Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Always...Patsy Cline by Ted Swindley, Presented by The Drama Workshop

The Drama Workshop finished off the 2016-2017 with a smash hit for their patrons.  This musical was so popular with the community that an extra weekend was added and people were begging for still another weekend.  But, as a member of the group remarked,  "This is community theater and it is time for us all to get back to our real lives."  My good friend who went with Tom and me said, " I had no idea that this group was all volunteer, that they perform like this for fun, not for pay."

Cynthia Mottel as Patsy Cline treated us to twenty-four Patsy Cline hits, including "Crazy" and "I Fall to Pieces".

Jennifer Keith as Louise Seger, Patsy's fan from the beginning and friend from the time Patsy met her was completely believable as a Texas housewife with a passion for Patsy and her music.

I was dazzled by the entire production.  I didn't realize until I was back in the van that the two women with Cynthia Mottel at a photo opportunity after the play were probably Jennifer Keith and Linda Abbott. I thought they were family members. But I did get this photo of Cynthia.

The musical production was directed by Robert Weidle and produced by Gretchen Gantner with Linda Abbott as Band Leader and Vocal Director.  Linda Abbott also played the piano.  Her piano playing could have been a solo act and people would have come.

                         The Bodacious Bobcat Band

As an aside and an example of the adaptability of all involved, my son,Ray, said that as of last Sunday there had been six different combinations of band members, depending on who was available for each performance.  But the band always performed flawlessly.

                                The Jordanaires
Standing is Kurt Kishler.  In front is Randy Meyer.  They sang "How Great Thou Art" beautifully as well as backup to Patsy Cline's songs.

Photo of part of the Creative Crew.

Below is a list of the entire Creative Crew.

This production brought back lots of memories from years ago.  I'll save them for another blog.

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Things My Mother Taught Me by Katherine DiSavino Presented by the Troy Civic Theater

This evening and Saturday evening are the Troy Civic Theatre's last two performances of Things My Mother Taught Me by Katherine DiSavino.  

The director is Steve Dietrich.   Beth Shrake is his stage manager and assistant director.  

This is a perfect play for Mothers Day. The comedy revolves around the intentional and unintentional conflicts that arise when people care about one another.  Everyone will recognize the craziness that arises.  Maybe you haven't had exactly the same experience in your life but you have had a similar one.

As you can see from the smiling faces, the crew and cast had fun preparing this play for your enjoyment.

The play takes place in a newly acquired apartment.

Olivia and Gabe have decided after a long relationship to move in together.  Rachel Smith is Olivia and Gage Emerson is Gabe.

Moving in is difficult when furniture doesn't fit through the doorway!  But that turns out to be the least of the happy couple's problems.

Gabe's parents, Lydia played by Sonja Hyer and Wyatt played by Mike Maxson turn up to help.  They have made a long trip from New York City to Chicago just to bring their helping hands.  In return, they plan to spend the night in the apartment's second bedroom.

A bit later, guess who arrives?  Olivia's parents, Carter and Karen,  Carter (Michael Robinson) and Karen (Niccole SueAnn Wallace) tumble in.  Remember that chair in the doorway?  And, of course, they are planning to stay in the second bedroom.

The mothers have lots of last minute advice to give the couple.  The fathers do, too.  The young couple's take on the advice plus the things they remember from childhood bring constant chuckles from the audience.

To add a little spice to the mix, the building caretaker shows up periodically. Max, played by Paul Robinson, is curious about the new renters and their visitors.  He has helpful and not so helpful suggestions.

The problems escalate and so does the laughter from the audience.  However, since this is a romantic comedy, all ends well, maybe even better than anyone expected.

To me, a little extra that made me smile was this poster in the lobby.  Playgoers were invited to post words of advice from their own mothers.

This is a perfect play to take your mother to.  It will have all of you remembering your own mother's words of advice.  Your mother will have memories of the reasons for those words of advice and what prompted them that will open your eyes to the uniqueness and preciousness of your own family.

To reserve seats, contact the Troy Civic Theatre by phone --  937-339-7700.

Friday, May 5, 2017

Adventure on the Garbry Big Woods Sanctuary Trail, April 30, 2017

Tom usually drives in front of me when we walk on the boardwalk.  On Sunday, I was soon far behind him.  There were flowers to see and pictures to take.

The boardwalk was damp and slippery because we had had four or five days of rain.  The soggy spots in the sanctuary were soggier than usual.

I hurried to catch up with Tom.  Rounding a curve, I saw him talking to a couple from Fletcher, a nearby town.  His tire was off the boardwalk, stuck in the mud.

This was a big problem.  While we were discussing options, another couple walked up.  They had come all the way to Garbry from the town of West Liberty.

Tom sent me back to the parking lot to get his walker so he could stand up.  That took me twenty minutes. But the walker wasn't a help because the boards were so slippery that his feet slipped when he tried to stand.  By then my legs were worn out so I handed our van keys to the man from West Liberty.  He went back to the van again and returned with the two floor mats from the back seat.  He was faster than I would have been.

Tom managed to stand and the two men, Jack and Scott, lifted the power chair high enough to get the wheel back on the boardwalk.  All told, the couples gave up at least an hour of their walking time to rescue us.  We were extremely grateful.

Despite the "adventure" the walk was a good one.  We saw new flowers blooming as well as some of the flowers we saw the last time we walked here.

Throughout the woods were large patches of Wild Hyacinths.

The trilliums were still blooming...Large-flowered Trillium and also Drooping Trillium and Sessile Trillium.

The Wild Blue Phlox were still showy, too.

A very few Blue Cohosh flowers were still hanging on.


The Solomon's Seals are blooming but a person has to know to look under the leaves to find them.

The dozens of Mayapples were easier to see.

It took a bit of looking but there were Jack-in-the-Pulpits sprinkled throughout the woods.

The Rattlesnake ferns were easier to see.  The fronds contrasted with the more usual leaves.

What appealed to me most were the blooming Sweet Cecily.

One cluster is not especially showy.  But there were clusters throughout the woods.  They were accents among the wild Hyacinths and Large-flowered Trillium and Wild Phlox.

One of the joys of having a macro lens on my camera is that I can see tiny flowers in great detail.