Bright, colorful, fun musical opens Friday in Carson City | NevadaAppeal.com
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Bright, colorful, fun musical opens Friday in Carson City

Sam Bauman
Rick Gunn/Nevada Appeal Luci-Ann Zuend portrays Miss Adelaide during a dress rehearsal of Guys and Dolls Tuesday at the Carson Community Center.
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Carson Performing Arts of Carson High School will open its production of the hit musical “Guys and Dolls” at the Bob Boldrick Theatre in the Carson Community Center Friday at 7:30 p.m.

Director Karen Chandler thinks the show will be “a smash.”

“The show is so bright and colorful and fun,” Chandler said Wednesday after dress rehearsals. “It’s always hectic with just five days to move into the theater and put together all the sets with the cast. Touring companies with thousands of dollars do it, but we do it for next to nothing.”

Chandler selected the musical after considering the available school talent. “I look for a show that matches the people we have – seniors who have taken part in shows over their high school careers, who have certain talents.

“With ‘Guys and Dolls,’ I could see that we had three possible players for one part, four for another and so on.”

Chandler gave a tip of the hat to the backstage crew. “They never get any recognition for all the hard work they do.”

Pat Josten is producer of the show, a role she has assumed many times.

“We’ve got 40 people in the cast and a 20-piece orchestra directed by Robbie Brooks (the new CHS band director), a veteran of musical pit playing,” Josten said.

“And we’re working from the original blueprints for the show. So far rehearsals have gone smoothly, thanks in part because we were able to build and paint all the sets at school and truck them in.”

Josten was recently awarded the Nevada Jefferson Award for her work with the theater and has been nominated to go to Washington, D.C., for the finals.

The musical is based on characters developed by Broadway writer Damon Runyon, with the music and lyrics by Frank Loesser. Jo Swerling and Abe Burrows wrote the book. The show opened Nov. 24, 1950, and ran for 1,200 performances. The film version starred Marlon Brando, Frank Sinatra, Jean Simmons and Vivian Blaine.

Leading the cast in this production are Domenic Procaccini II as Sky Masterson, the suave hero; Briana Valley and Whitney Myer, who alternate as Sarah Abernathy (the Salvation Army marcher); Luci-Ann Zuend as chorine Miss Adelaide; and Justin Menesini as Nathan Detroit, Miss Adelaide’s boyfriend.

At rehearsals Tuesday night, Valley said of her character Sister Sarah, “She’s interesting. She doesn’t like gambling or gamblers, but she gets involved with gambler Sky. She’s very much a ‘save the world’ kind of person. She’s fun to play.”

Procaccini, veteran of some 25 shows with the Performing Arts, noted, “There are lots of good musical numbers in the show. Sky is a smooth guy, and it’s lots of fun playing him.”

Menesini, as the longtime boyfriend of Adelaide, said, “Nathan is the guy everybody wants to be. The girls all like him, but he’s more than just a gambler.”

Zuend, as Miss Adelaide, says her character is “kind of nitsy; she ‘s fun to play. I love the music she sings.” Zuend is another veteran of more “shows than I can count.”

The show revolves around “the oldest floating crap game in New York,” and the romance that develops between Sky and Sister Sarah of the Salvation Army. On a bet, Sky agrees to woo her, while Nathan tries to avoid marring Adelaide. It all works out beautifully, of course.

But not until some of the brightest and most memorable Broadway songs have been sung, including “Fugue for Tinhorns,” “If I Were a Bell,” “Luck Be a Lady Tonight,” “I’ll Know,” “More I Cannot Wish You” and “Sit Down, You’re Rockin’ the Boat.”

Plus Sarah’s marching hymn, “Follow the Fold.” The Salvation Army is treated gently and with great good humor.

“I know the kids will cut loose and have a blast once they get going,” said Chandler. “It’s going to be a delight.”

Contact Sam Bauman at sbauman@nevadaappeal.com or 881-1236.