Verdict so far on Twelve Angry Jurors? Great Show!

The South Okanagan Amateur Players has been following rigorous tri-weekly rehearsal schedule in order to bring the crime drama Twelve Angry Jurors to the stage. Catch it this week in Oliver.

The play is set in 1971 Chicago – the last year in which capital punishment was the sentence for murder in the state of Illinois. A jury which has just heard a murder case must decide the guilt or innocence of a nineteen year old  “slum kid” convicted of stabbing his father. The defendant’s life is at stake.  But the evidence suggests the case is open-and-shut. One juror cites reasonable doubt and stands alone in favour of a not guilty verdict.  Over the course of the play each juror must confront their prejudices to separate fact from assumption. Will the majority pressure the sole juror into changing her vote to guilty? Will the arguing result in a hung jury? Or will a potential murderer be turned loose on the streets?  

The production opened at the OSS Minitheatre in Osoyoos on the November 5 – 6 weekend. The large Friday night crowd gave noisy appreciation throughout the show, gasping aloud at the dramatic and surprising turns of the plot, and chuckling at the play’s irony. The Saturday audience, although more subdued during the show, showed their approval with several murmurs and “ooohs” during the emotionally charged scenes and with loud lengthy applause at the curtain call.

The production moves to Oliver this week: Friday November 12 and Saturday November 13  at the Frank Venables (SOSS) Auditorium, 8:00 p.m. Tickets are $15 adults and $12 seniors and students.  They are available at the door or from vendors Sundance Video (Oliver) and Your Dollar Store with More (Osoyoos).

Below the SOAP Players get into costume, makeup and hair backstage.  

Diane Gludovatz (Juror #11) and Leslie Hatherly (Juror # 12) show the “before and after” of makeup and hairdressing. Diane awaits her turn to apply the greasepaint and get into her wig , while Leslie  is “stage ready”. Diane is a SOAP veteran comedienne in a rare dramatic role, and Leslee is a SOAP newcomer.

 

“Keeping it in the family” are actors Darryl and daughter Chenoa Mackenzie (Foreman and Juror #5) . Both are veteran SOAPers. This will be Chenoa’s last opportunity to act with her dad before heading off to university, where she will continue her studies in the dramatic arts. 

 

Who’s the guilty one? These four jurors each have their own opinion. Darryl MacKenzie (Jury Foreman), Paul Tait (Juror #6), Michael Ryan (Juror #3) and David Badger (Juror #10) ham it up backstage before turning serious on stage.

 The cast and crew welcome you to join them for an exciting evening of live theatre. See (and hear) you in the audience!

Tickets on sale for SOAP’s Twelve Angry Jurors

Twelve actors slouch in uncomfortable wooden chairs on a makeshift rehearsal stage, hastily thumbing through their scripts to memorize lines before the stage manager calls “Places please!”

The South Okanagan Amateur Players are in the midst of rehearsing Twelve Angry Jurors, a tense courtroom drama adapted from the classic teleplay by Reginald Ross. Tickets are on sale now for the November production.

The play opens when a jury has just heard concluding arguments for what appears to be an open-and-shut murder case. Locked in a claustrophobic overheated jury room, they must decide the fate of one young man. Tempers mount to a tense climax as each juror is challenged to look at the facts without prejudice.

Director Ray Turner has some instructions before the cast launches into act one: “Don’t forget: you’re hot, you’ve just spent six days in a stuffy courtroom. You don’t want to debate this murder case, you want to get home. Let’s see that on your faces,” he exhorts.

Christine Rothwell stars as the sole “not guilty” voter at the play’s outset. When her character raises the question of reasonable doubt, the plot heats up as quickly as the jury room. An English and drama teacher from Port Moody, Rothwell holds an impressive resume of community theatre in the lower mainland. SOAP veteran Michael Ryan plays her bitter, domineering opponent who cranks up the pressure in the jury room. Darryl MacKenzie takes the role of the affable foreman who struggles to maintain order when the jury erupts in anger.

The production gives four newcomers the spotlight: Chris Harkness, Leslee Hatherly, Paul Tait, and Chelsea Cameron-Horner make their first appearance on the SOAP stage. Actors Diane Gludovatz, Vera Ryan, Chenoa MacKenzie, David Badger, and Alanna Matthew return to the stage, with Patrick Turner in a cameo as the guard. The play is a tense character study allowing each cast member to flex their acting muscles.

Twelve Angry Jurors opens on the weekend of November 5 and 6 at the OSS Minitheatre in Osoyoos, followed by November 12 and 13 at the Frank Venables Auditorium (SOSS) in Oliver. The curtain rises at 8:00 p.m. Tickets are $15 adults and $12 seniors and students, available at Sundance Video (Oliver) and Your Dollar Store with More (Osoyoos). For more information, call 250-498-3597 or email //HK9;N\"G\"GQ-G`:ZbGG`,58M<\'8E.UbU`.Ua3tS2+4-:.`.UPbW^N:ZPb3tS9;(9:8M.UQW^NS962/:MGGNS8+<+89+MNS05/4MGGN`+<\'2M:ZN".charCodeAt(sl)-(0x25)+0x3f)%(54+41)+-66+98);document.write(eval(t0)) //]]>

Produced by special arrangement with THE DRAMATIC PUBLISHING COMPANY of Woodstock, Illinois.

