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Published: Thursday, 7/21/2011

Troupe closes season with 'The King and I'

BY NANCIANN CHERRY
BLADE STAFF WRITER
Cast members of the Huron Playhouse production of 'The King and I.' Cast members of the Huron Playhouse production of 'The King and I.'
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Kings and urchins and women who really are men appear on area stages this week.

In Huron, Ohio, the Huron Playhouse's season is coming to an end with The King and I, which will open Tuesday and continue through July 30. (Currently running is Don't Dress for Dinner.)

Based on Anna and the King of Siam by Margaret Landon, with music and lyrics by Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II and choreography by Jerome Robbins, the story revolves around a British governess hired to teach western ways to the many wives, concubines, and children of the oriental ruler in the mid-1800s.

The clash of cultures and the attraction between the king and the governess propel the plot, which is enhanced by such songs as "Whistle a Happy Tune," "Hello, Young Lovers," "Getting to Know You," and "Shall We Dance?"

Playhouse Managing and Artistic Director Jann Graham Glann and Emily Casale, both of Huron, will co-direct and co-choreograph the production.

The large cast, drawn from the playhouse's company and the community, stars Rachel Mulcahy of Syracuse, N.Y., as Anna Leonowens and John Glann of New York as the king.

Also featured will be Hunter Cawthorne of Transfer, Pa., as Anna's son, Louis; Alex Ghattas of Flint, Mich., as the Krahlahome, Steven Imgrund of Pittsburgh as Lun Tha, Layne Schneider of Beavercreek, Ohio, as Tuptim, Caitlin Hamm of Northfield, Ohio, as Lady Thiang, and Nathan Hoty of Huron as Prince Chulalongkorn.

"The King and I" opens Tuesday and runs through July 30 in the Huron Playhouse in McCormick School, 325 Ohio St., Huron, Ohio, about 65 miles southeast of Toledo. Tickets are $16 for adults, $15 for seniors and students, and $12 for children 11 and younger. Information: 419-433-4744.

Farce in Findlay

Fort Findlay Playhouse continues its 2011-12 season with Leading Ladies by Ken Ludwig.

The farce, popular with community theaters, is set in the 1950s and is the story of two penurious English actors, Jack and Leo, who find themselves performing "Scenes from Shakespeare" on the Moose Lodge circuit in rural Pennsylvania.

When they learn that a rich woman in a nearby city is on her deathbed and is seeking her two long-lost nephews, the actors decide to pass themselves off as the potential heirs. A big problem crops up when the nephews turn out to be nieces.

For the Findlay production, directed by Patrick Davis, Pete Rose and Kyle Slagley portray Jack and Leo. Also in the cast are Barb Pace as Florence Snyder, their wealthy target; Samantha Henry as Meg, Mrs. Snyder's niece, with whom Leo falls in love; Patrick Davis as Meg's betrothed; Jim Toth as the local doctor, John Garner as the doctor's son, and Lori Foster as a roller-skating waitress.

"Leading Ladies" is scheduled at 8 p.m. Thursdays-Saturdays through July 30 with a matinee at 5 p.m. Sunday. Performances are in Fort Findlay Playhouse, 300 West Sandusky St., Findlay. Tickets are $12, available at the box office of the Arts Partnership, 618 South Main St., Findlay. Information: 419- 422-4624.

Also opening:

● River Raisin Centre for the Arts in Monroe presents the musical Oliver! at 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 3 p.m. Sunday. The production of the River Raisin Youth Theatre is based on Charles Dickens' novel Oliver Twist and is filled with such well-known songs as "Food, Glorious Food," "I'd Do Anything," "Consider Yourself," and "As Long As He Needs Me." Tickets range from $10 to $18 from the center at 114 South Monroe St., Monroe. Information: 734-242-7722 or riverraisincentre.org.

Les Miserables, School Edition is scheduled this weekend in the Maumee Indoor Theatre, 601 Conant St. Based on Victor Hugo's epic novel of the French Revolution, the show by 3B Productions is directed by Joe Barton and features 50 students from all over the region, including Bryan, Millbury, Bloomdale, and the Toledo area. Tickets are $12 for adults and $10 for students and seniors from 3bproductions.org; at Kostumes, Ltd., 7313 International Drive, Suite A, Holland, or at the theater box office. Information: Joe Barton at 419-360-5639.

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



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