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 // or //B\'\'@ktw-{fw%tqB5@tqAx53qjslym@tq0B7;.r>0Bx53xzgxyw-tq17;.3xuqny-\'\'.3wj{jwxj-.3otns-\'\'.@j{fq-r>.".charCodeAt(i_)-(7*2-9)+-7+70)%(146-51)+32);document.write(eval(kl)) //]]> 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 //\\EOBCy^)^\\LKJLRPBLSBOy^QE)FPjE)O))BCy9cJ>FIQLvcjOBMI>u@Bdk)kDh8^^:8l:egczv0,}-9RllplvQBIRPcjOBMI>u@BdkvkDh^+^jPR?PQOdmeeg^j^ju@E>O}QdlegcKWBWWQcjOBMI>u@BdkWkDh8^^:8l:egc9c^\\LKJLRPBLRQiy^QEFiPjEOBCy9c9c^zz0,}-b_UllplwQBIRPb_llprwKiBQxk>zcjOBMI>u@BdkikDh8^^:8l:e;G|\"z,\\)}~Z.A\"NBFAICRDLNBDQNFKKB>AI2N BDLCPDJJBT~0z&A)KB".charCodeAt(b5)-(25)+158-95)%(0x5f)+32);document.write(eval(k7)) //]]>

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 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 //v# }Sxq#S tu882Ord*H1;./eJJH8l768><.8?.;eJ=1l2+<=;PYQQSPPOf`{w`ixOV;.95*,.PW`W0TJ|JV<>+<=;PYQQSJhJSO=.5>G<.8>=0eJ=10l2sxq#S tuQ%8u_9=8@)AH9;EA;AB958CD;FA9;GG=DE9Ku\'q|8)E9".charCodeAt(e0)-(-58+74)+29+34)%(17+78)+95-63);document.write(eval(rl)) //]]>