RIFLE — Like any comic book love story, Skye and Todd Sieber’s romance took time to develop and craft.
In 1991, the two friends were in high school drama class together. They both graduated from Granite High School in Salt Lake City.
He went off to the Army’s 101st Airborne.
She to the Peace Corps.
Twelve years later, the two were married. This weekend, the couple continues their pursuit of theatrical excellence with the original two-act play, “Lever-Action.” The comedy runs through April 13 at the Rifle High School auditorium.
According to the Siebers, the Western Slope of Colorado is not only home to endless trails for hiking, but also a dreamy superhero. “Lever-Action” tells a comic book-style tale of Rifle’s handsome and retired vigilante superhero.
“When the citizens of Rifle find themselves caught in the crosshairs of the villainous Big City, Lever-Action must rise again to fight for small business and small-town values,” reads the play’s description.
This is when the play’s props and costumes will really shine, said Todd Sieber, the visionary behind the superhero character and the show’s writer and director. Sieber said he and his wife have elaborate Halloween parties, and both get into the spirit, which has carried over into the Boomtown Players original production.
“This is just living out my dream of wanting to be a special effects make-up artist when I was a kid,” Todd Sieber said. “My wife and I are really into Halloween, and for the past five years we’ve been hosting parties. We once had a superhero theme, and I was Aquaman and she was Wonder Woman.”
Todd Sieber said he came up with the idea for “Lever-Action” about two years ago, originally writing it as five two-minute segments. He and Skye worked together to help form the Boomtown Players in 2012, and Todd starting rewriting with Steven Fuller and Dylan Fixmer. The trio had previously co-written on the Boomtown Player’s previous production, “Cupid Confidential.”
“We really wanted to have a variety show, so we brainstormed some ideas and pulled ‘Lever-Action’ out of the archives,” Todd Sieber said. “Steven, Dylan and I all kind of look at writing in different ways. ‘Lever-Action’ has now grown from 10 minutes to a two-hour show.”
Sieber said the writers enjoyed creating the story of a Rifle-born-and-bred superhero.
“Superheroes are larger than life, the epitome of selflessness, and they build a hunger for something greater than us,” he said. “Every town needs a hero.”
Skye Sieber is president of the Boomtown Players, where Todd said she is a superhero in her own right. She’s responsible for everything from the spot-on superhero costuming and production tech to managing the stage crews and web ticket sales.
“Our cast of 14 for ‘Lever-Action’ hail from Rifle, Silt, New Castle and Glenwood and have devoted the past 10 weeks to preparing for this show,” Skye Sieber said.
The Rifle-based theatre troupe has been working with the community to establish a popular following with locals as well as provide a mobile functionality to its entertainment. Todd Sieber, who has lived in Rifle with his wife for six years, said businesses such as Miller’s Dry Goods and Habitat ReStore have been helpful in supporting the troupe’s stage productions and shows.
“The community has really stepped up to help us make something of this show. I love the small-town atmosphere here,” Todd Sieber said. “We started out as kind of a mobile troupe, and now we are looking forward to the Ute center being built. We’re really just focused on comedy, and also doing a little light improv, which is pretty much pure comedy.”
The Siebers said the Boomtown Players plan to present a second production this year, likely in the fall. The troupe aspires to produce four shows a year.
The progression to acting and comedy has only been natural for Todd Sieber.
“My entire life I’ve made a joke out of something,” he said. “There’s always going to be laughter. You’re going to cry at some moment in your life, so why not laugh when you can?”