Morrison, Firlit return for key roles in Thingamajig’s Broadway Gala fundraiser

Photo courtesy Carole Howard This summer’s Thingamajig Theatre Company Broadway musicals actors, including Trevor Brown and Samantha “Sam” Luck, will serve dinner, perform in a cabaret-style concert directed by Melissa Firlit and be auctioned off by emcee Dan Morrison for private gatherings on Tuesday, July 25, at 5 p.m. at the Pagosa Springs Center for the Arts. It’s a gala evening to raise funds for Pagosa’s sole nonprofit professional live theater.

By Carole Howard | Thingamajig Theatre Company

Hugely popular Thingamajig Theatre Company actor Dan Morrison returns to Pagosa from California to emcee the live auction at the Broadway Gala fundraising event on Tuesday, July 25, at 5 p.m. 

Morrison will be joined by another greatly admired favorite, as Melissa Firlit comes from New York City to direct an original cabaret show featuring the talents of the Thingamajig Theatre Company’s brilliant summer musicals cast. 

The key roles of Firlit and Morrison are part of an elegant evening at the Pagosa Springs Center for the Arts to raise funds for Pagosa’s only nonprofit professional live theater. 

In addition to the cabaret concert, the event will feature a live auction for unique interactions with the actors, live music by the actors, and a meal catered and donated by a theater sponsor served by the actors. 

The dishes served at the gala dinner will be inspired by two of the summer’s Broadway musicals — southern favorites like chicken fingers and mac and cheese for “The Great American Trailer Park Musical” and Italian specialties like roast beef sandwiches and lasagna in honor of “Jersey Boys.”

Only about half of the costs of Thingamajig productions are covered by ticket sales. The remainder of the theater’s funding comes from private donors, business sponsors, grants and proceeds from this annual Broadway Gala fundraiser — the most important event of the year to keep the theater up and running. 

Tickets are $150 for this dressy evening and are on sale now on the theater’s website,, or by phoning the box office at (970) 731-SHOW (7469). 

Unique auction items 

A look at some of the one-of-a-kind live auction offerings gives you a good idea of what unique experiences will be available to you if you are among the many lucky winners. 

Always a favorite are singing telegrams with a minimum of three actors singing three songs as a special surprise for someone you love. Another unusual treat is a photo shoot for up to four people where the actors will do your hair and makeup while feeding you champagne and chocolate and choosing perfect costumes — imagine a perfect Christmas card when they join you in the picture.

Other options: Consider bidding on a campfire sing-along with the summer cast. Or, you can host three gatherings to discuss the casting and staging of possible plays while you and up to six friends enjoy a delicious meal prepared by chef extraordinaire Tim Moore. 

Take a look at two more exceptional auction items: One is a progressive dinner for 10 people when the actors chauffeur you and your friends to four incredible locations where you’ll enjoy serenades along with wine and cocktail pairings to go with a multicourse meal prepared by the cast. Past winners have called this offering the crown jewel of the gala. 

Another remarkable auction item is a trip for two to New York City with Tim and Laura Moore where you’ll join them for two days of auditioning potential actors to perform in next year’s summer musicals. This three-day, four-night trip also includes visiting with past Thingamajig performers, enjoying two high-end dinners out in the Big Apple and attending two shows on Broadway. Airfare is not included.

“We know from previous galas that our guests have been surprised and delighted by the evening’s festivities — and especially the clever and creative auction opportunities,” said Laura Moore, executive director and co-founder of Thingamajig Theatre with her husband, Tim. “We are deeply grateful for everyone’s support because the musicals that folks are seeing on stage this summer — and our many other productions throughout the year — would not be possible without the funding raised at the gala.”

Broadway summer

This summer’s talented actors, singers, dancers, directors and designers are presenting a blockbuster summer season aptly titled Broadway in the Mountains. Three musicals are on stage in rotation until Aug. 27: 

“The Great American Trailer Park Musical” is a heartwarming musical comedy that explores the complicated relationships between a group of misfits living at a trailer park in Florida. 

“Jersey Boys” became an international music phenomenon as it dramatized the story of the formation, success, eventual breakup and great music of Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons, the iconic ‘60s rock ‘n’ roll group. 

“Godspell” is structured as a series of parables principally based on the Gospel of St. Matthew, interspersed with multiple impressive music numbers. 

As well, “Newsies Jr.,” playing July 15 and 16, will be the theater’s Whatchamawhozits children’s summer camp show. 

How to buy tickets

Tickets for the gala and summer musicals are available at or by phoning the box office at (970) 731-SHOW (7469). 

“Trailer Park” and “Jersey Boys” are recommended for more mature audiences. Evening performances are at 7 p.m. and matinees are at 3 p.m.

Thingamajig Theatre Company is an award-winning professional nonprofit 501(c)(3) theater in residence within the Pagosa Springs Center for the Arts. Its talented cast and crew come from across the U.S. to produce musicals, comedies and dramas year-round. 

The theater was co-founded in 2010 by Tim and Laura Moore, both award-winning actors and directors in their own right. 

Their mission is to provide high-quality theater experiences at a low cost to our community, thereby making art accessible as well as providing a major economic driver for our tourist industry. They also provide youth, many of whom are recipients of scholarships, with low-cost, hands-on educational opportunities to see and participate in professional productions of important plays.