News Column

Musical celebration planned for 65th theater season

July 17, 2013


July 17--A champagne gala and red carpet affair await the Porterville Barn Theater Hosscar nominees Saturday during Night of Stars -- the 65th Hosscars Awards celebration, honoring the best of the 2012-13 Porterville Barn Theater season.

"We're keeping it as simple as possible -- yet classy," said Hosscars Awards chairwoman for the past 10 years Wendy Plaisted. "This is such a special event for us. It is our one chance we get to celebrate with others, sharing our passion."

After being treated to a 5 p.m. dinner, the nominees will arrive at the Porterville Barn Theater for a 7 p.m. red carpet walk through the Barn's lobby into the theatre.

The Barn's 65th season will be commemorated with vocalists singing the songs from numerous musicals that have played at the theatre and a slide presentation depicting 65 years of Barn history.

In addition, two costumes from each of the season's five plays will be on exhibit in the lobby.

"They were so diverse this year, we've had everything from Shakespeare to 1920s, 1930s, and 1940s to the 1990s in this season," Plaisted said. "There was such a wide range of costumes -- we were all over the gamut. This will show what our costumers did. We have western costumes too. There's so much variety."

"We're very excited," Plaisted went on. "We will have video clips -- three to five minutes each -- of all but one show. Our Shakespeare show will have a live performance."

Emceeing the event will be Steve Ross and Gordon Plaisted Jr.

"They're both strong actors on stage and will make the audience comfortable," Plaisted said. "Everybody will have a good time. They are the perfect hosts."

A total of 18 Hosscar awards -- the Barn's version of the Oscars -- will be presented, including those for best major and minor support, best bit, best juvenile, best set design, best costumes, best lighting and best direction. In addition, there will be a President's Award, a Board of Directors' Award and a Lifetime Achievement Award presented during the evening.

The process of selecting the recipients for the awards is extensive, Plaisted said.

"Through the year, judges watch the shows and score them on a 10-point scale," she said. "They score the actors, sets, costumes, directing -- and in the end, they take all the scores and average them. The nominees are the top three in each category."

The three biggest awards -- best male, best female and best show -- will be presented last. In addition, each presenter will also share their first Barn show experience.

"It's very exciting. We are unique here in that we have the opportunity to have bonds that last. The Barn is such a warm home to many," Plaisted said. "I've been here since the 1983-1984 season. We retain people. You can't say that about all theaters. We have people here in the core audience who have been here since Day 1."

Tickets for the evening, including the champagne and hors d'oeuvres after the awards, and the opportunity to visit with the Hosscar winners, are $10 each.

They can be obtained by calling 310-7046, online at or at the door.

Contact Esther Avila at 784-5000, Ext. 1045. Follow her on Twitter @Avila_recorder.


(c)2013 The Porterville Recorder (Porterville, Calif.)

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