BLAINESWORLD #1086 (Please send any comments to:

Section 2, part 2


(2) Lucas Gregg: Ah, where to begin…

The long and short of it:
A theatre company near and dear to my heart needs your help. Consider making a donation and if you are in the WNC area, check out ‘HARD TRAVELING WITH WOODY’ aka Randy Noojin at Owen Theatre July 27th-30th.

Some backstory:

I’m fortunate enough to have been raised in a “theatre family.” Theatre had always been a part of my life, but in the year 2000, my family moved to Mars Hill, NC where my father Bill Gregg took a position as the artistic director at SART. The theatre was old, and falling apart in many places. But man, it had history! The space was an old church converted into a performance space, and at that point SART had already been running for 25 years.

Growing up, if I wasn’t acting on the stage, I was backstage being babysat by the actors, or in the technical booth operating a follow spot. I’ll never forget playing the role of Little Jake at the age of 7 in ‘Annie Get Your Gun’ along side my mother Liz Aiello – literally kicking ass on stage in cowboy boots and hat, swinging an antique 45′ like it was her job.

Or the time my brother, Cameron Gregg and I played stage brothers in ‘Lost In Yonkers’ with the immensely talented Kay Galvin.
Michael Mattison played the badass uncle and man, cameron you rocked that ‘stickin it to the man’ monologue every night! You got moxie, kid!

And who could forget ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’? Savannah Rose Crespoabsolutely stole the show as scout, Ellis Robinson as Jem. I portrayed Dill. Mackenzie KnappJennifer Ariel HastyRobert P McDaniel all in this one as well.

How about ‘The Lion, The Witch And The Wardrobe’. Manon ManavitJasmine Sky, Cameron and I – What a dream team! One night we forgot one of our prop swords and came out at the end with a frying pan instead….Larry Putnam.

And the summer of 2008 was probably the best summer
I ever had as a kid thanks to Amanda ‘Mandy’ SaylesCat Dillon and Chelsey Lee Mirheli. The year of Evita! Or some might say….Evito? Michael Fisher

All of these individuals and so many others passed through the stage door every summer. Some came and went, others returned each year. And every single one of them I looked up to in one way or another. This theatre, the people, the shows, shaped so much of my being. Im so fortunate to have called SART my home for the last 17 years.

…………………Clear the stage, dim the lights, lower the curtain………………

From 2015-2016 SART and MHC Theatre dept. finally got the renovations and new building they so desperately needed to a falling apart space. However, the construction process displaced SART and the theatre was forced to move out of its home venue for two seasons, drastically diminishing sales and now the doors have been temporarily closed.

However the once downtrodden theatre space has been turned into a state of the art facility with new seating, lighting, and carpeting. There’s a new box office, black box theatre, and bathrooms. What a shame it would be if this new space couldn’t be properly put to use!

I want so much for others to experience the one of a kind magic that SART has the potential to offer, and that I experienced for so may years growing up.

There are stories that deserve to be told on that stage…and actors who eagerly await to tell them.

So lets raise the curtain again for SART, and keep the tradition alive for years to come.

With love & gratitude***

Note: To help out, please click:

(3) Ginger Heskett: The three best tips for customer retention

(4) As Paperwork Goes Missing, Private Student Loan Debts May Be Wiped Away



(7) Natalie Kaye: Saw My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 – laughed so hard.  I loved it.

Response: I liked it, too–and so did Cynthia.

(8) Bill Rech: [Saw] Dunkirk the movie, today. I Max version. Really worth seeing.

(9) Jacquie Wollins:


Section 12A, NC events

(1) Richard Shulman: “Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow: A Journey in Jazz” with Wendy Jones, Russ Wilson, and Richard Shulman

Great Jazz Songs from the 1920s through the 20-teens.

July 30, 2017

Lounge Seated
Limited Tables Available with a Dinner Reservation :: All Other Seating is First Come First Serve General Admission :: Please Call Venue for Dinner (Table) Reservations 828-575-2737
$12 Advance / $15 Day of Show

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(2) Hendersonville Community Theatre:

Disney’s The Lion King has captivated the imagination of audiences around the world. In this family-friendly performance, the African savannah comes to life with Simba, Rafiki and an unforgettable cast of characters.

Join this cast of students, ages5-15, as they take you on a memorable journey of coming of age and finding your destiny!

(3) David Francis:

Note: This is David’s final recital in the area, in that he will be moving to Mexico in September. (Asheville’s loss!) There is no charge for this performance.

(4) Travis Low: Tickets are on sale now for Six Knots. Get them here:

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(5) Nathan Singer: Learning to Listen, for a Change.

Different Strokes! Performing Arts Collective presents…

by Mark St. Germain
Directed by Ashleigh Millett-Goff
Assistant Direction by Courtney DeGennaro Robinson

August 17 – September 2 (Thurs – Sat) at 7:30PM
Online tickets are $15 for Opening Weekend or $18 in advance, and $21 at the door. And NO FEES for online purchases.

BEBE THEATRE. 20 Commerce Street. Downtown Asheville, NC

Features: Jeanette Oliver, Sean David Robinson, Bjorn Goller-Hagoob, and Molly Graves

Designs: Artemis Addams, Stephanie Hickling-Beckman, Katy Hudson, Laura Lowe, Grace Siplon, Nathan Singer, and Tippin

Production Beneficiary: Word on The Street, a component of Asheville Writers in The Schools & Community

Osha Gray Davidson’s The Best of Enemies: Race and Redemption in The New South, chronicles a friendship that developed in 1970 between two people who began as bitter enemies–black activist Ann Atwater (Janet Oliver) and white Grand Cyclops of the Durham North Carolina chapter of the ​Ku Klux Klan, C.P Ellis (Sean David Robinson). Mark St. Germain’s play, Best of Enemies, brings the story of this “unlikely friendship” to the stage against a Civil Rights backdrop.

Best of Enemies is based on the true events leading up to the official desegregation of the Durham school system in 1971. Ellis’ racism and contempt are challenged by Atwater, a local civil rights activist and Bill Riddick (Bjorn Goller), a community organizer from D.C. sent to Durham to facilitate the desegregation process. Both Ellis and Atwater are extremely reluctant to be in the same room together, let alone co-chair a committee to explore the problems in their school system. But through the course of their work together—and the tough-but-soft influence of Ellis’ wife, Mary (Molly Graves) — the two extremes find their way to the middle, uniting around their shared desire to secure a better future for their children. They realize that regardless of the color of their skin, their children are suffering in appalling school conditions. “We began to talk about what was on our heart,” Ellis says. “And both of us wept. … It was because the kids were suffering.” In the documentary “An Unlikely Friendship”, Ellis explains that people join extremist groups because they feel “shut out”. “Deep down inside, we want to be part of this great society,” he says. “Nobody listens, so we join these groups.”

I love how Best of Enemies explores what these two angry, opposite people have to go through in order to find common ground, and how relevant that is to the divisive times we’re going through in 2017. When I chose this play almost a year ago, I was very consumed by the negative effects of the social and political climate on my friends, and within our community; how people weren’t really listening to each other, yet fighting ​vehemently ​to be heard. Best of Enemies appealed to me as proof that the people of this country could find a way to listen to each other despite our personal and political differences; to work together for the rights, equality, and safety of all it’s citizens.

– Stephanie Hickling-Beckman, Managing Artistic Director

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(6) Kai Elijah Hamilton:

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Section 12B, PA/NJ events

(1) ‘The Threepenny Opera’ at ActorsNET through July 30

To read a review for this show, please click:


(2) At Mercer County Community College’s Kelsey Theatre:


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