By TOM LAVIS
Wedding guests love to see the bridesmaids mingling and helping make the bride’s special day one to remember.
But in the case of “Five Women Wearing the Same Dress,” those duties go unfulfilled.
The play will be staged in the Studio Theater of Pasquerilla Performing Arts Center, 450 Schoolhouse Road in Richland Township.
The Pitt-Johnstown theater department’s production marks the directing debut of Ann Marie Stewart, professor of theater arts who replaced university icon Rodney Eatman, who retired earlier this year.
“My objective for college theater productions is to educate, entertain and provide outreach to the Johnstown community,” Stewart said.
The play, which opens at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, is a good place to start.
The play was written by Alan Ball, the Academy Award-winning author of “American Beauty” and creator of the Emmy-winning HBO series “Six Feet Under” and Showtime’s “True Blood.”
The play takes place during an ostentatious wedding reception at a Knoxville, Tenn., estate, where five reluctant, identically clad bridesmaids hide out in an upstairs bedroom, each with her own reason to avoid the proceedings below.
As the afternoon wears on, these five very different women joyously discover a common bond in this wickedly funny, irreverent and touching celebration of women’s spirit.
The conversation between the five is the gist of the play, except for one romantic interlude with one lucky male.
“This is a complex, fast-paced, risque, playful and sometimes romantic story line,” Stewart said.
The play takes place in the bedroom.
Stewart described the costumes as elegant, playful, fun and character specific.
“The bridesmaids outfits are beautiful with deep red, flowing gowns and silver shoes with gemstones,” Stewart said.
The cast consists of the five young bridesmaids and one man.
The characters are Frances, a restrained religious conservative, portrayed by sophomore Taylor Casti; Meredith, an athletic, motorcycle type, played by senior Jill Engelmeier; Trisha, a glamorous promiscuous woman, played by senior Lauren Wahl; Mindy, a wisecracking lesbian, depicted by junior Carissa Ciciarelli; Georgeanne, a heartbroken woman, played by junior Jayme Brooks; and Tripp, the sole male lead, portrayed by junior Kyle Stankan.
“All the women are looking to find love, and reveal their past romantic experiences throughout the play,” Stewart said.
Curtain times are 7:30 p.m. Thursday through Oct. 24 and Oct. 29-31 and 2 p.m. Oct. 25 and Nov. 1.
Tickets cost $15, $13, $10.
Tickets are available by calling 269-7200, (800) 846-2787 or by visiting www.upjarts.com.
Tickets also will be available at the door.
By TOM LAVIS
Captured on film | Annual Johnstown movie festival kicks off tonight
People yearning to become successful filmmakers have an opportunity to showcase their talents during the seventh annual Johnstown Film Festival. Johnstown Area Heritage Association’s festival will be held tonight through Saturday (June 6-9) and will feature a mix of film shorts – documentaries, experimental films, narratives and comedies.
Toe-tapping music | Jazz Along the River kicks off Friday at St. Mary’s in Cambria City
Jazz Along the River will be back again this summer. The monthly jazz event has become a fixture at St. Mary Byzantine Catholic Church pavilion, Fifth Avenue and Power Street in the Cambria City section of Johnstown. The series of concerts will feature a different jazz group on the fourth Friday of each month through September.
Texas Tenors returning to Arcadia
Contrary to popular western lore, the good guys, or at least the good singers, wear black hats.
The Texas Tenors will perform at 7:30 p.m. Saturday at Arcadia Theater, 1418 Graham Ave., Windber.
Cresson Lake Playhouse to stage ‘The Fantasticks’
This musical has been on Broadway for 54 years.
“The Fantasticks” will be presented Thursday through June 2 at Cresson Lake Playhouse, 279 Shapiro Road, Loretto.
Curtain times will be 8 p.m. Thursdays through Saturdays and 2 p.m. Sundays.
Events | Whitewater bash
Benscreek Canoe Club’s Stonycreek Rendezvous will be held today through Sunday on the Stonycreek River and Greenhouse Park, Route 403, Tire Hill.
Events | Young art
Greater Johnstown Young Artists Exhibit is on display through May 25 at the Community Arts Center of Cambria County, 1217 Menoher Blvd., Westmont.
'Seeing the Invisible' exhibit opens Friday in Loretto
Painting on a different plane is a positive study for artist and Altoona native Barbara Wachter. Her latest exhibition, “Seeing the Invisible: Paintings by Barbara Wachter,” opens Friday at the Southern Alleghenies Museum of Art at Loretto. The exhibition features 35 canvases of contemporary impressionism that will be on display in the museum’s Margery Wolf-Kuhn Gallery.
Events | 'Grand Finale'
Johnstown Symphony Orchestra will present “Grand Finale” at 7:30 p.m. Saturday at Pasquerilla Performing Arts Center in Richland Township.
Showcase of the Stars will feature students from local high schools
Local theater arts will flourish at an area arts center. The fourth annual Showcase of the Stars will be presented at 7 p.m. May 18 at Pasquerilla Performing Arts Center in Richland Township.
Polka party | Three-day festival will feature Slovenian and Polish bands
After a seemingly endless winter and an abbreviated spring, the people of Johnstown are ready to kick up their heels. And there is no better opportunity to do that than by attending the Friendly City PolkaFest. The Greater Johnstown/Cambria County Convention and Visitors Bureau and St. Mary Byzantine Catholic Church co-sponsor the event. They are ready to welcome thousands of polka enthusiasts to the city May 31 through June 2.
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