Sunday, August 09, 2009


We attended a Melodrama play Friday night

Friday night we attended a play at our local River Belle Dinner Theater here in Mount Vernon. It was billed as a musical melodrama and titled, "He Ain't Done Right By Nell." It will just be there two weekends and then followed by another for two weekends called, "Curse You, Jack Dalton" that I think we would like to also go see. These are summer fare and not full dinner productions so the cost is much less- $14 each plus tax for adults. It was a lot of fun and of course I took some photos, over 150 all together but I've selected a dozen to post here. It was very hard to cut them down to only a dozen but I really feel that is almost too many for a blog post so have limited it to them. I did take a CD with all the photos to the play director yesterday so they will have them. By the way, a blogger friend from Whidbey Island, who produces plays for their local theater down there, is in need of a piano player for a production they are about open. If you or anyone you know might be interested, please click on the link here on my site labeled, Life After NEXCOM and talk with Mary Lou.

Here is what their flier says about the play:
"A gay nineties musical comedy. When Hilton Hays learns that Nell is a foundling and has no right to the Perkins name, he threatens to tell because Nell will not respond to his advances. Nell is too honest to marry the manly hero, Jack Logan, under the circumstances, so she dons her cape and prepares to roam the cruel world seeking a refuge for her broken heart. But wealthy Burkett Carleton has Hays arrested for stealing, and he discovers Nell is his long lost granddaughter."

That is a short summary of the play. There were seven characters and I know one of them quite well through church. I had never been to a Melodrama but it was done as in the past, with cue cards for the audience to cheer, boo, clap, etc. at appropriate times. I guess we could have thrown popcorn, which apparently was done in past years, but I think any popcorn that was sold there was eaten rather than thrown. Anyway, here are some photos, in the order they were taken.

Nell 01
Granny, coming down the step, is the one who found baby Nell in a basket outside the barn when Nell was a very small baby. The lady in the background is a friend of Granny's who is also searching for a Man (for her.)

Nell 02
The Villain, Hilton Hays, makes his first appearance. He is the manager of the local mill that is owned by the absentee Mr. Carleton. Hays is a perfect villain and shows his many despicable characteristics.

Nell 03
Hilton Hays along with the young lady he claims is his girl friend but in reality he is just using her as he does everyone. He does bum $50 from her as he apparently has no cash.

Nell 04
Granny's deceased husband had designed some invention that supposedly will be worth a lot of money. Granny plans to give the drawings of it to Nell as a wedding present but Hilton has become aware of it and tries to bribe Granny to give it to him to check out as he plans to marry Nell. So he says. He goes so far as to offer her cash (that he got from his "girl friend") and Granny is wise enough to take his money but not give him the drawings.

Nell 05
Nell, who has been out walking her blood hounds, makes her appearance and makes it clear that she has no intention of every marrying Hilton Hays. The love of her life is Jack Logan.

Nell 06
Here is Nell and Jack.

Nell 07
This looks a lot like the last one but it is actually a bit later in the play. The two have pretty much agreed that they want to marry.

Nell 08
Hilton Hays overheard a conversation between Granny & her lady friend where Granny admits that Nell was found in a basket outside their barn. Hays, being unable to get Nell to agree to marry him (he wants control of that invention) tells Nell that she is a foundling and has no right to the Perkins name. Apparently in the 1890s this was important as Nell decides that she cannot marry Jack and will just go off on her own. Hays looks around the Perkins home until he finds the drawings, which he then takes.

Nell 09
Nell, dressed in her cape ready to leave, tells Jack that she cannot marry him but he tells her that makes no difference to him and he still wants her for his wife.

Nell 10
Hilton Hays is exposed by his "girl friend" and Jack, normally a pretty calm person, threatens to hit Hilton. Hilton brings out his only true friend, a rubber chicken, which really seems appropriate. While they scuffle, the missing invention plans fall out of his pocket and he is exposed as a thief.

Nell 11
The "girl friend" has contacted her father who turns out to be Burkett Carleton, the owner of the mill that Hilton manages. He and his accountants have found many irregularities with money that Hilton has taken for his own use and have brought the Sherri f to arrest Hilton. While there, Mr. Carleton (my friend from church) notices the locket that Nell wears and asks to look at it. Due to a bunch of problems, one of Mr. Carleton's daughters married, gave birth and then died. Her husband gave away the baby and then disappeared leaving no trace of where the baby went. This locket was Mr. Carleton's daughters and it contains a photo of his daughter. Thus it is determined that Nell is his long lost granddaughter. She not only really has a last name but she is from a rich family!

Nell 12
Here's a photo with the full ensemble onstage singing (remember, this is a musical) at the end of the play.

We enjoyed it and definitely plan to return. They theater returns to their regular dinner theater programs in the fall and the first production will start the day after my birthday in September. That would be a neat gift! Are you listening, Honey?

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It looks and sounds very interesting. Glad you had a good evening of it.

Have a great new week, Dick. :o)

Love and hugs,

I need to get over and see one or two of their shows, And thanks for the bit about the pianist for my show. We really are in DIRE need.
That sounds so fun! I wish we had more of this around our house... just and wal-mart!

Hope all is well
Love, jess
The pictures of the play are great just seeing them and reading what you wrote makes one feel like they were there.
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