Shirl Mendonca: Singing, acting talent flows from Lake Wildwood |

Shirl Mendonca: Singing, acting talent flows from Lake Wildwood

According to Judy Blake, past president of the very active Lake Wildwood Theatre, 12 theater members are taking their talents beyond Lake Wildwood to perform at either the Nevada Theatre in downtown Nevada City or at Off Center Stage, the intimate venue at The Center for the Arts in downtown Grass Valley.

If you were fortunate enough to see the Sierra Stage production of “Lend Me a Tenor” at the Off Center Stage in September, then you saw Merilee Thompson Imamoto perform her magic as the opera president in that hilarious comedy.

Merilee has been in more than 50 plays in Massachusetts, Florida and California, including five plays in LWW.

Kristine Alcamo, Judy Blake, Ward Thompson, Cap Wallington and Nigiri Williams are performing in the poignant and insightful Legacy Production of “To Kill a Mockingbird.”

On the technical side, Verne Freer and Bud Nelson are handling set design and construction, while Don Queen is backstage manager, and Franklin Williams is helping with sound. In between LWW productions, this gives everyone an opportunity to keep doing what they love.

Nevada County is being treated to the marvelous voices and professional talent of Kim Wellman and Carolyn Winters in the Sierra Stages production “Grand Night of Singing” at Off Center Stage.

Both Kim and Carolyn have been singing publicly since they were children, and both are members of the Sisters in Song Trio, which performs throughout the county.

Look for a special treat opening the day after Thanksgiving and running into December at The Nevada Theatre. Under the direction of Judy Blake, Legacy Production will present “Tiny Tim’s Christmas.”

It’s the story of what happened to Tiny Tim when he grew up, moved to New York City and opened a toy store!

Others in the production from LWW include Kristine Alcamo as backstage manager, Franklin Williams controlling the sound and Nigiri Williams cast in the role of a townsperson.

Many of the LWW Theatre members are long-time professionals, both as actors and as technical crew. Others took their first shot at community theater when they moved to LWW, where everyone is encouraged to get involved either in acting or as part of the backup team doing sets, lighting, promotion and so on.

With so much support and interest in local theater, they now find themselves auditioning “uptown” and becoming part the larger Nevada County theater scene which just means more, and better, theater for everyone.

If you still have old computer equipment, televisions, video cassette recorders, digital cameras, copiers, stereo components and small appliances just lying around, you can get rid of them safely at a free electronic waste collection coming up.

It’s from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 6, at Ready Springs School on Spenceville Road, Penn Valley. This fundraiser for the school is in partnership with CEAR, a California state-approved collector and recycler of electronic waste. All hard drives will be completely shredded at a securely monitored CEAR facility.

If you have questions, call event coordinator Shannon Warner at (530) 432-5527.

Got a tip about someone or something in Lake Wildwood or Penn Valley? Contact Shirl Mendonca at

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