Wizard Of Oz Article   Leave a comment

The following article will not be published in local newspapers until after the PTA play is over.    I couldn’t wait that long to post  it here because  personally   I feel it is one of my best articles… and probably one of the last publicity  articles  I will write for the PTA t00.   Naomi is  just  THE BEST!

Souhegan High School Senior  shares PTA Play Memories

by Janine Leffler

 

 

The classic and iconic tale Wizard Of OZ will be performed by the Amherst PTA this April.  I recently  spoke with Naomi Cohen, a senior at Souhegan High School who will be playing Dorothy.  She reflected on her past PTA performances and the progress of Wizard Of  OZ rehearsals up to this point.

Cohen has been in the PTA play for the past seven years being in every show since 2010 except for CATS.  When asked why she auditioned for Wizard  Of Oz  she said, “The PTA Play has been part of my spring for so long it felt weird not to do it.   I decided to audition because this would be my last PTA  Play before  going to college.” She went on to say, “There are so many memories of my first PTA play, Children  Of Eden;  having my makeup done back stage, Sophie Linkroum waltzing by with her hair in curlers and saying, “This is a zoo!” and me answering with something witty or getting to eat lettuce on stage which is something  I didn’t think happened during shows.”  Naomi remembers looking up to Sophie Linkroum  and is honored this year to be the lead character, Dorothy, in the hope younger kids will look up to her.

 

When asked what she likes about Dorothy’s character she responded  “Dorothy is quite obviously a dreamer. She’s protecting Toto with every ounce of herself even if it means running away from home to do so. She’s friendly and loving with a touch of teenage brat which makes her so much more interesting, rather than the sweet character we’ve all come to know.”  She went on to say, “It is hard for me to choose a favorite scene. I love the Munckinland scene because it is so iconic and the kids are so fun to work with.  I also like the Jitterbug scene because it is a fun dance number.  There are so many bucket-list moments for me in this show;  I get to lie down on stage, carry a live dog, eat and I am even lifted up at one point.”

Cohen encourages people who have never auditioned for a  PTA play by saying the  following,  “A wonderful thing about the Amherst PTA is that we they include everyone we they can and you get to know so many people in a different way.  Who knew that the town’s teachers had such lovely voices or that your next door neighbor was a tap dancer extraordinaire?”   When asked why people should come see Wizard Of OZ  she said, “It’s a classic.  It’s a family show which supports your community.  There are a million reasons but please come support the arts!”

 

Cohen is still awaiting word on where she will attend college next fall and hopes to study music education where ever she goes.   This show has been a dream come true for her in every way. We wish Naomi the very best of luck in her future endeavors. Your star will shine wherever you go.

 

Wizard Of OZ runs at Souhegan High School April 20-23rd with evening performances at 7pm and matinees at 2pm.  The show is directed by Vouli Anthimoudi and Sharron April, music directed by Karina Allayne and Laura Millar and choreographed by Loren Hallet. You won’t want to miss this magical show!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted March 20, 2017 by theatretechdiva in Amherst PTA, Uncategorized

Updated Season Of My Favorite Shows Viewing Schedule   Leave a comment

 2017 Viewing Schedule

Updated 3-3-17

03-4-17    Promises Promises  Manchester Community Theatre Players

03-10-17  Love Sex And The IRS  Milford  Area Players

Review of both of these shows will be posted  March 13th.

03-17-17    Lion  King  Jr.  AMS Theatre Club

3-25 -17  Footloose Souhegan High School Spring  Musical

03-30-17    Wizard  Of Oz Young Performers Edition   Jr Actorsingers

04-01-17  Lights  Camera Action An All Dance Production Riverbend Youth Company

Review of  these shows will  be posted April 2nd.

04-07-17  Chess  Windham Actors Guild

Review will be posted between April 9-14th    As tech week for Wizard Of Oz approaches I will be limiting my time online.

