Angel Street Is a ‘Heavenly’ Production

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The Virgin Valley Theatre Group’s motto is ‘Setting the Stage in Mesquite’ and after attending the opening performances of Angel Street on Oct. 16 at the Mesquite Community Theatre it became evident to the audience that they are ‘Setting the Stage’ to very high standards for their 2015-16 season.

Angel Street  Bottom row: Jenna Grubb (Director), Emily Conklin (Nancy), Jennifer Patrick (Bella Manningham), Glen Bjornson (Set Designer, Jack Manningham), Patty Bjornson (Stage Manager) Middle: Jerrie Clarke (Elizabeth), Chad Calmelat (Police Officer), Mark Geurtin (Police Officer) Third Row:  Janet McDonald (Costumer), Matt McDonald (Director) and Denis Feehan (Inspector Rough).  Photo by Teri Nehrenz.

Angel Street Bottom row: Jenna Grubb (Director), Emily Conklin (Nancy), Jennifer Patrick (Bella Manningham), Glen Bjornson (Set Designer, Jack Manningham), Patty Bjornson (Stage Manager) Middle: Jerrie Clarke (Elizabeth), Chad Calmelat (Police Officer), Mark Geurtin (Police Officer) Third Row: Janet McDonald (Costumer), Matt McDonald (Director) and Denis Feehan (Inspector Rough). Photo by Teri Nehrenz.

The subject matter is anything but ‘heavenly’ in this Victorian thriller but the set, acting, directing, costumes and crew work so perfectly together to create an experience you’ll be feeling as if you’ve died and gone to heaven when you realize that this high quality entertainment is available in your own back yard.

The sheer amount of work involved in putting this production together is evident from the start of their new season and will have your hopes high for the rest of the season as well.

From the moment you walk into the Mesquite Community Theatre directors Matt McDonald and Jenna Grubb have left the curtain open on the exquisite Victorian style set, designed by Glen Bjornson, which will have you wanting to move right in.

With the lights down low and music perfectly suited to the occasion, you sit and wait for the production to begin.  There is a palatable aura of suspense and excitement that fills the air and draws the audience into the show before it even starts.  Grubb and McDonald have masterfully set the stage for the thrilling performance that is about to take place.

The main characters Jack Manningham (Glen Bjornson), Bella Manningham (Jennifer Patrick) and Inspector Rough (Dennis Feehan) will take you through a roller coaster of emotions with their powerful characters.  You’ll become sympathetic to the very fragile Bella, have fun with Inspector Rough’s amiable, charismatic character and grow to hate the despicable Jack Manningham.  The outstanding performances of Patrick, Bjornson and, newcomer, Feehan had audience members on the edges of their seats waiting to find out what would happen next.

Of course no show of this caliber is complete without a wonderful supporting cast and in this case it’s the talented group of Jerrie Clarke, Emily Conklin, Chad Calmelat and Mark Guertin who make up this ‘heavenly chorus of angels’ even though some appear to be just the opposite.

There are five more performances of Angel Street Oct. 23, 24, 30 and 31 at 7 p.m. and Oct. 25 at 2 p.m. If you don’t make one of them you’ll surely feel like the devil when your friends and neighbors are all talking about some of the most amazing talent they’ve discovered within the members of the VVTG.

For information on how you can obtain tickets to Angel Street or any of the VVTG’s 2015-16 season shows, contact the VVTG at vvtgnv.com.

Jack Manningham played by Actor Glen Bjornson is slowly and methodically trying to drive his wife Bella, Jennifer Patrick insane in the VVTG’s 2015-16 season opening production of Angel Street at the Mesquite Community Theatre on October 16.  Photo by Teri Nehrenz.

Jack Manningham played by Actor Glen Bjornson is slowly and methodically trying to drive his wife Bella, Jennifer Patrick insane in the VVTG’s 2015-16 season opening production of Angel Street at the Mesquite Community Theatre on October 16. Photo by Teri Nehrenz.

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