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Published: Wednesday, 10/22/2008

Owens hosts season s opening EdgyRep

BY NANCIANN CHERRY
BLADE STAFF WRITER

A ghost story and musicals about Jesus Christ and the circus grace area colleges this weekend.

At Owens Community College, the Toledo Repertoire Theatre is offering Shining City, the first of its season of four EdgyRep Readings.

The readings are bare-bones productions, generally devoid of props and costumes. They do, however, allow audiences to experience works that are unlikely to get full productions by community theaters looking to please a lot of people.

Shining City is Conor McPherson s tale of four people emotionally isolated in the teeming city of Dublin. It revolves around John, a widower who is haunted by visions of his dead wife. Other characters are Ian, the widower s neophyte therapist (a former priest); Neasa, the therapist s girlfriend, and Laurence, a young father.

Directed by F. Scott Regan, emeritus professor of theater at Bowling Green State University, the cast of Shining City comprises Cindy Bilby, Lane Hakel, Jeffrey J. Albright, and Wesley Volmar.

The Toledo Rep presents Shining City at 8 p.m. Saturday in the Center for Fine and Performing Arts at Owens Community College, 30335 Oregon Rd., Perrysburg. Tickets are $15. The event is preceded by a reception at 7:30. Information: 419-243-9277.

The gospel according to St. Matthew, with a few adaptations by John-Michael Tebelak (book) and Stephen Schwartz (music and lyrics), opens tonight at BGSU.

Godspell, a community theater favorite since its successful runs off-Broadway and on Broadway in the 1970s, uses circus tricks, TV quiz shows, cartoon voices, and other story-theater styles to recount the passion of Christ. Notable songs from the show include Day by Day, All for the Best, Turn Back, O Man, and By My Side.

Directed by Robin Gordon, an instructor of theater and film at BGSU, the cast includes Alison Schmidt and Casey Toney of Toledo, Leigh Yenrick of Rossford, Holly Blinn of Bowling Green, Ashley Brown of Defiance, and Erin Hoyt of Bedford.

Also performing are Kendra Jo Brook, Angelo DiBartolomeo, Michael Ferraro, Jackie Jerlecki, Kaitlyn Majoy, Scott Sanville, and James Wilson.

The BGSU department of theater and film presents Godspell in the Joe E. Brown Theatre of University Hall. Performances are at 8 p.m. today and tomorrow, 2 and 8 p.m. Saturday, and 2 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are $12 for adults and students, $6 for youngsters 11 and younger, and $5 for seniors 65 and older. Information: 419-372-2719.

Barnum, a musical comedy about the life of P.T. Barnum, is scheduled through Saturday at Adrian College.

The stage biography follows the life of the 19th-century showman and the people who entered it, including Tom Thumb, Jenny Lind, Susan B. Anthony, and a variety of circus and side-show performers. Cirque Amongus, from Livonia, Mich., helped to train students in circus techniques during workshops at the college in September.

Barnum is scheduled at 8 tonight-Saturday in Dawson Auditorium on Charles Street at Adrian College in Adrian, about 40 miles northwest of Toledo. Tickets are $10 for the public and $7 for seniors and Adrian College students and staff. Information: 517-264-3922.

Contact Nanciann Cherry at ncherry@theblade.com or 419-724-6130.



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