Sunday, January 15, 2012

STAGE: The Broomfield Enterprise

Dad and I were interviewed by the Broomfield Enterprise. You can read the article below or go to

The Carters are a tight-knit family, so the father-son team of Ron and Bret behind their original play "Mobius" know a little something about the various ways people's lives intertwine.

Like the Mobius strip, a character leads into each seemingly separate vignette, and another takes us to the next, until the sum of the whole loops back on itself, and shows them all to be of one side. All the actors, recruited by BackStory Theatre's Anna Marie Wilcox for the Jan. 13 and 14 production at the Broomfield Auditorium, play several roles.

Entertaining is in the Carters' blood.

A 45 recorded by Ron Carter's folk duo, Valley Men, hangs on the wall of his home. The Valley Men toured successfully and barely missed out on a recording contract that went to the unknown Smothers Brothers.

After seeing the brutality of the business, and more than a few lonely bachelors in their 50s and 60s waiting for their "big break," he gave it up in 1965 to become a minister in the Church of Christ and marry his sweetheart, Jean.

Bret jokes that his dad giving up show business is what allowed him to be here.

"I made the right choice," Ron said.

Music and theater was always a hobby of the family.

After becoming a minister and marrying, Ron Carter continued to write and win awards.

Bret Carter has formed a folk duo of his own, Ruby Mirror, with his sister, Julie Ochlert.

As a teacher at Hyland Christian School in Westminster, Bret Carter happened into the role of putting on a yearly production by accident.

He enlisted his father to help him write the plays and musicals. They both come up with an idea and write a first draft, then read them to each other and discuss what they like about each. From there, Bret revises and retools the scripts with the input of his father.

They have now collaborated on more than 15 projects.

One of the people to help with the productions was Anna Marie Wilcox, who would go on to found Backstory Theatre. Wilcox then asked them to do the shows again in Broomfield.

"Hyland has become sort of a testing ground," Bret Carter said, where they get a chance to see what works and retool it before bringing it to Broomfield.

Backstory Theatre has taken off since Wilcox decided to start children's classes in 2006, having become one of the Broomfield Community Center's and Broomfield Auditorium's most frequent presenters.

Wilcox, a professional actress and director in Denver for a number of years, wanted to have at least one play a year cast with adults, and not the culmination of a class, but a full production.

Having directed last year's "Signing Off," this year Wilcox is a member of the cast and looks forward to the chance to be on stage.

So far, the shows have done well. Well enough, at least, to be put on by other groups.

"Colorado State University is doing a production of 'Signing Off,'" Bret Carter said.

One of Backstory's students is now a theater major and brought it to the attention of her drama teacher.

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