Sisters Act showcases local talent


Last updated 4/5/2023 at 10am

Peggy Chesser

Men of Constant Sorrow. Sisters Act drew a wide range of local talent to the stage to entertain a packed house while raising funds for Ugandan (and Sisters) schools.

The Sisters Act provided tremendous entertainment for an audience estimated at over 600 while raising funds for school children at the Nabririzi School in rural western Uganda at the 12th annual talent show held Saturday, February 26 at the Sisters High School auditorium.

The 2005 edition, “Sisters Act at the Beach” featured a wide variety of offerings centered on beach themes with performers from the community and beyond.

Masters of Ceremonies Melvin Herberger and Kelly Powell, along with their elementary student counterparts Drew Jacobsen and Isaiah Wieland, kept the show moving along with flair and humor. They shared letters from students at the school in Uganda that has been the beneficiary of past Sisters Acts.

“I appreciate Kelly emceeing for the 12th year in a row,” said producer Theresa Slavkovsky. “He’s very dedicated to this cause.”

Sisters Act channels funds through Good Samaritan Ministries, which is based in Portland. Proceeds from this year’s event are earmarked for building latrines for the Nabririzi School, which will be closed down if the latrines aren’t completed soon. Any remaining funds will be used for concrete flooring at the school. The Sisters Act also provides money for a leadership scholarship and the Carlos Valdez OSEAscholarships.

The Nabririzi School serves 240 students from kindergarten through high school, 212 of which are orphans.

Past proceeds have benefited a school in Masaka, Uganda, which is now fully equipped and operational, according to Slavkovsky.

Theresa Slavkovsky praised the efforts of all the volunteers who worked through rehearsals and the night of the performance.

“Our stage crew, including Gordon Golden and Bryan Perky, along with fifth grader Cameron Brown, provided excellent sound and light and really kept things running smoothly,” she said.

Most performances tied into the beach theme, including the group Fiddlesticks that kicked off the show, which featured the Kalebaugh and Simpson families playing mandolin, guitar and fiddle. They concluded with a Beach Boys medley that had little children dancing in the aisles.

Six high school boys from the jazz choir, Ryan Blake, Ezra Patterson, Blake Poynor, Sam Pyke, Kyle Whipps and Byron Womack sang an a cappella version of “Brown Eyed Girl” just after Jaym Henderson and Christopher Burdick and friends performed “The Beach Walk” from an “I Love Lucy” show.

Kevin David King, age five, brought down the house with some classic “Knock, Knock” jokes.

Comerford School of Irish Dance broke from the beach motif to perform “Dance of the Celts.”

Nathan Woodworth presented “The Gang’s All Here” as a solo act in which he impersonated a variety of characters from movies including “Shrek,” “Lord of the Rings” and “Pirates of the Caribbean.”

“He did an uncanny impression of Gollum,” said Slavkovsky.

Rose Slavkovsky presented a slide show of her summer trip with Good Samaritan Ministries to Africa where she got to visit the Masaka School.

“It brought tears to my eyes when the slide show concluded with the children of Masaka holding up the big sign that said ‘Thank You Sisters’ on it,” said Rick Slavkovsky.

Eight-year-old Emily Corrigan followed with three short piano pieces including “Ode to Joy” and eighth graders Jacob French and Jared Henderson, recent winners of scholarships to University of Oregon’s summer jazz camp, played guitar and basstogether.

Laura Lee Callan returned to the beach in an act that combined a slide show with a humorous poem to honor Frankie Avalon, reminiscing about the surfing movies of the 60s.

Paul Bennett, Tim Calmettes, Travis Kalebaugh, Mark Pilliod and Rick Slavkovsky, recently pardoned by the governor after spending time incarcerated for crimes committed against society, performed “Man of Constant Sorrow” and led the audience in a sing-a-long of “You are My Sunshine.”

After intermission Amity and Devon Calvin along with Drew and Emily Corrigan performed “Caribbean Cruise.” They were followed by Paula Lovegren (vocal and guitar) and Tina Jewell (dance) who presented a dance interpretation of the hymm “How Great Thou Art.”

Tap dancers Laura Lee Callan, Pam MacGurn and Sherry Miller teamed up with Bob Buckman, Justin Dean, Harry Ingham and Adam Marcus for “Orange Blossom Special.”

Between acts, Herberger kept the audience amused with quips like the time he was at the beach sun-bathing and minding his own business when members of the Whale Foundation came along and tried to roll him into the surf.

Peter Selby sang an original song “Jubilation” and the Refugee Youth Group Dance Troupe of Madras followed with a routine that earned them a berth at the State Fair talent show last summer.

Seventh grader Julia Rahm sang “Girl from Ipanema” accompanied by Jacob French and the “Beach Boy Builders,” Sue Egerton, Carole Goodman, Bob Harris, Bob Helwig, Mike Herald, Ron Kelm, Larry Lennon, Donna Meyers, Darla Neiss, Linn Watson, Doug Wood and Woodie Woodsum, did “The Locomotion” in a routine choreographed by high school senior Teresse MacKenzie.

Sarah and Zygmunt Sawiel choreographed the grand finale that included all the performers from the evening.


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