Bits 'n' Pieces: Battle Ground thespians are singin' in the rain

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Battle Ground, Prairie students 'Singin' in the Rain'

A rainy fall evening seems the perfect time to see "Singin' in the Rain," presented by the combined drama departments at Battle Ground and Prairie high schools.

"Singin' in the Rain" began as a 1952 movie starring Gene Kelly, Debbie Reynolds and Donald O'Connor. It was adapted for the London stage in 1983 and the Broadway stage in 1985.

A classic American musical, "Singin' in the Rain" has been ranked No. 5 on the list of "100 Best American Movies of All Time" by The American Film Institute. The setting is Hollywood when the introduction of "talkies" — movies with sound — abruptly ended the silent-film era.

Nick Hulscher of Prairie plays romantic lead Don Lockwood; Josh Snider of Prairie plays his pal Cosmo Brown; Ashlee Waldbauer of Prairie plays Kathy Seldon and Sarah Russell of Battle Ground High School plays vain, fingernails-on-chalkboard-voiced actress Lina Lamont.

Teachers, of course, also have a role. Prairie drama teacher Claire Verity is director and choreographer, Darcy Schmitt of Battle Ground is vocal music director and Battle Ground music teacher Greg McKelvey directs the band.

"Singin' in the Rain" will be staged at 7 p.m. Nov. 8-10 and Nov. 15-17 at Prairie High School, 11500 N.E. 117th Ave. Tickets are $10 and are available at http://www.prairiehighschool.org. For information, call Prairie High School, 360-885-5000.

— Susan Parrish

Couple realize dream of a TV show of their own

Heidie and Doug McCall have long wanted to share their strange, silly and artistic vision of the world with the public. So the Vancouver couple — an artist and writer, respectively — created their own TV show.

It's been a long learning process, but the show, "Patrishaa's Workshop," is finally complete. It's airing on Comcast's Channel 11 Community Access Network, said Heidie, 59.

"A long time ago, I thought of the idea, way back in the '90s," she said. "Around 2000, we decided, hey, let's just do it. So I started taking classes in (video editing software) Final Cut Pro, and we kept working at it."

The couple finished the first season of their show earlier this year. It follows the life of an eccentric artist called Patrishaa, she said.

"It's like Vincent Van Gogh or any great artist allowed a camera crew in to watch their process," Heidie said. "It's a one-woman show. I play all the characters, and Doug does all the writing."

Doug, 69, is a fiction author who publishes under the name D.A. McCall. Heidie makes ceramics and paints, among other things, she said.

"There's no advertising in the show. Every product in there is something that we created — which is one reason why it took so long," she said.

The show airs from 7:30 to 8 p.m. Thursdays through Dec. 31 on Comcast. Clips can be viewed at http://www.factoryweststudio.com.

— Sue Vorenberg

Bits 'n' Pieces appears Fridays and Saturdays. If you have a story you'd like to share, email bits@columbian.com.