Saturday, August 9th was the final curtain call for the Triumvirate Theatre players in Soldotna at their original home in the Peninsula Center Mall. Triumvirate founder and director Joe Rizzo used the occasion for a walk down memory lane and a replay of the first Triumvirate performance in 2005, “I took the original script of the first play we ever presented in this theatre which was Dandelion Wine by Ray Bradbury and I gave the kids the first six lines of the play and had them recite those as a tip of the hat to the days of our beginnings when there was nothing but folding chairs in here,” recalled Rizzo in an interview with the Dispatch on closing night. “When I think of some of the great moments that have come in this little space I recall when we did a silly play called ‘Top Chum’ which was a take-off on the movie ‘Top Gun.’ We did as a dinner theatre at Mykel’s but put on an extra performance here as a benefit for a cast member’s brother who had cancer and we packed the place and it became a very magical night with a lot of laughter while emotionally touching for the family as we raised a bunch of money. So when I think back about the things we have done in this space it’s those shows that it has really been all about. Helping the community, helping people and helping kids learn self-confidence while taking direction on stage,” said Rizzo.
Several years ago Delana Duncan joined Triumvirate and used the space to teach music and voice while directing shows for Rizzo. “My first experience at Triumvirate was with my church using the theatre for the show Matrix which was funny skits and puppets I was twelve years old and I remember doing that program here and just loving this theatre. Then about a year and a half ago I returned from college and started teaching out of here and it’s been a great experience to have Joe Rizzo as a mentor to help me develop my business of music lessons. It’s been wonderful to teach here and have concerts here and to now move up into acting and directing here. It’s helped me grow as a person,” said Duncan. Delana will continue to teach music lessons from her home and continue to be involved with Triumvirate and some of their new shows coming up that will be performed at the Triumvirate North Theatre on the North Rd. just outside Kenai. “I’m going to L.A. in a few weeks to attend a two month long acting school and then I’ll be back and ready to roll on some more plays with our local talent,” she said.
Information about Triumvirate Theatre is available at their website or Facebook, “We’re still going to be going strong out north, we’re only 5 minutes outside of Kenai and it’s a very nice facility. Our next show is going to be ‘Lamb Ducks & Dark Horses’ which is our local political satire show that is very popular and folks have a lot of fun, but when I was talking about our original cast and the first performance tonight which was directed by Carla Jenness, she was already out in the audience balling which made it difficult for me not get a bit teary eyed,” confessed Rizzo.