Gold In the Hills: 1890's Melodrama

GOLD IN THE HILLS
or, THE DEAD SISTER'S SECRET,
Melodrama
By J. Frank Davis 1870-1942 (written 1930)

Vicksburg Theatre Guild of Vicksburg, MS

Our 74th season starts March 13-28 & April 3-4, 2009.
Performances are 7:30 p.m. every Friday and Saturday.

The Gold in the Hills performances at The Vicksburg, 801 Clay Street, are not affiliated with VTG.

We are 73 years old. On March 28, 1936,
 Gold in the Hills opened on an Army Corps of Engineers
 barge converted to look like a riverboat. Come see
 what has kept audiences entertained all these years.

 

Poster for 2009

 

 

Tickets: $10 adults and $5 children (12 & under)
Group rates available
No reservations; always plenty of seats!

 

Videos

Singing Waiters

Young Can-Can
 Dancers

Can-Can Dancers

Old Kate

 

Royalties paid for use of Ol' Man River and Can't Help Lovin' Dat Man
Words and Music by Jerome Kern, Oscar Hammerstein II
All rights owned or administered by ASCAP

Royalties paid for use of the melodrama Gold in the Hills
Baker's Plays Quincy, MA

 

We made the front page of The Vicksburg Post.

 

Vicksburg Theatre Guild

invites you to enjoy the longest running melodrama in the world [tradition founded by Julia Arnold in March 1936], as listed in the Guinness Book of World Records, performed every year since 1936. This play was written by J. Frank Davis and is produced by special arrangement with Baker's Plays of Boston, Massachusetts.

 

2008-2009 VTG Season

Faith County September 12-14, 19-21, 2008

Stalag 17 November 14-16 & 21-23, 2008

Jenny St. Joan December 12-14, 2008

Searching for Eden February 12-15, 21-22, 2009

Gold in the Hills 2009 March 13, 14, 20, 21, 27, 28, April 3, 4, 2009

The Fantasticks April 23-26, 30, May 1-3, 2009

Always Patsy Cline Special Production (not part of Membership) May 15-17, 22-24, 2009

Fairy Tale Theatre 2009 June 25-28, 2009

Gold in the Hills 2009  July 10, 11, 17, 18, 24, 25, 31, August 1, 2009

GOLD IN THE HILLS and the VICKSBURG THEATRE GUILD
were featured on Vicksburg's government access channel,
Channel 23
. Click here for more information.

Click for link to more Gold photos

Click on Picture for more recent photos

 

According to the charter of VTG, 1936 located in Book 35-36 Page 649 of the corporate records of the Office of the Secretary of State of Mississippi, the purpose of the VTG [501c3 nonprofit] is as follows:
The purpose for which said corporation is created: to stimulate an interest in local original and other dramatic and musical productions: to give the people of Vicksburg, Mississippi, the opportunity of self-expression in the various phases of dramatic activity; to present amateur productions and to foster professional productions that possess dramatic and artistic merit, to furnish training in acting, stagecraft and playwriting; to provide facilities for the expression of art in the community; and generally to stimulate an interest in drama.

Meet the Cast after the show in the lobby; take a picture with a cast member for your photo album.

Performances may be added during the seasons if the tour consists of at least 40 paying customers and enough advance notice is given; call for information. Large (80+) groups may call for out of season specials. Deposits are required in advance to guarantee seating.

"Gold In The Hills" is presented in the air-conditioned theatre at Parkside Playhouse on the Frontage Road (Confederate Ave) off the Halls Ferry exit of I20. Sit back in the comfortable theatre style seating and enjoy the world famous melodrama that has been enjoyed by audiences from across the world since 1936 in Vicksburg. In the tradition of plays of the 1890s, "Gold" features good, represented by our hero, John, a simple farmer, and our heroine, Nell, a farm girl in her early twenties; and bad represented by a ruthless villain and his accomplice. Leaving the farm, our heroine encounters the wilder side of life at the infamous New York Bowery. Entertainment at the bowery includes singing and can can dancing. Cheer the hero and heroine; boo the villain and his accomplice. (Sorry, no peanuts at our temporary location...) Sing along with the old songs. Participate in clean, family oriented fun, suitable for all ages.

 


 

Click here for directions

GOLD IN THE HILLS YEAR 2000 REUNION
Can Can Dancers with Gloria Thames Bottom
Heros
Villains
Downtown Dancing in the Street

By special permission of Robert Walker , his special
Proclamation Declaring June 24-29, 2000 Gold in the Hills Week
Former Mayor Walker Presenting Declaration

Program from original 1936 Shows; Thank you Julia Arnold for Making it Happen

Historical Brochure by Frances Ethridge

click here to view can can video (avi format)


 

Cheer the Hero and Heroine. Boo the Villain. Sing the Old Songs.


