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November 29, 2016 - 11:43am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Batavia HS, drama club, theater, arts, batavia, news.

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The Batavia High School Drama Club presents three performances this weekend of William Shakespeare's "Much Ado About Nothing," as dramatized by Trish Black Melchan.

Performances are at 7:30 p.m., Friday and Saturday, and at 2 p.m., Sunday, on the stage of the school's auditorium.

Tickets are $8 per adult and $6 for students and seniors.

The Cast:

Messenger of the Court -- Hannah Bluhm
Beatrice -- Serena Strollo-DiCenso
Benedick -- Evan Bellavia
Don Pedro -- Sam Rigerman
Claudio -- Pierce Corbelli
Hero -- Eryn Dunn
Leonato -- Alex O'Brien
Don John -- Cameron Bontrager
Borachio -- McKenna Dziemian
Conrade -- Christian Arteaga
Dogberry -- AnnMarie Georgia
Verges -- Taylor McKenzie
Margaret -- Celia Flynn
Ursula -- Taylor Fonda
Nerissa -- Elise Hoerbelt
Friar Francis -- Olivia Judge
Kinsman -- Alicia Scroger
Kinsman -- Madeline Keenan
Attendant -- Parise Ricks
Attendant -- Alayna Tatarka
Sexton -- Shannon Cervone

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November 7, 2016 - 12:28pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Batavia Players, theater, arts, batavia, news.

Press release:

Our 2017 Season will kick off with our Annual Gala on Jan. 7th and include many tremendous performances and interesting works by a varied list of playwrights and musicians. Plays and musicals will include classic literature, Shakespeare and timeless upbeat performances, thus the seasonal theme of Astonishment, Disbelief & Disclosure.”

This year’s productions range from traditional to avant-garde looks at familiar and not so familiar performances, throwing in a dash of the bizarre and horror and ending with a holiday tradition. Sure to please our theater audiences and provide a comprehensive theatrical experience for all. 

Annual Gala - Une Nuit Blanch A’ Paris (A White Night in Paris) -- Saturday, Jan.  7th @ 7:30 p.m.

This French-themed evening will pay homage to a traditional Parisian event. White dress, white lights, white decorations and all underlined by flowing champagne, basket raffles and our Annual Harvester 56 Theater Performance Awards and our most memorable performances. A sure not to miss event as we kick off the 2017 Season and celebrate the amazing 2016 Season! 

On Broadway 8 – The Magic Kingdom on Broadway – Feb. 10th, 11th, 17th & 18th @ 7:30 p.m. AND Matinee Performance – Feb. 12th @ 2 p.m. – Directed by Amanda Melissa Taylor & Kathy White.

Sure to be a huge hit and a tremendous family event, as special performances loved by all come from that Magical Kingdom to our stage. The combination of new songs and longtime favorites are brought alive with colorful costumes, dance and song. Expertly directed by Amanda Melissa Taylor & musically directed by Kathy White, this is sure to be a great spirited start to our 2017 Season.

This Ain’t Your Mamma’s Shakespeare  – March 10th & 11th @ 7:30 p.m. AND Matinee Performance – March 13th @ 2 p.m. – Produced by E. Jane Burk and directed by Susan Buckley, Joan Cirillo & Michele Stamp.

An irreverent look at the English Bard and his works by contemporary authors which include William Shakespeare having inspiring dreams, a community theater’s disaster with the play Hamlet and a college themed farce the night before a very special exam. Full of fun, fantasy and colorful characters, this is a great way to enjoy the themes and of Shakespeare while getting quite a few laughs.

William Shakespeare’s Hamlet – April 21st, 22nd, 28th & 29th @ 7:30 p.m. AND Matinee Performance – April 23rd @ 2 p.m. – directed by E. Jane Burk & assisted by Michele Stamp – Shakespeare in Springtime Production.

The perils, clashes and revenge of the young Danish Prince Hamlet as he tries to avenge his father’s murder and subsequent marriage of his mother to his uncle, the play explodes on stage with all the drama of Shakespearean tragedy.  Acutely directed and conceived by E. Jane Burk, this study into love, tragedy, revenge, madness and terror is sure to be incredible.

