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Published: 10/27/2010

Oregon Community Theatre returns to fearful night in 1938

BY NANCIANN CHERRY
BLADE STAFF WRITER

Even theaters pay attention to Halloween as shows with a spooky theme take over the schedule.

Oregon Community Theatre offers two performances of The War of the Worlds.

Originally written by H.G. Wells, The War of the Worlds was adapted, directed, and narrated by Orson Welles for the Oct. 30, 1938, Halloween episode of Mercury Theatre on the Air, a radio anthology series. The first part of the broadcast was presented as a series of "news bulletins," leading many listeners to believe that an invasion by Martians actually was taking place. Days after the broadcast, news reports were outraged as they described public panic at what was called the "cruel deception." For OCT's one-hour performances, the orientation room of the Challenger Learning Center of Lucas County will be transformed into a 1938 radio studio.

Reed Steele directs and is part of a cast of 14 in multiple roles, complete with sound effects. Also performing will be Jeff Smith as Orson Welles, Eric Collier, Don Dauer, Tammy Halay, Glen Hamilton, Kevin Harrington, Renee Harrington, Marcia Hayes, Patti Kasper, Cathy Klewer, Miriam Patznick, Daniel Sifuentes, and Dawn Yard.

A reception will follow the performance along with tours of the Challenger center and, weather permitting, an outdoor star party, with several telescopes and local astronomers on hand to assist guests in exploring the wonders of the night sky.

"The War of the Worlds" is scheduled at 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday in the Challenger Learning Center, 4955 Seaman Rd., Oregon. Tickets are $8 ($5 for those born before Oct. 30, 1938). Information: 419-691-1398.

In Adrian, the Croswell Opera House presents Richard O'Brien's rock musical The Rocky Horror Show!

A spoof of sci-fi movie classics of the 1950s, the plot revolves around squeaky-clean sweethearts Brad Majors and Janet Weiss, who suffer an automotive malfunction and seek a telephone in a spooky castle.

It's the home of Dr. Frank-N-Furter, a mad scientist who describes himself as "a Sweet Transvestite from Transsexual Transylvania." Also living there are a hunchbacked handyman, his sister, a zombie, and a being created in the scientist's laboratory

The show, which is filled with adult language and sexual references both blatant and innuendo, is definitely not for children.

Directed by Eric Parker of Chicago, with choreography by Cassandra Cardenas of Toledo, the cast includes Adrian residents Kyrie Bristle, Sean Catron, Joey Chase, Jim Craig, and Zane Dickerson; Eli Brickey of Bowling Green, and Stephen Kiersey of Brownstown, Mich.

The ensemble comprises Ashlynne Abraham, Milan Bowersox, Gretchen Hall, Kegan Jenkins, Kristin Kukic, Robert Kuschell, Amanda Matthias, Kristen Milbocker, Brian Miller, Jesse Montie, Natasha Ricketts, Karlea Smith, Stephen Smith, and Kevin Underhill.

Audience members are encouraged to come in costume, and prizes for audience favorite will be given during performances tomorrow and Saturday.

"The Rocky Horror Show" is scheduled at 8 p.m. Friday, 8 p.m. and midnight Saturday, and 3 p.m. Sunday in the Croswell Opera House, 129 East Maumee St., Adrian. Tickets are $25 for adults and $22 for seniors and students with a valid ID. Information: 517-264- 7469.

• The Black Swamp Players presents the Vintage Hitchcock: A Live Radio Play at 8 p.m. tomorrow and Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday in the Pemberville Opera House, 115 Main St., Pemberville. Three of Alfred Hitchcock's early movies, The Lodger, Sabotage, and The 39 Steps, will be presented in the style of a 1940s radio broadcast, complete with sound effects re-creating a train chase, a serial killer's ominous presence, and a devastating explosion. Tickets are $10 for adults, $8 for students and seniors from Grounds for Thought coffee shop, 174 South Main St., Bowling Green; 419-354-3266; or Beeker's General Store, 226 East Front St., Pemberville; 419-287-3274.

Frankenstein's Wacky Wedding takes place this weekend in the Sandusky State Theatre. During the fun show, suitable for all ages, the Frankenstein clan will gather to celebrate Frankie's ghoulish nuptials. Shows are scheduled at 7 p.m. tomorrow and Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday in the theater at 107 Columbus Ave., Sandusky. Tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for children. Information: 419-626-1950 or toll free at 877-626-1950.

Contact Nanciann Cherry at:

ncherry@theblade.com

or 419-724-6130.



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