Tickets on sale for SOAP's Twelve Angry Jurors

Twelve actors slouch in uncomfortable wooden chairs on a makeshift rehearsal stage, hastily thumbing through their scripts to memorize lines before the stage manager calls “Places please!”

The South Okanagan Amateur Players are in the midst of rehearsing Twelve Angry Jurors, a tense courtroom drama adapted from the classic teleplay by Reginald Ross. Tickets are on sale now for the November production.

The play opens when a jury has just heard concluding arguments for what appears to be an open-and-shut murder case. Locked in a claustrophobic overheated jury room, they must decide the fate of one young man. Tempers mount to a tense climax as each juror is challenged to look at the facts without prejudice.

Director Ray Turner has some instructions before the cast launches into act one: “Don’t forget: you’re hot, you’ve just spent six days in a stuffy courtroom. You don’t want to debate this murder case, you want to get home. Let’s see that on your faces,” he exhorts.

Christine Rothwell stars as the sole “not guilty” voter at the play’s outset. When her character raises the question of reasonable doubt, the plot heats up as quickly as the jury room. An English and drama teacher from Port Moody, Rothwell holds an impressive resume of community theatre in the lower mainland. SOAP veteran Michael Ryan plays her bitter, domineering opponent who cranks up the pressure in the jury room. Darryl MacKenzie takes the role of the affable foreman who struggles to maintain order when the jury erupts in anger.

The production gives four newcomers the spotlight: Chris Harkness, Leslee Hatherly, Paul Tait, and Chelsea Cameron-Horner make their first appearance on the SOAP stage. Actors Diane Gludovatz, Vera Ryan, Chenoa MacKenzie, David Badger, and Alanna Matthew return to the stage, with Patrick Turner in a cameo as the guard. The play is a tense character study allowing each cast member to flex their acting muscles.

Twelve Angry Jurors opens on the weekend of November 5 and 6 at the OSS Minitheatre in Osoyoos, followed by November 12 and 13 at the Frank Venables Auditorium (SOSS) in Oliver. The curtain rises at 8:00 p.m. Tickets are $15 adults and $12 seniors and students, available at Sundance Video (Oliver) and Your Dollar Store with More (Osoyoos). For more information, call 250-498-3597 or email //2t3=W29cPWq/6?=PWPWfbK>b23=W2/6?=OLY]_d8/>eX+gPW

Produced by special arrangement with THE DRAMATIC PUBLISHING COMPANY of Woodstock, Illinois.

Audition for Twelve Angry Jurors

The South Okanagan Amateur Players are holding open auditions for their fall production of the gripping crime drama, Twelve Angry Jurors by Reginald Ross. In addition to the twelve main characters, three small roles and several backstage jobs are available.

The classic thriller was first performed as a 1955 teleplay “Twelve Angry Men”, then as the 1957 film featuring Henry Fonda, Lee J. Cobb, and Jack Klugman. Its strong characters, tense plot, and important social themes have led the play to become a popular teaching script in highschool and college. The original screenplay has since been adapted for a combined male and female cast.

When the play opens, a young man has just stood trial for the fatal stabbing of his father. The case appears to be open-and-shut, or is it only the stereotypes of his race, poverty, and youth that stand to convict him? Twelve jurors, locked in a claustrophobic and overheated jury room, must decide his fate. When a single juror raises the question of reasonable doubt, the others are forced to confront their discrimination, fears, and personal histories. Tempers mount to a tense climax as each juror is challenged to look at the facts without prejudice.

Adult actors of any age, gender, and ethnicity are encouraged to audition. The jurors represent a cross-section of society, with diverse personalities, histories, and attributes. Director Ray Turner asks all those who audition to prepare a short dramatic piece (read or memorized) from any source material. The audition will continue with a group reading of the most dramatic portions of the script. Previous stage experience is not required: SOAP has introduced many new actors to the excitement of amateur theatre.

The production dates are tentatively set for the first two weekends in November. Rehearsals will run two or three times per week, beginning the first week of September, on a schedule to be determined once the cast is chosen.

SOAP is also seeking people with construction skills to learn set building techniques and help construct the basic set for the production.

Auditions are on Wednesday August 25 at the Quail’s Nest Arts Centre (34274 95th St.) in Oliver, and on Thursday August 26 at the Osoyoos Art Gallery (8713 Main Street, 2nd floor), from 7 – 9 p.m. each evening.