04-29-17  Arsenic and Old Lace   Nashua Theatre Guild

04-30-17   Mary  Poppins Street Car Company

Review for both of these shows will be posted  May 2nd

05-05-17  Seussical The Musical   Riverbend Youth  Company

05-06-17  Souhegan Valley Chorus Concert

Tuesday  I went to watch the rehearsal and  everything sounds great. I miss everyone so much and can’t wait to come back in the fall.    I am also sad because of the recent passing of Gerry Katz.

Reviews of Suessical and SVC Concert will be posted May 10th

05-13-17  Singin  In The Rain Actorsingers

05-19-17  Grease Peacock Players

Reviews of Singin  In The Rain and Grease will be posted May 22nd.

Summer Schedule

Palace  Theatre   Million Dollar Quartet   Planning to go to this whenever SVC gets the group discount.

New  London Barn Playhouse   *listing the dates  that the show is running.  We have not decided at this time when we are going to see the show yet.

Godspell   June  14-25

Souvenir  July 12-16     If vacation  conflicts our back  up choice is  NL Barn  IDOLS on August 14th

Interlakes Summer Theatre

South Pacific  July 19th-July 30th.

RYC  Alumni Show  August 5th

Posted March 4, 2017 by theatretechdiva in Uncategorized

A time of reflection   Leave a comment

Saturday afternoon  I was hit with the sad news that  Dan Wolaver from Souhegan Valley Chorus passed away.   I am  still trying to process  everything as   I am sure everyone else in the chorus is. I have been in SVC  f0r 3 years and  he along with everyone else was so welcoming when  I first joined.   SVC  has become a family to me and what makes me the most sad about Dan’s passing was that he was the president of  our chorus and such a vital member of the group.    He has really done so much for us and  I am going to miss him a lot.  I think all of us will.  He recently helped  me out with putting  my spoken word piece Angels  On My Shoulder to sheet music and  I was deeply appreciative of him   for  helping me out with that.  I hope to perform that song at some point  but  I don’t know when that will happen.

 

Rest in Peace Dan.

Posted February 14, 2017 by theatretechdiva in Non-related ranting

I love RYC a bushel and a peck   Leave a comment

Before I start my Guys and Dolls review let me go back in time  a little bit.  The   third show that I did backstage work for at the Boys and Girls Club of Souhegan Valley was Guys and Dolls Jr in  January 2011. I ran the spotlight and learned a lot from that experience.  Since then  I have been involved with several shows at the Amato Center and with the Amherst PTA. My current show Wizard  Of Oz is my 17th production overall and my 6th with the PTA (see list at the bottom)  Things came full circle for me when  I did publicity this year and also it has been awesome to help out with this show since  Patrick  O’Mara who played Nathan Detroit  in the 2011 show co-directed the current productions with  Katie Hammes.     I was blown away by the talent 6 years ago and still continue to be amazed today by how amazing these kids are.

On to the review:

Guys and Dolls is  a story  (at least from my  point of view) about    romance amidst gambling.  The two  couples  that the story   focusses around are   Adelaide (who apparently doesn’t have a last name)  and Nathan Detroit (Cassidy White and Zac Barnaby) and Sky Masterson and Sarah Brown  (Joe Solari and Katie Giannakopolous)  Giannakopoulous was a stand out as Sarah Brown  in her second  Riverbend performance after making her debut in November’s  West Side Story as the Somewhere  soloist.   Notable musical numbers included Marry The Man Today,Bushel and A Peck, Sue Me Luck Be  A Lady, More  I Cannot Wish You,  Adelaide’s Lament and  Sit  Down  You’re Rockin The  Boat.  Other notable performances were by   Cassidy White (Adelaide), Doug  Pedroza  (Nicely Nicely Johnson), Joe Guzman  (Big  Jule), Bryan Whittier (Arrivide Abernatnhy)  and  Nicole Sprague  (General Cartwright)   The set design  by Ben April was fantastic and was the choreography by   Meg King.

Guys and Dolls   has one more performance this afternoon  at 2:30pm at the Amato  Center.   Don’t miss this  show and it is a good way to beat the winter blues.  You’ll regret it if you miss this fabulous show.     The show was co-directed by   Patrick O’Mara and Katie Hammes, Music  Directed  by  Karina Bertrand and Choreographed by Meg King.  Costumes were designed  by  Julia  Bucklin.