The Last Five Years  – May 12th & 13th @ 7:30 p.m. AND Matinee Performance – May 14th @ 2 p.m.  -- Produced by Kathy White & directed and starring Amy Martin and Joe Kusmierczak in this very special performance.

You are sure to enjoy Jason Robert Brown’s musical experience in the life of a five-year relationship from the beginning to the end. This compelling award-winning musical is told in the unique aspect of an aspiring young actress and a novelist meet, fall in and out of love. The actress’ story is told in reverse narrative from the end of the relationship to the beginning and the novelist’s story from the beginning to the end.  Only once do the characters interact in a poignant wedding scene. This is a truly amazing musical offering.

Grey Gardens – June 9th, 10th, 16th & 17th @ 7:30 p.m. AND Matinee Performance – June 11th @ 2 p.m. – Produced, designed and directed by Patrick D. Burk with musical direction by Kathy White. 

Based on the Documentary of the same name, this is a compelling look at the lives of Edith Ewing Bovier Beale and her daughter Edith Bouvier Beale, aunt and first cousin of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis.  Once the bright lights of East Hampton, Long Island society, this musical delves into the complicated dynamics of this unique and tragic mother/daughter relationship as they diminish from the rich and polished society lovelies to their isolated and demented lives. Written by Doug Wright with Music written by Scott Frankel and Lyrics by Michael Korie this production is set at their palatial estate Grey Gardens as it too declines into disarray.

Kids Camp Presents -- A Midsummer’s Night Eve – July 21st & 22nd @ 7:30 p.m. – Kids Camp runs from July 10th -  22nd with this musical rendition of Shakespeare’s classic as the culmination of a fantastic program.

Led by trained and knowledgeable staff, our theater opens its doors to the 12 and under crowd to experience all aspects of theater work from conception to design.  This year’s program is a fun curriculum that will expand the experiences of the young actor and musician.  Included will be voice, dance, movement, design and acting.  Auditions will be held for the roles in the performance and campers will work to perfect their final performance for the public.  Lauded as “one of the best summer experiences around,” this summer staple of the Harvester 56 Theater will once again be supervised by Wendy Williams, Education Director & Musical Director, Kathy White. Camp spots are limited so watch for auditions and signs ups on our website.

21st Summer Youth Theater - FAME – The Musical – August 11th, 12th, 18th & 19th @ 7:30 p.m. AND Matinee Performance – Aug. 13th @ 2 p.m.  Directed by Patrick D. Burk and musical direction by Kathy White. 

This high-energy musical based on the 1980’s television show was conceived and developed by David De Silva.  Book by Jose’ Fernandez, Lyrics by Jacques Levi and Music by Steve Margoshes.  Set in the famed School of the Performing Arts in New York City, this production looks at the highs and lows of the education and training aspect of a career in the arts.  Packed with memorable songs and amazing dance numbers, Fame will become a theatrical highlight for all to see.  Directed by Patrick D. Burk and Musically Directed by Kathy White along with a solid number of professionals, this will make our 21st Summer Youth Theater, a huge success.  A must see for the entire family this show is jam-packed with great characters and tremendous performances.  

The Laramie Project – Sept. 15th & 16th @ 7:30 p.m. AND Matinee Performance Sept. 17th @ 2 p.m.
Directed by Norm Argulski as a special 2017 Tribute Performance of this moving American masterpiece.

The Laramie Project is a true American masterpiece that abruptly and pointedly takes on the horrors of prejudice and the tribute of love and resolution. Written by Moises Kaufman and the Tectonic Theater Project, this play explores the aftermath of the torture and murder of a gay University of Wyoming student, Matthew Shepard, in 1998.  This memorable and moving piece of American theater is sure to be a sober and reflective piece in our theater season. Expertly directed by Norm Argulski, who appeared in the first Laramie Project performance in Batavia, this indeed is a Tribute Performance and a very special offering this year.

Frankenstein the Musical – Nov. 3rd, 4th, 10th & 11th @ 7:30 p.m. AND Matinee Performance Nov. 5th @ 2 p.m. Produced, directed  & designed by Patrick D. Burk and musically directed by Kathy White.

