Albany Democrat-Herald from Albany, Oregon on September 28, 2006 · 29
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Albany Democrat-Herald from Albany, Oregon · 29

Albany, Oregon
Issue Date:
Thursday, September 28, 2006
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Friday, September 29 - October 6, 2006, Corvallis (OR) Gazette-Times and Albany (OR) Democrat-Herald THE ENTERTAINER 8 - f i , 3 I - " - - L' - - " "v 1 V CASEY CAMPBEOEntertainer Doris (Joyce Blodgett), left, Ida (Heather Emberson) and Lucille (Karen Emmons), run into Sam (Douglas Hambley) as each of them are visiting the graves of their departed spouses in Albany Civic Theater's production of 'The Cemetery Club.' Coming to grips with the el. U - c mmmm V: Ida stands over Lucille-and Doris as she asks them questions during 'The Cemetery Club.' 'The Cemetery Club' a comically healing slice of widows' lives at Albany Civic Theater IF YOU DIG By HEATHER CRABTREE The Entertainer Add a cup of comedy, a dash of drama and a few tablespoons of friendship and fun and youH have the recipe for Albany Civic Theater's newest production, "The Cemetery Club." The 56th season opener starts at 8 p.m. Friday, Sept. 29, at ACT. Additional performances are at 8 p.m. Sept 30, Oct 6, 7, 12, 13 and 14; and at 2:30 p.m. Sunday, Oct 8. The poignant comedy follows the friendship of three Jewish widows, each in various stages of mourning. Lucille is determined to play the field; Ida is beginning to feel the need to move on; and the pain of Doris' loss stays strongly with her. Each month the trio meets for tea and to visit their husbands' graves. The story takes an unexpected twist when one of the women falls in love. , Directing the production is Kay Roth of Scio.' She has been involved with ACT since "Rocky Horror Picture Show" in March 2005. However, this is her first time in the director's chair for an ACT show. Roth has directed the Sheepskin Revue in Scio and school plays when Tier youngest daughter was in middle school. She was the assistant director for John Elliott's "The Underpants" last February. But this time around is different than previous productions. "It's new in a way because the production we did out in Scio didn't have the full technical aspect," she said. "I was a theater major in college, and this is the first time in a long time I've had to deal with all the aspects." For her first production. Roth has hardly stood alone. She's utilized the help of ACT veterans such as Christi Sears and assistant director Nancy Fairchild, who have both offered positive feedback and support, she said. ; -t r 'It's not just a matter of WHAT: "The Cemetery Club." WHERE: Albany Civic Theater, 111 First Ave. S.W. WHEN: 8 p.m. Sept. 29 and 30; Oct. 6, 7, 12, 13 and 14; and 2:30 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 8. COST: Tickets are $10 for general admission or $7 for people under 18 and over 60. Tickets are available at Sid Stevens Jewelers in Albany, Rice's Pharmacy in Corvallis or at the box office 45 minutes before the show. 'me' putting on the show," Roth said. "It's W putting on the show. Some people are surprised that I'm accepting all this feedback, but it's nice to have all these people, to have that feedback." All productions have ups and downs. One of the highlights for Roth was Monday when everything clicked. "The show just really came together. It gelled," she said. "The special little nuances that seemed forced just came together. We nudged (the cast) to pick up nuances. They've come so far that they've come up with their own." One of the strongest aspects of this production is the little things the cast developed for their roles. "The Cemetery Club" is set in Queens, New York. It was a pleasant surprise to hear Heather Emberson (Ida), Karen Emmons, (Lucille) and Joyce Blodgett (Doris) with New York accents. The ladies had their lines down to the point that the inflections and tones came off their lips as naturally as if they had lived in New York their entire lives. Another aspect that makes the show is the way they interact with each other. From every touch, hand gesture, laugh and movement, they have developed Ida, Lucille and Doris' friendship into something that is believable and heart-warming. Overall, the play is comical. Playwright Ivan Menchell included a lot of great one-, two- and three-liners that will have the audience rolling. In turn, there are several scenes that are touching and even heart-breaking. Overall, be prepared for an uproariously good time. , Additional cast and crew are: Douglas Hambley as Sam; Megan Bryant as Mildred; assistant director Gary Burris; production assistant Becky Roth; stage manager Jan Donnelly; dialect coach Megan Bryant; makeup, Bonnie Hall-McFee; hair, Sharon Whitmer; costume design, Lara Van Huff and LeVelle Brown; set design, John Elliott; head of set construction, Gregg Burgess; construction crew, Dave Neiman and Ken Roth; fight design, Bill Nelson; sound design, Kevin Kirk; light master, Anya Corbitt; sound master, Shauna Kei-fuik; prop master, Leigh Matthews; wardrobe mistress, Lisa Bell Sramek; dresser, Kim Mainord; poster design, Jodi Al-tendorf; board liaison, Christi Sears; audition staff, Harriet Nixon, Becky Roth and Sarah Roth.

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