Photo gallery: My night backstage at Town Hall’s ‘Forever Plaid’

By John Moore
Jan. 11, 2010

Here are some images from my night visiting the cast of the Littleton Town Hall Arts Center’s “Forever Plaid” just before their first performance in front of an audience. Starring Tim Howard, Barret Harper, Mark Middlebrooks and Jacob Villareal. Through Feb. 10 at 2450 W. Main St., 303-794-2787 or www.townhallartscenter.com. Photos by John Moore of www.CultureWest.Org. Thanks: Nick Sugar, Steven Neale, Leslie Rutherford.

To see the our full photo series, “It’s Opening Night in Colorado Theatre,” featuring one intimate, iconic snapshot from 27 Colorado opening nights (and counting), click here.

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Mark Middlebrooks, Tim Howard, Barret Harper  and Jacob Villareal do vocal warmups where they find the best acoustics - in a backstage stairwell art Town Hall Arts Center. Photo by John Moore of www.CultureWest.Org.

Mark Middlebrooks, Tim Howard, Barret Harper and Jacob Villareal do vocal warmups where they find the best acoustics – in a backstage stairwell at Town Hall Arts Center. Photo by John Moore.

 

The actors' entrance to the Town Hall Arts Center. Photo by John Moore of www.CultureWest.Org.

The actors’ entrance to the Town Hall Arts Center. Photo by John Moore.

 

Donna Debreceni and the crew prepare to take the stage. Photo by John Moore.

Donna Debreceni and the crew prepare to take the stage. Photo by John Moore.

 

Music director Debra Donnaceni. Er, Donna Debreceni. Photo by John Moore.

Music director Debra Donnaceni. Er, Donna Debreceni. Photo by John Moore.

 

Photo by John Moore.

Photo by John Moore.

 

The cast prepares for its first appearance in front of an audience. Photo by John Moore.

The cast prepares for its first appearance in front of an audience. Photo by John Moore.

 

Cast member Mark Middlebrooks has a pre-show shave. Photo by John Moore.

Cast member Mark Middlebrooks has a pre-show shave. Photo by John Moore.

 

Director Nick Sugar offers some pre-show advice. Photo by John Moore.

Director Nick Sugar offers some pre-show advice. Photo by John Moore.

 

Jacob Villareal, Tim Howard and Barret Harper go over a number before the audience is allowed into the Town Hall Arts Center. Photo by John Moore.

Jacob Villareal, Tim Howard and Barret Harper go over a number before the audience is allowed into the Town Hall Arts Center. Photo by John Moore.

 

The cast goes over a number before the audience is allowed into the Town Hall Arts Center. Photo by John Moore.

The cast goes over a number before the audience is allowed into the Town Hall Arts Center. Photo by John Moore.

 

Production stage manager Steven Neale. Photo by John Moore.

Production stage manager Steven Neale. Photo by John Moore.

 

Director Nick Sugar offers some final suggestions before the first audience is allowed into the Town Hall Arts Center. Photo by John Moore.

Director Nick Sugar offers last-minute suggestions before the audience is allowed into the Town Hall Arts Center. Photo by John Moore.

 

Director Nick Sugar offers last-minute suggestions before the audience is allowed into the Town Hall Arts Center. Photo by John Moore.

Director Nick Sugar offers last-minute suggestions before the audience is allowed into the Town Hall Arts Center. Photo by John Moore.

 

At the Town Hall Arts Center, patrons who can't take the stairs go up by elevator. They then enter the theater through the backstage area, sometimes encountering cast members such as Tim Howard of "Forever Plaid." Photo by John Moore.

At the Town Hall Arts Center, patrons who can’t take the stairs go up by elevator. They then enter the theater through the backstage area, sometimes encountering cast members such as Tim Howard of “Forever Plaid.” Photo by John Moore.

 

The first audience for Town Hall's "Forever Plaid" begins to gather. Photo by John Moore.

The first audience for Town Hall’s “Forever Plaid” begins to gather. Photo by John Moore.

 

Tim Howard makes some last-minute adjustments before taking the stage. Photo by John Moore

Tim Howard makes some last-minute adjustments before taking the stage. Photo by John Moore

 

Patrons depart the performance by elevator backstage at the Town Hall Arts Center, escorted by Drew Kowalkowski. Photo by John Moore.

Patrons depart the performance by elevator backstage at the Town Hall Arts Center, escorted by Drew Kowalkowski. Photo by John Moore.

