“A Holiday Tribute to the USO: Soldiers in Greasepaint” gets started with the World War II era, continuing through the Korean and Vietnam wars and concluding with the Gulf War period.
The production, directed and produced by Connie Payne, is sponsored in part by American Legion Post 172.
“The veterans in the audience really enjoy the production and often open up after it,” Payne said. “By putting these shows together, I’ve learned a lot about the military and their contributions to our country. For some, this brings back pleasant memories from a USO show they attended in the past. This show really offers something for everyone.”
The tribute blends military facts with entertainment during the two-hour presentation, which includes cast members portraying Bob Hope and Burl Ives. The goal of the show is to honor United Service Organizations performers and all those who have served the nation in a military capacity.
For some of the participants — including local teenagers Kasey Silligman and Lacey Hineman — the production is also a hands-on lesson in history.
“This is my first time doing 1940s-style dancing, although I have performed other styles,” Silligman, 16, said. “I think it’s a great way for my generation to learn what it was like during that time.”
“I heard about this from my teacher and decided to volunteer,” Hineman, 14, said. “In the performance, I do a swing dance and a boogie-woogie dance.”
Performances begin at 8 p.m. Friday, Nov. 22, at 2 and 8 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 23, and at 2 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 24, at the theater at Tracy High, 315 E. 11th St.
Tickets can be purchased at the door and range in price from $8 to $12, with a $2 per-ticket military discount.
A portion of proceeds will help local military nonprofits and the USO.
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