MOVP play stars stories of Marietta

The Mid-Ohio Valley Players will present “A Time to Remember” this weekend only, a life story theater taken from interviews of people who lived in the area during the early 1920s through the ’50s this weekend.

With slides of early Marietta, provided by Lynne Sturtevant of Hidden Marietta and recordings from the era, audiences will go back to the time of one room school houses, the flood of 1937, traveling river boats and World War II.

The play, a project which began nearly 30 years ago, will feature several veteran actors of MOVP, most of whom were in the original cast which performed the show on The Becky Thatcher in 1995.

The idea for the play was formed when MOVP member, Marlene Somerville, having seen a production of Grandparents Theater of Columbus, was inspired to present the concept to the local theater group. Several members then did taped interviews of older residents of the area at senior centers and rest homes to gather their stories of life in the valley as they remembered it.

The project was then put on hold and the tapes were stored in a garage until the fall of 1995, when Carol Wharff, looking for a play of local interest for the Beck Thatcher, went to Sommerville and the idea to put the interviews into script form was begun.

The women asked Nancy Pansing Wymond, local author and fellow thespian, to help put a script together. Wymond put it on her computer and the first draft was formed. Several revisions later, the results became “A Time to Remember.”

The play had its premiere performance on the Becky Thatcher on Oct. 6, 1995. Many of the original members of that cast have returned for this production, which will be presented in readers theater format. Cast members are Marlene Somerville, Marian Kurner, Nancy Wymond, Suzyn Mills, Mark Neyman, Mike Siddall and Chuck Kurner. Director, Carol Wharff, will be assisted by Ines Allen and other volunteers from MOVP.

Performances will be held at 8 p.m. on Friday and Saturday and a Sunday matinee at 3 p.m. at Players Theater, 229 Putnam St., Marietta. Tickets are available at the box office prior to performances. All proceeds go for the upkeep of the historic Putnam Theater. Prices are $11 for adults, $9 for seniors and students, and $6 for youth up to age 16.

Mid-Ohio Valley Players, is funded in part by Artsbridge, recently celebrated their 50th anniversary providing live theater to Marietta.