PORT ANGELES — In the PA Panto production “Goldilocks and the Ultimate Rampage,” Naomi Alstrup of Sequim and Shannon Cosgrove of Port Angeles stir up a fairy tale, a variety of woodland creatures — and one blond auntie known as the Dame, all together in a Pacific Northwest town that looks just like this one.
It’s a mashup musical comedy, Cosgrove said, and it’s a celebration of life in Clallam County.
“Goldilocks” opens its run this Friday at the Little Theater at Peninsula College, 1502 E. Lauridsen Blvd., Port Angeles, and carries on until Jan. 1.
The Juan de Fuca Foundation for the Arts and PA Panto are presenting the original show with a 21-member cast of local singers, actors and dancers.
Curtain times are 7 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays through Dec. 31, while skipping Christmas weekend; matinees start at 2 p.m. this Sunday and on Dec. 18 and Jan. 1.
Tickets are $25 for adults, $15 for students (18-21 with valid ID), and $10 for youths 17 and younger. Tickets and information are available at JFFA.org, and by calling the Juan de Fuca Foundation office at 360-457-5411.
Here’s the story: All little Goldilocks (Emily MacAliley) desires is a quiet life in the town she’s chosen as her home. And her wealthy aunt known as the Dame (Morgan Bartholick) has gifted her a diner there. Meanwhile, though, Goldy’s best friend, Rose Red (Bailey Loveless), is chafing at being stuck in this old village, and dreams of adventure in faraway places.
Enter the Big, Bad Wolf (Dana Duffy). He knows what he wants: everything. That is every square inch of real estate, and he’s figured out how to get it. But that Goldilocks is in his way. In come some warring pigs and bears, an overworked fox and a rabble of trash pandas — aka opportunistic raccoons — so mayhem and hilarity can ensue.
“I love camp. I love the over-the-top schtick thing,” said Bartholick, who portrays the Dame as the sultry widow who has bid adieu to nine husbands.
He’s an actor, a singer and a musician who knows this village well, having graduated from Port Angeles High School in 2006.
The “Goldilocks and the Ultimate Rampage” script is what got him.
“It was just so funny. Shannon is a brilliant writer; her plays on words are just so smart,” Bartholick said. And while he doesn’t consider himself a dancer — “I call myself a mover” instead — this performer revels in collaborating with his neighbors.
“We’re all creating this thing together. One of my favorite things about community theater is it can be multigenerational. You get to see people you know, doing something you never knew they could do,” he said.
For example, his parents’ insurance agent, Steve Methner, is the show’s title sponsor — and he plays Papa Bear.
The youngest performers are elementary school-age youngsters, portraying various animals and “punk princesses”: Taezia Hanan, Aurelia Segars, Mathilda Bennett and Cora Sandoval. Beside them are the Trash Pandas, namely Mark Valentine as Ringo, Lisa Searles as CoCo, Paul Kolesnikoff as BooBoo and Lillie Commeree as Bob. Tia Stephens plays Rita, Queen of them all.
Rounding out the cast are Zade Harris as Frederick Fox, Ana Arndt as an additional Papa Bear, Sarah Brabant as Mama Bear, Kydn Meyer as Baby Bear, Asha Burson-Johnson as Mama Pig, Liza Pettigrew as Baby Pig and Cosgrove herself in the role of Papa Pig.
While several performers have years of training and experience, others are newer to singing on a stage, Bartholick added. Yet they tell the story and sing the songs from their hearts — and he’s certain the audience will feel that.
“People are taking a chance on something they’ve never done before,” he said, “and they surprise themselves by what they’re capable of.”
Bartholick Dame is a big, blond, outrageous presence on stage. He added that surprises, both costume-wise and music-wise, will be tossed into the mix.
Cosgrove added that she and Alstrup share an ongoing love for the British comedy style that inspired PA Panto.
“Naomi is magic,” Cosgrove said of her coproducer and director. This is their 13th production together, and “it’s an upwelling of love for our community.
“It celebrates all of the things we love about living here,” she said.
Cosgrove and Bartholick emphasize that the audience is an important character in the show; the fourth wall falls right down.
“We’re taking you out of real time,” Cosgrove said.
“Come and take part in this with us.”