News Column

Beyond the bright lights

July 12, 2013


July 12--All that glitters . . .

Norma Desmond knows the end of that phrase. The gold has long faded from her Hollywood career, leaving her alone and deluded -- but to screenwriter Joe Gillis, Desmond still represents a shining opportunity.

This messy relationship propels "Sunset Boulevard" -- both the 1950 film and the 1993 musical. It's the latter that will come to the Pueblo stage for five performances at the Runyon Theater, 611 N. Main St.

The Damon Runyon Repertory is putting on the musical. Runyon standouts Judith Cook, Sean Briggs and Rebecca Work star in the Tony Award-winning production.

Oliver Carlon is directing, with musical direction and accompaniment by Bette and Jim Lunn. For the young director,

from page 5A _______________________________________________ it's a hefty task.

"Being 20 years old and directing some very experienced vets can have its own challenges, especially when one (Cook) is your mother," Carlon said.

The story is set in 1949, so much of Carlon's preparation included research about that era and what Hollywood was like during that time.

Cook plays Desmond, the silent film star dreaming of a comeback. Cash-poor Gillis (Briggs) offers to help in exchange for a place to live. Betty Schaefer (Briggs) is the girl Gillis loves.

The musical closely follows the film, charting the descent of a oncegolden girl. Happily ever after isn't in this script; in fact, when the movie came out it drew some criticism from Hollywood for its failure to perpetuate the shiny myth. That didn't prevent it from becoming a classic.

Performances are scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Saturday and July 19-20 and 2 p.m. Sunday and July 21. Ticket prices range from $9 to $19.

For reservations, call 564-0579 or visit runyontheater. org.


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