Taber Players takes to the stage once again

·6 min read

With Taber Players new spring production, Spirit Level by Pam Valentine having its opening night this Thursday at the Taber Legion, The Times reached out to the cast of this production to ask some questions, to get their views on the play, and to find out why people should come to see it.

The first question that we asked the cast was 'who they are playing in Spirit Level?'

"I play an egotistical but very successful author who is in some way responsible for his own death," said Mark Harding, the actor who is taking on the role of the ghost of Jack Cameron. "He has a lovely wife who tolerates his tantrums and has come back to Earth with him to save him from himself.

"My character is Susie the wife, and I am quite flighty, but I am also some what smart. She believes in God and it's very important to her," said Patty Peronech, who plays Susie Cameron, the other ghost in the production, "I'm also bored and really want to escape where we are right now and I am looking tor ways to escape."

Harding added in, "but she wants to take him with her," referring to his role as Jack. "That's how devoted a wife she is."

"I am Simon Willis, aspiring writer, expectant father." said Emmett Campbell, who also elaborated on his feelings on the rehearsal so far. "I'm feeling really good, it's really coming together. Doesn't matter how big or small the show is, it alwavs feels like it is a hodpepodge, it's craziness right up till the last minute, and then, oh we still need to be working on thing right at call, but I think we got this licked. I really do."

"I've been cast as Guardian Angel who is from some distant place and comes down kind of in tither because she is extremely overworked," said Sandra Kabatoff. "You know with all the cutbacks it's pretty hard to set a guardian angel to come when you need them these days."

The next question asked was why they decided to audition for this production.

"It's been a few years since I've been a part of a show," said Campbell. "With the pandemic coming to play there as well, it's put a bit of a damper on things and Jocelyn reached out about auditions and I just felt I couldn't say no."

"I read the synopsis and I knew it was going to be a comedy," said Sarah Lee, the actor who is in the role of Marcia Bradshaw, mother-in-law to Simon. "I know the world needs some laughter right now and I want to be a part of that."

"Coming out of COVID, I wanted to get back to something that I enjoyed and I think part of our community coming back together as a community is coming out to do things together in public celebration," said Harding. "For me, the experience of the audience is part of the public celebration and coming back out of the other side of the nightmare that we've been through."

"Well, because Jocelyn (Steinborn) was directing and I've been wanting to act for many many years again because I graduated with a BFA (Bachelor of Fine Arts in Drama) in 1991," said Peronech. "So it's been a very long time since I acted."

"Actually, I didn't come in with the idea of auditioning. I just came to see if I could help because I love theatre and ended up getting cast in the role because the role of Guardian Angel is very much like me," said Kabatoff.

Then the cast was asked the big ques tion: 'Why should people come out to watch this play?'

"Because they're going to have a good time and because it's entertaining." said Permech. "It's a really well-written play. I love how well it's written and it will be fun to see the group of actors who are all very talented performers."

"I think everybody's I looking for kind of a happy ending to a story and even through tragedy in this story in the end it all works out." said Kabatoff. "I think people just need to use their creative minds to feel better about things and look at different ways of dealing with loss, and stress, and hardships, and disappointment, and everything in life and so if you kind of look at it as something that can help everybody feel better about things. Even just pure entertainment to get out of your own troubles kind of take a look at someone else's life and how things really aren't quite the way they seem. Things can get better it's a good thing to do."

“The script is full of really clever repartee,” said Harding. “It fun to get back with some people that I’ve worked before and working with some new people that I haven’t had a chance to do that before. It’s going to be fun.”

“This play is so clever, it’s not pretentious, it’s filled with a lot of great local actors, it’s filled with people who care about Taber,” said Campbell. It’s always great to come to live events especially now with restrictions being lifted.”

“We have some awesome actors, some very seasoned actors, some new actors, and some very hilarious characters that will make people laugh,” said Lee.

Finally we gave them an opportunity to comment on any aspect of the play or the production so far.

“I think we have a wonderful cast, I think everybody is well cast in the role,” said Kabatoff. “Jocelyn is an excellent director and we only wish she was acting in this play as well because she is very talented and I think Taber Players theatre is just making a come back now after being out with Covid and it’s really good to to have some thing able to do in the community.”

“It’s been a blast, after two years of not doing anything and being in quarantine it’s fun to get out and interact with people,” said Lee. “The play it’s awesome it’s hilarious and it’s a chance to be someone I’ve never been before. Just glad to be back and doing stuff we enjoy.”

“Jocelyn is a really great director and she has a really great insight,” said Peronech.

“Production team has been good, Rachel has helped a lot with us on set up every night and helping us with prompting us, and Jocelyn is a good director but also collaborative in the process and is always willing to listen to advice from her cast members and the group,” said Harding. “I think that a big part of the creative process is that you come with a vision but you’re willing to work with the suggestions of the people and a kind of build a partnership and a team really nicely.”

Anyone interested in seeing this production can purchase tickets either at the door or online at taberplayers.ca for $20. The play will run from the 12th to the 14th and then again from the 18th to the 21st.

Ian Croft, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Taber Times

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