Sandi Belcher email me
Sandi began to first perform publicly as a singer at the age of twelve. She started out singing as a soloist in churches and then, by the age of fifteen, as a lead singer in a local swing band called “The Robsons”. Her first role in a play came when she wrote, directed, and acted in a production that she and her friends performed for their sixth grade class. Sandi became more seriously involved in acting when she entered high school, performing in One Acts and school productions.
Her first show with the Waynesboro Players was “You Can’t Take it with You” in 1977. She moved from Waynesboro in 1980 and, after starting a family, began to perform in community theater in Tidewater, Virginia. One of her favorite roles was Babe in “Crimes of the Heart”. She has been involved in many shows with the Players since returning to Waynesboro in 1995. Her favorite show of all Waynesboro Players productions is “Sunday in the Park with George”. She has also been active with Oak Grove and ShenanArts, acting and singing in productions like “Company” and “The Spitfire Grill”.
She was thrilled and honored to direct the world premiere of “Woody”, written by Staunton’s own Richard Adams, in the fall of 2004. Next up for Sandi is playing Gertrude McFuzz in the Waynesboro Players’ spring 2005 production of Seussical the Musical.
After recently completing a three-year term as President of the Players, Sandi’s primary duties as a Board member now include publicity and writing and mailing out the season ticket brochures.
Cindy Cavanaugh email me
Being a native from Ohio I was imported to the valley via my husband. We've lived here for almost 16 years with our two wonderful children, along with a cat and a dog and I currently work in the pharmacy at Wal-Mart.
I'd have to thank Sandy Belcher for giving me my start in "The Players." She invited me several years ago to see her in the Waynesboro Players production of "'Lil Abner" and was very impressed not only with the acting talent we had in the area, but the professionalism involved in a local theatre group. It was from that experience that made me take the next big step in auditioning for a part in "The Sound of Music". Which I did get a part as a singing nun. It was a start, that's all that mattered. The following year I was "assistant to the director" in "Sunday in the Park with George." By 2001 I got my first speaking role in "The Curious Savage" and have since been in "Busy Body," "Jesus Christ Superstar," and "Boeing- Boeing." I also played a role in Red Eye Production's "The Cocktail Hour." I've been a stage hand, stage manager, producer and recently Directed last years musical "Anything Goes."
I've been an active member on the board for over two years, and have really enjoyed the time and challenges I've had in the numerous productions I've been involved with and look forward to the challenges ahead.
Craig Cavanaugh email me
Born in upstate New York my family moved to Virginia in 1971. Since then I've graduated from Waynesboro High School (1981), served four years in USAF, met my wonderful wife, got married, had kids, and reset our roots back in the valley. I work a full time job at ALCOA Home Exteriors in Stuarts Draft and also own and operate a mobile Disc Jockey service (Mystic Music DJ Service).
It's funny how chain of events come together to bring you where you are today. Although I've only been active with the Players for a couple of years I remember hearing of them as a child. Going to see one of their plays one fall performed at Stuarts Draft High School, unfortunately I don't remember the name of the play. I do remember it being a Murder, Mystery though. But I'd have to give all the credit to me being where I am today to my wife Cindy.
Cindy was invited by Sandi Belcher to see a performance of "Little Abner", which opened Cindy's eyes into local theatre. She then got the acting bug which then moved onto producing jobs where she tackled the job of producing and acting in "Boeing-Boeing". To help her out in "Boeing-Boeing", I tried to take some of the burden off her shoulders, by volunteering to do the sound and helping her out with the advertising. The following year I decided I'd tackle the job of producing myself and produced "Anne of Green Gables". Working with Suzanne Roberts and seeing a production from start to finish was amazing. The creativity of the director reading a script and bring it to life on stage is something everyone needs to see at least once in their life. Then there's the actors themselves. Remembering the lines and the hours of rehearsals leading up to the production. I'm completely in awe when I watch them. Acting is not in my blood. However, I did do a small role in "Dearly Beloved". Luckily, it was only about six lines. Enough to say I've done some acting. I prefer to be the behind the scene's guy. Creating some to the effects you see on stage, working with the sound, doing programs and advertising. That's more my speed.
Dana Durham is a longtime resident of Waynesboro and a very active and versatile member of the Waynesboro Players. She has not only acted in many productions, but also is a very talented musician and has participated in many a musical in the orchestra, playing piano and keyboards. She also is an accomplished set realization painter, props person, costumer, makeup assistant, you name it. Where there is help needed, we can always count on Dana to chip in and help out. Dana is deservedly retired and enjoys spending her time with her many grandchildren and also traveling across the US and the world. She is also involved in many of the community musical groups in the area, as she enjoys singing and sharing her love of music. Watch for Dana to pop up in most any department or area of a Players production!
