Sneak Preview of ‘SUDS’ at Civic!

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!

‘SUDS’ Will Have You Singing Along

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

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.

Spokane Civic meets The Fox

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.

Turn of the Screw, part deux

It’s time to gear up for Kaleidoscope 2013

And no, we do not mean the little tube toy with mirrors and glass and colors that uses reflections to create ever changing patterns. We mean the State Theatre Festival. This year’s Washington State Community Theatre Festival will be held in Bremerton at  the Bremerton Community Theatre and takes place February 28 through March 3 and includes participants from the Tacoma Musical Playhouse – they happen to be presenting The Drowsy Chaperone which Civic opens on the Main Stage on February 22. Small theatre world, we tell you – and the Richland Players among other theatres. The full list is available on the Kaleidoscope flyer on the Bremerton Theatre website.

Civic is turning the screw for this year’s competition

Turn of the Screw Spokane Civic TheatreIn October 2011, Turn of the Screw, directed by Susan Hardie, consistently played to sold out audiences. It was part mystery, part scary story, part thriller and more. Doug Dawson played The Man and Laticia Widman, The Woman. And yes, those were the actual names of their roles. The play received wonderful reviews from both professional and lay reviewers in the Spokane community.

We interviewed Susan to get the 411 on the Festival, Turn of the Screw and Spokane Civic Theatre’s plans moving forward:

Spokane Civic Theatre: Susan, will you explain the AACT competition?

Susan Hardie: The American Association of Community Theatre (AACT) is a non-profit organization that provides networking, resources and support to community theatres across the nation. Every two years, they hold a giant national theatre festival called AACTFest. Community theatres from across the country (broken down by AACT into 10 regions) enter productions for adjudication and advancement from state to regional to national level. Spokane Civic Theatre has had a remarkable history at AACTFest, advancing and receiving more top honors, I believe, than any other Community Theatre in the country. You can look up the stats on Civic’s website I think…

Civic: Who is going to this one and where is it?

Susan: This time, Civic has chosen our production of “The Turn of the Screw”, a show I originally directed in Studio Theatre last season. We are heading to Bremerton, WA to compete at the first level, the State Competition. We’ll be competing with eight other theatres from around WA state for advancement to the Regionals.

Civic: How long have you been preparing? What does it take to put this together?

Turn of the Screw Spokane Civic Theatre 1Susan:I started cutting the play quite a few months ago. Festival rules dictate a sixty-minute time limit for each show. If your show goes one second over 60 minutes, you’re screwed. Disqualified. I cut about 25 minutes off the show. That was an interesting process… We all started getting together to read/time the newly cut script and plan rehearsals, etc. starting in November, I think. We just met a few times in Dec & January and now that we’re into February we’re hitting it hard. Several things need to happen: the cast has to re-learn a cut version of the script; the blocking must change to accommodate a proscenium stage with different dimensions than we had in the Studio; the set must be redesigned to fit the new space, to travel, and for ease of assembly. But the really fun stuff is the opportunity to revisit the show and continue to explore it, tweak it and make it better!

Civic: Synopsis of Turn of the Screw?

Susan: Based on Henry James’ classic ghost story, “The Turn of the Screw” is the story of a young, impressionable Governess who travels to a lonely English manor house called Bly to care for two recently orphaned children. But she is not their first governess. Her predecessor, Miss Jessel, drowned herself when she became pregnant by the sadistic valet, Peter Quint, who was himself found dead soon after under mysterious circumstances. Dark, shocking secrets emerge, and soon the Governess is seeing specters of Quint and Jessel haunting the children. The classic question this piece begs (and the subject of endless literary debate) is, are the ghosts real, or are they the product of the Governess’ own fevered imagination? The play, like the novella, leaves this purposefully ambiguous. So be prepared to come and use your own imagination, which sometimes can be scarier than anything you can see with your own eyes.

Civic: Which scene will they be playing out?

Susan: Rather than cut big chunks out of the script, I peeled out select lines or parts of lines, or speeches that were not vital to the understanding of the play. So you will see a “condensed” version of the original.

Civic: Can anyone attend this?

Susan: Absolutely! It would be wonderful to see lots of folks at our free final dress rehearsal at Civic on Monday, 2/25 at 7:30pm! The audience is the final, vital piece of the puzzle and having this opportunity to play before a crowd is huge! And I think for the audience, it’s interesting to see the cast & crew assemble the set in under 10 minutes and then strike it in under 10 minutes. That is definitely part of the performance. The Festival is open to the public too (although not free), and I’m sure the theatre could get information to anyone who wished to attend and cheer us on! We perform at the Bremerton Community Theatre on Saturday night, March 2nd at about 8:25pm. We will be the final production at the Festival. So if you’re in the neighborhood… come on by!

