Family drives troupe’s backstage success

PATRICK WEBB/For the Observer Angela and Coty Grote, seated, work on costumes and backstage technical duties respectively for the Peninsula Association of Performing Artists. In the production of “Enchanted April” which closes after this weekend, three of their children also contribute. At rear, left to right, are Joel, 19, who portrays the husband of one of the leading characters, plus Samantha, 13, and Isaac, 15, who work behind the scenes. Two other Grote children have helped with prior PAPA shows.

CHINOOK — Community theater groups commonly rely on families for their core leadership and hands-on work, especially behind the scenes.

The Peninsula Association of Performing Artists is no exception with the Floods, especially Cindy, Gary and daughter Brooke, active since the group began, plus Ocean Park couple Glenn and Penny Ripley handling lights/sound and ticketing respectively.

However, all involved in the current production of the uplifting drama “Enchanted April” at the Fort Columbia Theater in Chinook agree that the Grote family is due some well-deserved applause.

Angela Grote has demonstrated zeal and creativity in charge of costume design for several recent shows, including “Beauty and the Beast” and this new one, which requires authentic-looking 1920s fashions.

Husband Coty Grote has helped with backstage technical stuff. Three children are involved in this show. Joel, 19, plays the husband of one of the leading characters, and Samantha, 13, and Isaac, 15, are working behind the scenes.

Two other Grote family members, Stephen, 23, and Seth, 17, have contributed to prior PAPA productions.

Angela Grote became involved some years ago.

“I tried out for ‘Wizard of Oz’ seven years ago as something fun I could do with my kids,” she said. “We had a great time and now the whole family is involved in various aspects, not just on stage.

“Community theater has truly helped my family grow emotionally as well as socially. I have seen it change my kids for the better and provide a great group of friends that we would have never known otherwise.”

This show concludes with three final performances this weekend, 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday then a closing matinee 2 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are $15 for premium seating (closer to stage, more comfortable chairs), $12 open, available online at hwww.papatheater.com. A Washington State Park Discover Pass is not required.

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