Borrego Sun - Since 1949

Borrego Springs - Funny You Don't Look Like a Grandma


Last updated 3/7/2016 at 8:10am

Russell Webb

How many Grandmas does it take to change a light bulb? None, 'that's ok, I'll sit by a window, I'll light a candle, I'll learn Braille...'. Now if you can read that with a New York Jewish accent, you'll get the picture of Funny You Don't Look Like A Grandma, showing last weekend (Mar. 3-6) at BSPAC.

Two years ago co-director Sherrie Harapat put together a spectacular production of Nunsense to the overwhelming enjoyment of Borrego audiences, which is still talked about today.

This year she, and co-director Shamus Sherwood, has enlisted the help of Nunsense cast members Lynette Salton, Elaine Hazelrigg and Julie Kehler to bring the stories of new grandmothers to life at the BSPAC stage.

With the expert help of husband and Musical Director Richard Helvig and Jinny Perrin on keyboards, these women cavorted through gym classes, baby clothes shopping at the mall, Grandmother of the Year ceremonies and walks in the park as well as reminiscing about the roles of grandmas and grandpas in the lives of their grandchildren and who they were and how to share that with them.

Having worked with the original Sister Mary Amnesia in 6 of the 7 Nunsense incarnations I can say unequivocally that Lynette Salton was unsurpassed. Likewise, as Grandmother number 2, she carried it off with all the moxie and pathos one would expect in a modern grandma. Of course, having been onstage since the second grade and performing in Borrego since 2010 invarious Christmas and variety shows, she is eminently qualified and gifted in her role.

With that Brooklyn accent she generated so well in Nunsense you'd think there was a Canadian neighborhood in that southernmost of New York buroughs, but Julie Kehler is, indeed, from our northern neighbor. Julie says she never met a microphone she didn't love. As a 'recovering politician'(?) with a music degree in medieval chant she much prefers to perform in the warm glow of Borrego Springs after such lofty, and chilly, venues as the Winter Olympics in Canada and Notre Dame Cathedral, Ms. Kehler is a welcome, and talented addition to the Borrego theatre world.

Elaine Hazelrigg is, relatively, a long-time resident of Borrego Springs having moved here in 2007 after visiting for several years before. Prior to arriving on our dunes (shores didn't seem appropriate) she had been in many musicals including South Pacific and Damn Yankees, well prepared for the WWII and Swingtime variety shows and Mother Superior in Nunsense. Her grandmother is hilarious.

Along with Larry Gilstrap in his first, ever, performance, Elaine and Alan Tulving, in their second, Beth Hart, a veteran of many Borrego variety shows, Laura Brecht, on loan from St Barnabas Episcopal Church, Athens, Ga. native Beki Braden, from Ocotillo's and Fred Jee, who has performed in more shows here than even he likes to count (including the Christmas tree role) rounds out a fun and entertaining supporting cast.

It goes to show that with motivated direction and performing like this, BSPAC can produce excellent Theatre.

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