June Hall email me
I began my Waynesboro Players experience in 1990 painting scenery for Gypsy–nothing fancy just painting this black and that red. I had a degree in Accounting!! What did I know about such things! So I just followed direction and did as I was told.
After painting a kazillion bricks for West Side Story in 1992, I decided there must be more to this theatrical experience than wielding a paint brush so I moved on to a screwdriver and starting building the things someone else would need to paint. All under the watchful eye of my wonderful mentor, Jerry Spooner. Of course, as with any volunteer organization, I wound up painting the things I was now building!!
I don’t remember which came first, producing plays or joining the Board of Directors but they seem closely linked in my mind. Anyway, I was certain this move up the ladder would surely get me off one. Wrong again! I now produce plays, design sets, build sets, paint sets, and move sets. Oh well, just don’t ask me to act!
Oh and by the way.....did I mention we are always looking for people to paint?
Charlie Lawson email me
Charlie's first involvement with the players was South Pacific in 1980. He spent every Thursday night for weeks on end in the basement of the old hardware store (now a carpet store) across from the Schooner (in Waynesboro) cutting out palm tree leaves from rolls of green construction paper. Charlie started working as backstage crew and got hooked. His involvement in multitudes of productions as crew, stage manager, special effects, props, actor, set construction and chief, set realization, and producer keep him in the theater as much as out.
His most memorable shows: "Dracula", "Sunday in the Park with George", "Oliver", "Inherit the Wind", "Guys and Dolls" , "The Sound of Music", "The King and I", and "Brigadoon. Charlie Co-produced "Grease" and "Nuncrackers", both large gate successes, the latter having the record for the biggest gate to date in the history of the Players.
He met his wife, Barbara Spilman, backstage at a WP production. They have been married since 1983 and have one child, Jenni, born in 1993, who is an upcoming Waynesboro Player future diva. Charlie owns and operates C.J. Buggs Import Repair Service in Fishersville, VA. If you live in the area then you can't miss (actually you mustn't miss) C.J. Buggs' holiday displays.
becky price email me
The first play I saw was Count Dracula (1981) and I became involved when my children were in The Hobbitt, (1981 or 82). The best play I have seen that Players did was Sunday in the Park with George (Sondheim). Some of my personal favorites that I have been involved with are: The Foreigner by Larry Shue (a play write from outside of Staunton who died in a plane wreck), Greater Tuna, Dearly Departed, Sunday in the Park with George, Grease and The King and I, all for very different reasons.
My contributions - I am a make up designer which is what I really enjoy doing. I’ve been a board member for 12 years; currently I am Secretary. I have co-produced several musicals in the last 2 years. As a working Board of Directors, each of us has a specific area we are responsible for and we each have to chair one committee and be an active member of another committee. So, I have fed large groups during our double rehearsals; have cleaned the warehouse (including the front parking lot and the back lot); have arranged parties; worked on props; worked on our yard sale; designed flyers; arranged publicity; worked on costumes; painted sets; helped strike; just about anything backstage or involving the production end of a play – never been on stage – never plan to.
Community theatre, for me, has been a great creative outlet. I have made so many wonderful friends who are talented in many different disciplines and who really are dedicated to putting on quality productions. Not all community theatre is strictly volunteer but Waynesboro Players is one that is - so you really have to enjoy it to continue to be involved.
Suzanne Roberts email me
Suzanne graduated from the Conservatory of Dramatic Art of the Province of Quebec and went on to study in France for a year. She worked both professionally and in community theatre in Montreal and Ottawa. She has been involved with the Waynesboro Players since September 1998, when she directed Moon Over Buffalo. She has subsequently co-directed The Sound of Music and directed Taking Stock, Crazy for You the Musical, Busy Body and Anne of Green Gables.
Suzanne currently oversees play research and readings for the WP as well as a myriad of other contributions for which we are thankful.
Taking a sabbatical this year, Suzanne is already working on one of the 2006 offerings, Pierre and Marie, which will be a Relay for Life event for the benefit of the American Cancer Society.
Charles Salembier email me
Lee McGratty introduced me to the Players, to building sets, and to stage crew with Mame and, while stage-managing Barefoot in the Park, Mike Lafferty ‘ordered’ me to play a simple walk-on and threatened me with bodily harm in his efforts to cure my ‘happy feet.’ The rest has been one fun experience after another.
