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Gualala Arts

Promoting public interest and participation in the arts since 1961.

Archive of past events: 2004 through 2014

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Art Center Theater presents:
For the Love of Broadway

Friday & Saturday, March 24 & 25 at 6:00 p.m.
doors open at 5:00 p.m.
at the Gualala Arts Center

Art Center Theater: For the Love of Broadway Broadway is coming to Gualala Arts. For two nights the Gualala Arts Center Coleman Auditorium will turn itself into a nightclub, complete with lively show tunes, martinis and hors d'oeuvres. We will salute the sounds of Broadway in this musical cavalcade. Fresh and fast-paced, For the Love of Broadway is a nostalgic treat that covers more ground than Friday night at a karaoke bar.

Some of the same people who sang about New York City in the recent production of Annie return to the Arts Center stage to offer a tribute to Broadway, cradle of the American musical theater. From the earliest days of Tin Pan Alley, Broadway echoed with America's best popular music. The Great White Way became a magnet for the country's finest composers and lyricists. Now, Sita Milchev has put together a show that offers songs from the giants of the Broadway scene, from Irving Berlin to Stephen Sondheim

Caitlin McMurtry & Hanna Parsons Sita will entertain with the old favorite "Baubles, Bangles and Beads" and introduce you to "His Face." Hanna Parsons, who wowed the audience in Annie as "The Star to Be" will sing "Look at Me, I'm Sandra Dee." Caitlin McMurtry, Lili St. Regis in Annie, tells us her "Heart Belongs to Daddy." The ensemble will come together in unforgettable duets.

Phil Atkins (Rooster Hannigan) and Dave Bess will serenade you with "There Is Nothing Like a Dame." Phil's fine tenor voice will remind you what it is like to be "One of the Good Guys," in contrast to Dave's ode to "The Sadder But Wiser Girl."

There is more. Some of these songs you will recognize. Some will be new to you. Join us for a reminder of what made Broadway musicals popular. With Lynne Atkins providing narrative that tells the story of the music, and Don Kreiger accompanying on keyboards, this is an evening you will not want to miss!

As an added attraction, the show will introduce the Gualala Arts Center martini bar. Some people know that Arts Center director, David "Sus" Susalla worked his way through school as a bartender in Detroit. Rumor has it that Lee Iacocca would only drink a martini if Sus was there to mix it. Now, Sus will be mixing martinis for this show. Nonalcoholic drinks will also be available, and the Culinary Arts Guild will hors d'oeuvres.

The evening is a benefit for Gualala Arts Center Theater. The show begins at 6 p.m. with the no host bar open at 5:00. Seating will be 'cabaret style,' featuring small tables.

Tickets are $15 per person. They are available at Gualala Arts week days from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and week ends from noon to 4 p.m. Or pick them up at The Dolphin 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily. For more information, call Gualala Arts at (707) 884-1138.

Sita Milchev Sita says her husband didn't even know she could sing when they got married. Classically trained at Julliard, she had abandoned her music career. Then, one day a friend heard her vocalizing and asked her to sing the national anthem at a convention.

Soon, Sita was back to her first love: entertaining people with her lovely voice. That was over thirty years ago, and she has been performing ever since. In 1982, her friend, Peter Arnott approached her with the idea of putting together a show highlighting Broadway musical theater songs. She found three other local singers who were interested in the idea, and they debuted the show at Point Arena High School. Soon, it was in demand around Northern California. They gave it at Stanford alumni fundraising events, and they even packaged parts of it for special occasions like birthday and anniversary parties. Eventually, they performed in places like Chicago and New York City.

Since then, Sita's voice has graced the local stage in a variety of roles. She is in demand as a soloist, and she has sung with the Highway One Jazz Choir. Most recently, she was chorus director for Arts Center Theater production of Annie. When she heard The Three Baritones performance at the Sea Ranch Barn last year, it reminded her of how much fun the old Broadway revue had been, and she began thinking about creating a new show.

She rummaged through her extensive sheet music collection for tunes about how Broadway portrayed love: romantic love, love gone wrong, love of the theater itself. Don Krieger was soon at work crafting accompaniments for these, some of America's favorite songs. Certain the local area had the talent to make the show a success, she chose four singers from around Gualala to join her in creating a show that promises a look at love through the eyes of Broadway composers, eyes that are sometimes starry, sometimes cynical, but always sharp. Caitlin McMurtry and Hannah Parsons are young singers who have already demonstrated their versatility. Phil Atkins and Dave Bess offer maturity to the mix.