Donald’s list: Weekend choices (Sept. 1)

Here’s a rundown on promising arts/culture picks for the weekend:

‘Swim Club’

You’ve got to hand it to the folks at the Kings Players in Hanford: They know how to counter program. On a very quiet weekend because of the Labor Day holiday, the company opens a new show: “The Dixie Swim Club,” directed by Debbie Walker.


Old friends: Mary-Catherine Paden, left, as Dinah, Nicole Devol as Vernadett, Samantha Highfill as Jeri Neal, Bethany Reynolds as Sheree and Danielle Bellman as Lexie in “The Dixie Swim Club.” Photo / Kings Players

I wrote a few months ago about the experience of visiting the Kings Players. You can read my “theater road trip” story here.

The play is written by Jamie Wooten, Jessie Jones, and Nicholas Hope. Here’s a description from the theater company’s website:


Five Southern women, whose friendships began on their college swim team, set aside a long weekend every August to recharge those relationships. They meet at the same beach cottage on North Carolina to catch up, laugh and meddle in each other’s lives. As the years pass, these women increasingly rely on one another, through advice and raucous repartee, to get through the challenges that life flings at them. And when fate throws a wrench into one of their lives, these friends, rally ’round their own with the strength and love. A hilarious and touching comedy about friendships that last forever.

For more about the cast, check out this preview story in Kings River Life. Lorie Lewis Ham writes:

The play is laced with moments of bawdy comedy, long-standing rivalries and, above all, steadfast loyalties, as the five friends try to relive and revive the team spirit that once made them the stars of their high school’s Swim Team.

… In spite of their very different personalities–or perhaps because of them–these ultimately indomitable women manage to achieve a bond between them that has survived betrayals, wounds, and grievances to emerge unbroken after 33 years.

Details: “The Dixie Swim Club” opens 7:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 1, Temple Theatre, 514 E. Visalia St., Hanford. Runs through Sept. 24. $14 at door, $12 online.

Playhouse Merced

Here’s one more theater opening: If you’re looking for a kid-friendly outing, set your GPS for Merced and a new production of “The Little Mermaid”:


Details: “Disney’s The Little Mermaid” opens 7:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 1, Playhouse Merced, 452 W. Main St., Merced. $15-$22.

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Covering the arts online in the central San Joaquin Valley and beyond. Lover of theater, classical music, visual arts, the literary arts and all creative endeavors. Former Fresno Bee arts critic and columnist. Graduate of Columbia University and Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. Excited to be exploring the new world of arts journalism.

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