With its 19th season’s first production — Headed South from the Great White North, which ran last month — now finished, Footlighters Theatre Society is preparing for the next show, Almost Golden, with auditions at 7 p.m. Aug. 27 at the Snoring Sasquatch.
The play, locally written by Suzanne Chubb and Jason Smith, focuses on a family gathering for a weekend to celebrate an important anniversary for retirees Marvin and Hazel Schooling. What should be a pleasant weekend turns mildly chaotic when family members’ secrets are revealed over the course of the comedy-drama.
“It’s a great ‘slice of life’ kind of story,” said director Brian Lawrence. “The script really captures family dynamics, both dramatic and humorous, that I found to be all too familiar.”
There are 12 characters in Almost Golden, ranging from teenagers to seniors:
•Marvin Schooling, a retired miner, and Hazel Schooling, his wife;
•their son, Steven, and his wife, Rachel, business professionals from the big city in their late 30s or early 40s, and their 16-year-old daughter, Tiffany;
•Marta, Marvin and Hazel’s daughter, and Andy McLucky, restaurateurs in their 40s, and their 15-year-old son, Sam;
•Chad Harvey, Rachel’s secretary, in his mid-20s;
•Dave Murphy, about 50, a visitor to the Schooling home;
•Maude Edison-Stapleton-Gilmore, in her 50s or 60s, manager of Cedar Park Retirement Resort; and
•Oscar, a financial planner in his late 50s or early 60s.
The production runs Dec. 5-7, and marks the fifth locally written production the troupe has presented, following Barging Down the Nile and Jack and the Beanstalk in 2007, the one-act No More Tomorrows in 2010, and Aladdin in 2011. At least one more is on the horizon, with Cinderella slated for the fall of 2014.
“Our goals go beyond simply putting on shows,” said Lawrence, who is also the society’s president. “We want to encourage people in all areas of production, from working backstage to, in this case, writing. We didn’t hesitate to say yes when we were approached to produce Almost Golden.”
In the case of Almost Golden, the production will go a step further. Footlighters has committed to hosting Centre Stage, Theatre BC’s Kootenay Zone competition, in late May 2014, and will enter Almost Golden to compete against other regional plays — with the hope of taking the play to Kamloops for the provincial festival that summer.
“After the December run, we’ll have an opportunity to fine tune the play, if necessary, before we start rehearsing it again for the festival,” said Lawrence. “Plays often change in the early stages of their development, and it will be interesting to see how it develops between now and the spring.”
For more information on Almost Golden, contact Brian Lawrence at 250-428-2266 ext. 203 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Almost Golden is the second production of Footlighters Theatre Society’s 2013-2014 season; it will be followed by Legend of Sleepy Hollow in April. The 2014-2015 season, the troupe’s 20th, will start in July 2014 with the comedy Dogsbreath Devereaux, the Dastardly Doctor, followed by Cinderella in the fall and Walt Disney’s Beauty and the Beast in the spring of 2015.
—FOOTLIGHTERS THEATRE SOCIETY