 

Director Nick Sugar offers feedback after the first performance before an audience. Photo by John Moore.

Director Nick Sugar offers feedback after the first performance before an audience. Photo by John Moore.

 

Long after the audience has left, the cast decides to try one more run-though of the final number, "Love is a Many Splendored Thing." Photo by John Moore.

Long after the audience has left, the cast decides to try one more run-though of the final number, “Love is a Many Splendored Thing.” Photo by John Moore.

 

Long after the audience has left, the cast decides to try one more run-though of the final number, "Love is a Many Splendored Thing," with director Nick Sugar. Photo by John Moore.

Long after the audience has left, the cast decides to try one more run-though of the final number, “Love is a Many Splendored Thing,” with director Nick Sugar. Photo by John Moore.

“Glee” fans: Meet Melissa Benoist in photos, video

Patric Case and Melissa Benoist in Town Hall Arts Center’s “Footloose, the Musical,” in Littleton, Colo. Photo provided by Town Hall Arts Center.

 

By John Moore

Hey, “Glee” fans: The first episode of Season 4, airing Sept. 13, is titled, “The New Rachel Berry” … and the new Rachel Berry is named Marley … and she will be played by Arapahoe High School grad Melissa Benoist of Littleton, Colo.

Look for our exclusive interview with Melissa in  the Sept. 9 Denver Post. Yes, she has already been Slushied. And yes, she opens Season 4 singing a cross-country duet with Lea Michele to Billy Joel’s “New York State of Mind.” Read more then.

Meanwhile, enjoy this look back at Melissa’s theatrical roots in the Denver metro area:

(And here’s our Denver Post feature naming Melissa one of Colorado’s “Can’t Miss Kids … in 2006!)

The Denver’s Post’s 2006 “Can’t Miss Kids,” from left: Max Posner, Noah Wilson, Akil LuQman, Melissa Benoist and Courtney Lorenz. (Photo by Lyn Alweis / The Denver Post)

 

Melissa Benoist, second from top right, as Brigitta with Annaleigh Ashford  (Liesl) in the Country Dinner Playhouse’s 2000 staging of “The Sound of Music.” Swanson is now in off-Broadway’s “Dogfight.” In front of them, Jesse Johnson is now in Broadway’s “Wicked,” and, far left, Christopher Sergeeff is in the national touring production of “Mamma Mia.”

Melissa Benoist as Kim MacAfee in the Town Hall Arts Center’s “Bye Bye Birdie,” with Jerry Cunningham, in Littleton, Colo. Photo by Brian Miller, provided by Town Hall Arts Center.  

 

 

On the day the Country Dinner Playhouse abruptly closed its doors in 2007, the cast of “Evita,” including Melissa Benoist (“Another Suitcase in Another Hall”) and Patric Case, gave one final performance of “Evita” in the rainy parking lot. (This was actually the pre-show medley promoting “Seven Brides,” which would have been the next show at the Playhouse.) Photo by Kathryn Scott Osler, The Denver Post.


 

Melissa Benoist, top right with Markus Warren and the cast of the Country Dinner Playhouse’s “Evita” in 2007.

 

Melissa Benoist in the title role of “Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella” at the Town Hall Arts Center in Littleton, Colo. Photo provided by Town Hall Arts Center.


Melissa Benoist in the title role of “Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Cinderella,” with Seth Caikowski as the Prince, at the Town Hall Arts Center in Littleton, Colo. Photo provided by Town Hall Arts Center.

 

Melissa Benoist as Kim MacAfee in the Town Hall Arts Center’s “Bye Bye Birdie”  in Littleton, Colo. Photo by Brian Miller, provided by Town Hall Arts Center.

 

Melissa Benoist as Kim MacAfee in the Town Hall Arts Center’s “Bye Bye Birdie” in Littleton, Colo. Photo by Brian Miller, provided by Town Hall Arts Center.

 

Melissa Benoist as Bebe in the Town Hall Arts Center’s “A Chorus Line” in Littleton, Colo. Photo by Brian Miller, provided by Town Hall Arts Center.

 

Melissa Benoist as Bebe in the Town Hall Arts Center’s “A Chorus Line” in Littleton, Colo. Photo by Brian Miller, provided by Town Hall Arts Center.

Melissa Benoist, 2006. Photo by Lyn Alweis, The Denver Post.