Actors really gel together after months rehearsing

Opening night of Over The River & Through the Woods brings out the laughs

Margot Shaw

By Lawrence Loiseau

Opening night of the 100 Mile House Performing Society’s Over the River & Through the Woods went off without a hiccup on opening night at Martin Exeter Hall on Nov. 25.

The comedy set in New Jersey ran Nov. 25-27 and will continue on Dec. 1 to Dec. 2 at 7 p.m. Its final performance will be Dec. 3 at 1 p.m.

Attendance was good, says Karen Smith who co-directed with her husband, Gordon.

The audience response was equally good, she adds.

They laughed from beginning to end. People loved it.

What’s great about finally performing live is the energy. The cast feeds off the audience’s energy.”

Written by Joe Dipietro, the light-hearted drama is about the love of family. It portrays the lives of two sets of grandparents and their grandson Nick Cristiano.

Nick dutifully visits his loving Italian immigrant grandparents every Sunday until, one day, he announces his plans to leave the East Coast. Nick has been offered a job promotion in Seattle.

Although it focuses on the grandparents, Smith says the fun doesn’t really begin until their grandson announces that he is moving.”

Nick’s grandparents spend the rest of the play scheming comical ways to convince their grandson to stay in Hoboken.

Smith says the cast really gelled during the rehearsals.

After rehearsing since September, we became one big family. This often happens with such productions.

The actors are all quite seasoned, too, which helps. Many already knew each other.”

It’s also a well-written play, Gord adds. “The humor really holds up.”

Tanner Barscht plays grandson Nick. Margot Shaw plays Ada. Eric Storteboom plays Frank. Chris Watkins plays Nunzio and Shelley Carrera play Emma. Kelsey Schuurman plays Caitlin O’Hare.

All tickets are $15 and are available at Didi’s and Donex. If tickets are not sold out on the day of the play, they will be sold at the door.

For more information about Over the River & Through the Woods, contact Kathy Wolczuk 250-395-8836, or Donalda Speers at 250-706-0060.