Olympic Theatre Arts newcomer Ashley Burton rehearses with veteran actor and director Ron Graham for the late Jim Guthrie’s “Searching for a Heart.”

Olympic Theatre Arts newcomer Ashley Burton rehearses with veteran actor and director Ron Graham for the late Jim Guthrie’s “Searching for a Heart.”

Tickets on sale for inaugural Olympic Theatre Arts showcase

SEQUIM — Olympic Theatre Arts Center’s inaugural New Works Showcase has been cast and is in rehearsal, with tickets available now for the July 16-18 shows.

After taking submissions for the better part of a year, Olympic Theatre Arts Center has selected six short plays by local authors and is producing the community theatre’s first ever New Works Showcase.

A team of both established and new directors to OTA are working with a cast of local actors, also ranging from veterans to beginners, to bring these stories to the stage for the first time.

The showcase will be dedicated to the late Jim Guthrie, a long-time OTA volunteer, playwright and columnist, reporter and editor for the Peninsula Daily News. Guthrie died at the age of 81 in November.

His submitted work, “Searching for a Heart,” will close the six-play series each night.

“The late, great Jim Guthrie was making us laugh until the end and beyond,” said that play’s director Tia Stephens.

“I’m so honored to be directing his final work with a cast that admired him.”

Performance times will be 7:30 p.m. July 16-17 and 2 p.m. July 18.

Tickets are $15 for the general public, $13 for OTA members, and $10 for students with school identification card. They are available at the theatre box office at 414 N. Sequim Ave., from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Friday or online at www.Olympic TheatreArts.org.

The works are:

• “Goodbye Cruel World,” by Susan Noyes, directed by Kyle LeMaire — Two woman make a suicide pact, but fate intervenes.

• “Dance Your Dance,” by John Painter, directed by Christy Holy — A poignant comedy about five souls whose conversations in death reveal their perseverance in life,

• “City of Sequim: Heart of Darkness & Lavender Capital of the World,” by Gabriel Mills and Sarah Brabant, directed by Marissa Meek — A satirical romp through Sequim.

• “Joie de Vivre,” by Suzanne Bailie, directed by Christy Holy — A dark comedy that explores how far humans will go to keep their zest for life in a future where they can live forever,

• “I Dance for Purple,” by Aurora Lagattuta, directed by Ginny Holladay — A woman in isolation finds freedom and connection through imagination, music and dance.

• “Searching for a Heart,” by Guthrie, directed by Stephens — A sweet and funny tale reminding us that our best legacies will live on in the hearts of others.

“This showcase is all about highlighting the written voices of our community,” said Holladay, interim executive director and stage director.

“There is no rush like producing a brand new work, and there is nothing more creatively inspiring to me than music and dance. This show is stunning.”

An all-cast readthrough was conducted earlier in June in the main auditorium. This was the first time the entire cast met to read the complete show, and it will be the last until dress rehearsal early in July.

Several authors of the selected plays were also there to hear their words read on the stage for the first time.

“Everyone was thrilled to be there,” said ‘Goodbye Cruel World’ author Noyes.

For more information, call the theatre at 360-683-7326.

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