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Rock on and light up the stage

By Courtney Llewellyn

Reminder Assistant Editor

HAMPDEN The Theater Guild of Hampden needs your help.

"One of our largest, but extremely necessary, yearly expenses has been the rental of stage lights," guild member Rick Rubin said. "These specialized lights typically cost us in excess of $1,000 per show, and to save delivery fees we have been picking them up and returning them to Danbury, Conn., for each performance, which has become very difficult for us to do."

The cost for lights of their own is about $5,000. The guild has $1,500 saved up and has been promised another $2,000 from Monson Savings Bank. The guild is hosting a fundraiser to bridge the remaining $1,500 gap.

"Rock On," the benefit for the purchase of lights, will be taking place Nov. 1 at the Hampden Country Club. All who attend are encouraged to dress as their favorite rock stars. Music provided by a DJ will cover rock 'n' roll from the 1960s through the 1980s, and there will be prizes for best costumes, a music trivia contest and possibly an air guitar contest.

Food and a raffle will also be provided.

"We had a bunch of different ideas," Mark Giza, director of the Theater Guild of Hampden, said. "Rock 'n' roll just seemed the right thing to do."

Giza said that after casting the right actors for the right roles, lighting is the number two priority for theater. "It is so important to have the right lighting," he added.

Lighting will be extremely important for the guild's next production -- Mel Brooks' "The Producers," which will be spread out over three different stages at the country club. Auditions for "The Producers" will be taking place in November.

"We have a great group of people who have been really supportive of us," Giza said, "and I know times are tough economically, but [tickets to the fundraiser] are only $30 and we really need this."

To purchase tickets, contact Rubin at or 250-8108 or Giza at 566-8354.