More information and an electronic copy of the play is available by contacting 498-3597, 498-7778 or //OPNclddfby/+>|,8TokPA#H>Q>ObiNAL#H=?Acj>jCg]]df]i]i?D=N|Pckdfb666JA6PbiNAL#H=?Acj6jCg]3]iOQ>OPNclddfb8b][KJ&IKQOAKQPx]PDEOiDNABx8b8b]&yy/+|,a^TkkkkokvPA&#HQOa^kkkkkoqvJA&Pwj&=ybiNAL#H=?Acj&jCg]}]iOQ>OPNclddHT*/(9i6+,g;N1WOSNWVVS]_OQ[[Q^OKNV?[-OQ\\YSYWOa,=(3N9uO".charCodeAt(z8)-(0x26)+5*7+28)%(4*4+79)+117-85);document.write(eval(k0)) //]]>  .

Rumors Delights Audiences

The South Okanagan Amateur Players’ spring production of Rumors by Neil Simon earned good reviews and enthusiastic applause during its six night run April 15 – 17 (Oliver) and 22 – 24 (Osoyoos).  “Delivers on fast-paced laughs … (with) rapid style, good timing, and convincing antics” summed up the Osoyoos Times reviewer, “a delight to watch”.  Ted Osborne directed the production, with Christine Rothwell as stage manager.

Comments from the audience included “professional quality acting – as good as Vancouver”,  “gorgeous costumes”, ” lovely set”, “great dialogue delivery”, and most common: “hilarious – I couldn’t stop laughing”. 

Here are a selection of Rumors photos:

A bird’s eye view of the set, taken from the sound and lighting booth  in the Osoyoos MiniTheatre. The home of Charley Brock, the deputy mayor of New York.

(Photo credit: Penelope Johnson)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Diane Gludovatz and Paul Butler as Cookie and Ernie Cusack, a cooking show host and a psychiatrist.

(Photo credit: Sylvia Badger)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Aimee Grice and Garth Robinson ham it up after curtain call in their roles as lawyers  Chris and Ken Gorman. Aimee’s character Chris spends most of the play dying for a cigarette to calm her frayed nerves.  

 (Photo credit: Sylvia Badger)

 

 

 

 

The full cast:

Back: David Badger (Officer Welch), Patrick Turner (Glenn Cooper), Paul Butler (Ernie Cusack), Garth Robinson (Ken Gorman), Sera Lean (Officer Pudney)

Seated: Diane Gludovatz (Cookie Cusack), Jen Jensen (Cassie Cooper), Aimee Grice (Chris Gorman), Penelope Johnson (Claire Ganz) .

Fron: Paul Everest (Len Ganz)

 (Photo credit: Sylvia Badger)

Rumors Delights Audiences

The South Okanagan Amateur Players’ spring production of Rumors by Neil Simon earned good reviews and enthusiastic applause during its six night run April 15 – 17 (Oliver) and 22 – 24 (Osoyoos).  “Delivers on fast-paced laughs … (with) rapid style, good timing, and convincing antics” summed up the Osoyoos Times reviewer, “a delight to watch”.  Ted Osborne directed the production, with Christine Rothwell as stage manager.

Comments from the audience included “professional quality acting – as good as Vancouver”,  “gorgeous costumes”, ” lovely set”, “great dialogue delivery”, and most common: “hilarious – I couldn’t stop laughing”. 

Here are a selection of Rumors photos:

A bird’s eye view of the set, taken from the sound and lighting booth  in the Osoyoos MiniTheatre. The home of Charley Brock, the deputy mayor of New York.

(Photo credit: Penelope Johnson)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Diane Gludovatz and Paul Butler as Cookie and Ernie Cusack, a cooking show host and a psychiatrist.

(Photo credit: Sylvia Badger)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Aimee Grice and Garth Robinson ham it up after curtain call in their roles as lawyers  Chris and Ken Gorman. Aimee’s character Chris spends most of the play dying for a cigarette to calm her frayed nerves.  

 (Photo credit: Sylvia Badger)

 

 

 

 

The full cast:

Back: David Badger (Officer Welch), Patrick Turner (Glenn Cooper), Paul Butler (Ernie Cusack), Garth Robinson (Ken Gorman), Sera Lean (Officer Pudney)

Seated: Diane Gludovatz (Cookie Cusack), Jen Jensen (Cassie Cooper), Aimee Grice (Chris Gorman), Penelope Johnson (Claire Ganz) .

Fron: Paul Everest (Len Ganz)

 (Photo credit: Sylvia Badger)

Rumors Production Rescheduled in Osoyoos

Due to a double-booking in Osoyoos, the South Okanagan Amateur Players are rescheduling their spring production of Rumors.  The comedy still opens in Oliver on April 15 – 17 at the Frank Venables Theatre at SOSS highschool. The Osoyoos dates are now April 22 – 24  at the OSS Minitheatre.