Admission rates are adults $10 and children 12 & under $5. Group rates for groups of 12 or more are adults $7 and children $4. Bus drivers and chaperones are admitted free at the rate of one free admission per 12 paid passengers. Performance time is 7:30 PM; seating is open so arrive early.

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The Death of a Family Member ó  The Sprague
April 15, 1974


For more information, including dates of our other performances write Vicksburg Theatre Guild, P. O. Box 821472, Vicksburg, MS 39182,
call 601-636-0471, or e-mail editor.39180@gmail.com.


PARKSIDE PLAYHOUSE, VICKSBURG          SINCE 1936             Engagement Extraordinary

The Vicksburg Theatre Guild PRESENTS

GOLD IN THE HILLS
or, THE DEAD SISTER'S SECRET

A Nineteenth Century Melodrama in Three Acts by J. Frank Davis

Produced by Mr. Michael Calnan & Dr. Walter Johnston
and with the following distinguished

CAST
for the Summer 2008 Run
(in the order in which they appear)

Madame Pizzicato............................................................................................................................... Ruth Osburn

Singing Waiters.................................... Jack Burns, Glenn Chabot, Ian Derrick, Oscar Frost, Eric Hesselberg,

                                      John Hesselberg, Josh Hynum, Brady McKellar, JJ McKellar, Ryan Van Den Akker

Lizzie Jones, a housekeeper.................................................................................. Jennifer Stringer, Beth Martin

Barbara Stanley, Nell's younger sister......................................... Jai Dobson, Jasmine Jackson, Cicily Chiarito

Hiram Stanley, an honest farmer............................................................................ David Haworth, Jeff Hensley

Nell Stanley, his daughter............................................................................................... Ashley Ford, Nikki Jobe

John Dalton, a son of the soil............................................................................................................... Ian Tubman

Richard Murgatroyd, from the city.................................................. Richard Van Den Akker, William Mathews

Sam Slade, his shadow................................................................................................. Paul Bennett, Akia Chabot

Jenkins, a constable............................................................................................................................... Roy Bailey

A Derelict........................................................................... Ian Derrick, Glenn Chabot, AJ Johnson, Jack Burns

Big Mike Slattery, a dancehall proprietor................................... Jack Burns, Walter Johnston, Mark Jourdan

Paper Boy....................................................................................................... Noah Van Den Akker, David Frost

Pete the Rat.................................................................................................................... Josh Hynum, Ian Derrick

Old Kate.................................................................................................................. Cheri Williams, Karen Calnan

Slick Steve..................................................................................................... Ryan Van Den Akker, JJ McKellar

Little Tammy or Tommy............ Lindsey Bailey, Emily Stringer, Anna-Claire McKellar, Sara-Beth McKellar

Mamie, Queen of the Bowery............................................................................ Glenda Arredondo, Evana Davis

Chuck Connors, a Bowery guide.................................................. Cody McKellar, Jack Burns, Jason McKellar

Reginald Vanderlop, an uptown swell............................................................. John Hesselberg, Cody McKellar

Mrs. Vanderlop...................................................... Karen Calnan, Rosie Powell, Jackie Mims, Kiely McKellar

Edith Vanderlop................................................................................... Heather Calnan, Julia Lee, Theresa Frost

James H. Glue, a sightseer.................................................................................................................... Roy Bailey

Rose Robinson, a favorite songstress......................................................................... Julia Blake, Clarissa Davis

Happy, the singing waiter....................................................... Eric Hesselberg, Jeff Harrison, Brady McKellar

Can-Can Dancers........................ Margie Blanche, Heather Calnan, Eleana Davis, Jai Dobson, Fawn Francis,

                                                Natalie Henry, Jana McAlpin, Sharayah McKellar, Lauren Proctor, Blair Webb

Olio Singer.......................... Eric Hesselberg, Eleana Davis, Jeff Harrison, Glenda Arredondo, Clarissa Davis

 

STAFF

Drama Director......................................................................................................... Beth Martin, Jeff Hensley

Dance Director............................................................................................................................. Cathy Blanche

Stage Managers......................................... Beth Martin, Allie Johnson, Walter Johnston, Amy Cunningham

Box Office...................................................................................................................................... Jodie Johnson

 