Mary Shelley’s classic story comes to life at the Harvester 56 Theater stage with a tremendous score and soaring musical numbers. Set in Europe and the Arctic in the late 1790s this spectacle of the stage, with music by Mark Baron and book and lyrics by Jeffrey Jackson was originally adapted by Gary P. Cohen. Painstakingly performed and adapted for our stage, the audience will be immersed in the horror, madness and tragedy that Shelley put on the pages of her most famous novel. Enter the world of Frankenstein as he creates his creature and realizes the impact this has on his family and all mankind. 

Whispers in the Snow – Dec. 15th & 16th @ 7:30 p.m. AND Matinee Performance Dec. 17th @ 2 p.m.
Written, designed and directed by Patrick D. Burk and musically directed by Kathy White.

Our magical year ends with an astonishing look at the Christmas Season. This production, written by Patrick D. Burk includes this area’s brightest and best performers, our younger artists as well as dance and song to tell a poignant tale of Christmas, community and love. It is a companion piece to last year’s The Christmas Gift. Full of the awe and wonder of the Holiday Season, Whispers in the Snow will be the performance that will put you in the spirit of joy and giving. It is indeed a wonderful and colorful way to end our 2017 Season, perfect for the entire family and kids of all ages.  

August 1, 2016 - 9:19am
posted by Howard B. Owens in theater, arts, GO ART!, Darien, Darien Lakes State Park, news.

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Shake on the Lake, Genesee Valley’s Shakespeare Festival, now in its fifth season, performed Saturday at Darien Lakes State Park, entertaining an audience with "Twelfth Night," co-produced by Arkansas Shakespeare Theatre.

The evening, which opened with plein air artists painting Darien Lakes landscapes, was sponsored by GO ART!

If you missed the performance, there are opportunities this week to see it in Attica and Silver Lake. For more information, visit the theater company's website.

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July 29, 2016 - 9:23am
posted by Howard B. Owens in arts, theater, alexander, news, Naomi LaDuke.

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Last night, a homegrown youth theater troupe in Alexander performed a special production of the "Wizard of Oz" before dozens of invited guests.

This 25-page adaptation of the famous story was based on a script by 13-year-old Naomi LaDuke, who based her version on a musical performed at Shea's, on silent films, the movie and the book.

These pictures are from the rehearsal Wednesday at the treehouse on Church Street where the actual performance took place.

Naomi also cast the players, designed and sewed Dorothy's costume and created the scenery and props. The musical accompaniment was played by David Lange, the organist at St. James Episcopal Church, which Naomi recorded using Apple's software, Garage Band.

This is the fourth annual production by the kids, under the name of their theater, Open Door Productions.  

There was no admission fee for guests last night, but they were asked to make a donation at the door benefiting Brittany's Hope, a nonprofit in Pennsylvania that assists in international adoptions. The evening's theme was "There's no place like home."

"The kids are hoping to raise money and awareness to bring another child home to their forever family," said Naomi's mother, Karen Laduke. "Two of the actresses are internationally adopted themselves, so this is a theme that hits close to home."

Leigh LeFevre, pictured above, played Dorothy.

Naomi, besides being the writer, director, set and costume designer, also played the Wizard.

The rest of the cast: Lillian McClellan, Sally LaDuke, Jennmarie Schiller, Mya Hardie, Margarite LaDuke, Samual LaFevre, Kylee McClellan, Kathryn McClellan, Katelyn Hardie and Lucy LeFevre.

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March 24, 2016 - 5:59pm
posted by Steve Ognibene in GO ART!, Arts & Crafts, art, batavia, theater, news, steve ognibene's blog.

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(Photos by Steve Ognibene.) (Above, 6-year-old Lilian Gary paints a clay mushroom.)

During the school Spring Break, some families go out of town and some stay local to enjoy with friends and family from out of town. Parents are still working during the day and looking for an opportunity for learning something new.

This week GO ART! offered its first Creative Arts Camp in the Seymour Place buildingin Downtown Batavia and hopes many others will follow.

The camp sold out. All this week, 28 students in grades two to six participated in many different activities like: drumming, Colombian dance, steel drums, photography class, drawing and theater.

