PRINCESS THEATRE - Raising the Curtain: April 2009

Wednesday, April 22, 2009


As usual, The Babahatchie Community Band rehearsed Monday evening for the May 16thAppalachian Dreams” stage show. On hand Monday, to practice with the band, were Sandra Copeland Hicks, representing “The Chickadees”, and Roane County High School’s Kayla Wadlington, who will open both shows with the national anthem.

Kayla plays the alto sax in the Roane County High School and RCHS Jazz bands. Kayla, a junior this year, rushed to the rehearsal just after tennis practice. She, and band director McCall Bohanan, conferred for a few minutes and then she ran through the anthem a couple of times with the band. She is the daughter of Randy and Rita Wadlington of Kingston.

Later, Kayla, her mother Rita, discuss future rehearsal and show

arrangements with Gary Baker of the Princess Foundation.

McCall Bohanan is a member of the UT Music Department, where he is pursuing a master’s degree in Music Education, and is an arranger of several works for wind and choral ensembles.

The Babahatchie Community Band was founded by Dr. Joe Williams, and he and several of his old high school classmates continue to play together today weekly. The band is a rather eclectic group with member ages ranging from pre-teens to over eighty! It’s a wonderful ensemble that enjoys playing great music together!

Remember, the evening show is “sold out”, but there are still plenty of tickets to the 2PM Matinee at the Roane State Theater. See you there!

Saturday, April 18, 2009


HOWEVER, there are plenty of 2PM “matinee” tickets remaining, so hurry and purchase yours now!

What a wonderful testament to the support the area is giving to restoring the Princess Theater and to the effort of revitalizing downtown Harriman! It also confirms what we have long believed, and that is that people of this area are hungry for entertaining things to do. It is the commitment of Princess Productions and Roane State Community College to continue to bring you entertaining shows, based on area talent to the Roane State Theater and, in the near future, the Princess Theater!

We are grateful for you support and look forward to seeing you at the Roane State Theater, at either 2PM, or 7PM, on May 16th!

Monday, April 13, 2009


Film clips are being edited, photo montages are being worked out, stage sets are being prepared, and actors and actresses are being recruited and practiced! It’s an exciting time for the Princess Productions and Roane State Community College staffs, and everyone is convinced that “Appalachian Dreams”, scheduled for a 2PM matinee, and a 7PM evening, showing at the Roane State Theater on May 16th, will be a crowd pleaser!

Bill Landry’s Media Production class, held every Monday evening from 6 to 9PM, at Roane State is putting the final touches on scripts and film sequences planned for the May show. I visited the class this past Monday evening and found Brooks Benjamin, local school teacher and independent film maker, leading the first hour of Bill’s class. The class was discussing the nearly completed J. D. Williams filmed interview, and the reviewing the raw footage taken at the Phillippi Primitive Baptist Church back in March.

Bill was delayed getting to class because he was busy in the Roane State Theater, watching rehearsals of the upcoming “Seussical” at Roane State Community College (Saturday April 25, 2009). Why, you may ask, because there is some great talent on stage that would be perfect for the “Appalachian Dreams” production! One great find he made was getting Ms. Maggie Kohlbusch to be part of the cast.

Maggie is considered a budding talent at the tender age of 10, and is spoken of very highly by the Roane State Humanities staff. Maggie has already been active in stage productions and there’s talk of Roane State doing “Annie” next year, with her having a large part in it. She will be seen in the opening moments of the May 16th production, as well as in later skits. She is the daughter of Jay and Susan Kohlbusch of Knoxville.

When Bill Landry finally made it to class, he took a seat in the back until Brooks finished the first hour of the class. Later he entertained the class and the rest of us (including Gary Baker, Susan and Maggie Kohlbusch, and Bill Farnham) by shifting into his well known narration voice and rehearsing the voice-over for the J. D. Williams story. It’s going to be great!

Incidentally, I want to wish Brooks Benjamin the very best of luck. He is taking his latest film, “The Boys of Summerville” to the “Big Island Film Festival” in Waikoloa, Hawaii that begins May 14th. I’ve got my fingers and toes crossed that he will receive all the recognition he deserves for this film, and that it will finally get the wider distribution the film needs. By the way, the movie will also be screened for the public sometime in May at the Roane State Theater. Keep watching for more information!

It is my understanding that tickets for the evening performance are getting scarce, so I’m expecting a great crowd on May 16th…will you be one of them?

Wednesday, April 1, 2009


Ferrell Winfree and Sandra Copeland Hicks, minus Linda Whitson Jones, the third member of “The Chickadees”, met and rehearsed with the “Babahatchie Community Band” Monday evening in the Harriman High School band room to practice for their upcoming combined performances for the “Appalachian Dreams show at the Roane State Theater on May 16th.

The show, to be emceed by Bill Landry, with a special appearance by screen and television actor Muse Watson, will be performed twice that Saturday, with a matinee at 2 PM and another showing at 7 PM. Tickets are on sale now at the Rocky Top General Store and the Harriman Jewelry Exchange in Harriman.

For 20 years or so, the “Babahatchie Community Band” has performed for area residents with popular classics, marches, brass band music and show tunes. The group, usually about 30 members strong, was formed when Dr. Joseph (Joe) Williams back in 1989. The band holds weekly rehearsals, which are open to the public. You can find them enjoying themselves down in the Harriman High School band room most any Monday evening around 8 PM.

Williams also organizes, and plays the tuba for Harriman's TubaChristmas each year.

Babahatchie is a unique Native American name for the Emory River, which means “babbling waters.”

Recognize any of your neighbors? You never know who might be in the Babahatchie Community Band!

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