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Woodinville Rep performs ‘Tuna Does Vegas’

  • Written by Woodinville Weekly Staff

TunaCourtesy Photo. Woodinville Rep’s production of “Tuna Does Vegas” opens March 7.Depending on your point of view, Tuna, Texas, is heaven on earth or the weirdest place imaginable. Local audiences can decide for themselves in March with the Woodinville Repertory Theatre’s production of “Tuna Does Vegas.”

The show is the latest in a series of hilarious shows that lampoon — in a loving sort of way — the foibles of Tuna, the legendary but entirely fictitious third-smallest town in Texas, where the Lions Club is too liberal and Patsy Cline never dies.

Tuna offers up its charms in performances scheduled for Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 p.m. March 7 and 8, March 14 and 15, March 21 and 22 and March 28 and 29. Matinees will be at 2 p.m. on March 9, March 16 and March 23.

Performances will be at Denali Slab & Tile Studio, 16120 Woodinville Redmond Road NE, Suite 12, in Woodinville. Tickets are $18 online, $20 at the door. For more information, check the theatre’s Website (www.woodinvillerep.org).

The hilarity of “Tuna Does Vegas” begins when oddball-conservative radio host Arles Struvie announces on air that he and his wife Bertha Bumiller are heading to Vegas to renew their wedding vows. And then most everyone in Tuna decides to go along for the ride.

The show makes fun of conservatives, liberals, Rush Limbaugh, airlines, and, of course, the infinitely strange place called Las Vegas.

The show features a fight over the winnings from a slot machine, an odd quest to save a peacock and possibly the worst airline flight ever.

“Tuna Does Vegas” is the fourth in the Tuna saga written by Jaston Williams, Joe Sears and Ed Howard. Starting with “Greater Tuna” in 1981, their shows have toured the country and the world and played the White House. Twice. The Woodinville Rep produced “Greater Tuna” in 2013; the audience of every show left laughing.

The cast consists of exactly two men who play 18 different parts, male and female, including not one but two Elvis impersonators. Starring in this production are local actors Chazz Kaskes and David Bander.

Chazz offered up a memorable performance in last season’s “Greater Tuna,” where his Vera Carp, the ever-vigilant defender of Tuna against the forces of smut; Petey Fisk, the gentle head of the local humane society; and Charlene Bumiller were not to be missed.

Chazz also appeared in two other Woodinville Rep shows: “The Odd Couple” (female version) in 2009 and “An Evening with Christopher Durang” in 2010.

Bander is a newcomer to the Rep. He was a drama student at Woodinville High School as well as Studio East. And he is a self-proclaimed comedian. He also works for the Kirkland Performing Arts Center.Directing the show is Hjalmer Anderson, the theater’s artistic director. Anderson directed “Greater Tuna,” Neil Simon’s “The Prisoner of Second Avenue” and “Southern Hospitality.”
“Tuna Does Vegas” is the second of four shows the Woodinville Rep will produce this season. “Shirley Valentine” was the opening show. Got a question, write: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

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