Former ‘SanTan Sun News’ owner to hit stage with friends in ‘Boa Babes’ - SanTan Sun News SanTan Sun News

Former ‘SanTan Sun News’ owner to hit stage with friends in ‘Boa Babes’

May 14th, 2017 development
Former ‘SanTan Sun News’ owner to hit stage with friends in ‘Boa Babes’

By Colleen Sparks

Chandler resident Laurie Fagen, former owner and publisher emeritus of “SanTan Sun News,” is taking the stage with four other experienced actresses in a musical about their friendship, which has spanned four decades.

“Boa Babes” makes its world premiere May 18-21 at Mesa Encore Black Box Theatre, 933 E. Main St. Fagen, who has performed in many local theater productions including “Dames at Sea” and “Jerry’s Girls,” wrote the musical about love, loss, children, spouses, deep friendships and other universal themes for women and men.

The women who inspired her script and are performing in what Fagen calls a “dramedy with music” are Mary Nelle Brown, Pam Cannedy, Sherri Hildebrand, Sandy Densford Vernon and Fagen herself. Deborah Lee Hall (whose directing credits include “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” and “Wait Until Dark”) is directing the musical, while the stage manager is Cat Dragon of Mesa (whose managing credits include “Lonely Planet” and the 1992 Academy Awards).

Arizona Women’s Theatre Company and Cannedy Performing Arts Centre are producing the show.

“There are so many universal themes about friendship, love, aging parents, kids, pets – mostly cats – and then growing old and having a bucket list and checking things off a bucket list,” Fagen said of the musical. “These are all stories from our 40-year friendship. I think other people will say, ‘Oh, yeah, I remember when we did something like that.’”

She wrote the script last summer before showing it to the other women in the musical, who helped her edit it. Fagen said she and the other “gals” in the show are “all in our 60s.”

Fagen earned a bachelor’s degree in mass communications from Arizona State University and has worked extensively for television and radio stations. She also worked as a writer/producer/director of corporate videos for 12 years.

“Boa Babes” will be performed at 7:30 p.m. May 18, 19 and 20 and at 2 p.m. May 21. For tickets and information, visit

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