 

 

 

As mentioned above  Wizard Of Oz is my 16th overall production  here is a break down of my history

2010-    Riverbend Youth  Co Annie Jr ( Props)  and   Riverbend School Of Theatre Arts The Man Who Came To Dinner ( Sound Design)

2011-   Riverbend Youth Company  Guys and Dolls Jr  (Spotlight)   & Wizard  Of Oz  (props) and  The Music Man  Amherst PTA (Ensemble)

2012  Oklahoma  Amherst PTA  (Ensemble and Publicity) and It’s A Wonderful Life   Riverbend/MAP Holiday Show (Mrs. Hatch and various ensemble )

2013  Princess  K.I.M. The Musical  (Publicity), Meet Me  In St Louis   Amherst PTA  (Scene Changes and Set Painting)

2014   Seussical The Musical Amherst PTA   ( Who Ensemble and  Publicity),  Holiday  One Acts  (Miss  Kosmo and Wiseman #3)

2015  CATS  Amherst PTA  (Sound Design), Mary Poppins   Friends Of The Amato Center (Ensemble)

2016  Shrek The Musical Amherst PTA (Villager, Skeleton, Moon),   Oliver  Friends  Of The Amato Center (Ensemble)

2017    Riverbend Youth Company    Guys and Dolls Jr  & Seussical  The Musical  (Publicity),  Amherst  PTA  Wizard  Of OZ  (Munchkin and Ozian Ensemble and Publicity) Fiddler On The Roof Friends Of The Amato Center  Publicity and  backstage work TBA (Additionally   I am also helping out with publicity for   the Souhegan High School  musical Footloose.)

 

 

 

Posted February 12, 2017 by theatretechdiva in Riverbend Youth Company

Theatre Viewing Schedule for Feb -May 2017   Leave a comment

Theatre Viewing Schedule for  2017

 

February

10   SHS   Jazz Night

11th  Guys and Dolls Riverbend Youth Company

16th SHS   Pops Concert

March

4th  Promises Promises  Manchester Commmunity Theatre Players

24th   Footloose Souhegan High School  Spring  Musical

25th   Seussical The Musical  Pinkerton Academy Spring  Musical

31st  Wizard Of OZ Young Performance Edition  Junior Actorsingers

April

1st   Lights Camera Action  An All Dance Production  Riverbend Youth Company

8th  Chess Windham Actors Guild

29th   Arsenic and Old Lace  Nashua Theatre  Guild

30th   Mary Poppins   Streetcar Company            Hey FOTAC Friends- Emily Getchell Lacey is playing Miss Andrew   let’s go support  her!

 

May

5th  Seussical The Musical  Riverbend Youth Company

6th Souhegan Valley Chorus  Spring Concert

13th Singin  In The Rain Actorsingers

20th Grease Peacock  Players

I also plan to see the spring play at Nashua High School North but at this time do not know the dates  for it.

 

 

Posted January 30, 2017 by theatretechdiva in Uncategorized

Guys and Dolls Character Profiles   Leave a comment

Can  I  just stop for a second and say how much  FUN it was to interview these kids in character for the Guys and Dolls    profiles?    Samples are below.   You won’t want to  miss this show it  runs   Feb 9-12th at the Amato Center.  Directed by  Patrick O’Mara and Katie Hammes   Music Directed by Karina Bertrand and choreographed  by  Meg King.

Meet Benny Southsteet

 

 

Benny Southstreet  grew up in Hoboken New Jersey with his best friend Nicely Nicely Johnson.  They  are still best friends to this day and  do everything together.   He moved to NYC  because he got involved with the wrong people in  Hoboken. He is a part time gambler and pull time con-man.   Two little  known facts Benny are that he’s afraid of spiders and that he;’s very OCD.    He went on to say, “I’m afraid of spiders because the little buggers creep me out  and if thing’s aren’t in order  I’m out.”

He does what he does  in the show to get by and gambling is his favorite way.

