Can’t wash this show right out-a your hair

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By Courtney Grabendike

Zane Gerson portrays Lt. Joseph Cable. (Khai Le)

By Courtney Grabendike

The stage is set and the cast is ready as Performance Riverside embarks upon its 25th season.

Since its inception in 1983, Performance Riverside has delivered professional theatre performances to over a million viewers. This year will be no exception to the quality and diversity of shows Riverside has grown to know and love.

The schedule this season includes everything from “Annie Get Your Gun” to “Peter Pan” and “Guys and Dolls.”

For 2008, the most anticipated and exciting production of the year is “South Pacific.”

The reason for the excitement you ask?

Twenty-five years ago, Performance Riverside presented “South Pacific” as its inaugural play. The company has now come full circle in the last two and a half decades and no one should pass up the opportunity to enjoy “South Pacific.”

Rodgers and Hammerstein’s “South Pacific” was originally adapted from the coveted Pulitzer Prize winning novel “Tales of the South Pacific” by James Michener. This play is an intertwined story of love, war and prejudice. Even though the novel was written during World War II, its problems, joys and emotions are still relevant today.

The music accompanying the acting is just as impressive. Songs like “There is Nothin’ Like a Dame” and “I’m Gonna Wash That Man Right Out-A My Hair” will make you fall out of your seat in laughter. Other numbers such as “Some Enchanted Evening” and “Younger Than Springtime” make you ponder the hardships of age, race and injustices. While the songs leave a lasting impression on each audience member, the acting is what everyone leaves talking about.

Rey O’Day, production artistic director, had only good things to say of the actors. “We have a great cast,” O’Day said.

“Great” is an understatement for the incredibly talented and experienced group of actors and actresses gracing the Landis stage. Every performer perfected their character and brought that person to life. Everything from the French accents to the dances and sets was perfect.

All of this excitement is available for as little as $25. Riverside Community College District students with a student identification card will receive an even better price.

Mayor Ronald O. Loveridge presented an award to Linda Lacy, interim president of Riverside City College, and RCCD Board of Trustees Secretary Janet Green on Sept. 19 on behalf of the Riverside City Council deeming the week of Sept. 21-28 as “Performance Riverside Week.”

This recognition is only a small testament to how great the company truly is. “South Pacific” will be on stage through Sept. 28. After that, “Annie Get Your Gun” hits Landis Auditorium Nov. 7.

Alyssa Marie portrays lead character Nellie Forbush in a dress rehersal on Sept. 16. (Khai Le)

Performance Riverside opens its 25th season with the opening of “South Pacific.” (Carlos Castellanos)

Not only is South Pacific a place of war and love, but also of family and is good for all ages. (Carlos Castellanos)

“South Pacific” is an exciting romantic comedy set during the 1940s. (Carlos Castellanos)

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