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Serenading the 1930s
Following the success of last year’s “Movies and Their Music,” Readers Theatre Plus returns to explore the music of popular films from the 1930s.
With songs personally selected by the show’s writer, Carol Swarbrick Dries, and musical director Dewey Ehling, 13 singers perform 22 classics like “Isn’t It Romantic,” “Night and Day,” “A Fine Romance,” and more.
“Movies and Their Music” runs for six performances over two weekends, Feb. 8-10 and 15-17 at the Dungeness Schoolhouse, 2781 Towne Road.
Tickets benefit the Sequim Guild for Seattle Children’s Hospital to help provide assistance to local families in need of financial assistance with children receiving uncompensated care.
Ehling said the first year’s event focused on music from Oscar-winning movies and that this year’s event allows more freedom to explore the great romantic songs from the decade. “The audience will really like it and can relate to it,” he said.
“Movies and their Music” features well-versed actors such Ric Munhall, Valerie Lape, Barbara Hughes, Karla Messerschmidt Morgan, Breva Funston, Trent Pomeroy, John Silver, Cheryl Bell, Karen Pritchard, Anneka Morgan, Janice Parks (also stage director), Carl Honore and Dani Keller.
This year’s event features an a cappella performances from the actors. Two singers, Silver and Honore, accompany themselves on guitar.
Each song includes a narration written by Swarbrick Dries that sets the story for each song.
Ehling said he’s excited by the opportunity for a mostly non-instrumental performance.
“When I meet someone I ask them if they like to sing and if they say no, I bet they usually sing in the shower,” he said.
“I like the idea of no instruments. It takes a lot of confidence to do that.”
Messerschmidt Morgan, who was the opening performer last year, said she participates again because the community responds so well to activities like this.
“It’s fun to hear the old songs and see people’s personalities as they present the songs,” she said.
A few other songs in the revue include “Monte Carlo,” “Beyond the Blue Horizon,” “Simple Simon” and “Mississippi.”
Bell, who thought up “Movies and Their Music,” said each show is a great time and there’s a lot of interaction on the stage, particularly with the final song “Somewhere over the Rainbow” where the audience sings along.
Read more about Readers Theatre Plus, a tax-exempt nonprofit at readerstheatreplus.com.