Bring on the Bash
Ryan Summerlin March 22, 2013
A parade of fools will grace the stage March 30 for the Backstage Theatre’s annual fundraiser, the Backstage Bash.
“The Bash unabashedly embraces the April Fools’ theme in presenting a ‘topsy turvy’ celebration that features local acts with a silly spin to them,” Backstage Artistic Director Christopher Willard said. “With this show, right is left, up is down, and you never know what is coming around the next corner.”
Jeffrey Bergeron, aka Biff America, will host the event, and Willard and Lenore Giardina will direct.
“Jeffrey Bergeron is the host, so get ready for off-the-cuff humor and improv to put everyone in a great mood,” Willard said. “Why they haven’t asked this guy to host the Oscars is beyond me … maybe because they’d have to use the bleep button to excess.”
The night begins with an Italian buffet dinner, drinks and the opening of the silent auction. A “not so silent” auction and dessert dash will be held at intermission. Auction items range from a food tour to in-home performances to exclusive lodging packages, Willard said. But the main draw, of course, is the entertainment.
This year’s Bash will feature musical numbers from Michelle Marzo and Giardina and a visit from Kate Monster, star of the Backstage summer production “Avenue Q.” Last year’s winners of the coveted Topsy Turvy Trophy (a sponsorship competition among acts), Adam Helfrich and Drew Reges, will return to protect their crown, Willard said. Noah and the ARCs, with CJ Mueller, Dave Pringle, Jere Lynch, Mike Kopicky and Rick “The Pup” Ascher, also made the bill.
“This is the ‘ageless airband’ that has closed each of our past Bash events,” Willard said. “They’re a great deal of fun, seeing these former ski pros up there, rocking out to ’50s tunes. … They’ll have a few guests with them, too.”
Vail Resorts red-suited information volunteers Bill Rider, John Walton, Ohnesian, Ray Smith and John Nielson will be dressing up as bro boarders and doing their version of “The Harlem Shake,” Willard said. Other acts include ballroom duo Teresa and Roger Moen and “The Tao of Gibby,” where local personality Mike Gibson will share some of his personal wit and wisdom.
Willard said Backstage is rating the programming of this year’s Bash as PG-13.
“We have very affordable on-site babysitting services available through Activity Sitters, so parents can drop off their kids and enjoy the show while their kids are having a great time with the babysitting professionals of Activity Sitters,” Willard said.
Money raised by the event supports the Backstage Theatre’s various programs, such as KidsPlay and workshops, special events and operational expenses for the year, Willard said.
“The Backstage is Summit County’s oldest nonprofit arts organization,” Willard said. “Now in its 39th Season, the Backstage employs casts that are a blend of community and professional talent.”
Attending the Backstage Bash is a way to support theater in the Summit County community.
“The Backstage is the community’s premiere outlet to experience the performing arts, take a class, act and sing onstage, build and paint sets, design lighting, run a show and on and on,” Willard said. “That kind of creative home is essential for any community to encourage and support. We’re about to celebrate our 40th anniversary with many new exciting programs, shows and opportunities for all to be engaged with. We’re grateful to reach this upcoming milestone and mindful that this kind of consistency and longevity does not occur without huge community support.”