Hamilton Players Singin' in the Rain

The classic 'Singin’ in the Rain' was produced on stage at the Hamilton Playhouse in 2016.

DOUG MCCONNAHA - for the Ravalli Republic

HAMILTON – The Hamilton Players will continue their fundraising, performing and celebrating of community partnerships and volunteers for 2017. 

Monday and Tuesday, the Hamilton Players have auditions for “The Mystery of Edwin Drood” and on Saturday, Jan. 7, they are hosting a special evening in appreciation for anyone who has every volunteered or wants to volunteer with the playhouse.

“I am not sure that people truly understand the importance and value of Hamilton Players’ volunteers to the overall success of the organization,” said Denise Rose, executive director.

Rose is the only full-time employee at the Playhouse. She has a high school administrative assistant who works after school and some weekend,s and there are a few artistic positions – directors, music directors, choreographers and musicians – who receive compensation as temporary employees and contractors for each show.

“But the bulk of the work rests on the shoulders of volunteers who make up the actors, builders, house staff, and designers,” Rose said. “Take for example last year’s show, ‘Pride & Prejudice,’ which took over 3,750 volunteer hours to produce.”

Rose pointed out that those hours and amount of dedication by volunteers are just for one show.

“Multiply that number by four shows in a season and the volunteer hours could easily equal 15,000,” Rose said. “If those volunteers were paid minimum wage, though many volunteers are skilled tradespersons, the total would be $120,750.

“That is simply remarkable,” Rose said. “There is no way that the Players could hope to succeed without the support of the volunteers who dedicate so much time and energy to the organization.”

Rose said the Volunteer Appreciation Event is a good opportunity for community members who have considered volunteering with the Hamilton Players to meet volunteers involved and learn more about the Playhouse.

“The Mystery of Edwin Drood” is a musical play based on the final, unfinished novel by Charles Dickens, Rose said.

“It is a musical-murder-mystery-metatheater-comedy,” she said. “For the audience, it’s practically one of those ‘choose your own adventure’ stories. The show is full of wildly suspicious characters who, from time to time, interact directly with the audience.”

Rose said the play has ribald humor, some provocative costuming and is not appropriate for young children.

For information about the performance season, listing of shows and purchasing tickets visit hamiltonplayers.com.

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