Director Jennifer Gray said they wanted to give kids a small snippet of a little bit of everything in the creative world and include different tastes of performing arts, music, dance and visual arts as part of it. If parents are not aware coming from an arts background, this camp offers what they might not get in school and pique some future interests for the students.

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(Above, Director Jennifer Gray giving a drawing lesson to 11-year-old Hunter Kelsey on a graphic abstract.)

GO ART! also plans to offer one-day drop-in camps during the summer and they are looking to offer a younger camp for toddler, pre-K to second-grade kids, and perhaps one for middle school students.

They want to thank generous sponsors for this event: Applied Business Systems -- ABS, T-Shirts Etc., Art Ah La Carte, Design by the Hour, and Glass Roots.

For more details on this event go to: http://www.goart.org/

Also Facebook page: GO ART!

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Above, 10-year-old John Riley participating in a Performance Theater segment taught by Assisant Director Gregory Hallock.

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Above, Director Gray teaching painting on model clay to elementary students.

March 8, 2016 - 6:26pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in alexander, arts, entertainment, theater, news.

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The Alexander High School Drama Club presents "Big Fish: A Musical" this weekend.

Showtimes are 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 2 p.m., Sunday.

Tickets are $8 for adults and $6 for seniors and students, pre-sale, and $10 for adults and $7 for seniors and students at the door. Children 5 and under can attend for free.

Photos are from yesterday's rehearsal.

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February 25, 2016 - 2:14pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Batavia HS, theater, arts, entertainment, news.

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Batavia High School's Production Club will present a musical product of Mary Poppins next week with Nick Piedmon playing Bert and Andrea Gilebarto as Mary Poppins.

Photos are from yesterday's rehearsal. 

Caryn Burk Wood is the director and Dan Grillo the musical director.

The cast includes Ross Chua as Mr. Banks, Chelsea Jensen as Mrs. Banks, Eryn Dunn as Jane Banks and Colin Dunn as Michael Banks.

Performances are at 7:30 p.m., March 4 and March 5, and 2 p.m., March 6.

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February 24, 2016 - 3:10pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Le Roy, le roy hs, entertainment, theater, arts, news.

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Le Roy High School is presenting "The Addams Family: A Musical Comedy" on March 3, 4 and 5.

Director Jacqueline McLean said:

The story is inspired as a continuation of the Addams Family from the original comic strip and TV series. In the show, Wednesday Addams has gone off to college and fallen in love with a "normal" boy. When the "normal" family comes to meet the Addams, things get out of hand. This show is full of wonderful, dark comedy and will feature all of the characters that you remember in addition to some new ones. We hope you will join us at one of three performances and get ready to be "Pulled in a New Direction!" with this quirky story.

Books are by Marshall Brickman and Rick Elice, with music and lyrics by Andrew Lippa, based on characters created by Charles Addams.

All show times are at 7 p.m. Tickets can be purchased online at leroycsd.org, in the HS main office or at the door. Tickets are $10 pre-sale and $12 at the door.

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February 17, 2016 - 11:13am
posted by Howard B. Owens in elba central schools, ecs drama club, music, entertainment, theater, news.

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The Elba Central School Drama Club is presenting performances of "The Sound of Music" this weekend. These photos are from yesterday's rehearsal.

Performances are at 7 p.m., Friday, and 2 & 7 p.m., Saturday in the ECS Auditorium. Tickets are $8 for adults and $6 for students and seniors. Tickets are available at the district office and at Roxy's Music Store.

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December 2, 2015 - 1:12pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Batavia HS, BHS Drama Club, arts, theater, batavia.

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The Batavia High School Drama Club will present a special adaptation of "Peter Pan" called "Peter and Wendy" this weekend on the stage -- a theater-in-the-round setting -- in the school's auditorium.

The adaptation, by writer Jeremy Bloom, explores some of the deeper themes of "Peter Pan," including the relevance of time.

There are 28 students in the cast and four more working as stage crew. The production is directed by Caryn Burk.

Performances are at 7:30 p.m., Friday and Saturday, and 2:30 p.m., Sunday. Tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for students.

