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Theatre in the Valley launches season in new home

After a three-year hiatus, Theatre in the Valley is grateful for a new start and a permanent home.

The theater, 10 W. Pacific Ave., premiered its first production of the season in December after securing a location earlier last year, according to board member Megan Riggs.

“For the short amount of time we had to put it all together, it went pretty well,” Riggs said. “It’s a bit small for now, but we’re working on it.”

Formed in 1992, the theater hosted productions at the Valley View Recreation Center for about 15 years.

“We performed at the center until about 2007, which was about the time of the city (of Henderson’s) redevelopment,” Riggs said. “When the cultural arts and parks and recreation departments were together, we were able to use the center. But once they were divided, we got dismissed.”

From 2007 to 2011, the group hosted touring productions at the Henderson Convention Center, the Sun City MacDonald Ranch community center, the Sun City Anthem community center and other locations, according to president Rick Bindhamer.

“It was rough because we had no place to do rehearsals or auditions,” Bindhamer said. “We had to find the space for that, plus space to store the equipment and build the set.”

Riggs said touring was also difficult because the board members were volunteering on top of working full-time jobs.

“We only had a small group of people doing the auditions, marketing, advertising, rehearsals and making the set,” she said. “Then when you’re touring, you spend the whole day going to the venue, putting everything up, doing the show during the day and taking it all down at night. It was really tiring.”

In 2011, the group decided to put all productions on hold while it secured a space. It took about three years.

“While looking for a location, we had to consider what would work for seating and how we could arrange the performance area,” Bindhamer said. “We still have a little remodeling to do at this space, but we’re still planning performances and classes.”

Theatre in the Valley has five productions scheduled for its 2015 season. Performances are usually planned for 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday.

“Wally’s Cafe” is a comedy about a man named Wally who purchases a restaurant on a California road to Las Vegas. The show is set to run Jan. 23-25, 30 and 31 and Feb. 1.

The theater plans to show the Broadway production “Love Letters” Feb. 6, 7, 13 and 14.

“The show just closed on Broadway in December, and we basically got the first shot to perform it,” Bindhamer said. “It’s about the relationship between a man and a woman from their youth to their older days. It’s a love story, but it’s a long-distance love story told through their correspondence.”

“Butterflies are Free,” a romantic comedy about a blind man in New York City and his neighbor, was turned into a movie in 1972 featuring Goldie Hawn and Edward Albert. The theater is set to run the production March 13-15, 20-22 and 27-29.

“Prescription Murder,” a murder mystery on which the television show “Columbo” was modeled, is slated for April 3-5, 10-12 and 17-19. Auditions are scheduled for Jan. 26-28 and Feb. 2 and 3.

The theater also plans to perform “Southern Comfort,” a romantic musical about an older man and woman, in May. Audition dates are set for March 2-4, 8 and 9.

Bindhamer said the board plans to offer acting classes and stage tech workshops for children this summer.

“We’re a community theater in the traditional sense,” he said. “We invite people in who have experience, along with people who don’t have experience. We like to bring people in, and we like to give them chances.”

Tickets typically are $15 for adults, $12 for seniors and $10 for children. Prices are set to vary, depending on the length of the production.

For more information, visit theatreinthevalley.org or call 702-558-7275.

Contact Henderson View reporter Caitlyn Belcher at cbelcher@viewnews.com or 702-383-0403.

 

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