Hartsville Community Players hand out People's Choice Awards
HARTSVILLE, Feb 28, 2013 (The Messenger - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) --
The Hartsville Community Players held its annual gala on Saturday at Black Creek Arts Center to show appreciations to its supporters and performers. The players also announced its 2013 season and began its season membership drive.
Guests were welcomed by the group's new president, Jason Umfress. Umfress recognized outgoing president Elayne Mahn, who has served several terms in that position.
Three awards were given out during the evening, including audience choice awards and the best newcomer in a performance during the 2012 season.
After each production, the audience is asked to vote for the actor they think gave the best performance. At the end of the season, the performers are recognized at the gala.
Elayne Mahn received the People's Choice Award for her performance in "The Kindness of Strangers, a one-act about an elderly woman who gives her caller a run for his money. The one-act was a part of the May production of "Phone Play," co-directed by Jason Umfress and Josh Euten.
Mahn has been active with the Players for more than 40 years, starring in their first production. She has acted and directed many HCP productions. A graduate of Coker College with a major in theater, this was Mahn's first acting role in some time as the Players have kept her busy directing in recent years.
Mahn serves on the Hartsville Community Players Board of Directors as vice president.
Terri Brown received the People's Choice Award for the December production of "Smoke on the Mountain," for her performance as June Sanders, the sister that signs.
Brown is a veteran of both the Hartsville Community Players and the Florence Little Theatre stage. She has been involved in community theater since 1990. In that time she has performed and directed numerous stage productions. She has had the honor of playing June Sanders in three "Smoke on the Mountain" productions. This is her second People Choice Award for that role. In 2007, she received the award for "Smoke on the Mountain -- Homecoming."
The Best New Performer Award was presented to Wiley Alexander. The award is given each year in memory of Patrick DeHart. DeHart performed with the Hartsville Community Players on numerous occasions and was a dedicated thesbian from Hartsville.
Alexander performed twice this year for the Players, first in "Cell/Block," from "Phone Play" and in "Smoke on the Mountain."
Directed by Euten, Alexander played Wayne, a hot-shot lawyer who finds it difficult to make time for his death row client, in "Cell/Block."
Alexander also appeared as Stanley Sanders "Smoke on the Mountain."
Alexander is a pharmacist and owner of Bishopville Drug Company.
Entertainment for the gala was provided by Greg Spittle.
Also, Josh Euten, Alisa Spittle and Tracy Price gave sneak peak performances of the Hartsville Community Players' upcoming dinner theater production of "A Taste of Theater: Monologues, Dialogues and One Acts." Under the direction of Jason Umfress, the production is scheduled for April 13 and 20 at Black Creek Arts Center and April 19 in Bishopville.
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