Playmakers & Company actors to return to stage
Former members of an historic New River Valley community theater group are about to make an encore.
Beginning April 25, cast and crew from the former Playmakers and Company will be joining forces with New River Stage for performances of the Neil Simon comedy “The Odd Couple” at Warm Hearth Village.
The company, which started in the 1980 as the Christiansburg Community Theater before changing its name, staged 99 different productions before financial troubles caused the group to fold in 2000.
The history of Playmakers and Company dates back 34 years to the first performance of “Come Blow Your Horn.” Mike Vaughn – who directed a female version of the “Odd Couple” in 1996 (PC’s 73rd show) – returns to direct the upcoming play, which also casts women instead of men in the lead roles. Vaughn helped form the Christiansburg Community Theater.
“He (Vaughn) and several friends got together to read plays. They enjoyed it so much that they decided to actually perform a play,” said Anna Dalton, former group member and the producer of the current production.
When New River Stage asked Vaughn to direct again, he called former members of both Christiansburg Community Theater and the Playmakers and Company. Many answered.
- Three actors will reprise their roles: Mike Ogliaruso, Babs Ogliaruso and Beth Moody.
- A.J Brightman-Moose, who will play Mickey the Cop, is a charter member of CCT.
- Stage manager Terry Goodson who played the role of Mickey the Cop in 1996.
- Mel Anderson and Tina Vaughn will help with props and set.
Several former CCT and PC members are now drama teachers at local high schools: Jeff McCoy at Pulaski High, Makala Witten Vest at Christiansburg High and Tonya Hall Bowyer at Radford High.
The group is putting a new spin on the reprise by offering Saturday night shows as a dinner theatre. Doors will open an hour early for catered meal.
‘The Odd Couple: Female Version’
What: A comedy by Neil Simon by New River Stage
When: April 25-27, May 2-4. Friday shows are at 7:30 p.m., Saturday shows are at 6:30 p.m. (dinner before 7:30 show); Sunday matinees are at 2:30 p.m.
Where: Village Center, Warm Hearth Village, 2387 Warm Hearth Drive, Blacksburg.
Cost: adults, $12 online, $15 at the door; students/seniors, $8 online, $10 at the door; children 4 and younger, free. Dinner theater tickets cost $35.