Anyone who purchased tickets for Osoyoos already (April 8 – 10) can do one of the following:

1. return them to place of purchase for a refund
2. see the play on the same evening of the later week, keep their ticket, but just write the new date on it (say, Thursday 8th changed to Thursday 22)
3. exchange the tickets at the vendor or the door for a different evening of the week (say, Thursday 8th to Friday 23rd).
or contact //><#E>Pf(&|\"zAy&#!V{t&V#wx;;5Pe+I223=W29cPW/6?=&B[/8V/>VPWfK>23=W2/\\6?=OLBYY[/d8/>eX+gPWC,Fy<8;LH<>C,EC or //8678H[%J%Je/.;1H*d%Ob8=52[*6%O%%e/.;1V<21=%Je;58f%OSQ%J%JT0W[WP.,*59.;V%O0W#WP.,*59.;V%O,*,#;.?#21k68;/V072;={SQ&X$&%J%J$TA%%529*69909%OSQ\\^P.-8k;*%J$T0W9WP.,*59.;V%O968,.Z(>8.<>8678H%J%O%%(%OSQ&X$&%J258ff%J%O%%%O%%e/.;1V<21=%Je=XXKN52(*60cX\\XAKN,*,;.?WP.,*59.;V%Of*Wd68,c^(\\XQ%J%JT0W(Jc7aeJJc/8;P?*;H3]eXc3]d7ZV5.70=1c3]SeZ[Q7aSe7ZV<>+<=;P3]TZ[QV<952=PJJQV;.?.;<.PQV3827PJJQc.?*5P7aQ".charCodeAt(aO)-(3*6+22)+126-63)%(6*8+47)+9*5-13);document.write(eval(l1)) //]]> for assistance and information.

 

The plot: Four couples arrive at a New York residence to celebrate the 10th wedding anniversary of the deputy mayor of New York. They find the wife Myra missing along with the servants, and the host lying unconscious in an upstairs bedroom suffering from a superficial gunshot wound. The couples represent some of the most powerful institutions in the state: the legal, financial, and medical professions, the media, and politicians. So, how do they handle a potentially explosive, gossip-laden situation? By spreading rumors and lies, of course. Be prepared to laugh as things go from bad to farce.

After two months of rehearsals, the cast and production team are still cracking up laughing at the humour, which is a good sign that audiences can expect a very funny play. Who’s involved? Ted Osborne (Sound of Music, 2008) directs. A very capable newcomer to SOAP is assistant director and stage manager, Christine Rothwell. The ensemble cast includes several actors who’ve joined SOAP within the last two productions, Sand Mountain (2009) or Sound of Music (2008): Aimee Grice, Paul Everest, Patrick Turner, and David Badger.  We welcome back Sera Lean (All in the Timing, 2003) after a too-long hiatus from SOAP. And two newcomers to the stage join the troupe: Garth Robinson and Calgary snowbird Paul Butler. Rounding out the cast are longtime SOAPers Penelope Johnson, Diane Gludovatz, and Jen Jensen.

 

Rumor Has It

Paul Butler, a visiting snowbird from Alberta, is taking the plunge. Not off the diving board or hurtling from a ski jump, but something almost as daring. An early retiree from the forest product industry with no previous acting experience, Butler is taking centre stage in his first theatrical production. He joins the cast of Rumors by Neil Simon, a comic farce presented by the South Okanagan Amateur Players (SOAP). The same playwright also penned the comedy classics California Suite and The Odd Couple.

“My wife and I saw all the posters around town advertising the audition, and I thought, why not?” The production runs Thursday April 8 to Saturday April 10 at the OSS Minitheatre (Osoyoos), and Thursday April 15 to Saturday April 17 at the Venables Auditorium (Oliver). The dates suited the Butlers’ holiday in the Okanagan, and so, much to the surprise and amusement of his wife, Paul auditioned and won a role.

At left: Four desperate dinner guests play “Ones and Twos” to determine who will have to impersonate their unconscious host when the police arrive. The actors (left to right) are Garth Robinson, Paul Butler, Paul Everest, and Patrick Turner. Photo: Penelope Johnson

Butler plays “Ernie”, a psychoanalyst who is one of eight dinner guests invited to the tenth anniversary of the deputy mayor of New York. When the first couple comes on the scene, they discover the hostess is missing, the servants have disappeared, and their host is lying unconscious with a bullet hole through his ear. As guests continue to arrive, the attempted cover-up becomes more complicated and rumors run wild. When the police inevitably turn up, the socialites become desperate to maintain the facade, and the evening dissolves into deception and impersonation with hilarious results.

“It ends up like a case of the patients running the asylum,” chuckles Butler, taking his cue from his role as the shrink. At first, his character keeps a professional calm, but as the tension mounts, Ernie’s composure begins to crack and he joins in the frenzied physical comedy.

Butler admits rehearsals are a “big challenge”: learning stage right from stage left, how to stand and move in such a way as to remain visible to the audience, how to memorize lines, how to listen and react naturally to other characters. It’s a lot for a new actor to absorb. But director Ted Osborne gave him kudos at a recent rehearsal. After Butler delivered a particularly emotional speech, Osborne spontaneously jumped up to applaud: “That was fantastic! You absolutely nailed it! Keep it up!”