PROGRAMME

PIANO OVERTURE...................................................... MADAME PIZZICATO

SING-ALONG................................................................ AUDIENCE AND SINGING WAITERS

A Prologue, in the Wycherley-Congreve style, written by the Play's Author, and spoken by:
Mr. Colin McAneny, Mr. Jack Burns, Mr. Jason McKellar

 

SYNOPSIS OF SCENES

ACT I

THE OLD HOMESTEAD; JUNE. The happy home. A murder. Nellie the farmer's daughter. John Dalton makes a sacrifice. Moonlight and a locket. The serpent comes into the Garden of Eden. "Beneath this flannel shirt there beats an honest heart." Sam Slade the shadow. "Gold in the Hills." "I fear neither man nor devil, save only one." The plot thickens. "Officer, do your duty!" A base deceiver. Nellie's temptation. "You are no longer daughter of mine!" A fate worse than death. John Dalton confronts Richard Murgatroyd. "She will be in my power!" A blow for defenseless womanhood.

ACT II

BIG MIKE'S BEER GARDEN AND DANCE HALL ON THE BOWERY; OCTOBER. The fugitive finds honest employment. A pistol concealed. Word comes of the sleuth. "There's dirty work afoot!" An innocent child in the toils. "Who is it he reminds me of?" Nellie seeks news. A ruse to avoid recognition. "Once that poor outcast had a home." A familiar voice. In the villain's clutches.' "Will no one save me?" John Dalton to the rescue. "Stand back! I am a desperate man!" The escape.

OLIO

AN OLIO between acts II & III will introduce "Olí Man River" or "Canít Help Loviní Dat Man," "Battle Hymn of the Republic," and "Dixie's Land."

ACT III

THE OLD HOMESTEAD AGAIN; THE FOLLOWING CHRISTMAS EVE. The vacant chair. A face at the window. "I cannot sing the old songs." A lamp to light the wanderer home. "I have the papers!" Out into the bitter storm. A hunted man. "And I am powerless to aid them." The erring girl's return. The villain still pursues her. A stratagem with Slade. John Dalton's arrival. "Tell me, or I will strangle it out of you!" The loss discovered. Charge and counter-charge. The Dead Sister's Secret. "Curses on you all!" Denouement.

 

SPECIAL REQUEST
In order that the enjoyment of later audiences may not be lessened, you are requested not to divulge to anyone the situation which is developed during the closing lines of the play.

 

GOLD IN THE HILLS
Produced by Special Arrangement with BAKERíS PLAYS of Boston, Mass.

 

OL' MAN RIVER and CANíT HELP LOVINí DAT MAN
Words and Music by JEROME KERN, OSCAR HAMMERSTEIN II
All rights owned or administered by ASCAP


SING A LONG

1 WHEN YOU WORE A TULIP
When you wore a tulip
A sweet yellow tulip
And I wore a big red rose
Twas then you caressed me
Twas then heaven blessed me
What a blessing no one knows
You made life cheery
When you called me dearie
Twas down where the green grass grows
Your lips were sweeter than julep
When you wore a tulip
And I wore a big red rose
 
3 I WANT A GIRL
I want a girl just like the girl
That married dear old dad
She was a pearl and the only girl
That daddy ever had
A sweet old-fashioned girl
With eyes so true
One who loves nobody else but you
Oh I want a girl just like the girl
That married dear old dad


5 GOODBYE MY LOVER
See the boat go round the bend
Goodbye my lover goodbye
The Showboat's comin round the bend
Goodbye my lover goodbye
Singin' by-o my baby
By-o my baby
By-o my baby
Goodbye my lover goodbye
 
BATTLE HYMN OF THE REPUBLIC
Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord;
He is trampling out the vintage where the grapes of wrath are stored;
He hath loosed the fateful lightning of His terrible swift sword,
His truth is marching on.
Glory, glory, hallelujah! Glory, glory, hallelujah!
Glory, glory, hallelujah! His truth is marching on.