 

 

Benny Southstreet  is  portrayed by   Duncan  McGrath a  junior at Souhegan High School who is making his Riverbend Youth Company debut in  Guys and Dolls.  “My experience so far has been   10/10 and  I  have enjoyed meeting new people.”  When  asked why  people should come see  Guys and Dolls  he said  :Anyone with a good emotional mindset will enjoy this show.”

Meet  Miss Adelaide

.

I’m  Miss Adelaide and  I’m a dancer & singer  at the Hot Box. My mother wanted    me to move to New York to  marry Nathan. He introduced me to Rusty  Charlie and that’s how  I got a job at the Hot Box.   I spend  all my time with Nathan because he’s my fiancé  and most of my motivation is  because I want to get  married  to  him.

 

Miss Adelaide  is portrayed by Cassidy  White  a  12th grade homeschooler from  Nashua.    For her the best part of the show has been working with the directors.  When asked about a funny memory during the process of the show is ” We were in dance rehearsal  and  Meg  usually calls us the As and the Bs but instead she called the Eggs and the Beats.. White stated in a recent interview, “You should come see Guys and Dolls because “It’s going to be an amazing show. The cast is incredibly talented.”

 

Meet Sarah  Brown

 

 

 

Sarah  Brown moved to New York to help her  grandfather  Arrivide Abernanthy  with the Save A Soul Mission.  Her  goal in working  at the mission is to make New York City  a great place to live. .free of  sin.  She would like people to know that even though she may come off as stand offiish   she wants what is best for everyone.  She spends the most time with Sky since he is trying to win  a bet and Arrivide and the missionaries and her grandfather Arrivide   spreading the word of  God.

 

 

 

Sarah  Brown is portrayed by  Katie Giannakopoulos, a junior  at Souhegan High School in Amherst.    Guys and Dolls is her second show with Riverbend Youth Company after making her debut this fall   as the Somewhere soloist in West Side Story.  She has enjoyed getting to know new people . Her favorite memory so far is working the Havanna Fight because there have been a lot of comical moments while learning it.  Why should you come see West Side Story? ” We’ve  put a lot of work into  our characters. It’s a great show. Everyone loves  each other.”

 

These profiles will be  published on the Riverbend Youth Company Facebook page.  Be on the look out for them! Don’t miss this show either!  It will be great!

 

 

 

Posted January 30, 2017 by theatretechdiva in Riverbend Youth Company, Uncategorized

Season of My Favorite Shows is Off And Running   Leave a comment

2017 is officially dubbed the season of my favorite shows.. mostly because many shows that I’ve seen and grown to love over the past 4 or 5 years are being performed at various community theatres and local high schools.

We’ll start with You’re A Good Man Charlie Brown which was performed by the Riverbend Youth Company. The Peanuts comic strip will forever remain my favorite. My favorite character has always been Schroder probably because he is a musician like me.
You’re A Good Man Charlie Brown was the debut for people involved in the production both in the cast and production team: Cast: Landyn Byrd (Charlie Brown), Ivy Rose Harvey Olsen (Pig Pen and Aimee Ledoux (Violet) Production Team: Jacob Erdody (Director), Lily Ayotte (Choreographer) and Kayla Sickler (Assistant Music Director).
I have previously seen this show put one by Stagecoach Productions and The Palace Theatre Youth Company. My favorite songs have always been Happiness, Beetoven Day, My New Philosophy, Supper Time and The Book Report. Some songs make you laugh and some songs make you think. Happiness is the type of songs that makes you count your blessings and be thankful for all the people in your life that love and support you.
Notable performance were by Landyn Byrd ( Charlie Brown), Genevieve Steadman ( Lucy), Ivy Rose Harvey Olsen (Pig Pen), Sally (Anna Goyette) and Snoopy (Autumn Fichera)
You’re A Good Man Charlie Brown was performed at the Amato Center for the Performing Arts January 20-22nd and was directed by Jacob Erdody, music directed by Jennifer Erdody and choregraphed by Lilly Ayotte. Congratulations to cast crew and production team on a fabulous show. A special shout out to Jacob and Lily– You guys are amazing and I am so proud of you!

 

 

 

Posted January 23, 2017 by theatretechdiva in Riverbend Youth Company