As Lee points out, theatre is “hours of boredom punctuated by moments of sheer terror.” Actually though, there has been little terror and much enjoyment and satisfaction.
Of the many plays with which I have been involved, my care for music leaves the musicals as my favorites. Special memories are Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, a musical I had wanted the players to ‘do’ for a long time and which Mark Bizdic beautifully directed, ‘Forum’ in which I had the unique opportunity to carry Barbara’s ‘bust with pride,’ and Annie where, as Big Daddy ‘W’ I had the undivided attention of 9 beautiful little girls and, of course, a dog.
A unique memory comes from Carousel in which as Mr. Snow, while singing a duet with my stage wife, all (well almost all) of her undergarments simply heeded the call of gravity and slid silently to the floor. Undeterred, Mary K kept on singing as she stepped out of her ‘whatevers.’ (I never did find out where all that frilly white stuff went.)
Since moving to Waynesboro in 1983, I have worked on a number of non-profit boards including The United Way, First Night Waynesboro, the Valley Alliance for Education, and the Waynesboro Choral Society. I am currently active on the boards of the Waynesboro Players and the Woodrow Wilson Rehabilitation Center Foundation, as well as chair of the City of Waynesboro’s Cultural Commission.
In addition to the Waynesboro Players, for which I am responsible for maintaining the mailing lists, I am active in First Baptist Church and in local choral groups and am completing a Master of Letters in Shakespeare and Renaissance Literature in Performance program offered in partnership with Shenandoah Shakespeare.
My wife Anne and I live in Waynesboro and enjoy 5 children and 3 grandchildren.
I can say that, on more than one occasion while on stage, I have said a quiet prayer of thanks for being in the middle of something so beautiful and so much fun.
W.E. "Bill" Shook email me
W.E. "Bill" Shook moved to Waynesboro, VA in the Fall of 1964 and saw his first Waynesboro Players show, A Thousand Clowns, the following Spring. He tried out for a part in It's Never Too Late and was mis-cast as a doctor. With 24 lines of dialogue he managed to remember some of them and delivered the ones he knew with an indifferent attitude. From that point on, he was hooked on the Waynesboro Players. He has been involved in every production since that time whether on stage or off. He's built sets, run the box office, done publicity and many other facets of a show production.
He produced Godspell, The Tiger, and The Dumbwaiter. Directed Man of La Mancha, Guys and Dolls, Bell Book and Candle, Plaza Suite, Blithe Spirit, and The Sunshine Boys. He appeared in many plays over the past 40 years and had the leading role in The Music Man, The Sound of Music, Two for the Seesaw, and The Owl and the Pussycat. Some of his favorite roles include Prof. Harold Hill in The Music Man, in which his daughter Rachel was also on stage, and as Horace Vandergelter in Hello Dolly where his son Jeff also played a dancing waiter and Rachel played in the orchestra.
Most recently Bill starred in A Month of Sundays opposite Phil Ernst. One night during the first act neither could remember who had the next line. As they both looked at each other Phil finally elected to give a line that was (unfortunately) from the second act but Bill didn't bite as doing so would have ended the show an hour shorter than normal. Instead Bill got up and walked across the stage to the bar hoping someone in the wings would throw a line to get them started again. Bill knew they were on their own when he saw the stage manager with a play book and flashlight flipping pages as fast as he could, shaking his head. Bill got a drink from the bar, returned to his seat, and threw a line out that was remarkably close to where they should be! The went on to glory from there!
In addition to the Waynesboro Players, Bill has taken roles and assisted with productions at the Oak Grove Theater in Verona and Theater Wagon in Staunton.
In 1969, Bill was elected to the Waynesboro Players Board of Directors and elected President in 1971. He took over the role of Treasurer in 1973 and remains in that post today.
Bill and wife, Gloria, live in Waynesboro. They met at Oak Grove Theater during a production of Playboy of the Western World in which they each had a role, and the rest, as they say, was history!
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Jennifer Vaughan email me
Jennifer Vaughan started working with WP doing set realization. She has worked on crew for and appeared in many productions. Performances include THE SOUND OF MUSIC, CRAZY FOR YOU, JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR, SOUTH PACIFIC, ANYTHING GOES, and SEUSSICAL. She designed sets for SOUND OF MUSIC, GREASE, CRAZY FOR YOU, and SEUSSICAL in addition to consultation and designs for area theaters and schools. Jennifer is the visual arts department coordinator and instructor at Shenandoah Valley Governor’s School.