Continuing their emphasis on local settings, Michael Prince and the folks at Gaslight Melodrama are now doing a soap opera parody titled "Rosedale."
The central theme: "Who shot R.J. Brewing?," a play on the name of the character the late Larry Hagman played in the long-running nighttime soap "Dallas."
"It is, after all, one of the classics," Prince said. "We, of course, had to change ours to R.J. from J.R. (Ewing), but the fun is still the same."
But the script Prince has written for the Gaslight show has many more elements, among them references to local farming. Brewing, played by Jay Stodder, is the patriarch of the biggest almond farming family in Rosedale.
"We've taken all the funny over-the-top stuff from all of the popular soap operas such as 'Days of Our Lives' and thrown them into our own."
Some audience members may notice a couple of new faces in the cast, namely Shaylon Trone and Mendy Leyendecker, who play Flo and Sally. Yet neither is exactly new and both have connections with Gaslight.
"Shaylon has been a part of the melodrama family since we first opened," Prince said. "Her last show was our 'Back From the Future' in 2011. She's been finishing college and getting her teaching credential these past couple of years."
Leyendecker is director of the melodrama's Children's Theatre Workshop, but this is her first main stage show.
Others in the Rosedale cast are Matthew Thompson, Shawn Rader, Chris Burzlaff, Jennifer Prince, Taylor Dunn and Jessica Burzlaff.
Music director Warren Dobson has titled his vaudeville revue, which follows the play, "Karaoke at the Blue Tail Lounge." Performances continue though Sept. 14.
Reagan Library tour
A one-day trip to the Ronald Reagan Library on Aug. 4 will be the first in the Arts Council of Kern's new ArtVentures program.
A highlight will be the library's private, docent-led tour of the Lincoln exhibit that includes historic artifacts like a signed copy of the Emancipation Proclamation, the president's stovepipe hat and gold watch, and Mary Todd Lincoln's Bible, as well as costumes and sets used in Steven Spielberg's 2012 movie about the 16th president.
Arts Council president Anthony Goss said travel to the Simi Valley site will be on an 81-passenger double-decker bus equipped with seat belts. The $100-per-person tab includes lunch.
"The curator, Andrew Wulf, will talk to us about the Lincoln exhibit during lunch, which we'll eat in the Air Force One pavilion," Goss said.
Air Force One, the plane that flew seven presidents, is a permanent part of the Reagan Library. However, the Lincoln exhibit will be on display only until Sept. 30.
At least two other ArtVentures are being planned during the council's fiscal year. In December there will be a holiday-themed evening tour of Hearst Castle in San Simeon.
And then in March or April, Bakersfield-based performing magician Ron Saylor will lead a trip to the Magic Castle in Hollywood.
Goss said the out-of-town visits are being done as incentives to increase membership in the council as well as a method of fundraising.
Tuesday is the deadline for making reservations for the Reagan Library trip.
Folk-pop duo to perform
Shelby Lindley and Tieg Johnson, a pair of singing-songwriting musicians, will perform a concert Tuesday at Fiddlers Crossing in Tehachapi.
Deborah Hand-Cutler, owner of the coffeehouse, describes the duo as a "gleam of light" in the current popular music scene.
"So much of the music young people listen to, write and perform today is dark and even nihilistic," she said. "This is the kind of music your mother would love to have you love if you were 13."
Known professionally as Shelby & Tieg, the duo is based in Sunland, a suburb of Los Angeles. Lindley has worked as a studio singer and Johnson is a guitar teacher. They have been performing together in the Los Angeles and San Diego areas for about three years.
Fiddlers Crossing is an informal venue. Coffee, pastries and other refreshments are provided free to concertgoers.
Cannon at PCPA
Still no word when or if Spotlight Theatre will stage any productions. But there is good news about Joseph Cannon, one of the actors who appeared in several shows at the downtown Bakersfield venue before moving to Arizona about four years ago.
Cannon is on the Central Coast appearing as King Arthur in the PCPA Theaterfest production of "Spamalot," which is being presented at the outdoor Solvang Festival Theater.
The Monty Python-inspired musical opened on July 13 in Solvang and continues nightly, except Mondays, through Aug. 10.
Check out YouTube.com/ pcpatheaterfest for a lively 4-minute video clip of Cannon and the cast in action.
PCPA is a professional conservatory theater based at Allen Hancock College in Santa Maria that has been in business since 1964.
Cannon has a powerful singing voice and long-time Condors fans will remember his frequent pre-game performances of our national anthem at Rabobank Arena. At the time, he was serving in the Marine Corps and performed wearing his uniform.