ALTON — The Actors and Artists of the Riverbend theater group continues to flourish in its fourth year, as it uses performing arts to benefit an area nonprofit.
This summer, the organization will share the art of theater for the benefit of the Jacoby Arts Center with the production of “Beehive,” the 1960s musical sensation.
The nostalgic musical, with more than 40 songs, remembers a time when everybody dug the Twist, Sandra Dee got engaged to Bobby Darin and 13-year-old girls dreamed of becoming shindig dancers. This tribute to the girl groups and great female singers of the ’60s includes songs from the Chiffons, Shirelles, Aretha Franklin, Diana Ross and the Supremes, Janis Joplin, Connie Francis, Leslie Gore, Tina Turner and more. “Beehive” began in 1986 at the New York cabaret Sweetwaters and moved to the Top of the Gate, where it played for more then 600 performances. The musical originally was written and directed by Larry Gallagher.
Actors and Artists of the Riverbend theater group was established in 2011 as a community group of professional teams that create theater productions to benefit area nonprofits. The show is directed by Sue Mueller with Gordon Cragg as choreographer, Caitlin Peach as vocal and music director, Jerry Mueller as the technical director and Daniel Nosce as rehearsal and band member. Since the group began, “West Side Story,” “Seven Brides for Seven Brothers” and “Smokey Joe’s Café” have provided attention and monetary benefit to the causes of the 5A’s animal shelter, Riverbender.com Community Center and the Alton Youth Symphony.
Actors and Artists of the Riverbend joins Jacoby Arts Center to enhance their programming with community theater.
The group offer three performances at 7:30 p.m. Friday, July 24, and Saturday, July 25, at the Nazarene Community Center (theater), 400 N. Center in Roxana; or 2 p.m. Sunday, July 26. Tickets are $10 and $6 and may be purchased online at www.jacobyartscenter.org or at the performance. Proceeds benefit Jacoby Arts Center in Alton. Silent auction items will be available for the benefit as well. For information, call (618) 581-6220.