2 LET ME CALL YOU SWEETHEART
Let me call you sweetheart
I'm in love with you
Let me hear you whisper
That you love me too
Keep the lovelight glowing
In your eyes so blue
Let me call you sweetheart
I'm in love with you
 
 



4 BICYCLE BUILT FOR TWO
Daisy, Daisy give me your answer do
I'm half crazy over the love of you
It won't be a stylish marriage
I can't afford a carriage
But you'll look sweet
Upon the seat of a
Bicycle built for two
 
 

AFTER THE BALL
After the ball is over
After the break of morn
After the dancerís leaving
After the stars are gone
Many a heart is aching
If you could read them all
Many a hope that has vanished
After the ball
 
DIXIE'S LAND
I wish I was in the land of cotton,
Old times there are not forgotten;
Look away! Look away! Look away, Dixie Land!
In Dixie Land where I was born in,
Early on one frosty morning,
Look away! Look away! Look away, Dixie Land!
Then I wish I was in Dixie! Hooray! Hooray!
In Dixie Land I'll take my stand, to live and die in Dixie!
Away! Away! Away down South in Dixie!
Away! Away! Away down South in Dixie!

click to play or download When You Wore A Tulip
click to play or download Let Me Call You SweetHeart
click to play or download I Want a Girl
click to play or download Bicycle Built for Two
click to play or download Goodbye,My Lover,Goodbye

The above files are in RealAudio format. We recommend the JetAudio Basic Player.
If you enjoyed this try this page of Girl Scout Campfire Songs.


Fairytale Theatre is in my opinion one of the most important offerings of VTG
Every June we have a children's workshop where 80-140 children
ages 7-18 participate in making the magic of live theatre happen

Emma Lou and the Big Ragout was presented as part of Fairy Tale Theatre 2008. Terri Booth was the Director and Ryan Van Den Akker was the Apprentice Director.

The Dragons of Spring, presented as part of Fairy Tale Theatre 2007, was written by Vicksburg resident and Gold in the Hills actor Richard Van Den Akker. Marie Cunningham was the Director.

Snew White was presented as part of Fairy Tale Theatre 2006 with permission of Pioneer Drama Service. Emily Jackson was the Student Director.

Aladdin and The Wonderful Lamp was presented for Fairytale 2005 via special arrangement with Baker's Plays. Emilee Booth directed the performance.

Stone Soup was presented for Fairytale 2004 via special arrangement with Pioneer Drama Service. Jo Beth Britt directed the performance.

The Wizard of Oz in the Wild West was presented for Fairytale 2003 via special arrangement with Pioneer Drama Service. Jo Beth Britt directed the performance.

The Frog Princess was presented for Fairytale 2002 via special arrangement with Pioneer Drama Service. Beth Martin directed the performance.

 Jungle Book was presented for Fairytale 2001 via special arrangement with Pioneer Drama Service. Meggie Welch directed the performance.

Special Thanks to Harold Ober Associates for letting us adapt and perform Letitia Rabbits String Song by Russell Hoban, dramatized by Julia Dionne for Fairytale 00 with original music by Julia Dionne.

Special Thanks to Dramatic Publishing of Woodstock, Illinois for letting us perform Charlie and the Chocolate Factory based on the book by Roald Dahl, dramatized by Richard George for Fairytale 99.

A note from Barry:
Fairytale 98 was the fulfillment of a long-time wish of Earlene's and mine as we obtained permission of Jill Murphy [A.P. Watt, London--thanks Ali] to adapt and perform Jill's book The Worst Witch. The children also did a production number (choreographed by Earlene) to Charles Strouse's "Growing Up Isn't Easy", used by special permission of Charles Strouse (the world's most talented composer) [Helene Blue, NY--thanks Bert]. Thanks again for the permissions; we and the children thoroughly enjoyed bringing our adoption of the drama and Mike and Clarissa Davis' 7 voice arrangement of Charles Strouse and Don Black's music to the amateur stage and total delight of the audience. Thanks to the cast and techies that worked so hard making the play real. I love you all, thanks for making a dream a reality, may God bless you, Barry.


Other Related Regional Web Pages


Larrys Poms

Gulfport Little Theatre Home Page

Cedar Grove Mansion once owned by VTG.

Clinton Community Theatre


Mississippi Theatre Association (MTA)

Vicksburg Military Park

WLBT, Channel 3 Jackson, Home of Window on Mississippi

Vicksburg Post, a newspaper friend to VTG and the Arts

The Jackson Free Press, Jackson, Mississippi's alternative newsweekly


 American Association of Community Theatre (AACT)

American Theater Web


 Jim Henson born Greenville, MS (same year as "Gold" 1936) raised Leland, MS (where Kermit was born in Jim's mind on the banks of Deer Creek and named after his childhood friend Theodore Kermit Scott) Director/Puppeteer/Rock Skimmer (his children recently regained control of the company through a purchase--Congratulations Brian and siblings)

Girl Scout Campfire Songs

All Scout Campfire Songs

Vicksburg Convention and Visitors Bureau

Spider Web Art Gallery

Alcorn's theatre links

Bill & Shirley Smollen's Stained Glass Manor

Open Theatre Listings