylor: I think that A Charlie Brown Christmas has tremendous appeal, both to young actors who are being exposed to Charles Schultz for the first time, and to parents who grew up reading the comics in their daily papers. The show itself tells a great story. It teaches us about the importance of caring, sharing, working together, and acceptance. I think there is a little bit of us in each of the Peanuts characters, and whenever we watch anything Peanuts, we are reminded of the naïveté (Sally), the whimsicality (Peppermint Patty), the grouchiness (Lucy), and the innocence (Charlie Brown) that exists in all of us.

M. Hoffman: I’ve heard roller skating is a part of the audition requirements for this show.  Are kids really going to be roller skating up on stage?

C. Taylor: Yes, we have the kids roller skating in the opening scene, Christmastime is here. My overall vision for the show has been, and will continue to be, a comic strip coming to life. When we read the comics, we remember seeing the kids skating at the rink, Snoopy stealing Linus’ blanket, etc. and I want those moments to be seen on stage as much as possible.

M. Hoffman: What are the ages of the performers for this show?

C. Taylor: Kids ages 10-17 will be on the stage.

M. Hoffman: I’m obsessed with the mellow jazz soundtrack Vince Guaraldi wrote for the movie.  Will I hear the same tunes live?

C. Taylor:  Yes, you will hear some wonderful Piano work from Andrea Hall, as well as some background percussion from Taylor Belote. The tunes from the movie are replicated almost exactly for the stage.

M. Hoffman: Thanks Chris!  I can’t wait to see it!  Auditions are coming up November 5th for those interested in being a part of this magical holiday experience.

More information here:  http://www.spokanecivictheatre.com/audition/?aid=109