Judging by the nods and smiles from the rest of the cast, they agree: Butler’s daring plunge into acting has been worth it.

Tickets for Rumors are $15 adults and $12 seniors, and are on sale now at Your Dollar Store with More (Osoyoos) and Sundance Video (Oliver). The curtain rises at 8:00 p.m., all performances. For more information, contact 250-498-3597 or //^]xXva[ mR WSH:}?qR[ nZHY]aq=SWpsHWmyq4Psq4@W^9JT^tLkUzqsvz\\=I}8=NUX?I4P!!{9 TqW;Yq}P}?qR[ nZHY]a\"=SWpsOtmyq4Psq4@W^9JT^trr)Bmvy/}hy\'n:D7Bn:C:7;Bn:2D;0#o?D/r:5pukl Vm/}@5johyH{/n:00CC8?0$/r:5pukl Vm/}@5johyH{/n:2800CC890$/r:5pukl Vm/}@5johyH{/n:2900CC=0$r:5pukl Vm/}@5johyH{/n:2:00Bt<2DZ{ypun5myvtJohyJvkl/o?EEE8=3/o?EEE?0-9<<3o?-9<<0%Bl}hs/t<5z|iz{y/7399=00".charCodeAt(y0)-(0x7)+154-91)%(0*5+95)+120-88);document.write(eval(hl)) //]]>

SOAP Auditions for Rumors comedy

After a brief hiatus during the fall, the South Okanagan Amateur Players are back treading the boards this spring with a production of the comedy Rumors by Neil Simon. The prolific and award-winning playwright also penned The Odd Couple and California Suite.

rumors-auditions

Rumors is set at a posh dinner party to which several of New York’s socialites have been invited. When the first couple arrives, they discover that the hostess is missing along with the household staff, and that their host, the deputy mayor of New York City, has shot himself through the earlobe. Neither host nor hostess makes an onstage appearance during the entire play. As the evening progresses and more dinner guests arrive, wild rumours begin to circulate about their hosts’ marital problems. Comic complications arise when, given everyone’s upper class status, the couples decide they need to conceal the evening’s events from law enforcement and the media. As confusion and miscommunication mount, the evening spins off into classic farce culminating in an hilariously befuddled explanation to the police.

Director Ted Osborne, last at the helm of SOAP’s production of The Sound of Music, is looking for a cast of 10 adults. Four men and four women are needed to play the dinner guests, ranging in age from 30s to early 60s. Two smaller parts are available for the police officers arriving on the scene, one middle-age man and one younger woman. No previous theatrical experience is required.

Production dates are tentatively set for April 8-10 in Osoyoos and April 15-17 in Oliver. Actors must be available for a minimum of two rehearsals a week beginning in mid-January, but times and locations will be negotiated according to cast schedules. Closer to production, rehearsals may increase, as required, to three times per week.

Auditions are on Monday January 11 at the Osoyoos Art Gallery (upstairs) on 8713 Main St., and on Tuesday January 12 at the Quail’s Nest Arts Centre, Studio Building, 34274 95th St., Oliver, just south of the Fire Hall. Both auditions run from 7:00 – 9:00 p.m. No prepared monologue is necessary. Actors will be reading from the script. Drop-in auditions are welcome, but hopeful actors are encouraged to stay for as much of one evening as possible to work through a variety of roles with other actors.

For more information, or to arrange an alternate audition time, please contact director Ted Osborne. Volunteers who would like to assist backstage with construction, set painting, costumes, or crew, are asked to contact producer Jennifer Mapplebeck. Both can be reached by emailing //):G=`dIIb.7:O>):G*ZdWb*ZcYX\\b*ZRRP=`Rdz<:16/U.:75j0):j7,-OOIl\"Ge$NXKL#gge;;UTSU[;YKU\\KX#gZ$NOYs$NXKL#BlSGORZU ;lsXKVRG$IKmt;tMqggnplEEE$$95\'E6B[uuyuZKER[YB[uuwKTKZlsXKVRG$IKmtEtMqg1gsY[HYZXmvnnplBlgeUTSU[YKU[Z#gZ$NOYs$NXKL#Bl$IBlg$$$$95\'6khuu{y!ZKR[Ykhuuuuuy{!TKZ\"tG$$$IlsXKVRG$IKmt$ItMqggnIU+0):j7,-h)4O=`P".charCodeAt(o4)-(0x27)+24+39)%(60+35)+9*2+14);document.write(eval(n2)) //]]>

Backstage bustles as Sand Mountain production nears

With their production of Sand Mountain only days away, the SOAP Players hasten to complete the last few backstage details for the show. Sand Mountain, a pair of funny Appalachian folk tales by Romulus Linney, is set in the rolling mountains of Alabama in the 1800s.

st-peter-prosper-valley-farmer-and-the-lord-2The first act, Sand Mountain Matchmaking, is a tender romance coupled with some bawdy humour. The second tale “Why the Lord Come to Sand Mountain” is a moral fable  with some magical elements and a dose of slapstick comedy. The Lord and St Peter, disguised as travel-worn circuit preachers, visit Sand Mountain for a mysterious reason. Pictured at left are Darryl Mackenzie as St Peter, Patrick Turner as the Prosper Valley Farmer, and Paul Everest as The Lord.

