Theater provides local entertainment through May

  • In A Perfect Likeness, Eric West (right) as Charles Dodgson shows Bill Butler as Charles Dickens photos of a young girl named Alice. The play will be shown Saturday night. Photo by Samantha Sinclair
    In A Perfect Likeness, Eric West (right) as Charles Dodgson shows Bill Butler as Charles Dickens photos of a young girl named Alice. The play will be shown Saturday night. Photo by Samantha Sinclair
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    Andrews - What would Charles Dickens and Lewis Carroll say to each other if they met? The ACT2 Players opened the second half of their season showing that fictional interaction in their production of A Perfect Likeness: Carroll Photographs Dickens.
    The show starred Eric West as Charles Dodgson, or Carroll, and Bill Butler as Charles Dickens. West selected the play to have something with a small cast to fill the time between the Christmas show and dessert fundraiser. He and Butler directed the show, with input from experienced friends.
    The show was only supposed to run last weekend. However, because of weather conditions allowing only six people to see last weekend’s performance, they decided to do one more show at 7 p.m. Saturday. Tickets are $15, and include a drink.
    Lori Coffey, a Valleytown Cultural Arts & Historical Society board member and artistic director of Community Youth Players/ACT2, said the community should support the local theater at the Valleytown Cultural Arts Center.
    “It’s very important,” she said. “Not only do they have inexpensive entertainment, but they are supporting so much.”
    Coffey said she especially enjoys seeing joy on the actors’ faces when they successfully put on a show.
    The Community Youth Players was started in the 1970s to bring theater opportunities to Andrews. The Adult Community Theater, or ACT2, was started decades later as the theater organization was revitalized.
    Ticket prices and sponsorships go toward each show’s costs and maintaining the building, which is on the National Register of Historic Places.
    The season typically runs from September through May. The building cannot be used this summer, as much-needed renovations will be done on the ceiling and basement walls.
    The next production is the annual dessert theater fundraiser in February. Supporters will get to enjoy desserts as they watch the Act2 Players present the comedy Rex’s Exes at 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Feb. 7-8, as well as at 3 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 9. Tickets are $15 each.
    The comedy focuses on the Verdeen cousins – Gaynelle, Peaches and Jimmie Wyvette – and what happens when Peaches’ declared-dead husband returns.
    Rex’s Exes is the sequel to The Red Velvet Cake War, which the company performed during last year’s dessert fundraiser. Most of the actors are reprising their roles. Coffey said those who didn’t see last year’s show will definitely be able to follow the amusing action in the sequel.
    “They refer back enough to where you’ll know what’s going on,” she said.
    As Andrews High School no longer has a culinary arts program, desserts for the show will be provided by community bakers and local professionals.
    Beauty and the Beast Jr., will be presented on the weekends of March 27-29 and April 3-5. Showtimes are 7 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, and 3 p.m. Sundays. It is based on the original Broadway production and Academy Award-winning motion picture.
    Auditions for the show begin Monday, Jan. 27. Tickets for Beauty and the Beast Jr. will be $10 for Friday and Saturday performances, $5 for Sunday performances.
    The season will conclude with the annual dinner show fundraiser Saturday, May 16. The company will present The Fantasticks, a musical about two fathers who trick their children into falling in love. Auditions are planned to begin at the end of March, with tickets expected to be $25 each.
    Funds raised at the dinner show each year go toward the air conditioning fund. Coffey said the historical society has about one-fifth
of the money needed to install air conditioning in the former First Baptist Church of Andrews. She’s hoping in the next year they can acquire a grant that will help them get much closer to their goal.
    The 2020-21 season is not completely set yet. However, Coffey is looking forward to the Community Youth Players’ production of A Charlie Brown Christmas coming in November.
     The historical society is always looking for sponsors for the Community Youth Players/ACT2 productions, and sponsorships are still available for individual shows. Individual show sponsorships range from $60-150. For details, contact Coffey at 360-4108 or vcyp.act2@gmail.com.
    Samantha Sinclair is the Scouting Around columnist for the Cherokee Scout. You can reach her by phone, 837-5122, Ext. 24; or email, scoutingaround@cherokeescout.com.