Incline Star Follies a family affair
Special to the Tribune
The Incline Star Follies organization is coming into its 20th year of raising money for the local public schools with enthralling dance and charismatic lip sync.
With help from the community, the nonprofit has raised over $1 million to date. Not only are the shows a highlight for the community, but many participants enjoy it so much, they return to the stage year after year. Chris and Patti Plastiras are on stage again with their daughter, Amber Anderson, and son-in-law Trevor Anderson.
Amber and Trevor both joined Star Follies as kids. Long-time audience attendees may remember Amber as Annie when she was in fifth grade; Trevor was in eighth grade when he made his debut in “Who Let the Dogs Out?” They are joining the adult cast for the first time. This year will be Patti’s eighth show, and for Chris, in addition to a year helping out backstage, it will be his 18th show performing.
Q: Trevor and Amber, where have you guys been since leaving the Follies student cast?
A: We’ve been slowly making our way back to Tahoe. After college and marriage, we are working with family and putting down roots again in our hometown. It has seemed like a natural progression from fan to participant.
Compared to being a kid, the stage seems smaller now and the nerves infinitely more.
Q: Do you think you’re hooked for future Follies?
A: Like we had a choice! We’ve been hooked on Follies since the beginning. It wouldn’t stop now!
Q: Amber, your dad has participated in 19 of the 20 shows. He’s quite the seasoned veteran. What do you think he is looking forward to the most?
A: He’ll be excited to be adding to his Follies costume wardrobe, and sneaking in the back wings to watch every number, even when he’s not supposed to.
Q: Chris, what has been your favorite costume?
A: My Elvis costume was actually purchased from an Elvis impersonator, so it is top-quality.
Q: Patti, what is your favorite dance move?
A: Dancing like Tina Turner, which is also my most embarrassing.
Q: Chris, what is your most embarrassing moment on stage?
A: Wayne Cameron and I were in a country western number I had a part where I’d come up and sing a verse. To this day, I am sure Wayne purposely distracted (me) so I’d forgot my cue. I was certainly late.
Q: Patti, what has been the most unexpected part of being a cast member?
A: For months after the show, whatever character I was often times people would greet me with “Hey Barbie” or “Hi Cher.”
Q: What are you most looking forward to this year?
Patti: Being in the Follies with my family.
Chris: I look forward to seeing everyone in the show year after year. You’d think, living in such a small town, we would see each other more often, but with the busy lives we all have, it just doesn’t happen. It’s going to be an emotional year for most of us out there. We basically get to relive 20 years of memories all in one night.
Amber: All the energy and excitement! It’s contagious!
Trevor: Now that I am a member of the adult cast, I’m excited to see the younger generation take the stage like I did at their age. I remember the cast coming together to mentor us through the experience back then and I can’t wait to return the favor!
Q: Amber and Trevor, what advice do you have for the students in this year’s cast?
A: Go all in! The Follies is what you make it. Everyone is out of their comfort zone, but the bonds you form and the confidence you gain is irreplaceable. And remember the bright lights make everyone fade away. If that doesn’t work, just picture everyone in the audience in their underwear.
Q: Chris and Patti, what would you tell someone who is thinking about attending for the first time?
A: Be prepared to be entertained from the moment the show starts. It’s fast-paced and takes on a life of its own. You will be amazed at the choreography and costuming. I can pretty much promise you, once you come to the first show, you a come year after year.