Sunday Gazette-Mail from Charleston, West Virginia on May 23, 1976 · Page 87
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Sunday Gazette-Mail from Charleston, West Virginia · Page 87

Charleston, West Virginia
Issue Date:
Sunday, May 23, 1976
Page 87
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Summer Stock: The Interest Keeps Rising 2tY -May 23, 1976 tavUr* Mail ----- Ctwrtttlon. By ftUrtht Saith There's one stock market that seems to double and triple in value each year: summer stock. In West Virginia-although far removed from Broadway's bright lights-an active year-round theater season prevails in nearly all major communities. Perhaps the most interesting feature of the state's theaters is the experimentation that occurs during summer stock productions. In some communities, theater goes outdoors-under tents or simply under the stars in amphitheaters. In other towns, summer is a time when smaller, more intimate types of shows can be presented. Small musicals, cabaret- style shows, melodramas, revues and revivals blossom. They're mounted in various settings that depart from traditional proscenium theater. Theater in the round, which compels the actors to play to an entire roomful of patrons seated completely around the stage, enjoys summer popularity. Dinner theater productions are attempted on a small scale by community arts groups. Cabaret- style theater with coffee or ale and peanuts for the audience has proved highly successful. Weekend vacationers will find even more to savor in the way of entertainment this summer because each state community of any size is planning Bicentennial celebrations. Most include arts and crafts displays, festivals promoting native products (apples, buckwheat, etc.), some pageants with historic themes, some mountain music festivals. Carolanne Griffith at the State Bicentennial Commission can tell you all about those events. :ln several cities, however, some highly reputable theater organizations have scheduled a summer season of professionally staged music and drama. For those who'd enjoy a theater weekend, the following is a brief explanation of some of the organizations whose work is strongly recommended. ··Theatre Arts of West Virginia will bring the hills alive around Beckley. Alive with the sound of music, and gunfire. In its seventh season, "Hatfields and McCoys" remains a monumental work in the genre of'outdoor historical drama. Its masterful book and lyrics by Billy Edd Wheeler and a; haunting score by Ewel Cornell bring to vibrant life the legendary feud that raged across West Virginia and Kentucky lines, to tear two mountain families apart with dissension and hitler hatred. I Directed by John S. Benjamin, "Hal- fields and McCoys" explores the personalities of the clan adversaries, focusing on the stubborn determination of Devil Anse Bitfield and the quiet, brooding sadness of Rarid'l McCoy. Comedy and sorrow are offsetting elements in the story, reflected in:the humorous trial over ownership of a hog, and the tragic romance of Rose Anne McCoy and Johnse Hatfield. Opening al 8:30 p.m. June 19, "Hatfields and McCoys" will be presented in Cliffside Amphitheater of Grandview Stale Park each Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday through August ' · i"Honey in the Rock," Ihe second production of Theatre Arts, willbegin its 15th season June 20, West Virginia Statehood Day. Also directed by Benjamim, this historical drama details the birth of the state during the turmoil of Civil War. "Honey", will be presented Fridays and Sundays. l~ Here's what the New York Times critic said of "Hatfields": "Far from Broadway, in the mountains of Appalachia, a new chapter in outdoor theater was created. . .it reveals the mountaineer as a man MOORE'S PHOTO VACATION REMINDER BEFOftElTOU LEAVE LET US CHECK TOUR. . . · CAMERA · BATTERIES · FLASH · METER BESURETOTAKEALONGENOUOimSH HLM,FLASH(WESandLEMSCLEAIfR! Remember Moore's Qukk Photo Seryite . i " i M TSef 11BV9MI Hatfield clan poses for family portrait in "Jf/al/ieWs and McCoys" at Grandview Outdoor Theater. Photo by Bob Gay. of worth, pride and dignity." Auditions for the professional company of actors, dancers, singers and technicians were held in New York, Chicago, Pills- burgh, Ohio, Kentucky and North Carolina. Tickets available by writing P.O. Box 1205, Beckley, W.Va., 25801. Next summer, Theater Arts will premiere its third historical drama. "John Brown," another work by Billy Edd Wheeler, will open in a new Harpers Ferry amphitheater. · The Greenbrier Valley Theater moves into new facilities in Lewisburg this summer, directly across from the airport. Director Jean Tsokos has revealed a summer program of four adult productions and Iwo children's theater plays. The Greenbrier Valley Theater's schedule includes: "Barefoot in the Park"-June 24-26, July 1-3; "Godspeli;-July 8-10,15-17; "Witness for the Prosecution,"-July 21-24, 29-31; "Fiddler on the Roof,"-Aug. 5-7, 12-14. For the children, Ihe following performances are planned: "Rumplestilskin"- July 17 and 24; "Cinderella,"-Aug. 14 and 21. Tickets to all productions may be obtained by writing P.O. Box 474, Lewisburg, W.Va. «- The Beckley Curtain Callers will present "A Member of the Wedding" June .10-12. Information may be obtained by calling the Princess Playhouse in Mount Hope, 877-9928. In Charleston, the Light Opera Guild will offer three workshop productions, one during each month in June, July and August. The opening show will be "I Do, I Do" in June,-with the.other two musicals not yet- announced. Tickel information . may be obtained by writing to the Guild Workshop, 311 Jefferson St., Charleston, W.Va., 25311. »· Also in Charleston, the Kanawha Players will present an as yet undecided work- Play the beautiful Pipestem State Park Resort Courses! Indoor swimming, saunas, archery, deluxe accommodations, horseback riding, camping. All the mountain beauty of "Almost Heaven" PIPESTEM STATE PARK shop production in lale July and early August. Information may be obtained by writing the Kanawha Players, 5315 MacCorkle Ave., S.E., Charleslon, W.Va. 25304. The Mountaineer Dinner Theater will offer a complete summer season. Information available by writing to the theater in Winfield or calling 755-3811. Theater midway belween Charleston and Huntington, in Putnam County. + In Charles Town, the Old Opera House is expected to produce a summer show. Information available by calling Bob Angel at 725-4420 or 876-2282. Summer theater in West Virginia offers the magic of the stage without the agony of New York City heat. It's fun, it's informal and it's.slock whose value continues to rise. A worthwhile investment for those who are bullish on entertainment. cores FREE *2 BILLS Deposit S 5000 W get Two Free Bills Deposit '10000® get Five Free Bills Offer Applies To All Savings Plans 5% To 7 Vz% Interest Substantial Penalty For Early Withdrawal Tin* Limited-Come In Today M GUflRfWY BflNK 1625 Washington Street East* Charleston, West Virginia · Phone 344-9891 · Member FDIC MART DIVISION OF THE G.CMURPHY CO. p ALL FACILITIES HOW OPEN Coleman FUEL One gallonCan VT.43ACase FOR A FUrWUED VACATION! 4 DAYS ONLY May 23,24,25,26 Sunday thru Wednesday Re'127.87 9x12 FOOT CABIN TENT SAVE '27.99 Limited Quontitm 99 Charge It Bug free construction with two large screened windows and extra wide 3-way tipper. Sewn in lUtr. A big value at this price. .".·»,,, * ·» "*v Coleman Family Size 56 Quart Cooler «G.*22.96 Limited Quantities 2-BURNER STOVE Enameled steel with polyurethane insulation. Stain and odor resistant plastic liner. Storage tray. Leakproof drain. Recessed handles. Charge It! 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