The Gift of White Christmas

Spokane Civic Theatre rehearsals White Christmas

The next time you see this, it will be a giant Christmas present on the set of White Christmas

It’s definitely not a wrap

You’re probably wondering what the heck this is a picture of. I was. We all were. Unless you were at rehearsals for White Christmas last night, you won’t know. This is the gift of White Christmas. Apparently, it involves a giant wrapped Christmas present and Mike Muzatko and Mark Pleasant. That’s as much as I know and now you.

White Christmas, though, will be a wrap

Opening on November 16 and running through December 21st, everyone loves some of Irving Berlin’s White Christmas. It’s musical. It’s nostalgia. It’s heartwarming. It’s feel good. It’s family. It’s romantic. Songs like White Christmas (imagine that!), Happy Holiday, Count Your Blessings, and so much more. And as a side note, Kathie Doyle-Lipe is reprising her role as Martha Watson.

White Christmas

Book by David Ives & Paul Blake

Music & Lyrics by Irving Berlin

Directed by Yvonne A.K. Johnson

Sponsored by Columbia Hearing Centers

So, where’s your ticket?

To find out more about Spokane Civic Theatre, check out Civic News, stay up to date with cast and crew on our Facebook Page and keep an eye on Pinterest for some pinnable images of all things theatre! Upcoming productions for the Season to Inspire include A Closer Walk With Patsy ClineWhite ChristmasEscanaba in LoveNext to Normal, On Golden PondTreasure IslandGrease and more.

Happy Days are here at Civic!

Happy Days are here at Civic!

The Fonz and the Car Hops Rehearse

The Fonz and the Car Hops Rehearse for Happy Days

The kids have started rehearsals and are ready to go!

The teen Happy Days cast (who probably hadn’t heard of Happy Days or the Fonz before auditioning for the Main Stage Performance camp) started their daily rehearsals. The show runs from August 10 to August 17. They had about three weeks to learn songs, lines & choreography as well as get fit for costumes, get used to roller skates, help with sets, and make props!

Michael Muzatko shows the Happy Days boys the dance moves

Michael Muzatko shows the Happy Days boys his moves and they try to keep up.

 Who’s in the cast for Happy Days?

  • Arthur “Fonz” Fonzarelli: Joshua Spencer
  • Richie Cunningham: Landon Toth
  • Pinky Tuscadero: Morgan Keene
  • Howard Cunningham: Christopher Pittella
  • Marion Cunningham: Alanna Hamilton
  • Joanie Cunningham: Sara Wier
  • Charles “Chachi” Arcola: Daniel Amado
  • Ralph Malph: Nathan Hoyt
  • Warren “Potsie” Webber: Logan Tiedt
  • Bully/Leopard Manny Moon/Jumpy Malachi/Elvis: Jacob Nolan
  • Leopard Mac Gates/Myron “Count” Malachi/James Dean: Duncan Heaney
  • Arnold Delvecchio: Will Dubiel
  • Lori Beth Allen/Ensemble: Delaney Gold
  • Pinkette Lola/Car Hop Girl/Ensemble: Natalya Ferch
  • Pinkette Tina/Car Hop Girl/Ensemble: Lexi Forster
  • Pinkette Rose/Car Hop Girl/Ensemble: Roxie Peters
  • Ensemble Boy & Girls: Alyssa Bean, Katherine Cowley, Desmond Goodwin, Kehly Hedrick, Karlin Kahler, Gabrielle Stone, Rachel Teo, Janine Warrington, Keegan Heaney
  • Technical Team: Jeremy Alder, Spencer Cole, Emily Boynton

Who are the crew and design team for Happy Days?

David Brewster & Ashley Cooper work with Happy Days Leads

David Brewster & Ashley Cooper work with Happy Days Leads


  •  Director: Yvonne AK Johnson
  • Music Director/conductor/piano: David Brewster
  • Choreography: Michael Muzatko, Ashley Cooper
  • Set Designer: Peter Hardie
  • Technical Director: David Baker
  • Lighting Design: Matthew Egan
  • Costume Design & Construction: Jen Birkey, Jan Wanless
  • Stage Manager: Spencer Cole
  • Technical Crew: Jeremy Alder, Emily Boynton

More about Happy Days:

The cast of Happy Days rehearses

The cast of Happy Days rehearses on the Main Stage

Of course, any of those who were around during the 70’s (should you care to admit it) know what Happy Days is and know all about the Fonz. You have no problem grasping this musical is based on the hit TV Show. For the rest of you, that’s what the internet is for =): Yes, this is a wikipedia link to Happy days.

Of course, not everything is hard work for our local teens working on the production. Yvonne took them out to dinner at Hogan’s Diner to get that 50’s diner feel.

Tickets for Happy Days are on sale now, so call the box office at 509-325-2507 or buy tickets online. Tickets are $18 for Adults, $16 for Seniors (Age 65+) and military with ID & $10 for students age 5-25 (with college ID). We really hope to see you there supporting Spokane’s up and coming talent!