Driftwood Players

"Charley's Aunt" Feb. - March 1980

By Brandon Thomas,

Directed by Ray Phillips, assistant Director Gloria Ingram

Standing From Left: Debbie Johnston: (Amy Spettigue) Don Fries: (Brassett) James Ball: (Col. Sir Francis Chesney) (Geri Reynolds: (Donna Lucia D'Alvadorez) Ernie Ingram: (Stephen Spettigue) Viki Prescott: (Ela Delahay) Colleen Ryan: (Kitty Verdun)
Seated: Mark Pinckney: (Jack Chesney) Keith Krueger: (Lord Fancourt Babberley) Russell Hart: (Charley Wykeham)

Pictures by
Jim Bates

From The Daily World Friday, February 22, 1980

Driftwood Players in

Charley's Aunt

    A long-time favorite comedy, "Charley's Aunt," is the play that the Driftwood Players chose to celebrate the 20th birthday of their theater group.

    It will open at the Playhouse in Hoquiam Friday night, just three days short of 20 years from the evening when the fledgling group opened the English comedy-mystery "See How They Run" on a makeshift stage in Cosmopolis.

    Charley's Aunt is set in the Victorian era when young ladies of quality were not supposed to visit males without being chaperoned. So two young men devise a scheme in which a third friend will impersonate the elderly visiting aunt of one of them -- a ready-made and compliant chaperone for them and their lady friends.

    The complications, of course, come thick and fast, and involve two characters played by longtime Driftwood actors Ernie Ingram and James Ball becoming rivals for the hand of "Charley's Aunt."

    Others in the cast include Keith Kruger, who was the second lead in the recent Grays Harbor Civic Choir production of "Brigadoon" and who plays the bogus aunt; Don Fries, Mark Pinckney, Russell Hart, Geri Reynolds, Vicki Prescott and others.

    The photos on this page were taken amid the Victorian furnishings of Elsie Reynolds' home next-door to the Hoquiam Castle.

    The Driftwood Players' first theater in 1960 was a former storage building which Weyerhaeuser Co. loaned to the group for several years. The nucleus of the organization had been formed in the previous summer, when a group of South Beach, Aberdeen and Hoquiam stage buffs got together to produce a melodrama in "Hogan's Barn in Cohassett near Westport.

    The beach "summer theater" idea which gave the Players their start never was successfully revived ---- But the theater organization lived and prospered.

    People involved in Driftwood Players at the beginning --- many of whom are still active members -- remember that since it began, the group has never failed to produce at least three plays a season.

    In recent years there have been four productions a year plus a summer play during the last three years.

    "Charley's Aunt" opening night will feature a birthday cake and champagne --- in celebration of two decades of bringing theater to the Harbor. 

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