Caryn Haller

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'Call Me Madam,' but don't miss opening night

Director Norris Edson’s biggest problem wasn’t finding 25 talented cast members for his musical comedy, but how to fit them all on the stage.

Carson Valley Community Theatre’s “Call Me Madam” shows March 21-23 and 28-30 in the CVIC Hall in Minden. Friday and Saturday evening shows at 7:30 p.m. will be followed by matinees on Sunday at 2 p.m.

“It’s fun to work with a big cast. We’ve never had one this big,” Edson said of the theatre company’s 10-year history. “I want the audience to appreciate the talent we have and the work done behind the scenes. It takes a village to put on a show like this.”

The “Call Me Madam” story is a satire on politics and foreign affairs that spoofs America’s penchant for lending billions of dollars to needy countries. The show centers on Sally Adams, a well-meaning but ill-informed socialite widow who is appointed U.S. ambassador to a small fictional European country, the tiny duchy of Lichtenburg. It’s not long before her down-to-earth, typically undiplomatic manner has surprised and charmed the local gentry, especially the handsome prime minister. A second romance is blossoming between her young aide and Lichtenburg’s enchanting young princess.

Gardnerville resident Corey Stockton plays Adams’ aide, Kenneth.

“Sometimes he’s a little bit like me. We’re both to the point,” Stockton said. “He just graduated from Harvard, and he’s very cocky and smart.”

A Douglas High School graduate, Stockton sang with the Madrigals in 2005, so being in a musical with 14 songs appealed to him.

“I like to sing, and I like these songs,” he said. “Irving Berlin is a great songwriter. He wrote my favorite song, ‘God Bless America.’”

Among the songs featured in the show are the popular chart makers of the ‘50s, “It’s A Lovely Day” and “You’re Just In Love.”

Carla Wilson plays Mrs. Sally Adams.

The Jacks Valley resident said Adams is one of her favorite characters she has played in her 40-year acting career.

“There’s a lot to like about her. She’s outspoken and fun. She’s down to earth and a well-rounded character,” she added.

Wilson also encouraged the community to see the play.

“You’re going to get an opportunity to see some of the finest talent in the Valley,” she said. “Even though this is taking place in 1952, you can apply it to current political times by thinking outside the box.”

Minden residents Joe and Mary Baldecchi sing and dance in the ensemble for their acting debuts.

The couple have danced for 12 years, even performing one of the dances in the play, the Vienese Waltz, in Vienna four years ago.

“I’m loving it. It’s our first production and we’re having a wonderful time,” Joe said. “We hope we can get people to come out dancing after seeing the show. It’s fun and it keeps your mind sharp.”

Tickets can be purchased online at or 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday at the CVCT box office located at 1572 Highway 395, or at the door. Adult admission is $18 and admission for seniors and students is $16. Groups of 10 or more can be purchased at a discount price of $2 off regular price at the box office.

Dinner and show tickets are available at Minden Food Co. for the Friday and Saturday performances for $52, and a Sunday champagne brunch before the matinee is available at Minden Meat and Deli for $40.

For more information, visit or call 775-292-0939.

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The Record Courier Updated Mar 13, 2014 11:29AM Published Mar 17, 2014 04:39PM Copyright 2014 The Record Courier. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.