Village Players win New Hampshire Theatre Awards

Written by: Jay Sydow, President 2004.

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Hello VP members,

I would like to take a minute of your time to congratulate you. I had the good fortune to attend the NH Theater Awards along with

Carol Bense on Friday evening at the Palace Theater in Manchester. It was a very long evening but I had some great surprises. The first surprise was we bumped into Bill Fluhr, but wait it gets better.

The awards show is presented by New Hampshire magazine and honors theater in NH, both professional and community. The show started slowly with lots of awards presented to large theater groups. There were dramatic readings and musical numbers performed by local actors. There was a phenomenal number from Ragtime performed by Nashua's theater group (Broadway caliber complete with chills up the spine) and a lot of blah, blah, blah banter from the hosts. The night was getting long until the category of "best supporting actor in a community theater/drama", came along. Boy I woke up fast when I heard our own Bill Fluhr's name mentioned as a finalist for "Hounds of the Baskerville". What a thrill. Some guy from somewhere else won but he wasn't as good as Bill (at least that's what Bill and I think). Next up was "best supporting actress/drama" (drama means non-musical). Alphabetically the names were read and the third and final name read was Helen White for "the Foreigner". A lesser actor won but "Wow" this was two nominees. "Best actor in community theater/drama" brought Wayne Gehman's name to the attention of the crowd. This was unbelievable. Wayne, Helen and Bill were all finalists in their categories. What a thrill. None of them brought home the "hardware" but as far as I/we were concerned they/we were all winners.

Well to make a long story shorter. The evening continued. Carol Bense and I left at around 11:20 pm (very late, very tired,lousy weather) I couldn't find Bill anywhere so with tongue in cheek a approached Meggin Dail (from the Pittsfield Players) and asked "Would you be a love and accept all of our awards and bring them to us later"? Her reply was "Most definitely. I hope I can fit them all in my car". We had a nice little chuckle and that was that.

When I stepped in the door at 12:45 am the phone rang. It was Meggin. "You never should have left" she said. It seems that in our absence we missed the categories for Best Director and Best Show. The Best Director category read.....Some guy from where ever for whatever, Michael Wilkes, the Village Players for "The Hound of the Baskervilles" and Nadine San Antonio, the Village Players for "The Foreigner". Wow two nominees. "And the winner is..............Michael Wilkes for "The Hound of the Baskervilles". This is very cool. Meggin informed me there was more. The final award of the evening was for Best of Shows. I along with others (Bill and Carol) thought this award was saved for the Westminster Dog Show. Well I was very wrong.

The nominees were; "some show from some place", "The Hounds of the Baskervilles", The Village Players and "The Foreigner", The Village Players.

"AND THE WINNER IS............... "The Hounds of the Baskervilles, The Village Players.

I want to let you know how very proud I am of all of you.

CONGRATULATIONS to Bill, Helen, Wayne, Nadine, Michael and the Village Players.
CONGRATULATIONS to the cast and crew of both of the shows.
This was/is huge. Have I mentioned how proud I am?

Congrats again and lets keep up the good work.
RESPECTFULLY and most SINCERELY

Jay Sydow

President of the most talented community theater group this side of Bali Hai