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BWW Blog: Jesse Swimm of Tuacahn's MARY POPPINS - Good-Bye, Good Goody Girl…

Tonight we said good-bye to our good friend Miss Millie Dillmount. "Thoroughly Modern Millie" was the third show in our season here at Tuacahn that we learned and it came straight off the heels of opening "Mary Poppins" and "Starlight Express". It was a whirlwind of an experience as we had only about 4 weeks to get it ready for an audience. What made it even crazier was that we could only rehearse for about 5 hours a day as we were doing our other two shows at night, oh and did I mention it was about 115 degrees during the day at the time and we were rehearsing outside for about half of the process. At the helm of this monumental task was our director/choreographer Jeffrey Denman. Now I have known Jeffry for a couple years but have never had the opportunity to work with him so I was very excited when he showed up to share his "Millie" with us. I have to say if it had been anyone other than Jeffry, I don't think we could have pulled it off. His passion was immense and as he put us through the paces and shared his vision of Hi-Boys and Flappers we all had this sense that our production was going to be a spectacular endeavor. Everything was going smoothly for me until a bit of tragedy hit my life and I had to fly home unexpectedly to celebrate the life of my beloved Grandma, Rose Ebenhoch and her passing on June, 19th. It was an extremely difficult time for me but I couldn't have asked for a more supportive group of friends to help me get through it. Once I returned and got back into the swing of things with the show it seemed as if the elements were plotting against us, from sweltering heat one day to complete downpours during tech, it made the process that much more special for us. But eventually we got through it all and opened the show to an overwhelming response of praise and cheers for us.

Doing the show didn't come without it's set of problems however. As I mentioned in a previous blog we had massive windstorms that knocked our set over and rainstorms that cancelled shows. These are the hazards with doing outdoor theatre but this never dampened our spirits and we continued to give our all for our girl Millie. In fact it only pushed us to succeed even more, as the show grew so did our stars. Hearing Laura E. Taylor and John Preator belting out "I Turned the Corner" was beautiful as was Jennifer Evans and Peter Saide singing "I'm Falling In Love With Someone" as they pranced around stage together. Nicole Powell's Muzzy was a force to be reckoned with as she completely dominated the stage with "Only in New York". Joyce Nolen's Mrs. Meers, with all her hijinks and hilarity, was priceless and I was never more impressed than I was with Eymard Cabling and Daniel May as they sang and spoke in Mandarin and Cantonese on stage, I mean who does that in a show, lol.

As I look back on our time at "Millie" I am so proud of what we as a company accomplished. For a brief moment in time we brought the "Roaring Twenties" to the people of St. George, Utah. We took them away to a simpler time, a romantic time and they were grateful for it. I know we will miss our time with "Millie" but I hold on to the knowledge that what we had was an incredible experience and one that will stay with us for years to come. Good-bye, good goody girl. We will miss you.

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It's showtime for the final "Millie"

Eymard Cabling gets his Bun-Foo ready

Trevor Graydon (Peter Saide) expects an efficient show done in a timely manner

Bun-Foo (Eymard Cabling) and Ching-Ho (Daniel May) going over some dialogue before their first big scene.

Millie (Laura E. Taylor) and Jimmie (John Preator) get ready to hit the stage

Some very important advice from Max, Todd Dubail's dog, yes he is dressed as a squirrel for Halloween.

Some of our lovely Flappers (Megan Young, Rebekah Wainwright, Kylee Young)

Muzzy (Nicole Powell) and her boys (Top left to right: Clinton Sherwood, Tino Smith, myself and Clay Stefanki, Bottom left to right: Michael McGurk, Dan Gutierrez)

Mr.s Meers (Joyce Nolen) keeping her boys in line

Miss Dorothy (Jennifer Evans) with Ching-Ho (Daniel May) to the rescue

Miss Dorothy (Jennifer Evans) and Trevor (Peter Saide) share one last dip

Jimmie (John Preator) and the Pearl Lady (Veronica Yeager) strike a pose

The Millie Family (Laura E. Taylor, John Preator, Jennifer Evans, Peter Saide, Nicole Powell, Joyce Nolen, Eymard Cabling, Veronica Yeager, and Daniel May)

Good-bye, good goody girl. We'll miss you

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