By EVELYN CARINS
Krista Schafer Ewbank will see her dream of founding a Downriver professional theater company materialize on stage this month when the Open Book Theatre Company presents its inaugural performance, the comedy “Sylvia,” by A. R. Gurney.
The play is scheduled for Sept. 26 and 27 and Oct. 2, 3 and 4 at 8 p.m., and at 2 p.m. Sept. 28 at 12219 Dix Toledo, Southgate, behind Penelope’s Venue.
Ewbank, a Grosse Ile Township resident, has a degree in theater from Northwestern University and has spent 18 years performing in or directing theater companies throughout the metropolitan Detroit area and the United States.
The founder stressed that Open Book is not a membership organization.
“We hire professional actors as needed for each show, as well as designers and others, and will also be utilizing volunteers in various capacities,” she said.
Ewbank is also the artistic director of the company and president of the theater group’s board. Other board members are Brian Cahalan of Flat Rock, Lea Ellwood-Filkins of Wyandotte and Erin Shelton of Grosse Ile.
Associate Director Topher Payne is directing “Sylvia,” the first of four plays to be staged during the company’s first season.
Cast members of “Sylvia” are Ewbank, in the title role; Sean Paraventi of Redford Towndhip; Jan Cartwright of Novi; and Melissa Beckwith of Ferndale.
Future plays are “Red,” by John Logan, scheduled in December; “Independence,” by Lee Blessing, in February; and “Kimberly Akimo,” by David Lindsay-Abaire, in May.
Tickets $20 ($15 for students and seniors) are available online at www.openbooktc.com, at Penelope’s Venue and from board members.
Comedy to raise money
Performances of the comedy “Parallel Lives” will be presented on Sept. 19 and 20 to raise funds for the Wyandotte Community Theatre and the Downriver Council for the Arts.
The two-woman show, starring Jazmyn Bencik and Tammy Trudelle, will be staged at 7:30 p.m. at the James R. DeSana Center for Arts & Culture, 81 Chestnut, Wyandotte.
The actresses will depict men and women struggling with common rituals of modern life. The play, which contains adult language and situations, is directed by Jeremy St. Martin.
Martin, Bencik and Trudelle are Wyandotte residents.
Tickets, $15, and additional information are available by calling 734-720-0671 or 734-775-9635, or going to www.downriverarts.org or www.wyandottecommunitytheatre.com.
‘Somewhere’ events slated
Games, crafts, entertainment and automobiles popular in the early 1900s await visitors to the annual Somewhere in Time celebration from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sept. 21 at Elizabeth Park in Trenton.
In conjunction with the event, the annual Taste of Trenton and Beyond will offer specialties of area restaurants.
The park, at 3975 W. Jefferson, will be closed to traffic during the celebration, which is sponsored by the Wayne County Department of Parks and Recreation in co-operation with Trenton Parks and Recreation.
Coming up . . .
Sept. 14 — Walk ’n’ Roll fundraiser for ALS at Lake Erie Metropark in Brownstown Township; registration at 10 a.m.; walk at 11 a.m.; for more information, call 1-800-882-5764 or go to www.alsofmichigan.org.
Sept. 26 — “Sip-n-Support!” beer and wine fundraiser for the Downriver Youth Performing Arts Center; 7 p.m. at Salute Special Events, 26123 Huron River Drive, Flat Rock; for tickets, $35, or more information, call 734-771-7945 or go to www.dypac.com.
Sept. 27 — Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Light the Night Walk at Bishop Park in downtown Wyandotte; festivities begin at 5 p.m.; remembrance ceremony at 6:15 p.m.; program at 6:45 p.m.; and walk at approximately 7:15 p.m.; to register or for more information, call 248-581-3941 or go to www.lightthenight.org.