Play On Program cover
Cast of Characters
Aggie ManvilleDave Hibler
Gerry DunbarPeggy Maki
Henry BenishHarry Preston
Polly BenishGeorgetta Jones
Marta "Smitty" SmithKaren Spafford
Saul WatsonMark Monroe
Billy CareweRichard Rennoll
Violet ImbrySimone Angel
Louise PearyAmy Lincoln
Phyllis MontagjueIrene Billingsley

Production Crew
DirectorDoreen JacobsCostume DesignersAnnette Huffman, Danny Morris, Georgetta Jones
Assistant DirectorPaula HolderMake-UpEllen Stohr
Executive ProducersAnnette Huffman, Nancy GreenPublicityClaire Bugado, Danny Morris
Stage ManagerPaula HolderProgramDawn Buttrell, Nancy Green
PropsKathy McCaffertyProgram CoverMark Monroe
Set DesignerMark MonroeProgram PrintingMicro-Service, Jamie Clark
Lighting DesignerDiana SmithTicket ManagersJerry Hughes, Peggy Hughes
Lighting OperatorJohn StaffordHospitalityBrenda Robinson
Sound DesignerLou AllianoSet ConstructionIrene Billingsley, Melissa Buttrell, Doreen Jacobs, Mark Monroe, Michael Ekanol, Diana Smith
Costume DesignersAnnette Huffman, Danny Morris, Georgetta JonesSpecial Thaks To:Micro-Service, Patio Playhouse, Eldon Jacobs, Amy Lincoln, Michelle McGown, Jim Millard

Poway actors provide evening of 'Play On!' laughs

Play Review by Ruth W. Lepper of the Sentinel

There's a play going on in Poway that may tend to be a bit confusing. Take the title, for instance. "Play On!" Just mentioning the title leads to the question, "Play on what?"

Or, telling someone, "I'm going to see 'Play On!' at Poway Performing Arts Company" may bring the response, "Yes, but what's the name of the play?"

Getting through the title alone leaves one to wonder if author Rick Abbott ever pondered any of these questions. But once you get through the title it's time to sit back and enjoy one very funny play.

A score of actors deserve more than a pat on the back for a job well done. Director Doreen Jacobs can take a bow for pulling her cast through a production that isn't one of the easiest to do and still come out on top.

"Play On!" is a three-act play about a small community theatre group trying to put on a play. The play's author complicates matters by making last-minute changes right up until opening night.

We first join this happy crew four days before the opening. The next act takes us to dress rehearsal and finally, the big night is upon us.

A play within a play actually creates two roles for the actors - that is, the actors who are cast as actors in the play that's in the play. Sound confusing? You bet it is.

Peggy Maki plays the director, a role she handles with skillful tact. Her professional air makes one forget there is a real director watching from somewhere offstage as this hilarious tale unfolds.

Dave Hibler, as the director's assistant, is a perfect example of the talent within the grasp of Poway Performing Arts Company. He's been here before, most recently in "Dining Room," and he's sure to be back again.

The actors come across as a group of community theater actors, playing well off of each other and using their physical skills with ease.

The only one who does not come across as totally believable is Irene as the author Phyllis Montague. There's a little too much over-acting here, but then, how often does the audience experience the idiosyncracies of an author?

Georgetta Jones, a PowPAC regular, tackles the role of Polly Benish with aplomb. She suits this role to a T, complete with padding to ward off the heftier jokes.

Harry Preston is in his third appearance on the Poway stage as Henry Benish, the lesser half of the husband-and-wife acting team. We may be apt to forgive him if he forgets a line or doesn't know where he is going, but that's only because he does it so convincingly.

The rest of the cast are all newcomers to the Poway boards, which in no way hinders their capabilities. Of the remaining quintet, Simone Angel as Violet Imbry is tops in conveying her message to the audience with more than just words.

Richard Rennoll provides the love interest for Violet in the role of Billy Carewe, who also keeps the audience informed of whatever background information is necessary to help straighten out this confused state of affairs.

Mark Monroe plays Sual Watson, Violet's fiance. He has some of the funniest lines in the play and delivers them well.

Amy Lincoln as Louise and Karen Spafford as Smitty round out the cast. While we don't see them as much as the others, this doesn't keep them from earning their share of the laughs.

And laughing is what you'll be doing - all evening long. "Play On! will keep you laughing on and on and on.

Performances continue through Nov. 10 at the Golden West Academy at 13634 Cynthia Lane (behind K mart). Call the box office at 679-8085 for ticket information and reservations.