TV tunes brought to life on stage in Beaver Creek
Ryan Summerlin November 17, 2011
“Sunday-Monday-Happy-Days.” Remember what comes next? Don’t worry, the kids will remind you. This weekend the Vail Performing Arts Academy will present “It’s Prime Time TV” at the Vilar Performing Arts Center in Beaver Creek. The show is a musical revue of the best television theme songs from today’s hit shows and yesterday’s beloved classics.
Songs and dance numbers will include “The Flintstones,” “The Brady Bunch,” “Golden Girls,” “Fame,” “Dancing with the Stars,” “American Idol,” “Glee” and many more. In addition to the usual song and dance, skits from memorable episodes will also be a part of the show. Colin Meiring, director of “It’s Prime Time TV,” wrote the revue, combining songs from his own childhood with what’s popular now.
“I loved TV as a kid; (the shows) always have a great story and teaching lesson,” Meiring said.
Well-known among adults, some of the older TV shows are new to the young performers, who range in age from 8 to 18. Meiring sees teaching these kids the songs as a way for them to learn a little about TV’s past. Producer Annah Scully agrees.
“Some of the kids know the TV shows, many of them don’t,” Scully said. “It’s a history lesson, and it is (also) a really fun, high-energy show because the music is all familiar.”
Scully has been a part of the VPAA for 16 years. She loves to see kids change from shy wallflowers to star performers.
“(My favorite part) is just watching the kids grow and reach their full potential, seeing the difference when they start off with us,” Scully said. “From this little pool of talent, we actually have a lot of potential that’s blossomed.”
Quite a few of the “It’s Prime Time TV” participants have been acting, dancing, and singing in VPAA shows for many years.
For Raquel Walder, 13, this is her sixth year as a performer.
“It’s really fun because you get to go and perform and do a lot of singing and dancing,” Walder said. “You also get to be with your friends. I’ve had friends that have been doing this for six years and now they’re some of my closest friends.”
The VPAA is a musical theater program that makes a point to include everyone. With a cast of 80 to 90 students, Meiring ensures that everyone who auditions gets at least one role, often more, in the show.
“No matter if you get a solo or an acting part, you’re always involved, you don’t get rejected,” said 13-year-old Georgia Hintz. “We all have parts in the choruses … if you prefer dancing but don’t like to sing, (Colin) will try to give you more of a dancing part.”
VPAA shows often sell out. Scully said the program has a reputation for quality, entertaining performances that aren’t just “kids shows.” The show this weekend promises a trip down memory lane to the sound of everyone’s favorite television tunes.
Ready to experience those “Happy Days” watching “That ’70’s Show” with your “Friends” aboard “The Love Boat” on your way to “Gilligan’s Island”? Then head to the Vilar Center for “It’s Prime Time TV.”-
Rosanna Turner is a freelance writer based in Vail. Email comments about this article to firstname.lastname@example.org.