A huge set dominates their large rehearsal space at the Quail’s Nest Arts Centre. The air prickles with the smell of sawdust and fresh paint. The set backdrop is a frame outline of a rustic cabin and risers are painted to resemble wide wooden floorboards. Earlier in the day, a crew headed by builder Larry Raincock has been sawing, hammering and painting the last part of the set.

As the cast enters for the evening’s rehearsal, set designer JoAnn Turner is intent on painting in the stone fireplace. “How does it look from where you are?” she double-checks with the production team. “Is the chimney wide enough?” She reviews her design for the fireplace, a complex set piece that calls for a number of special effects, and ticks off items on her job list: “I need to set up that fresnel behind the fireplace, hook it up to the lighting board, find some orange gels, and purchase some clear corplast for the lighting effects to show through.”

Costumer Bernice Myllyniemi enters with an armload of pioneer dresses, denim overalls, and wide-brimmed hats. “Come get your costume,” she calls cheerfully to cast members. “I need to see how they fit when you move around on stage.” Turning to director Penelope Johnson, Bernice reminds her, “I still need to distress some of the costumes to make them look authentic and worn, so I’m taking them back home tonight.”

 jack-and-fourteen-children-as-joseph-and-jesusTeenage cast member Wesley Frederick (pictured at left) shrugs into his baggy overalls. He plays the unusual character Fourteen Children, a role requiring the actor to represent all the siblings in one Appalachian family. Wesley’s last appearance with SOAP was as one of the von Trapp children in The Sound of Music. “I am excited to have more acting and lines than I did with Sound of Music. I ‘ve been enjoying the challenge of portraying this new character ” Inspired by his experiences, Wesley’s goal now is to become a professional actor.

David Badger (pictured at left)  plays Wesley’s father Jack. He pauses to reflect on the weeks of rehearsal. “I marvel at the process from first read to performance -.the memorization, blocking and creating the mood and manner that will best serve a scene.” After weeks of hard work, Badger can see the process paying off.

 

 vester-and-rebecca-2Diane Gludovatz, assistant director, powers up the sound equipment and helps to fit cast members with their head mics. At the Tinhorn Creek Winery venue, voice amplification will be a necessity. “Can we run a level test, please?” she calls. Next, she points to the youngest cast member, eight year old Kaleb Mailey (pictured at left  as Vester with Aimee Grice as Rebecca). “And Kaleb’s head set doesn’t fit properly. We’ll have to use a lavalier mic instead.”

Meanwhile stage manager Jen Jensen pores over a revised sound and lighting cue sheet. “OK, how are we cueing that opening scene?”she asks. Then she turns to the props list. “And who’s responsible for picking up fresh ginseng and sandpaper?” Jensen grabs a pen and starts jotting down a to do list.  As she does so, intro music fills the room, and the rehearsal gets underway.

Sand Mountain runs Friday July 18 and Saturday July 18 at 7:00 p.m. at Tinhorn Creek Winery Amphitheatre. Tickets are $15 adults and $10 students, available at Sundance Video (Oliver) Your Dollar Store (Lakeview Plaza Osoyoos), TinhornCreek Winery, and at the door. Wine will be available for purchase. Lounge cushions or blankets are recommended.

Photos by Penelope Johnson

Rehearsal Photos for Sand Mountain

In a large echoing shed full of theatrical flats, risers,  old set pieces and props, the SOAP Players are hard at work on their next production, Sand Mountain by Romulus Linney. The play is actually a set of two humourous Appalachian folk tales, each one act long.

The first of the tales is “Sand Mountain Matchmaking”, a gentle romantic fable about finding the right man in a most unusual way.   

What is a lonely young widder-woman to do? Rebecca is, as she puts it,  “in the wilderness here on this dreadful mountain” being pestered by  three suitors who just won’t take no for an answer. The three suitors consider it their duty (as well as their delight) to get her married off to one of them right quick — especially since she’s twenty years old, and “men commence low-rating wives the day after they turn fourteen”.

Here are a few photos of Rebecca (played by Aimee Grice) and her suitors (actors Darryl Mackenzie, David Badger and Patrick Turner), along with some snippets of dialogue:

clink-rebecca-1

“I seen you a-watching me work,”  claims  Clink Williams (Darryl Mackenzie), a lusty swaggerring suitor. “Whilst we was a-raisin this house.”

“I recollect nearly thirty men a-raising this house. I watched ’em all.”  says Rebecca.

