Santa Maria Sun / Art
The following articles were printed from Santa Maria Sun [santamariasun.com] - Volume 15, Issue 22
The Lompoc Civic offers two chances to enjoy community theater
BY JOE PAYNE
Getting on stage to perform is a daunting task that most of us avoid, but among our ranks are brave individuals who feel compelled to perform. In no place is this more apparent than in community theater organizations like the Lompoc Civic Theatre, which gives many performing artists a first crack at the stage.
With more than 40 years of productions between its curtains, the Lompoc Civic Theatre offers a variety of live events throughout the year. Currently, the organization is prepping for its last performance of Miracle on South Division Street, a dinner theater event, and the upcoming free summer showcase of one-act plays including Brush Yourself Off and Move On by Megan Boduch and Drugs Are Bad by Jonathan Rand.
The summer showcase will be Patricia Roby’s directorial debut. Roby began volunteering for the Lompoc Civic Theatre a few years ago and has been assistant director to president Larry McClellan and past president Marian Stave.
“Being an assistant to Larry and Marian was very intensive, I did learn a lot,” Roby said. “I learned blocking, diction, how to handle the cast, how to be diplomatic; just about everything I’ve learned about theater was from those two.”
The summer showcase gives members of the community who otherwise couldn’t afford tickets a chance to come out and enjoy some live community theater.
“We are hoping it will get people involved in the theater or at least motivate them to come see our main stage productions,” Roby said. “I’m very impressed with the people who give up their time, the actors particularly, because it’s very time intensive with all the rehearsals.”
One of Roby’s mentors, past president Stave, is directing Miracle on South Division Street. Stave has been involved with the Lompoc Civic Theatre ever since the group began in 1973 with a production of 1,000 Clowns. Though Stave doesn’t direct main stage productions anymore, she still enjoys directing smaller performances like the dinner theater shows.
“I have a degree in theater, and I started on the stage at age 13 in high school, so this is my 60th year on the stage,” Stave said. “Since I was a kid it has been one of my biggest passions in life.”
Through Lompoc Civic, Stave has been able to share her passion and pass on some expertise to generations of performers. The civic theatre gives people a chance, regardless of their experience, she explained.
“You don’t have to have any experience to jump right in,” she said. “We’re very welcoming, and people say, ‘Oh no, I couldn’t do that,’ and we say, ‘Well, you don’t have to act. There are other things you can do off stage,’ and that’s how we get some people who are involved.”
The dinner theater production includes a pre-show dinner of steak, pork loin, or a vegetarian stuffed portabella mushroom followed by the production, which includes an intermission with dessert. The room at the Village Country Club is welcoming and the food is good, Stave explained, and reiterated that there is only one chance to catch the comedic story by Tom Dudzick.
“We’ve had sell-out crowds,” Stave said, “so if people want to come, they better get their reservations soon!”
Arts Editor Joe Payne would go for the steak. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.