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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Ignite theater will stage new play by KZZU’s Molly Allen

Spokane radio personality Molly Allen, of KZZU’s “Dave, Ken and Molly in the Morning,” has written a play and she’s going to perform in it.

“On Shaky Ground” will have its world premiere run Sept. 16 through Oct. 2 at Ignite Community Theatre in Spokane Valley.

Allen’s mother, actress Ellen Travolta, will produce the show, which will feature veteran actor Jack Bannon, Oskar Owens, Allen, and Billy Hultquist. The two-act play will be directed by Dawn Taylor-Reinhardt and Troy Nickerson.

The play is set in an apartment building in San Francisco. In one apartment, a grandfather (Bannon) and grandson (Owens) are struggling to connect in the digital age. Next door, a troubled couple (Allen and Hultquist) are in the process of breaking up. When a natural disaster hits, the characters in each apartment are forced to come to terms with each other as they deal with fear and loss.

“I am excited to see my words come to life,” Allen said in a news release. “I feel so fortunate to be working with my friends and family – a dream come true with an absolute dream team.”

Tickets, ranging from $12-$15, are available through Brown Paper Tickets,, or by calling (208) 352-0727. Ignite is located in the Spokane Valley Partners building, 10814 E. Broadway Ave.

“On Shaky Ground” will kick off the 2016-17 season for Ignite, a nonprofit community theater company. Other productions are:

“Farce of Nature” by Jessie Jones, Nicholas Hope, Jamie Wooten, Nov. 11-27;

“Tuesdays With Morrie” by Jeffrey Hatcher and Mitch Albom, Jan. 13-29;

“Scotland Road” by Jeffrey Hatcher, March 10-26;

“Casting for Murder” by Elizabeth Elwood, May 5-21.

For more information about Ignite, visit

Symphony of Potter

In March, the Spokane Symphony had a hit on its hands with its “Star Wars” themed family concert. So they’re doing it again, trading in light sabers for wands.

The symphony – under the direction of resident conductor Morhiko “Professor Dumbledore” Nakahara – will perform music from the “Harry Potter” films during two concerts on Saturday, Oct. 29 – just in time for Halloween.

Young wizards will be encouraged to don their robes and head to the Martin Woldson Theater at the Fox for magic and music, which was written for the movies by John Williams.

An afternoon matinee, at 2 p.m., is designed for younger witches and wizards and their families, while the older Hogwarts fans can come for the 8 p.m. show. At the time of ticket purchase, audience members can select which house they’d like to be sorted into – Gryffindor, Hufflepuff, Ravenclaw or Slytherin. Once at the Fox, they’ll be sent to their houses to receive special instructions for the concert, which promises to be interactive. A special “batonwand,” part of that interactive experience, will be available for sale as well, with proceeds to benefit the symphony’s education programs. There will be a costume contest and other festivities before the show.

Tickets go on sale to the public at 10 a.m. Aug. 25 through the Fox box office, (509) 624-1200 or 1001 W. Sprague Ave., online at, or at any TicketsWest location. Tickets are $19, $29 and $39, with half price admission for children ages 12 and younger.

Getting saturated

Spokane Arts, which among many other thing coordinated the two big Visual Arts Tour programs this year, is adding to the mix.

The winter tour, set for Feb. 3-5, will feature a new project called Saturate – a citywide collaboration featuring artworks, curatorial projects and performances by people of color.

Artists and venues interested in participating are encouraged to visit

Speaking of Spokane Arts

Laura Becker, the Mead High School graduate who has led Spokane Arts since January 2015, is leaving to become cultural affairs supervisor to the city of Santa Monica’s public arts program.

Under Becker’s tenure, Spokane Arts has launched a number of projects. Perhaps most critically, she was part of the drive in the spring that pushed the city to triple the amount of funding from admission taxes dedicated to the arts.

Said Spokane Arts Commissioner Dean Davis in a news release: “To be sure, Laura will be missed. But through her efforts to strengthen and focus Spokane Arts, she has created a position we are confident will be sought after by other highly qualified candidates.”

Becker will remain on the job until Sept. 23. The Spokane Arts Board will conduct a nationwide search to replace her. Those interested in applying may email Spokane Arts board chairwoman Brooke Kiener at

Musical reunion

Three former Coeur d’Alene High School classmates are coming home. Not for a class reunion, but to put on a show.

Aaron Baldwin and Jessi Little, who graduated in 2009, and 2010 grad Madison Leonard will present “By the Light of the Moon Cabaret” on Aug. 20 at the Jacklin Arts and Cultural Center in Post Falls.

The three performed together in high school before going off to college. Little graduated from TCU and now lives in Seattle. She’s acted professionally in Seattle, Dallas and Coeur d’Alene, where last year she was Wednesday Addams in “The Addams Family” at Coeur d’Alene Summer Theater. Leonard graduated from Pepperdine University and earned a master’s degree from Northwestern University. She lives in Chicago and performs all over the country. Look for her in “Il barbiere di Siviglia” with Opera Coeur d’Alene in the fall. Baldwin lives in Boise, where he recently was in a production of “Young Frankenstein.”

The evening beings with a reception at 6:30 p.m., followed by the concert. Tickets are $20 for adults and $15 for students. For more information or to buy tickets, visit

The JACC is located at 405 N. William St., Post Falls.