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‘Star-studded’ FUNdraiser to bring movies back to Farris

Greased Lightning will flash across the Farris stage Saturday in a FUNdraising show for digital projection equipment. In the number are, from left, front row, Tonya Willim, Sandy Duncan, Jessica Teat, Christal Milligan and Alyson Crane, and, back row, Terry Dickey, Jesse Rice, Justin Meierer, Rob Kinnard and Tim Leach. (Photo by Max Hockemeier)

Greased Lightning will flash across the Farris stage Saturday in a FUNdraising show for digital projection equipment. In the number are, from left, front row, Tonya Willim, Sandy Duncan, Jessica Teat, Christal Milligan and Alyson Crane, and, back row, Terry Dickey, Jesse Rice, Justin Meierer, Rob Kinnard and Tim Leach. (Photo by Max Hockemeier)

By Sara Seidel/For The Richmond News

A cast of local “stars” will shimmer and shine Saturday at the Farris Theatre when they take the stage to help the historic venue raise funds to purchase and install digital film projection equipment. Although the Farris has been busy with live performances, it has been unable to show movies the past month because the movie industry has virtually stopped distributing movies on film.

Acts featuring dozens of area residents are scheduled to perform skits and numbers for an event that couples great family fun with a serious community purpose – to raise $110,000 for a digital projector and its maintenance costs. For their part, the performers are vying to be named the favorite act, with the audience members casting monetary votes.

“We’re asking audience members to vote with their dollars,” said Max Hockemeier, who is producing the show with Sherry Smith. “People will vote for their favorite actors or dancers by adding money to ballot boxes during intermission.”

Friends of the Farris have recently received two $10,000 contributions – one from Community Bank of Missouri and the other from Richard W. Bidding of Edward Jones Investments – for the project. Westbrook & Co. PC has also offered to match 50 cents on each dollar donated, up to $10,000. These recent gifts add to the $37,000 already raised for the project.

The show begins at 7:30 p.m., with doors opening at 6 p.m. A silent auction opens the show in the Friends Gallery at 5 p.m. A showcase item of the auction is a custom-made quilt depicting the 14 Kiwanis Theatre Guild shows produced 1963-2004 by the late Don Jackson. Barb Proffitt, Farris’ first executive director after its re-opening in 1999, designed the quilt with area quilter Vicki Long constructing it. Quilt fabric was donated by Sandra Austin, owner of By the Yard in Rayville.

Saturday’s show harkens to Jackson-produced shows that utilized local talent and brought a community together, said Rob Swafford, president of Friends of the Farris.

“Don would tell me he’d cast shows by walking down Main Street,” he said. “Max and Sherry also have a good knack of brining people together for fun, exciting shows.”

Acts scheduled to appear include:

Under the Sea, featuring Little Mermaids Macenzie Day, Ensley Shane, Sacorra Teegarden, Danika Curtis, Carsyn Teat, Marin Thompson, Isabella Smith, Carli Ealey, Meadow Hutchings, Alayna Quick, Kayland Cooper and Bella Foster.

I Feel Good, featuring Shirkey Nursing and Rehabilitation Center employees Janie Pearson, Cassie Alexander, Samantha Doss, Robin Farris and Christie Jones.

Mama Mia performing Dancing Queen, featuring Brandee Curtis, Bev Holloway and Sheila Day.

We’re All in This Together, featuring Richmond Middle and Elementary schoolers Emmalea Kilpatrick, Olivia Maulsby, Daelyn Curtis, Jordan Heber, Jillian Heber, Kaitlyn Baynes, Peyton Bowman, Sydney Hosman, Alexis Leach, Katelyn Smith, Lexi Roberson and Scarlett Gottschalk.

Somewhere Over the Rainbow, featuring young area dancers.

Who’s on First, the famous Abbott and Costello comic baseball routine, featuring RHS baseball coaches Brandon Quick and Bob Lauck.

Greased Lightning, featuring Terry Dickey, Rob Kinnard, Christal Milligan, Alyson Crane, Tonya Willim, Justin Meierer, Jesse Rice, Sandy Duncan, Tim Leach and Jessica Teat.

Doctor, Doctor featuring Dr. Douglas McCune, Dr. Daniel Paul, Dr. Mark Rose, Dr. John Scowley and Marilyn Gayle

Puttin’ on the Ritz featuring Brad Bamman and Hockemeier.

Also scheduled to perform are Kyrah Smith and Cody Horton.

Entertainers who are set to perform after the intermission include Kyle Foster performing Singing in the Rain, and Frazer Letzig and Jennifer Blair performing Personality.

Watching the whole thing from box seats will be Muppets Statler and Waldorf. “Crotchety old “audience members, who make grumpy comments after each act, will be portrayed by Clay McGillevry and Kris Kirkham.

After the winner is announced, a grand finale, from Footloose, will end the evening.

Swafford and Leslyn Farmer are serving as emcees. Mac Rogers is stage manager, along with a stage crew including Ed Jackson, Sandy Cazzell, Jeff Harrison, Mark Cazzell and Ben Thompson.

“We’ve got a great show planned,” Smith said. “We’re inviting everyone to come, enjoy the fun and contribute to the effort to keep movies showing at our local theater.”

General admission tickets are $10 and are available in advance by calling 776-6684 and at the door.

 

 

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