Pictured are: Shannon Cervone, Eryn Dunn, and Elise Hoerbelt as Lost Boys; Alex Mott as Peter, Chelsea Jensen as Tiger Lily and Sarah Wetzel as Tinker Bell.

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September 23, 2015 - 1:39pm

Press release:

On Saturday, Oct. 3, Notre Dame High School is proud to present the wildly funny, interactive experience of “Joey & Maria’s Comedy Italian Wedding.” You are an invited guest to an anything-but-traditional Italian wedding. The craziest two Italian families you’ll ever meet will make you dance the Tarantella, witness the vows, and take part in some unconventional surprises.

Tickets are $30/person or $55/couple, which includes appetizers provided by the Culinary Arts Department of ARC, salad, homemade spaghetti dinner (sauce compliments of Margie Misiti), homemade meatballs (compliments of ND’s principal, Wade Bianco, his wife Darlene, and Darlene’s 91-year-old mother), dessert, beer, wine, non-alcoholic beverages, basket raffles, 50/50 raffles, and door prizes.

Doors open at 5:30 p.m., cocktails start at 6, and dinner starts promptly at 6:30. Pre-sale tickets are strongly recommended, seating is limited. Seats are filling fast, don’t miss out.

Visit Great Lakes Productions Joey and Maria at www.joeyandmaria.com and watch the video link at the bottom of the page. See you at the wedding!

August 14, 2015 - 3:26pm
posted by Billie Owens in GCC, music, art, theater.

Press release:

The Genesee Community College Center for the Arts is prepared for another exciting year of events offering a wide range of entertainment including jazz music, graffiti art and dinner theatre. The community is enthusiastically welcome to all events which are listed in chronological order.

The Roz Steiner Art Gallery will host and display "Impromptus," paintings by Jonathon Langfield from Aug. 27 – Sept. 25. Langfield carries on the tradition of American abstraction while infusing an element of graffiti. Utilizing the ideological framework of modernism, his art is executed in a spirit of improvisation. The result is a painterly impromptu. Opening receptions are planned for Thursday, Aug. 27, at 12:30 - 2 p.m. and 5 - 7 p.m.

The Genesee Symphony Orchestra presents a "Fall Festival" performance on Sunday, Sept. 27, at 4 p.m. in the Stuart Steiner Theatre with S. Shade Zajac conducting. Guest soloist Raymond Feng, winner of the GSO Young Artist Competition will perform Greig's Piano Concerto in A Minor, Movement 1. The GSO hosts world-class artists and composers as well as a multitude of well-known local soloists that give audiences a professional-level musical experience. Tickets can be purchased in Batavia at the Senior Center, Roxy's Music and GO ART!, and at the Bank of Castile in Le Roy.

The Kazzrie Jaxen Quartet will take the stage on Friday, Oct. 2, at 7:30 p.m. and bring together the elemental qualities of four creative jazz musicians: the buoyant swing of Bill Chattin's drums; the melodic pulsations of Don Messina's bass; the oceanic depth of Charley Krachy's tenor; and the fiery adventurousness of Kazzrie Jaxen's piano.

Honoring jazz tradition with straight-ahead swing and spontaneous improvisation, the band draws from the collective inspiration from jazz greats such as Lennie Tristano and Sal Mosca, Lester Young, Charlie Parker, Billie Holiday, Bud Powell, Warne Marsh and many others. The quartet plays standard tunes, jazz lines, originals and occasional excursions into the abstract stretching the music in unique and complex directions.

Tickets to the event in the Stuart Steiner Theatre are $8 for adults, $5 for seniors (55+), students (16+) and GCC faculty/staff and $3 for GCC students with ID. GCC alum with ID will receive a $2 discount. Go to http://www.kazzriejaxenquartet.com/ for photos and further information.

Mixed media paintings by Nate Hodge will be displayed in the gallery from Oct. 8 – Nov. 25. The "Everything Flows" exhibit can be viewed during regular gallery hours, which are Monday-Friday 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. For more information on all upcoming events at the Roz Steiner Art Gallery visit www.genesee.edu/gallery or www.facebook.com/gccgallery.

