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      We’ve had three performances of the Festival of HG Radio and they’ve all been fun. They wonderfully embrace the spirit of our mission: to provide opportunities for people of all ages to enrich and empower their lives through community performing arts. This project does that.

      The youngest in the group is either Bryson Fuhrer who attends Westfield Elementary, or Katie Burke from Mansfield. Either of these—both of these—kids are a joy to work with, and a joy to watch. They are high energy and full of expression and spirit. The oldest in the group—oh, geez—I’m not sure who is the oldest. Larry Biddison may get the prize. Or maybe Bill Bauer. Ed McQuaid is getting up there. There are a few women who may be the winner, but I’m not comfortable listing their names. Sorry for making assumptions.

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      One more night of auditions for PROOF. You’ve put off long enough. Take the step out of your comfort zone and come to auditions tonight. 6:30 at the Warehouse Gallery next to the Native Bagel. Even if you are not chosen for this play, you’ve made yourself vulnerable which is always a freeing experience. You’ve also made yourself known as someone who is interested thus leading to consideration for future plays. And you could possible make yourself some new friends. See you tonight.

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      We’re in the midst of auditions for our upcoming play PROOF by David Auburn. I was introduced to the play via the film with Anthony Hopkins and Gwyneth Paltrow. I saw it a few years ago at the Hangar Theatre in Ithaca, wherein the family members were black and the grad student white. I’ve read the play a number of times. Yet when someone asks either what the play is about or what is it about the play that I’m drawn to, I find myself at a loss.

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      One of the huge perks of community theatre is the vast number of people with whom one can rub elbows. A musical offers a grand opportunity since there are usually so many in the cast. Everyone was a joy.

      A few folks were new to me; they may have been in an HG show before but not one that I directed. Nikki York was one. She played Gooch, and her performance was as funny as the sound of the character's name. I had seen Nikki in a few short plays in the HG Women's Project and I was delighted when I saw her walk in for auditions.  When I asked her to read Mame's line she sounded like a confident Mame. Then she read for Vera and she had a completely different voice of the fading actress. I thought, wow, this woman has a good idea of character and is not afraid to explore.

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      My good intention was to write a blog throughout the process of producing MAME. So much for good intentions. Once the process begins I always seem to let just about everything else slide. I remember years ago a woman who was in a number of plays announced that bills simply do not get paid when she was participating in a production. They do have a tendency to demand attention.

      So, we have completed our run of the musical; and it has been a glorious adventure. I don't like having to transport paint and set pieces and lumber and costumes over to Straughn, but in the end it's all worth it. Much of the wonder and wonderfulness of a production is how well the cast interacts and functions, and this cast was luminescent. Really. It was a large cast and not a diva among them. If there were complaints or gripes I never heard them. Everyone seemed to help and respect the other members of the cast and crew. This dynamic goes a long way to making a production delightful.

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