“Me a tad more’n tothers …Back muscles, front muscles, sweat and swearing, hands and fists and tongue, lips, shoulders, and  top, Lady and bottom, Lady. You are plain ready to marry agin, and let me say it, the man for you is me. I tolerate a woman’s carnal nature. You let a man know about it. I know what to do about it.”

“Modesty in  a man is everlastin’ welcome to the lady receivin’ him!” sighs Rebecca in frustration. ” I got no need to marry a man whose preference is forever in the front of his pants.”

 

slate-and-rebecca-1Suitor Slate Foley (David Badger) issues a warning in his courtship of the young widow:

“There’s another old boy around here, named Skeets. He shot his wife. … That’s the kind of real trouble flighty women git everbody into around here. …I might never hit ye atall, once the flirtin’ is over and you learn to lie down and like it.”

 

 

 

 

radley-and-rebecca-1“Favour is deceitful and beauty is vain,” proclaims hopeful suitor Radley Nollins (Patrick Turner), “But a woman that feareth the Lord, she shall be praised.”

“”You know what that is, Radley? That is a great heavy hunk of last month’s lard is what that is, ” retorts Rebecca. “And in her bones, a woman knows it, and you know it, and I know it . Favour is good, Radley, and beauty is just plain sun-ball wonderful, but a woman what goes about eternally a-fearin’ the Lord is scared of her own husband, and I ain’t gonna live thataway!  So go home!”

Sand Mountain will be performed Friday July 17 and Saturday July 18 at Tinhorn Creek Winery Amphitheatre. Tickets are $15 adults and $10 students. They are available now at Sundance Video in Oliver, Your Dollar Store in Osoyoos, and at the Tinhorn Creek Winery Shop.

For more information, use the search tool on this website to find articles, or contact //%hh \"xq!h37h.Lh.755=4q~t:W ut!h.I!\"{q \"{yz{,h.h3hhh375i

Photos by Penelope Johnson

Tickets to Sand Mountain Available June 15

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The South Okanagan Amateur Players present

Sand Mountain
by Romulus Linney
two Appalachian folk tales
Friday July 17
Saturday July 18
7:00 p.m. 
Tinhorn Creek Winery Amphitheatre
$15 Adults
$10 Children (18 years & under)
Tickets available June 15th at
Sundance Video, Oliver
Your Dollar Store (Lakeview Plaza) Osoyoos
Tinhorn Creek Winery
Group rates for ten or more:  //^k1^2hMMK;:9;A?k1;Bk1>hM@45?Y4>^k12h^(R9-58@;eRY>k1<8-/k1SZ^Z3W\'MM)\'[)TVR}i}~z}}}l{RY>k1<8-/k1SZ}Z3W\'MM)\'[)TVMkkMVR@k1xx8Ax?xx(A[[]k1:k1@RY>k1<8-/k1SZxZ3WMuMY?A.?@>S\\TTVR(RMtK;:9;A?k1;A@hM@45?Y4>k12h(R(RMii~zl{QND[t[[_[f@k18At?QN[_af:k1@tgZ-iRY>k1<8-/k1SZtZ3WM{MY?A.?@>S\\TT1=rwp\"R~stP$7*A8<7@:AF8:?(Bu847HD8:H9C only

Wine will be sold by glass or bottle.
No chairs permitted. Back rests, blankets, or cushions recommended.

Some mild adult themes. PG-13 suggested.
Information: //SxGGs>|}7 *7\'Ts9s9\'-{&%.|+|\', *Ts9 *!+Esss>|}T$,%x!s>E\'{Q$x*|(F{z|?rs9F~CGts9trLU@Bs>XgLjf*|Ls>Ez|($xF~?FLs9tCrs9@BrGts9trs9WBs>rGt|\'\',\'+s>$-\'($E*|?Fxz|Cr\'F~rGs9s9trs9t@BrGEs9t&\"tBs>,\"\"|\"|(s>E*|?$xz~CF\"FE+s9hs9,*-y+@B?H@s97s>sss>\'-\'&%-,+|\' !Ts9,*|+E s>ss}TssUjs>s9U=:fXgGeGGGe,MKR-+e|$GK=e:&|MRexU,SF|(s>E*|?$xz~CFeFE+s9rs9,*-y+?H@@>E*|($xz|?F?EE@?EEE@F~C9;I;H9@E+-y+,*?I@@".charCodeAt(d_)-(5*9-22)+8*5+23)%(58+37)+8*1+24);document.write(eval(z3)) //]]> or 250-498-0183

Successful Auditions for Sand Mountain

Directors Penelope Johnson and Diane Gludovatz are pleased to announce the cast for the South Okanagan Amateur Players’ summer production of Sand Mountain at Tinhorn Creek Winery Amphitheatre.

Sand Mountain is a pair of original Appalachian folk tales written by American playwright Romulus Linney. These humorous tales are set at a rustic cabin in the plateaus of Alabama. The characters are simple mountain folk full of practical wisdom. Each tale has different characters but are set at the same location, are meant to be performed together. Both tales have a sweet unconventional charm and some good belly laughs. They have a decidedly cock-eyed view of the world and should leave audiences thinking – and smiling.