In November, audiences are asked to take a trip back in time to a lively Victorian musical hall for a night of dinner theatre where a distinguished ensemble of actors, the Music Hall Royale, stages its flamboyant rendition of an unfinished Dickens' mystery, "The Mystery of Edwin Drood." The show tells the story of the upstanding young Edwin Drood who mysteriously disappears and is presumably murdered. But who the Dickens did it? In the end, the audience gets to decide! The dinner theatre shows will run Nov. 12-15, Thursday, Friday and Saturday, at 7 p.m. and Sunday Matinee at 2 p.m. All tickets are $30 and will include a pasta buffet dinner. The production will benefit the Mental Health Association in Genesee County and advance reservations are required.

"The Mystery of Edwin Drood" is a musical by Rupert Holmes and the original Broadway production was produced by The New York Shakespeare Festival with Joseph Papp as producer and the arrangement by TAMS-WITTMARK MUSIC LIBRARY, Inc., 560 Lexington Ave., New York, NY 10022.

For ticket reservations for "The Mystery of Edwin Drood," or for further information, contact the Genesee Center for the Arts box office at (585) 345-6814 or via e-mail: [email protected]. Information can also be found online at www.genesee.edu/campuslife/arts or www.facebook.com/GCCTheatre.

It's never too soon to mark your calendars for not-to-miss events already scheduled for 2016.

•    Jan. 29, 2016 at 7:30 p.m. -- The Rochester Rat Pack invites you to join us in the cocktail lounges of the world as we laugh and dance the night away to Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Keely Smith, Etta James, Jimmy Durante, Bobby Darin, Judy Garland, Jerry Lewis and the gang.

•    Feb. 12, 2016 at 7:30 p.m. -- Etta Mae -- an evening of laughter with the reigning "Queen of Southern Sass" and winner of American Comedy Awards: "Stand-Up Comic of the Year." (www.ettamae.com)

•    Sunday, Feb. 14, 2016 at 4 p.m. -- Genesee Symphony Orchestra Mid-Winter Concert at GCC's Stuart Steiner Theatre.

February 27, 2015 - 11:56am
posted by Howard B. Owens in arts, theater, entertainment, Le Roy.

"Shrek: The Musical," based on the Dreamworks animated motion picture, is coming to Le Roy. Performances are at 7 p.m. March 5 and 6 and 4 p.m. March 7 at the Le Roy Junior Senior High School Auditorium. Tickets are $8 presale and $10 at the door.

The show is directed by Jacqueline McLean.

Photos from Thursday's rehearsal.

February 20, 2015 - 11:08am
posted by Howard B. Owens in arts, theater, elba, elba central schools.

The Elba Central School's Drama Club held a dress rehearsal Thrusday night for their performance of the hit Broadway musical "CATS."

A performance originally scheduled for tonight has been moved to 2 p.m. tomorrow. The cast will perform a second show at 7 p.m., tomorrow.

December 2, 2014 - 7:05am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, arts, theater, Batavia HS.

Theater-in-the-round, Shakespeare, celebrating 100 years of live stage performances at your school. These are all heady things to take on for a group of young thespians, but the Batavia High School Drama Club is pulling it all together nicely, says advisor Caryn Burke.

It was actually a student who suggested the club perform Shakespeare's "A Midsummer Night's Dream" this year after noticing the comedy was the first public stage performance by BHS students in 1914. Though none of the students had much experience with Shakespeare, they've all taken to it like sprites to pixie dust.

Burke admits she was a little apprehensive once it was settled that they would perform "A Midsummer Night's Dream."

The first step was for them just to get through a reading of the play.

"A lot of them had no idea how to read or even comprehend Shakespeare," Burke said. "Once they got it, they just ran with it. Once they understood what the show was and what all the dialogue meant and they had a good understanding of it they just took it from there."

The version the students will perform this Friday and Saturday is an adaption suitable for a high school performance by Ken Womble. None of the language is changed and the plot and themes remain the same, Burke said. It's just a slightly abridged version.

Even so, taking on Shakespeare, especially in the theater-in-the-round format Burke prefers for the winter show could be a bit daunting. She says the club has been able to remain focused on its primary goals.

"It's supposed to be fun," Burke said. "It's supposed to be educational, but there's a time and place for Shakespeare and that's not always necessarily in a high school drama club. The kids rose to the challenge."

