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The Civic brings home two national awards

The Spokane Civic Theatre brought home two awards from last weekend's AACT/FEST 2011 national community theater awards in Rochester, NY:

  • Lacey Bohnet won Best Supporting Actress.
  • Nancy Vancil won Best Musical Accompaniment

The Civic's entry, “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee,” also earned three nominations:

  • David Baker, nominee for Best Lighting Design
  • Mark Pleasant, nominee for Best Actor
  • The cast, nominated for Best Ensemble

By the way, the overall winner at this competition  was “Dog Sees God: Confessions of a Teenage Blockhead” — Ohlook Performing Arts Center, Grapevine, TX
  

These busy ‘Bees’ need help to get to Rochester

The folks in “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee” are feverishly raising money to go to Rochester, N.Y., for AACT/Fest, which is the national community theater competition.

They’ve already come up with $20,000. They have $10,000 more to go.

This Spokane Civic Theatre production qualified for the nationals by winning the state and regional competitions. It costs a lot of money to transport everybody to New York and house them during the competition, so they are staging three “dress rehearsal” fundraisers. No tickets are required, but donations will be gratefully accepted.

The dates are:

  • May 31, 7 p.m. – Lewis and Clark High School Auditorium.
  • June 1, 7 p.m. – Lewis and Clark High School Auditorium.
  • June 8, 7:30 p.m. – Spokane Civic Theatre, 1020 N. Howard.

Director Kathie Doyle-Lipe says they are “working feverishly to get this accomplished, but we can use any help we can get.”

The competition takes place June 20-26. It’s worth noting that the Civic has had more success in this national competition than just about any theater in the country. The Civic has won it twice and finished second once.

“Nunsense” already sold out

The news came out even before the first wimple-wearing nun hit the stage: The entire run of “Nunsense” at the Spokane Civic was sold out.

Theater head Yvonne A.K. Johnson delivered the announcement before the opening curtain of the opening performance. This continues a remarkable run for the Civic, which also sold out “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee” at its Studio Theatre this month. The Civic has already sold out many other runs this season, including “Buddy” and “White Christmas.”

But what about the show itself? Did “Nunsense” live up to expectations? 

Is the Reverend Mother Catholic?

Look for my full review in Sunday's Spokesman-Review.

“Spelling Bee” sold out

This just in: The entire run of “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee” at the Spokane Civic Theatre is already sold out.

That includes the two extra Saturday matinees that had already been added on to the regular run, which ends Feb. 20.

This is no big surprise, since (1) The show is in the small Studio Theatre space that seats less than 100 and (2) It's a hoot of a show that is getting great word of mouth.

The Civic may be wondering if it should have run upstairs on the much-larger-capacity Main Stage, yet the intimate setting is one of the reasons the show works so well.

You may be able to catch a cut-down version of the show in March. The Civic plans on making this show its competition show for the 2011 Kaleidoscope Festival — which will be hosted by Civic March 11-13.

Jamie: God-Forsaken Icy Roads

I was going to see White Christmas at the Spokane Civic Theatre on Friday. I had my tickets waiting for me at the box office for the sold out show, but because I am a chicken when it comes to driving on icy roads we stayed home instead. Now this has really put a crimp in my monthly dose of culture! I need to remind myself of the finer more simple pleasures in life and going to a performance at the Spokane Civic gives me that and more. Sometimes we get caught up in all the daily crap (yes I said crap) that is going on around us and we don’t take time to just sit and be entertained.

Question: Have icy roads this year prevented you from attending an event that you really wanted to see or be a part of?