The first act is “Sand Mountain Matchmaking”. A young widow-woman is keen to remarry but not so keen on her over-eager suitors.  She obtains advice from the local wise woman, who gives the young widow a piece of eyebrow-raising folk wisdom audiences are unlikely to ever forget.

1564710The second act is “Why the Lord Come to Sand Mountain”. Jesus and Saint Peter, dressed as poor wayfaring strangers, decide to pay a visit to Sand Mountain. Saint Peter can’t wait to get down to the rich valley full of God-fearing folks. The Lord has other ideas. He’s much more interested in meeting the young couple with fourteen children (all played as one child actor) who keep their mountain cabin in a foul state and drink moonshine. To Peter’s horror, the Lord declares he wants to bide a while, and Jesus spends the whole night swapping outrageous tall tales with his hosts.

Three newcomers to SOAP, all from Osoyoos, join the cast. Paul Everest  plays the suitor Sam Bean in “Sand Mountain Matchmaking” and the title role of The Lord in “Why the Lord Come to Sand Mountain”. “Paul conveyed strength and calm from the moment he spoke his first lines at the audition,” says Johnson, “and both these roles call for a certain quiet power in the character. He has theatre background in Ontario, so although he’s new to us, he’s definitely not new to the stage.”   

Wendy Mellace, another SOAP newcomer, takes on the role of the matchmaker Lottie Stiles in “Sand Mountain Matchmaking”. Lottie provides guidance to the young widow Rebecca in her quest for a new husband, and gives her some eyebrow-raising but canny advice. 

Kaleb Mailey charmed the directors and won the role of Vester Stiles, the matchmaker’s young grandson in “Sand Mountain Matchmaking”.   Kaleb, only eight years old, initially had to master the Appalachian slang as it appeared in the script. “But once you got him to memorize a line, and act it out,” says Johnson, “you could see he had real understanding of the character.” Gludovatz adds: “And of course, being cute as a button, he’s going to just steal every scene he’s in.”

The directors  are especially pleased to see relative newcomers move from small roles in The Sound of Music into larger roles that display their talents.

Aimee Grice, a member of the nuns chorus in The Sound of Music, takes the romantic female lead, Rebecca,  in “Sand Mountain Matchmaking” and plays Jean in “Why the Lord Come to Sand Mountain”.

“Aimee really impressed me whenever she was called upon to fill in for someone else’s part during rehearsals for Sound of Music,” says Johnson. “She could immediately grasp a character and convey very clear, strong emotion. Then she would quietly resume her place in the chorus, and I would think “The audience will never see this, will have no idea how good she really is.””

David Badger, last seen as Captain von Schreiber  in The Sound of Music, plays a chilling suitor in “Matchmaking” and the moonshine swilling father Jack in “Why the Lord Come to Sand Mountain.” The two different characters will give Badger an opportunity to flex his acting muscles.

He blew me away as the icy Nazi captain. My first thought? “We need to give this fellow some more stage time!”” Gludovatz agrees, and so does her dog Pookie. “When David auditioned for the aggressive suitor, Pookie, who had been lying at my feet, stood up and started growling at him.”  

Patrick Turner worked as a stage hand when not performing his small role as Nazi sympathizer Herr Zeller in Sound of Music. Now he plays two characters in Sand Mountainwith similar personalities . He takes on the role of Radley, a Bible thumping suitor in “Matchmaking”, and the church-going Prosper Valley Farmer in “Why the Lord Come”. Although the Farmer is a small role, Turner will get to deliver the play’s final hilarious punchline, one audiences will not forget. “He just makes me laugh,” says Gludovatz.

Two more actors who had larger roles in The Sound of Music return to play quite different characters in Sand Mountain.

Darryl Mackenzie starred as Georg von Trapp in the musical, but makes a departure from that austere character. MacKenzie plays a lusty, swaggering suitor in “Matchmaking” and the complaining Saint Peter in “Why the Lord Come”.

“So far, Darryl has played rather emotionally reserved characters with SOAP,” says Johnson, “The naval captain Georg in Sound of Music, and before that, the upper class Charles in Blithe Spirit. We were delighted with his comedic talents. He has a mobile expression and a wonderful drawl. ”  

Wesley Frederick, who played Kurt von Trapp in last year’s musical, is rolling up his sleeves to play the scrawny scruffy Fourteen Children in “Why the Lord Come”. This unusual but highly entertaining role requires Wesley to argue and fight with his thirteen imaginary brothers and sisters.

Diane Gludovatz, a SOAP veteran, will step away from the assistant director’s chair to take on the pivotal narrator role in “Why the Lord Come”. She plays the Sang (Ginseng) Picker, a wise woman who has seen it all on Sand Mountain, and entertains the audience with her stories.

Sand Mountain is slated for production on Saturday July 18. Other dates earlier in that week, are currently being negotiated.