The lead cast is Ross Chua, Andrea Gilebarto, Chelsea Jensen, Evan Bellavia, Lauren Dunn, Cara Ranalli, Alex Mott and Nick Piedmont.

Show times Friday and Saturday 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $8 each and only available at the door. Seating is limited to 100 patrons.

April 9, 2014 - 2:23pm
posted by Billie Owens in theater, GCC.

Press release:

Genesee Community College Forum Players Children's Theatre ensemble is pleased to present "Tales from Japan," a unique collection of traditional Japanese stories written by Patricia Montley and produced by special arrangement with Playscripts, Inc.

Performances are at 7 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, April 25 - 26, with a Sunday Matinee at 2 p.m. on April 27 in the Stuart Steiner Theatre at GCC's Batavia Campus.

The traditional tales presented in the show bring to life subtle and surprising aspects of Japanese culture. Treasure is discovered in unexpected places, beauty is found in all aspects of nature and even the most unassuming characters are heroes. The exciting stories feature a variety of interesting characters from an old woman using her wisdom and wit to save a kingdom from tyranny to a young girl fighting a horrific undersea dragon and a peach boy defeating the village monster.

"These tales speak to all ages. Because they are folkloric, they speak meaningfully to the spectrum of emotions and human experience," said Director Norm Gayford, English professor at GCC.

Special performances of "Tales from Japan" are also scheduled for students from area schools. Batavia, LeRoy, Geneseo, Alexander, Perry and Pavilion, and also homeschool students are being bussed or transported to GCC's Stuart Steiner Theatre in Batavia on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, April 23 - 25, for two shows, 10 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. each day. While most of these school group performances are sold out, there are still plenty of seats available at the public performances listed above.

"Our children's theatre program has always been very well received, and this year is no exception," said Maryanne Arena, director of Fine and Performing Arts at GCC. "Last year we performed for more than 2,000 people at our theatre and on location."

The cast of "Tales from Japan" includes: William Rupp, of Batavia, Kayli Wilson, of Canastota, Amber Lively, of Barker, Christian Hoffman, of Hilton, Kathleen Kwasniewski, of Alexander, Tony Heard, of Fillmore, Ryan McKenrick, of Rochester, Brianna Jones, of Batavia, David Wysocki, of Hamburg, Courtney Amesbury, of Bergen, Jerry Jordan, of the Bronx, Cameron Pollard, of Mount Vernon, Sania Hyatt, of NYC, Kaori Shinchi, of Japan, GCC paralegal instructor Karyn Bryson, and Jordan Griffiths, of Milford, who is also serving as stage manager for the show. Ali Scharvella of Copake Lake is assistant stage manager. William Rupp has served as Tai Chi and Katana trainer as well as mask maker, and Kaori Shinchi as language consultant.

Tickets for the show at the Batavia Campus in the Stuart Steiner Theatre are $8. GCC students with ID and children pay $3. Seniors and GCC faculty/staff are $5. GCC alumni receive $2 off with ID. Contact the Box Office for more information at (585) 345-6814 or [email protected].

For more information, visit http://www.genesee.edu/campuslife/arts/calendar.cfm.

March 5, 2014 - 10:16am
posted by Howard B. Owens in arts, theater, entertainment, Le Roy, le roy hs.

About 150 students at Le Roy High Sschool are busy in rehearsals and stage set up for upcoming performances of "Legally Blonde: The Musical."

The show stars, above, John Snyder, Rachel Glucksam, Danny Weaver and Ashley Webb.

Performances are at 7 p.m. March 20, 21, and 22, in the auditorium at Le Roy HS. Tickets are available online at www.leroycsd.org and are $8 or $10 at the door.

The show is directed by Jacqueline McLean. She described the themes of the show as appropriate for school children in fourth grade and older.

"We picked the show because we had a lot of strong girls, but we also wanted to talk about some things in society that are a little controversial but important," McLean said. "The overlying theme of the show is the overall acceptance of people and people with differences. "

December 6, 2013 - 5:09pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, arts, theater, Batavia HS.

