A couple of gamblers, a nightclub singer, and a missionary cross paths on their way to romance and a fateful crap game in Sacramento State’s production of the popular musical comedy Guys and Dolls.
Part of the Sac State Theatre and Dance program’s 60th anniversary celebration, Guys and Dolls features music by Frank Loesser and is directed by Professor Ed Brazo on the main stage of the University Theatre. Performances are at 8 p.m. Nov. 9-12 and 18-19, 6:30 p.m. Nov. 16-17, and 2 p.m. Nov. 13 and 20.
In the musical, Nathan Detroit operates the oldest established permanent floating crap game in New York City. He has his sights set on the Save A Soul mission for the game’s next location, but he needs to get the mission director, Miss Sarah Brown, out of town. Enter Sky Masterson, whom Nathan tricks into a bet to take the aforementioned Miss Sarah Brown on a date to Havana.
But Nathan has other problems to deal with. He is being distracted by his girlfriend, Hot Box Nightclub singer Miss Adelaide, who, after a 14-year engagement, is getting tired of waiting for a wedding ring.
Based on the stories of Damon Runyon, the Broadway fable includes popular favorites such as “Luck Be a Lady,” and “Sit Down, You’re Rockin’ the Boat.”
“We decided to present Guys and Dolls because we have a wide variety of student types right now,” Brazo says. “It is a classic musical and quite family-friendly as well.”
For senior Sidney Raey-Gonzales, playing the prim-and-proper Sarah Brown is the chance of a lifetime. “I’ve wanted to play this role since I was a little girl,” she says. “My mom raised me on all the classic movies, and Guys and Dolls was one of my favorites of all time.”
She notes that Miss Sarah shows how opposites attract when she falls for the suave Sky Masterson. “He’s not anything like she usually goes for,” Raey-Gonzales says. “He brings out a side of her she didn’t know she had.”
William Schmidt, who portrays Sky, says that holds true for his character as well. “The moment he walks into the mission, there’s something about her that pulls him to her,” he says. “She’s a challenge for me.”
Nathan and Adelaide’s romantic journey has taken a different route. “Adelaide and Nathan have been together for 14 years, and all she wants to do is marry him, but he seems to keep avoiding that,” says senior Hannah Singleton, who plays Adelaide and says she immediately fell in love with the role. “She’s such a character and I love character roles. They’re unique.”
Nathan is played by Panagiotis Roditis, who says his character, despite his reluctance to marry Adelaide, still loves her very much. “She is the first and only woman he’s ever been with, and she puts up with him,” Roditis says. “That’s why he can’t get over her even after 14 years.”
The storylines intertwine until they all come together at the crap game, where Miss Sarah’s fate and two romances are decided by one roll of the dice.
Tickets for the 6:30 p.m. performances of Guys and Dolls are $10 general admission and $8 for children. All other performances are $15 general, $12 for students and seniors, and $10 for children. Tickets are available at the University Ticket Office, (916) 278-4323 or www.csus.edu/hornettickets.
For more information on the Theatre and Dance Department and its events and programs, visit csus.edu/dram or call (916) 278-6368. – Craig Koscho