Standing Ovation For Local Dinner Theatre

?Oh My! ? a shocked and humbled director Erin Hanna said into the microphone when the curtain reopened after the final scene of TR Time Travel through the Musical Decades. ?Our inaugural dinner theatre got a standing ovation. Thank you very, very much!? Added Hanna later, ?It was the ultimate reward.?

Somewhat concerned that a dinner theatre by a more or less unknown amateur theatre company was a bit of a risk, the group was willing to take a chance. It paid off ten-fold.

Audience reaction was fantastic and the actors exhibited great energy and had a real sense of fun while performing. As every production has a glitch or two, the recovery repartee and song introductions were exceptionally narrated by Dr. Madd, played by Bob Norman, or as he went by in this production, Sir Namron Trebor.

The cast and crew for the show was a wide range of individuals and the teamwork factor was evident. Several members of Citizens On Patrol were also on hand for designated driving, security and liquor ticket sales.

The makeshift stage was a good effort to make the show more visible, although if built higher up would have better accommodated the people in hard to see locations. The stage was constructed with risers side-by-side and a very well thought-out temporary curtain put together by Luigi Ferrari. This performance was very well received with several comments on the feedback forms passed out addressing the need for a higher stage with a frontal curtain system in this community. This is, of course, out of the control of a small theatre company and unfortunately unless a stage becomes available at low or no cost, such productions can only be done on existent staging partitions that are available.

The dinner was good, a change in menu for many – provided by Sheila Proehl and her staff, ¾ Time Enterprises. Bar services were expertly handled by Ronnie Aschenbrenner and Brian Sipe in a quick manner, according to attendees. Aschenbrenner beamed, ?I will do the bar for them (Theatre On The Ridge- Grizzly Valley Players) anytime, this was fantastic!? Hungering for more atmospheric touches, such as tablecloths, candles and more intimate seating, the crowd was still very supportive of the whole event. As a first time dinner theatre put on by the Grizzly Valley Players, the group wanted this kind of feedback on how to improve and have consistent attendance for future shows. Feedback forms were passed out with each show program. . Comments from the audience following the show were tremendously positive and asking for more.

Due to the overwhelming response at this event and the waiting list of names that were vying for tickets up to the time the doors opened, a second show is planned for the first week of April. It will be a reduced ticket cost with desserts and drinks, rather than a full dinner. The reason for this, explains Hanna, is that the lead-time you need to give a caterer is fairly inhibiting to the success of the ticket sales and this way you can sell tickets closer to the show date. ?Not that we won?t have the dinner again in the future, but a second run of the same show will be a good time to have the desserts only.? This event was co-sponsored by a grant awarded from the District of Tumbler Ridge Community Events Program and because that grant has already been awarded for the time period restrictions, the second show does not have the same financial backing to host a full dinner Adds Hanna, ?But we do it for the fun of it and the entertainment aspect. We simply need to have cost recovery and if that?s all that comes out of it, then that?s ok too.? Hanna seemed overjoyed by the success and especially the number of people who approached her after the fact and offered hugs and congratulations.

The actors were well rehearsed, in sync and having the time of their lives. Video tapes of the show may possibly be available upon request for a nominal charge. Contact Erin Hanna at 242-3364 or email A great show by the Grizzly Valley Players, adult drama group of Theatre On The Ridge. Watch for posters around town for the date and time of the second run of TR Time Travel through the Musical Decades.