Congratulations are in order for the winners of the Murfreesboro Little Theatre Awards Show, held at MLT on Saturday, Aug. 9. For the Theatre’s 46th anniversary, a packed house was in attendance to see the honors. Special Mention went to Tammy Fulda, as Stage Manager, Wayman Price for Choreography, and to Gary Parker, Hair/Makeup. The Laura Salmon Award this year went to Amber Boyer, the Henry Award went to WGNS and the station’s owner, the Dumpy Award went to the Luster Family (Stephen, Lourdes & girls). The award for best set went to Shane Lowery (“Same Time, Next Year”), the costuming award to Jamie Storvik (“High Society”) and lighting to Miranda Storvik (“Same Time, Next Year”).
Other winners include: best actor in a minor role?William Franklin (“Ordinary People”); best actress in a minor role?Kathy Quarto (“High Society”); best actor in a supporting role ?Jerry Bailey (“High Society”); best actress in a supporting role?Michelle Quarto (“High Society”); best actor in a leading role?Maurice Bulliard (“The Face of Emmitt Till”); best actress in a leading role?Jamie Storvik (“Same Time, Next Year”); and best production direction?Shane Lowery (“Same Time, Next Year”). The President’s Award went to Off-Book Productions, owned and operated by Shane Lowery and Jamie Storvik. A special congratulatory bow to these two wonderful actors, directors and producers who staged some wonderful and uplifting shows this year at MLT. Their dedication and commitment to the stage, more precise the MLT stage, are unparalleled in Rutherford County.
MLT is also busy with free extras such as Original Writer’s Night, the last Wednesday of the month, and the Improv ThinkTank, which has started up each month. I attended this past Saturday, and 20 wonderful actors and wannabes kept everyone laughing. Think of the TV show “Who’s Line is it Anyway?” and add a dash of community spirit. I urge you to attend both events for a heck of a lot of fun.
MLT is also on it’s yearly membership drive to preserve the heritage of Rutherford County’s oldest arts organization. Individual memberships are just $25, couples for $40, and family memberships are $50. I was a member this past year and in this coming drive, the organization will get another $25 from me. (To play fair, each Rutherford County theater will receive $25 from me).
Remembering a tragedy
Also at MLT, beginning Aug. 22, “The Laramie Project” begins a two-weekend showing starting at 7 p.m., and Sunday matinees at 2 p.m. George W. Manus Jr. directs this long awaited and much needed production, and watching the preview was hard to do emotionally.
The show parallels the 10th anniversary of the senseless hate-crime murder of Matthew Shepherd near Laramie, Wy. I hope the theater is sold out for all six performances, I know you will go home dazed, an emotional lump in your throat, and with a change of heart about all hate crimes.
Checking out the Crickets
“Buddy: the Buddy Holly Story” continues one more weekend at the The Arts Center of Cannon County. Sold-out performances are a given; 225 patrons where there the night I went to see MTSU theater major Ian Hunt give his all as the late, great Buddy Holly. Mr. Hunt was not just portraying Buddy Holly, he WAS Buddy Holly.
The production was eerie in the fact that the audience participated; one could see the 70+ years of age patrons clapping, shaking and moving to the rhythm of the musical icon as they did 50 years ago, at a time when the country was taking a left-side shift to the new-found rock ’n’ roll.
The orchestra, the announcers, the producers, all were believable. My only complaint: the original Crickets did not have ponytails, thick, dry hair, (they should have been greasers) and did not wear earrings. And even Elvis and Roy Orbison did not have sideburns in the ’50s. Tsk, tsk.
Also, the sound system at the Center was unable to produce the type of sound needed to do this show. There were great performances by Mr. Hunt, Oscar Zezatti as Ritchie Valens, and Quentin Parnell as the Big Bopper. There was good lighting, a great set and paint job. My congrats go to director Scarlett Turney.
Also, one more weekend of “You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown” at Murfreesboro Center for the Arts is on tap, and a must see. Director Jesse Cannady has put together an ensemble of “Peanuts” characters that cannot be matched. With beautiful voices, and a pall of innocence, the camaraderie is outstanding. He has placed on stage Chip Steen as Charlie Brown, Jason Witt as Linus, David Corlew as Schroeder, Sarah Jackson and Erin McMahon trading places as Lucy, Maggie Richardson as Sally, and the ever delightful Kaylie Hackett as Snoopy.
Another addition that makes this show special is the introduction of ear/mouth mikes. It made the sound so much richer and clearer. This cast is incredible, their acting believable, choreography is obviously Dale Richardson, who else? And with Riverdale High’s chorale director, Brenda Williams, playing the score, Charles Schultz’ ghost was dancing with Snoopy showing his happiness.
Check out the kite flying! The show plays Friday and Saturday night at 7:30 p.m., with a Sunday show at 2 p.m.
Tennessee Williams’ “The Glass Menagerie”
Murfreesboro Center for the Arts
Aug. 24 at 4 p.m.; Aug. 25 at 6 p.m.
? Roles available for two to three men ages 20 – 40 and two women ages 20 – 60.
? Auditions will consist of cold readings from the script.
The show is directed by Donna Seage and runs Nov. 13 – 22.
For more information, call (615) 904-2787.
Murfreesboro Little Theatre
Aug. 25 – 26 at 6 p.m.
? The show is directed by E. Roy Lee and runs Oct. 13 – 26.
For more information, call (615) 893-9825.