The Western Stage presents SpringFEST 2018

Publish Date: 
Jan 26, 2018

Pre-Season Thaw: The Western Stage’s SpringFEST In Bloom

2018’s theme: “In the Company of Women: Changing the Story”


SALINAS, Calif.  Many may be familiar with The Western Stage’s repertory season. Each year, six titles are unveiled and performed in repertory from June until December. However, after the season comes to a close, the theatre is anything but dormant. It is this time, winter and early spring, that the gears begin turning for its annual festival of pre-season workshops and performance projects: SpringFEST.

The Western Stage’s annual SpringFEST offers performance and technical opportunities to students and the community who wish to improve their skills, gain experience, or simply find enrichment in the arts. This year’s theme adds an especially relevant layer to the program, which speaks to the country’s current efforts to fill the gender gap: “In the Company of Women: Changing the Story.” Each project is reflective of the stories and experiences of women, and seeks to explore, highlight, and rejoice in the unique truths and triumphs of women around the world.

Opportunities include, but are not limited to: acting/performing, producing, playwriting, directing, and tech (lights/sound/rigging/deck crew), and include opportunities for children, teens, and adults. Those who wish to audition, may contact Casting Coordinator, Malinda DeRouen, at 831-759-6037 or email Those interested in enrolling in a workshop or getting involved in technical, artistic, or non-performance arenas, contact Artistic Program Director, Melissa Chin-Parker at 831-770-7088 or email And of course, those who simply wish to support SpringFEST by enjoying these collaborative and grassroots projects from the audience are encouraged to make note of the performance schedule. Most performances are free to attend or by donation.

Male participants, don’t be discouraged! Men are not being precluded; however, The Western Stage is working towards increasing the number of women artists in all areas by removing barriers to their participation/application, and by giving a leg up to young women who just need a door opened and the opportunity to be first. 

SpringFEST 2018 Line-up


“The Princess Who Lost Her Hair,” by Jeremy Kisling

(Presented by special arrangement with THE DRAMATIC PUBLISHING COMPANY of Woodstock, Illinois)

Based on an Akamba legend translated by Tanzanian children’s author Tolowa Mollel, this is an exquisite story of Princess Kalinda who refuses a magical Weaver Bird’s request for a strand of her beautiful hair. Her selfishness not only causes her to lose all of her beautiful hair, but also brings hard times and famine to her village. A wise and generous beggar transforms the Princess and teaches her kindness and compassion.

For actors ages 9 – 14.

Rehearses after school, Tuesday – Friday, and Saturday mornings, from January 30 – March 15.

PERFORMS March 16, 17, 21*, 22*, 23* (*10:30 a.m. performances for school groups)

“Live: A Musical Showcase 2018”

Returning for its second year, the Live: Musical Showcase is an introduction to a new singer, and a chance for veteran performers to showcase new material.

For ages High School – Adult (previous vocal performance experience highly recommended)

Rehearses January 23 – April 6.

PERFORMS April 7 & 8, 2018.

“Emma: A Pop Musical,” by Eric Price

(Presented by special arrangement with Playscripts Inc.

Based on Jane Austen’s novel, this musical is set in a Prep High School and features hit songs of legendary girl groups and iconic singers, including The Supremes, Cyndi Lauper, Sarah Bareilles, and more!

For teens and 20s and 3 adults. (Several roles already cast)

Rehearses Tuesday – Friday evenings and Saturday/Sunday afternoons from February 20 – April 26.

PERFORMS April 27, 28, 29, May 3, 4, and 5, 2018



“Of Thee I Sing,” a dramatized reading from CITIZEN: An American Lyric by Claudia Rankine

“Of Thee I Sing” was first presented fall 2017 in partnership with the National Steinbeck Center and the NEA Big Read, and will be presented to honor Black History Month 2018.

PERFORMS: February 10 & 11, 2018

“Alma,” by Harvey Landa

Presented by TWS’ LegacyPlayers, Alma chronicles the adventures of Alma deBretteville Spreckels, known both as “Big Alma” and “The Great Grandmother of San Francisco.” A wealthy socialite and philanthropist who, persuaded by her first husband, sugar magnate Adolph B. Spreckels, donated the California Palace of the Legion of Honors to the city of San Francisco.

PERFORMS: March 10 and 11 at 2:00 p.m.

“Solo Flights: Nevertheless, She Persisted”

Based on a concept from TWS’ past, first-time and veteran women writers and playwrights will start creating new and original stage works that focus on women’s stories, told from the woman’s point of view. Led by actor and playwright, Cheryl Lilko-Games, the group will present their works-in-progress in whatever stage it is in (concept proposal, story research, storyboard, first monologue, first dialogue, first scene, etc.).

Meets twice a week: Saturdays from 12-4p and one weekday evening February 20 – April 7.

PRESENTATIONS April 14 and 15, 2018 (dates subject to change).

*All performance times: Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 p.m. and Sundays at 2:00 p.m. unless otherwise stated

DETAILS: SpringFEST 2018 offers performance and technical opportunities for students and the community seeking experience and enrichment through the Arts. “In the Company of Women: Changing the Story” will focus on the strengths, triumphs, and points of view of women.

WHAT: The Western Stage’s annual pre-season festival

WHEN: January 16 – May 5, 2018

WHERE: The Western Stage, Hartnell College, Building K, 411 Central Ave., Salinas

TICKETS AND INFO: Admission ranges from Free/Donation only to $10. For prices and information, go to or call 831-755-6816

PRESS: For press tickets, contact Cheryl Worthy at the box office: or call 831-755-6816


Founded in 1974, The Western Stage (TWS) has evolved over the last four decades into one of the most respected community-based theaters on California’s Central Coast. TWS is committed to enriching the culture of its community by bringing together professional artists, theatre students, and community members to produce a dynamic season of plays that enhances the lives of both the artist and audience; developing new works that speak to the history and culture of the Salinas Valley; and provide educational opportunities that allow students of all skill levels to explore and develop their unique talents.


The Hartnell CCD serves over 17,000 students annually through its main campus in Salinas, the Alisal Campus in East Salinas, the King City Education Center, and various outreach learning centers throughout the Salinas Valley. Hartnell College, a Hispanic Serving Institution, provides associate degree and certificate programs, workforce-training, courses in basic skills, and prepares students for transfer to four-year colleges and universities. Hartnell College is recognized for its innovative public and private partnerships that support world-class education for STEM, career technical education, fine and performing arts, humanities/social sciences, nursing/healthcare, and athletics. We are proud to be the winners of the 2015 Innovation Award for CSin3 – a Computer Science bachelor’s degree in three years.  We are growing leaders through opportunity, engagement, and achievement. For more about Hartnell CCD, visit