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‘Robin Hood’ rolls a strike

ABOVE: Lady Marian (Cassidy Ward), right, complains to the Sheriff of Nottingham (Gary Reissner) that he has Genghis Khan and the pope seated at the same table for a dinner party while Prince John (Tony Hobbs), his fawning ladies (Brittney Lawson, Nadine Pizzi, Hailey Rogers and Barbara Holmes), and his guard (Nathan Dodgen) listen in on the conversation. The Pilot/Bill Schlichting
The Brookings-Harbor Community Theater’s production of “The Somewhat True Tale of Robin Hood” hits the bull’s eye of the target, or perhaps rolls a strike in the bowling alley, when it comes to humorous entertainment.

The script, written by Mary Lynn Dobson, has a melodramatic twist in that stage characters boo and hiss at the lead bad guys – members of the Royal House, Prince John (Tony Hobbs) and the Sheriff of Nottingham (Gary Reissner) – and cheer for the lead good guys – outlaws Robin Hood (Steven Nagel) and Friar Tuck (Rick DeHaven) and their band of merry men (and women). And, of course, hero Hood gets the heroine Lady Marian (Cassidy Ward). Or, perhaps the real heroine is the narrator (Dorothy Shull) who seems to always have a part in the action.

The story has the usual Robin Hood plot. Robin Hood and a band of outlaws steal from the rich and give to the poor. However, there are a few modern additions to this tale that supposedly takes place in Renaissance England. For example, Robin Hood and his gang decide to take action when it is learned that the sale of Girl Scout Thin Mint cookies will be banned. 

Of course Robin Hood’s real motivation is capturing the heart of Lady Marian. As a result, he finds himself in the Dungeon of Demise, a place “worse than the Department of Motor Vehicles,” where his torture is listening to “Christmas with Kathie Lee.”

Robin Hood’s merry men, and women, come to the rescue with the help of the production’s technical crew (they operate the lights, change the set), but in order to keep Lady Marian from marrying the sheriff, he must accept an archery challenge. This is no problem for Robin Hood, until the Sheriff of Nottingham learns that Robin is the best at the bow and arrow. The challenge is then changed to a bowling tournament.

Laughs are abundant throughout this play not only because of the delivery of funny lines, but because of the actions of the actors. 

This play also has several fresh faces as many actors have either never been on stage or haven’t been there since high school, 30 to 40 years ago. These actors include Hobbs, who being a transplant from England is a natural with his British accent; Reissner, who has never been on stage; Joe Donohue, the big man who plays Little John; Karen Dillon, one of the merry women; Pam Lynn, the lady in waiting; and Hailey Rogers, one of the fawning ladies.

In addition, outlaws are played by Sennett Vest, Scotty Oka (who has acted in this play for another theater), Jordan Grenert, Courtney Dornback and Karen Dillon. Characters in the royal house are played by Brittney Lawson, Nadine Pizzi, Barbara Holmes, Chase Hahn and Nathan Dodgen.

Operating the lights is Megan Hulen and sound manager is Morgan Loring. The stage crew is Colleen Gibson, Pati Gibson, Hunter Hahn, Chase Hahn and Stage Manager Hazel Campbell. 

Costumes were created by Dornback, Norma Starbard and Director Dori Blodgett. The set was created by Campbell and the Gibsons with scenes painted by Susan, Nathan and Brianne Dodgen. The Dungeon of Demise was built by Leroy Blodgett and Harry Hall.

Six chances remain to see this play: 7:30 p.m. today, 2 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 18, 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Saturday, Sept. 22, 23 and 24, and 2 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 25. Tickets are $10 for adults, $9 for seniors and $7 for students, and are available at Wright’s Custom Framing and Art Supplies and Pacific Rim Copy Center in Brookings, and New Wave Video in Harbor. The theater offers a family package for $25, available by reservation at the box office. For more information, call 541-469-4700.

The play is staged at the Harbor Performing Arts Center in the Brookings-Harbor Shopping Center, above the DMV.

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