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Wednesday, November 26, 2014
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Published: Thursday, 5/8/2014 - Updated: 6 months ago

PEACH WEEKENDER

‘Proposals’ closes the season for Village Players

BY SUE BRICKEY
BLADE STAFF WRITER
The cast rehearses a number in the Fremont Community Theatre’s production of  ‘The Drowsy Chaperone.’ The cast rehearses a number in the Fremont Community Theatre’s production of ‘The Drowsy Chaperone.’
DION WILSON Enlarge

The Village Players is wrapping up one season and announcing the next.

Beginning Friday, the group closes its 2013-2014 season with Neil Simon’s Proposals. The memory play is set at a family retreat in the Poconos in the summer of 1953. 

Romance is definitely in the air for the Hines family; Burt is looking forward to seeing his ex-wife — he is still in love with her. Daughter Josie rejects her fiance, Ken, because she’s captivated by Ray. Clemma, the housekeeper, observes the others while recalling her own past.

“Proposals is one of Neil Simon’s least-done plays, but one of his most heartwarming,” Wes Skinner, who is directing the Village Players production, said in an email. “The audience experiences a range of emotions,” he added. “You find yourself laughing one moment and tearing up the next.”

The cast includes Mary Taylor as Clemma, Larry Farley as Burt, Megan Beckett as Josie, Jon Masters as Ken, and Connor Gavin as Ray.

Looking ahead to 2014-2015, the Village Players’ 58th season will include Quartet, Sept. 5-20; The Heiress, Nov. 7-22, Good People, Jan. 9-24; Looking, March 6-21, and Clue: The Musical, May 8-23.

Proposals will be presented Friday, Saturday at 8 p.m.; May 15, 16, and 17 at 8 p.m.; May 18 at 2 p.m., and May 22, 23, and 24 at 8 p.m. at the Village Players theater, 2740 Upton Ave. Tickets are $16-$14, from 419-472-6817 or thevillageplayers.org.

Fantasy in Fremont

Fremont Community Theatre is drawing actors from around the region for its production of the musical comedy The Drowsy Chaperone, which will be staged this weekend.

Mitchell Antesky of Toledo directs and portrays the Man in the Chair, an anti-social theater fan who seldom leaves his apartment. One evening, he listens to a favorite recording of The Drowsy Chaperone, a fictional 1928 musical comedy, and magic happens — the show comes to life as his dreary living room is transformed into a glitzy Broadway set with actors in lavish costumes and lots of singing and dancing. As the show goes on, more of the Man in the Chair’s life is revealed through his comments.

Featured cast members are Lora Horn, who plays Janet, and Dave Riegel as George, both of Bellevue; Ben Archer as Robert, Sami Trapp as Kitty, and Dwayne Arnold as Gangster No. 1, all of Clyde. Ellen Tucker, who portrays Mrs. Tottendale, is from Perrysburg; Ryan Mahaffey, as an Underling, lives in Rossford; Matt Book, who plays Mr. Feldzieg, lives in Woodville; Kristopher Krotzer, Gangster No. 2, is from Gibsonburg; Scott “Harley” Berry, who plays Aldolpho, is from Toledo; Candi Cantrell, who portrays Trix the Aviatrix, and Darla Brown, the Chaperone, are of Fremont. The ensemble also includes Ashleigh Mays of Bowling Green, Jessica Holland of Fremont, Ryan Book of Woodville, and Pete Lowry of Oak Harbor.

The Drowsy Chaperone will be performed at 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday and May 16 and 17, and at 2 p.m. Sunday and May 18 at Fremont Community Theatre, 1551 Dickinson St., Fremont. 

Tickets are $12 general admission, $10 for seniors and students, from 419-332-0695 or fremontcommunitytheatre.org.

‘Oliver!’ in Bellevue

The beloved musical Oliver!, presented by the Bellevue Society for the Arts, opens Friday in the Hirt Theatre in Bellevue.

Inspired by the Charles Dickens novel Oliver Twist, the musical tells the story of an orphan boy who is put out on the streets of London and comes under the tutelage of the criminal Artful Dodger and his band of child pickpockets trained by Fagin.

With book, music, and lyrics by Lionel Bart, Oliver! was a success in London and in the United States, opening on Broadway in 1963 and winning a Tony Award for Bart for music and lyrics. It was made into a 1968 British film that won an Oscar for Best Picture.

The Bellevue cast includes Daniel Keener of Wakeman, Ohio, as Oliver, Samuel Merritt of Woodville, as the Artful Dodger, and J. DeFriece of Vickery, Ohio, as Fagin.

Oliver! will be performed at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Saturday, and May 16 and 17, and at 2:30 p.m. Sunday in the Hirt Theatre, 205 Maple St., Bellevue. 

Tickets are $12 for adults 18 and older; $8 for adults 60 and over and children and students through grade 12, from 419-484-2787. Reservations also can be made on the society’s Facebook page.

Send theater items to Sue Brickey at: sbrickey@theblade.com.



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