Mamma Mia

Members of The Upstagers set up the stage for Mamma Mia, the musical. The play will be the second show of the season by The Upstagers this year. Opening night will be July 26 at the Paul Poag Theater.

The Upstagers will open the long-awaited musical, Mamma Mia, on July 26 at 8 p.m. at the Paul Poag Theater, 746 South Main Street. Subsequent shows are on July 27 and Aug. 2, and Aug. 3. The Upstagers have added a Saturday matinee for both Saturday afternoons.

Evening performances will begin at 8 p.m. while the matinees start at 2 p.m. All six performances are sponsored by both the Bank and Trust and the Del Rio News-Herald. The show will be directed by Annie Marshall and Colin Montgomery. Rob Wade is the set designer and Lea White is the costumer.

The Upstagers have been waiting for the rights to Mamma Mia to be made available to community theatres for several years. That moment finally arrived in time for it to be included in the 2019 season.

The cast calls for many young people so, naturally, that meant it must be the summer musical. And when auditions were held, an enormous amount of young talent showed up hoping to be a part of this show. Mamma Mia also has a tremendous following by people of all ages because the music of ABBA has been a part of our pop-culture since mid-1970.

As a wonderful consequence, large numbers of talented adults also showed up at auditions, all vying for a role. The directors thought it would be a superb idea to double cast all of the principal roles. The Upstagers board agreed, and soon over 40 cast members began their rehearsals which have been ongoing all summer.

Double casting the principal roles allowed The Uspstagers to offer a third show, a Saturday matinee, to the lineup. One cast will stage the night performances while the other one will perform Saturday afternoon the first week, and they will reverse the procedure for the second weekend. The chorus will perform for all six shows.

The youthful male roles will be played by Aaron Escoto and Nathan Fortmayer as Sky; Pepper will be played by Kyle Helgans and Robert Martinez; Eddie will be played by Elias Pontiff and Luis Sanchez.

The younger female roles will be played by Bella Cadena and Audrey Marshall as Sophie while Emmalee Diaz and Danielle Hoyer will play Ali. The part of Lisa will be played by Alex Sanchez and Genevieve Abrego.

The male adult roles will be played by Colin Montgomery as Sam, Rob Wade as Bill and William Marshall as Harry. Rob and Colin will switch roles for the second weekend, and William Marshall will keep his role as Harry for both weekends as will Glen Pontiff in his role of Father Alex.

The female adult roles will be performed by Clarissa Martinez and Terra Wade as Donna, Joanle Patoni and Brittany Banister as Tanya. JoLee McKaskle and Melissa Pontiff will play Rosie.

The chorus will be made up of around twenty people of all ages. They are Angela Martinez, Miranda Martinez, Sabien Escareno, Ana Sofia Tejeda, Robin Anne Palmer, Alissa Hobby, Arely Flores, Rosa Reyna, Madelyn Houchin, Christopher Wofford, Mary Hudgins, Dasha Pontiff, Glenn Pontiff, Clara Salas, Stephanie Zapata, Andrea Sanchez, Liana Escareno, Nayeli Olivo, and Danielle Scheller.

Set building has already begun under the direction of Rob Wade, the set designer. By show time, there will be an idyllic island setting for this popular show.

About a week before opening night, tickets for the show may be bought from cast members, from our outlets, and from paulpoagevents.com. They can also be bought at the door at show time. Buying at the door and from paulpoagevents.com will include venue and processing fees. Outlets are Paulino’s Service Center, Polished Elegance, Del Rio Feed and Supply, and Diamond’s Salon.

Submitted by Freddie Bayne

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