Vaudeville melodrama full of zanies hitting GHS stage

Staff Writer
Geneseo Republic
Among cast members of this weekend’s “Pure as the Driven Snow” performances at Galva High School are (kneeling, from left) Nelson Kendall, Katie Huffman, Cody Demas, Ellie Savage; (back, from left) Kevin O’Riley, Hayley Thuline, Lance Salzmann, Taryn VanDeVelde, Kerry Cortes, Kait O’Riley and Erika Edmonds.

A zany cast of characters enduring plot twists, double dealing and mixed messages will delight audiences at this weekend’s production of “Pure as the Driven Snow,” this year’s spring play at Galva High School.

Held at 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday night, the play, written by Paul Loomis, is a vaudeville-style melodrama in which the audience is encouraged to cheer the good guys and boo the bad ones.

Characters include persecuted heroine Purity Dean (Oh, how pure!), fiercely mustachioed rogue Mortimer Frothingham (his name reeks of villainous deeds) and noble Leander Longfellow, who works in a pickle factory.

Set in the 1930s, the story includes a romance between Purity Dean (a working girl with a secret) and Leander Longfellow, with Mortimer Frothingham hot on Purity’s trail. The discovery of an abandoned baby in a barn thickens the plot.

The cast includes: Taryn VanDeVelde (Purity Dean), Kerry Cortez (Leander Longfellow), Lance Salzmann (Mortimer Frothingham), Cody Demas (Jonathan Logan), Ellie Savage (Zamah Logan), Kait O’Riley (Mrs. Ethelinda Hewlitt), Nelson Kendall (Erik Z. Pickins), Katie Huffman (Imogene Pickins), Kevin O’Riley (Jed Lunn), Hayley Thuline (Mrs. Faith Hogue), Megan Benjamin (Letty Barber) and Taylor Williams (Nellie Morris).

Silent movie cast members are Nolan Peterson, Kayla Stewart, Ethan Halsall and Meg Engstrom. Dancing girls are Hannah Nordstrom, Macy Droege, Alex Caravello, Shannon Clark, Rachel Jeffries and Emily Swanson.

Tech crew members are Haley Hardy, Beverly Scott, Miriah Anderson, Ryan Craig, Harry Hergert and Carol Fredrickson. Sarah Fredrickson is the sign girl.

The play is directed by Malory Payne. Assistant director is Pamela Lee. Student director is Stephanie Cokel.

Tickets are available at the door.

A spaghetti supper hosted by the Galva Lions Club from 5 to 7 p.m. in the school cafeteria will be held before Saturday night’s performance. Meal attendees will get $1 off the cost of their play tickets.