Quote of the Day: I don’t make mistakes, I have unintentional improvisations! unknown, or everyone!

The Brainerd Lakes Community Theatre (BCT) is performing Play On! at the Central Lakes Community College Performing Arts Center. A community theatre production about a community theatre production written by a local playwright. It’s hilarious. I had multiple laugh out loud moments, which were drowned out by the raucous laughter all around me by the others in the audience. Katie, who was sitting next to me, said tears were rolling down her face by the end of the show. Having experienced many theatre moments myself, on and off the stage, and even writing my own script, I could relate to pretty much everything that happened on, and off, the stage during last night’s performance. 

Rebecca Timmins, who plays Phyllis Montague, the playwright, was a particular standout to me. (probably because of the playwright connection) It’s hard to let your beautiful baby out in the world. You want to keep tweaking her, and trying to pretty her up! Oh, my. And, all to add to the confusion and missed lines, and flow, of the script for the poor actors who struggle to get along, or keep watching the clock because they need to get home to study, or their mom doesn’t want them out late. I loved the line that Smitty (Michelle Waldoch) has about her mom needing to approve the script!

Beth Selinger plays the stage manager Aggie Manville. Beth has done pretty much every job in the theatre, which gives her the edge she needs to manage the unruly cast and crew, and corral the over zealous playwright!

Siblings Bri and Shane Keran are veteran actors on our local stages and have great comedic timing and expression. Always a delight to watch them along with Marc Oliphant who has also been in numerous shows. Jen Anderson plays the cranky director Gerry. Clayton Castle is new to the BCT stage playing stage hand Louie in a fun and quirky way. As he pounded on the set during the show, I had flashbacks to working with my students during our Youth Theatre camp while George was building the set for Play On! Art imitating life… 

Nicholas Kory once again plays an energetic and silly character, Billy Carewe. He really knows how to strike a pose, give a meaningful look, and get the lines out at the right, or wrong, time as needed in a show like this. Emili Lane plays Violet Imbry who’s character is cute and funny and is constantly being told that the line is different. It must be a challenge to memorize these lines as they say them one way, then change them, then have to remember where the “mess up” is, and the correction. Really fun play on words, scripts, and the headaches of community theatre!

The Brainerd Community Theatre cast of the summer production of “Play On!” includes Clayton Castle (left), Beth Selinger, Marc Oliphant, Bri Keran, Michelle Waldoch, Shane Keran, Rebecca Timmins, Jen Anderson with Emili Lane and Nick Kory seated. The play opens July 6. Photo by Chris Bremmer

Patrick Spradlin did an excellent job of directing Plan On! by Rick Abbott, a clever romp, and stumble, about a theatre troupe trying to get their act together! George Marsolek did a great job creating the set. Dawn Marks is expert at costume design, as usual. Ben Kent works magic as Lighting/Sound Designer, and Kerry Townsend and Paul Warmuth are the real stage managers in this production.

You can see Play On! at CLC Performing Arts July 6-15, 2017. Go to the box office, or call 218-855-8199 to purchase tickets, or visit their websiteRead more about this production in the article in the Brainerd Dispatch. The public should note that a strobe lighting effect is used in the play, and a gun is fired on stage.

Go. Create. Inspire!

Journaling Prompt: What mishaps have you experienced in community theater, or in any creative endeavor?