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Variety show 'Entertainment Through the Ages' benefits Mayor's Christmas fund

Entertainment through the Ages features students, faculty, and local entertainers.  The show of mixed genres displays a variety of eras including: country, jazz, classical and barbershop music, as well as comedy skits and dancers.
Entertainment through the Ages features students, faculty, and local entertainers. The show of mixed genres displays a variety of eras including: country, jazz, classical and barbershop music, as well as comedy skits and dancers.
Mike Athey

To showcase local talent and raise funds to support area families, a group from Gardner, KS, Performing with a Purpose, in conjunction with the Gardner Edgerton High School’s Repertory Theatre, presents a family-friendly variety show, “Entertainment through the Ages,” at 7 p.m., Saturday, March 29, in the GEHS Auditorium.

If that’s not enough to get the crowds to attend, four tickets to the upcoming Miley Cyrus concert, April 15, at the Sprint Center are up or grabs to a lucky attendee. Also in the gift packages are tickets to the Kansas City Repertory Theatre. The current show at KC Rep, “Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike,” won the Tony last year as best play on Broadway.

Entertainment through the Ages features GEHS students, faculty, and local entertainers with a flair for performing. The variety show of mixed genres displays a variety of eras that include country, jazz, classical and barbershop music, as well as comedy skits and dancers. The show hopes to offer something to please all who attend, Robyn McGuire, co-organizer, said.

"Entertainment Through the Ages," the benefit show presented by Performing with a Purpose and the Gardner Edgerton HS Repertory Theatre Saturday, March 29, will provide entertainment to audience members both on-stage and off.

The family friendly variety show features GEHS students and faculty members, local entertainers, and a singer/songwriter from Nashville, TN. Performances will include comedy (Cave Men discover Music, I Love Lucy), Barbershop Harmony (Star Wars, Blues), Classical Voice, Popular Music from several eras (1930', 1940's Sinatra, Broadway, Beatles), Dance (clogging, modern), Jazz (Band), and Country.

The performers in the show bring a wealth of experience to the stage. The GEHS students have performed in a variety of music and theater venues from school and community to regional and state levels. Adults performing in the show bring a wide range of professional experience, including regional, national and international performing experience, as well as a singer/songwriter whose songs have recently been recorded by Jake Owen, Rascal Flatts and the Swon Brothers.

Entertainment and sports-themed gift baskets will also be on display in the lobby the night of the show, and will go home with some lucky winners. The baskets will be filled with sports memorabilia, including signed merchandise from Bubba Starling, as well as entertainment merchandise, such as movie passes, music, movies, salon products, gift cards and much more.

Off stage entertainment can go home with audience members as well. Many items have been donated for a silent auction and gift baskets. Some of the available merchandise include:

  • 4 tickets in the KCP&L Sprint Center Suite for the upcoming Miley Cyrus Concert, valued at $600
  • Professional Photography Package, valued at $150
  • 2 Kansas City Repertory Theater Tickets, valued at $100
  • Autographed Sports Items, from Bubba Starling
  • Parks and Recreation Gift Certificates
  • NAIA Merchandise
  • Movie Passes
  • Gift Cards to Stores, Restaurants
  • Professional Sports Team Tickets
  • Community Theatre Tickets
  • Movies
  • Music CDs

"The generosity of community and metro area individuals and businesses has been incredible," Robyn McGuire, silent auction coordinator, said. "We so appreciate it, and hope audience members will enjoy donating to a great cause.”

Performing with a Purpose, a service project created by GEHS junior, Cooper McGuire, encourages musicians, actors, and entertainers to use their talents to support charitable causes and be a positive influence in their communities. McGuire, who sings and plays piano and French Horn, actively performs in music and theater. He said he believes music and laughter can have a healing effect on both performers and audience members. His goal for Performing with a Purpose is to bring the community together for an evening of fun while raising money to help others.

The GEHS Repertory Theatre students volunteer their time as performers, stage, and tech crew members. They are in charge of lighting, sound, back stage management, publicity, costumes, and anything else needed to create a quality show.

“I am so proud of the work Cooper and the Repertory Theatre students are doing, coming together to support our community,” Jeff Lady, GEHS Theatre Director, said.

“I am thrilled Cooper wants to undertake such a philanthropic effort at such a young age,” said Gardner Mayor, Chris Morrow. “And I am excited that he has decided upon the Gardner Christmas Tree Fund to donate the fruits of his labors, along with the other performers and student volunteers. I hope a lot of people come out and see the show.”

McGuire hopes the event builds and serves as a springboard to future events for Gardner talent.

“We want a full house on March 29,” McGuire said. “It will be a great show that people of all ages will enjoy. It is important for the community to attend, not just to see the amazing talent Gardner has to offer, but to make a difference in peoples’ lives through our donation to the Mayor’s Christmas Tree Fund.”

Tickets are $5.00, available at the door. The performance will be at 7 p.m. in the Gardner Edgerton HS Auditorium. Profits from ticket sales, gift baskets, and the silent auction, all go to the Mayor's Christmas Tree Fund, which provides community support all year.

For more information, to donate merchandise for the gift baskets, or to make a donation to the Mayor’s Christmas Tree Fund, contact: PerformingWithAPurpose@embarqmail.com or cmorrow@gardnerkansas.gov.