Batavia High School opens its performance of "The Brother's Grimm Spectaculathon: Not your Disney fairy tales" at 7:30 tonight in the high school auditorium.

Tickets are $10 at the door ($8 for students).

There is a second performance at 7:30 p.m. tomorrow.

(submitted photos)

October 25, 2013 - 7:14pm
posted by Daniel Crofts in Announcements, theater, GCC, GCASA.

Press release:

In celebration of Red Ribbon Week, Genesee County Drug Free Communities Coalition, a program of GCASA, presents the North American tour of the new hit stage play “Pass It On…An Evening with Bill W. & Dr. Bob.”  The production is a dramatization of the early history of Alcoholics Anonymous, delivered with a message of hope, help and the miracle of recovery.

This highly acclaimed two-man show comes to Batavia for a one-time engagement on Tuesday, October 29th at 6:30pm, at the Stuart Steiner Theatre at Genesee Community College.

This unique, inspirational and often hilarious theatrical production celebrates sobriety and serves as the centerpiece for an international recovery education project, raising awareness about the solution to North America’s number one public health issue – the disease of alcoholism and addiction.

“Pass It On…An Evening with Bill W. & Dr. Bob” has created excitement among audiences and recovery communities.  The show travels across the United States and Canada, appearing in such cities as Phoenix, Sacramento, Tucson, San Antonio, Delray, Ottawa, Little Rock and now Batavia.  Audiences experience an unforgettable evening of inspirational entertainment that aims to enhance recovery, inspire hearts and reach people who cannot be reached in any other way.

The show transports audiences to the late 1940s to meet Bill W. and Dr. Bob, the beloved cofounders of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA).  They tell their stories, share their experiences, strength and hope, and dramatize key events – such as their legendary drinking sprees and the extraordinary night they met in Akron, Ohio in 1935.

Audiences will be regaled with fascinating and hilarious yarns about the early history of AA – including the writing and publication of "The Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous," the creation of the "12 Steps," and how the protagonists overcame tremendous obstacles as they struggled to develop their new recovery program and pass it on to others.

Reservations are suggested; call Diane at 815-1883 or e-mail [email protected].  A $5.00 donation is recommended.

June 12, 2013 - 10:32pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in arts, theater, GCC, entertainment, Forum Players.

GCC's Forum Players Theater Company presents "Charlotte's Web" this week, opening at 7 p.m. Friday in the Stuart Steiner Theater.

Alumna Jaime Arena directs the production, which also shows at 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday at 2 p.m.

From a press release:

The show is being produced with the support of The BEST Center at GCC by special arrangement with the Dramatic Publishing Company of Woodstock, Ill. Originally published in 1952, E.B. White’s “Charlotte’s Web” chronicles the life of Wilbur the pig  (played by 2010 GCC alumnus Robert Reiss). Born the runt of the litter, Wilbur is saved first by 8-year old Fern Arable (Brianna Jones of Batavia) who stops her father (played by GCC English Professor Norm Gayford) from killing the pig and nurses him to good health. In the barn at the Zuckerman farm, Wilbur encounters a spider named Charlotte (Margaret Gayford, of Warsaw High School), who spins magic when Wilbur’s life is again in danger. A timeless tale of bravery, selfless love, and the true meaning of friendship, the play is adapted for stage by Joseph Robinette.

Other cast members include: Kayli Wilson (Canastota) and Jordan Griffiths (Milford) as narrators; Sania Hyatt (New York City) as Templeton; Courtney Amesbury (Bergen) as Mrs. Arable; William Rupp (Batavia) as Avery; Christian Hoffman (Hilton) as Homer Zuckerman; Alayna Zimbrich (Hilton) as Edith Zuckerman; Tony E. Heard (Fillmore) as Lurvy; Emily Jones (Waterloo) as Goose; and Norm Gayford as Old Sheep. William Rupp, Norm Gayford and Emily Jones will play fairgoers while Brianna Jones, Tony E. Heard and William Rupp will appear as spiders.

All tickets for the show are $5. An autograph session will be held after each performance. Tickets can be purchased by cash, check or credit card from the GCC box office at (585) 345-6814 or [email protected].

Photos from today's dress rehearsal by Howard Owens.

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