Victoria Recker, left, portrays Doralee Rhoads and Steve Lane portrays Mr. Hart in “9 to 5” offered now at the Van Wert Civic Theatre. (Photo courtesy of Monica Campbell)
Victoria Recker, left, portrays Doralee Rhoads and Steve Lane portrays Mr. Hart in “9 to 5” offered now at the Van Wert Civic Theatre. (Photo courtesy of Monica Campbell)
VAN WERT – “9 to 5,” a musical which follows three women who work as secretaries at Consolidated Industries in 1979, will be opening at the Van Wert Civic Theatre this week.

Delphos native Victoria Recker plays the part of Doralee Rhodes, who is happily married but who’s boss is making advances towards her and even goes as far as to tell the entire office that they are having an affair, without her knowledge.

“It’s in the midst of a time period where women were regarded as just secretaries and they really couldn’t do much more than that, other than be an housewife at home,” said Recker.

The musical feature’s two other women, Violet Newstead, played by MaryAnn Falk, a long-time employee who is looking to move up the corporate latter but can’t quite break through the glass ceiling; and Judy Bernly, played by Stacy Rife, who is newly-divorced and just entering the work-force for the first time.

“I auditioned for Doralee because I really like the spunk of her character,” said Recker. “I really felt an inclination to bring out the country singer in me and become Doralee Rhodes.”

The musical is based off of the 1980s movie with the same title, in which Dolly Parton, who originally plays the character of Rhodes, helped to adapt into a musical. Parton wrote and composed the songs for the musical.

On top of memorizing a script and songs, the performers had to memorize choreography.

“We’re really excited to showcase what our dancers can do,” commented Recker. “They’ve practiced, they’ve put the time and energy into learning these numbers and spent many, many hours, but they really have come around and done a fantastic job with learning it.”

Recker, who graduated form Delphos St. John’s in 2009, has always had a passion for performing, especially musically. She joined theatre in high school, where she performed in her first musical as a sophomore.

“I’ve always been inclined to be performing, whether that’s singing or dancing,” said Recker. “I actually really enjoy the music component of the performance. I really got involved in singing when I was in second grade at St. John’s for school masses. It kind of just developed me into the performer I am today.”

“I’ve always wanted to get involved in music and it actually inspired me to become a music major in college,” Recker continued. “My roots in music in church helped me to get into the theatre component in high school and then pursue it hopefully as a career with my ambition.”

Recker currently works at UltraSound Special Events in Delphos, where she has been able to stay in the entertainment business.

Recker is an avid theatre performer. She has been in six productions within the last year.

“The one thing I really enjoy about theatre is being able to take the vision of a character or an entire plot that someone has taken their time and energy to write down on paper and to recreate that based on what they’ve envisioned,” Recker said. “There are elements that are pretty much always the same when playwrights put down what they want, but generally the characters, the actions, the facial expressions, they’re unique to you as a person and performer. I’ve always liked to recreate that vision that someone’s created.”

Recker also noted that one of her favorite parts of theatre is being able to collaborate with fellow cast members, stating that the productions are a team effort and that they try to convey that on stage.

When it comes to the “9 to 5” production, Recker feels that it could be relevant to how women may feel today and encourages the community to watch to see the power women can have together.

“It’s just a great musical to see how women empower each other and how they can step up and take charge,” she said. “It really is a show that reaches all age levels, whether you are 65 or whether you’re just starting out at 21 years-old in the career force. It really showcases what women are capable of once they do take charge and when they do feel like they have power and support. It really is incredible what we can do.”

Rehearsals for the musical started at the end of January, so the performers have had six weeks to prepare themselves for the show.

“This has been quite fun, working 9 to 5 on a day-to-day basis in my own personal life and then going after hours to work on a different ‘9 to 5’ show,” said Recker. “People should come and reminisce with us in 1979’s office life.”

“9 to 5” opened Thursday at the Van Wert Civic Theatre. Additional show times include today at 8 p.m., Sunday at 2 p.m. and next weekend, March 23-25 at 8 p.m. and March 26 at 2 p.m. Tickets can be purchased at the Civic Theatre box office.