Last show of season
Rehearsals for big 2021-22 Temple Civic Theatre season finale are under way.
DAVID STONE | June 10, 2022
Rehearsals are well under way for Guys and Dolls, the final production of the 2021-22 Temple Civic Theatre season.
Originally released in 1955, the show is a musical romantic comedy involving the unlikeliest of Manhattan pairings: a high-rolling gambler and a puritanical missionary, a showgirl dreaming of the straight-and-narrow and a crap game manager who is anything but.
“This will be a three-weekend run,” said Dr. Sara Harris Baker, director of the TCT production. “Most Temple Civic Theatre shows are just two weekends, so this will be taxing for sure. But, some community theaters have five weekend runs, so this isn’t out of the ordinary. But it’s not typical at TCT.”
Guys and Dolls opens July 22 and will be held July 22-24, July 28-31 and August 5-7. For tickets and showtimes, visit https://templecivictheatre.com.
Harris is no stranger to directing live stage productions. And, she is no stranger to Guys and Dolls.
“I was in this show at Temple High School in 1998 under the direction of Natasha Tolleson,” Baker said earlier today. “I was a sophomore at THS at the time. I played Agatha, a mission girl.”
Last month, Tolleson retired from Temple High and became the managing artistic director at TCT.
Baker — now the director of Fine Arts at Temple College and co-owner of The Beltonian Theater — continued her love of the theatre long after graduating high school
“I have directed more than 40 shows,” she said. “I’ve worked with productions at Temple College and Temple Civic Theatre, of course, but I’ve also worked with the LSU Opera, the Temple Symphony Orchestra and others. I taught at Bonham Middle School here in Temple and at high schools in Burleson and Baton Rouge.”
The TCT version of Guys and Dolls features 29 performers.
“This is a big cast for our space,” Baker said. “That’s a lot of people to costume and keep backstage.”
The set will include street scenes of New York City and Havana, Cuba.
Based on a book by Jo Swerling and Abe Burrows, and music and lyrics by Frank Loesser, Guys and Dolls is a musical comedy involving the unlikeliest of Manhattan pairings: a high-rolling gambler and a puritanical missionary, and a showgirl dreaming of the straight-and-narrow and a crap game manager who is anything but.
Set in a Manhattan typical of Damon Runyon’s short stories, Guys and Dolls tells of con artist Nathan Detroit’s efforts to find new life for his illegal crap game.
When police catch on to the location of the notorious venue, Nathan has to find a new home for his crap game quickly but he doesn’t have the dough to secure the one location he finds.
Enter Sky Masterson, a high-rolling gambler willing to take on any honest bet with a high enough reward attached. Nathan bets Sky that he can’t take the “doll” of Nathan’s choosing to Havana, Cuba, with him on a date. When Sky agrees to the bet, Nathan chooses uptight Evangelist Sergeant Sarah Brown, head of Broadway’s Save-a-Soul Mission.
Sky thinks he’s been duped, but he’s in for even more of a surprise when his efforts to woo Sarah are so successful that he falls in love with her himself!
Guys and Dolls takes us from the bustle of Times Square to the dance clubs of Havana to the sewers of New York City as it demonstrates the great lengths to which a guy will go when he truly falls in love with a “doll.”
Guys and Dolls features some of Loesser’s most memorable tunes, including the hilarious “Adelaide’s Lament,” the romantic “I’ve Never Been in Love Before,” the exuberant “If I Were a Bell,” and the classic “Luck Be a Lady.”
Here’s the cast:
Dan Becker as Nicely Nicely Johnson, a devoted gambler and one of Nathan’s closest associates.
Ethan Matous as Benny Southstreet, a gambler and an ally of Nathan.
Nathan Fulmer as Rusty Charlie, a gambler who frequents Nathan’s establishment.
Sidney Lowell as Sarah Brown, an idealistic but sheltered missionary.
Jeff Ellis as Arvide Abernathy, A member of the Save-a-Soul mission who is a bit gullible.
Glenn Kuriger as Calvin, a member of the mission band.
Erica Aguillon as Martha, a member of the mission band.
Hope Ash as Agatha, a member of the mission band.
Richard Rogers as Harry the Horse is a gambler with a complaining streak.
Daniel Clark as Lt. Brannigan, a policeman bent on stopping the illegal craps games.
Brian Joyce as Nathan Detroit, facilitator of illegal gambling in town.
Nick Lopez as Angie the Ox, a gambler and close friend of Nathan.
Matt Fulmer as Liver Lips Louie.
Jouper Muring as The Gambler.
Cleon Tollerson as a boxer who gambles.
Jeremy Lawson as Tex the Gambler.
Priscilla Santana as Miss Adelaide, a funny but classy showgirl.
Kyle Parsons as Sky Masterson, a charming but self-assured gambler.
Michael Prince as Joey Biltmore, a gambler and a businessman.
Rebecca Johnson as Mimi, a Hot Box dancer.
Maddie Clark as Allison, a Hot Box dancer.
Eden Irom as Ferguson, a Hot Box dancer.
Kaiya Fowler as Vernon, a Hot Box dancer.
Debbie Cable Brown as Gen. Matilda Cartwright, regional director of Save-a-Soul.
David Koontz as Big Jule, an intimidating hustler from Chicago.
Victoria Bongat, Sarah Kuriger, Lily Johnson and Catherine Doyle as the featured ensemble.
Mary Jacq Kirchhoff and Johnny Gonzales as featured dancers.
Cast members include JoAnna Langthorn, choreographer; David Perez-Guerra, rehearsal music director; Benjamin Irom, performance music director; Rob Coward, technical director; Michelle Clark, state manager; Hope McMahone, assistant director; Connie Harris, costume coordinator; Marissa Hunt, Ina Goad and Doni Brought, costume assistants; Tanya McMillan, hair/makeup coordinator; Macy Burns, props coordinator; Eden Johnson, spotlight operator; Gracin Ivey, light board operator; Sue Morissey, and production liaison.
Marilyn and Seth Avery are sponsors of the show and helped cover production costs. Sponsorships help keep ticket prices low and affordable.
“This is a colorful 1940s tale with the happy ending audiences always want,” Baker said. “People will leave with a tune in their heart and a smile on their face.”
StageAgent contributed to this report
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