04 The USP Walk of Fame

Who Should Be on USP’s Walk of Fame?

Walk of Fame Members (L to R) Pat Moriarity, Peggy Moriarity, Shelley Buhrow, Bev Graves, Arvin Van Zante (Not Pictured: Dottie McGee)

It’s time for the Union Street Players Board of Directors to begin consideration of the 2011 Walk of Fame inductee. Started in 2008, the USP Walk of Fame honors individuals who have gone above and beyond in helping USP fulfill its mission. The Board of Directors began the inaugural year with three inductees (Dottie McGee, Pat Moriarity, Arvin Van Zante), then pared it down to two in the second year (Bev Graves, Peggy Moriarity) and one in the third (Shelley Buhrow). The Board plans on inducting a new member of the Walk of Fame at the annual Awards Dinner which is scheduled for September.

The USP Board is seeking the nomination of individuals who have been involved for ten years or more, have contributed in multiple ways (actor, director, stage manager, lighting, sound, set work, Board Member, etc.), and have helped USP further its on-going mission.

To nominate an individual, simply provide the following information in an email sent to info@unionstreetplayers.com or in a letter mailed to USP Walk of Fame, 712 Union St., Pella, IA 50219:

  • Your name
  • Your email
  • Your phone number
  • Name of person you are nominating
  • Explanation of why you think this person should be inducted into the USP Walk of Fame.

To help determining who is eligible, the following Microsoft Excel file contains a historical database of individuals and their roles in various productions and positions on the Board of Directors. There is a drop down menu next to the heading of each field. You can filter your view using the drop down menus to view results by individual.

USP_Historical_Database Published

2011 Once Upon a Mattress

USP “Goes to the Mattresses”

Get ready. Union Street Players (USP) is “going to the mattresses!” (Though we’re not talking about leaving the gun and taking the cannoli). This summer we are excited to produce “Once Upon a Mattress” under the direction of Brystal Hopkins. Brystal will be familiar to USP audiences from her roles as Maria in “The Sound of Music” and Hattie in “The Christmas Post.” Brystal has also taught the younger grades in USP’s summer Drama Camp for the past two years.

Once Upon A Mattress is based on the famous fairy tale, The Princess and the Pea. Because of her noble birth, the Princess is unable to sleep on a bed of many mattresses when a tiny pea is placed underneath the bottom mattress.

The kingdom is an unhappy one. King Sextimus has been struck dumb by a witch’s curse and is condemned not to speak again until “the mouse devours the hawk!” Queen Agravia has assumed power and she talks enough for the whole Royal household. She has decreed that no one in the Kingdom may wed until Prince Dauntless is married to a true princess of Royal blood. So far the Queen has tested the eligibility of eleven applicants and each has failed the almost impossible tests the Queen has devised.

The Knights and Ladies of the Court are most distressed by the situation but the most concerned are Lady Larken and her handsome lover, Sir Harry. Lady Larken has informed Sir Harry that he is to be a father so the situation is quite desperate. Sir Harry, determined to find a true princess, sets off for, until now, unexplored parts and returns with Princess Winnifred. She arrives dripping wet have swum the moat and proceeds to act as unlike a princess as one could possibly imagine. Prince Dauntless is very impressed by the new princess and is soon obviously in love with her – to the consternation of the angry Queen, who decides to give her an impossible test. She consults the Wizard and together they decide on the the sensitivity test – a pea is placed beneath twenty mattresses and the Queen decrees that if Princess Winnifred cannot sleep she will prove her royal birth. However, to ensure that she does sleep, she proceeds to do everything to make her tired out. A ball is held where the dancing is fast and furious and Winnifred is encouraged to drink heavily. She is also given a sleeping draught and a singing bird is provided to sing her to sleep…

USP’s auditions are set for May 14, 16, and 17th. In an effort to be mindful of everyone’s time, Director Brystal Hopkins plans to schedule auditions in blocks of time. Those interested in a part can sign up for a block of time. This will hopefully eliminate the possibility of people sitting around for long periods of time waiting to be called into the audition.

Here is audition information. Please contact Brystal Hopkins (brystalhopkins@gmail.com) with questions. There is no need to sign-up ahead of time for a particular audition group. Simply choose when you’d like to audition on one of the two days and show up shortly before your desired group time in order to fill out an audition sheet.

Sat. May 14 – Please show up in time for an audition group: 8:15 – 10 am, 9:00 – 11:30 am, or 10 am – 12:30 pm
Mon. May 16 – Please show up in time for an audition group: 5:45 – 8:15 or 6:45 – 9:15
Tues. May 17 – Call backs 6 – 9 pm

Auditions will include basic vocal, choreography, and stage pieces.  No prepared pieces required. Perusal scripts will be available at the library beginning April 9.

Rehearsals scheduled for most M, T, and Th evenings and Saturday mornings from May 21 – July. (not all actors needed at every rehearsal)

All roles are for agest 14 and up. There are no roles for children younger than 14 years of age!

Roles to be cast:
Queen Aggravain
Princess Winnifred the Woebegone
Prince Dauntless
King Sextimus the Silent
Sir Harry
Lady Larken
Nightengale of Smarkand
Sir Studley
Lady Mabelle
Princess No. 12
Lady Rowena
Lady Merril
Lady Lucille
Kitchen Wench
Ladies-in-waiting, Knights, Soldiers, Servants, Musicians

2011 Vintage Hitchcock

“Hitchcock” Thrills; Now Heads to Newton

Union Street Players finished their run of Joe Landry’s “Vintage Hitchcock: A Live Radio Play” on Sunday afternoon. The show recreated what it was like to be in the live studio audience for the live broadcast of Alfred Hitchcock’s radio dramas. It was a completely new concept for many audience members, while those who grew up in the Golden Age of Radio found themselves taking a trip down memory lane.

“I just closed my eyes and I was back in childhood with my family huddled around the radio,” on audience member said after the show.

As with most spring productions, attendance was low. Though, with the show falling on spring break week, the numbers were unusually slim.

Thu Mar 10: 35
Fri Mar 11: 79
Sat Mar 12: 55
Sun Mar 13: 44

Total attendance: 213

While the curtain has dropped for the last time on this Pella production, several members of the cast and crew are taking a piece of the show to the Iowa Community Theatre Festival in Newton. The annual festival of the Iowa Community Theatre Association features productions from community theatres around the state. Productions at the festival are judged, with one show going on to regional competition. USP plans to produce one of the three Hitchcock pieces, “Sabotage,”  for the festival.

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