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Looking ahead at RTOP’s season

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Looking ahead at RTOP’s season

RTOP along Grand Avenue in downtown Pullman, Aug. 24, 2014.

RTOP along Grand Avenue in downtown Pullman, Aug. 24, 2014.

RTOP along Grand Avenue in downtown Pullman, Aug. 24, 2014.

RTOP along Grand Avenue in downtown Pullman, Aug. 24, 2014.

BY CATHERINE KRUSE | Evergreen theatre reporter

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The Regional Theatre of the Palouse (RTOP) has a history of providing classic and contemporary plays for the entertainment of the public, from “Les Misérables” last spring to their recent production of “The Music Man.”

Located in downtown Pullman, the theater plans four shows for each performance season. For the 2014-15 season, the lineup includes “The Music Man” (finished this past weekend), “Oklahoma!” in November, “Little Shop of Horrors” in February, and “Mary Poppins” in April.

RTOP Director John Rich said the season’s choices are based on different factors such as requests from patrons and performers, availability and whether or not the show works within a season’s time.

“We like to do a balanced season of classic, well-known musicals, new musicals and shows just off Broadway,” Rich said.

Rich had directed “The Music Man” and “Oklahoma!” a few times over the years. The last time he directed “Oklahoma!” MGM film star Virginia Mayo starred as Aunt Eller in her last stage appearance.

“‘Oklahoma!’ is the musical that brought the team of Rodgers and Hammerstein together as one of the most successful teams that wrote for the Broadway stage,” Rich said.

“Oklahoma!” ran for more than 2,200 performances on Broadway and became a groundbreaking musical. It centers on the relationship of its two main characters, Curly and Laurey, set during the turn of the century when Oklahoma becomes a state.

“This All-American, award-winning Rogers and Hammerstein musical score is filled with hit after hit, such as ‘Oh, What a Beautiful Mornin’’ and ‘People Will Say We’re In Love,’” Rich said.

Auditions for “Oklahoma!” will be held Sept. 3 and 4 from 6:30-8:30 p.m. and Sept. 5 from 6:30-7:30 p.m. Auditions and call-backs are held at RTOP, 122 North Grand Ave.

Rich said singers are asked to have prepared a song in the style of the show and to bring their own sheet music in their key. An accompanying pianist will be provided, or those auditioning can bring their own. Dancers are asked to prepare a few steps to show their dance ability.

For additional information, call the theater at 509-334-0750 or visit www.rtoptheatre.org.

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Looking ahead at RTOP’s season