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Backstage April 2005

Opening April 29th, "Into the Woods"

From 129 auditioners (a new record turnout!), a talented cast was chosen:

  • Rich Boyer as the Baker
  • Kim Mesiti as the Baker's Wife
  • Renee Palermo as the Witch
  • Shannon Barry as Little Red
  • Karah Kuhns as Cinderella
  • Michael King as Narrator/Mysterious Man
  • Devon Talbot as Jack
  • Kathy Iannacone as Cinderella's Stepmother
  • George Keenan as Cinderella's Father
  • Desiree Caro as Florinda
  • Kira McCarthy as Lucinda
  • Barbi Hendrickson as Jack's Mother
  • Tom Ryan as Cinderella's Prince/Wolf
  • Matt Burns as Rapunzel's Prince/Wolf
  • Elissa Strell as Rapunzel
  • Phil Levesque as Steward
  • Jeslyn Wheeless as Cinderella's Mother/Granny/Giant
  • Jacki Sogel as Milky/Snow White
  • Mara Lundstrum as Sleeping Beauty

Into the Woods Come see this imaginative musical account of what happens when the lives of new and old fairytale characters dramatically and humorously come together in a parable about the loss of innocence, the joys and sorrow of adulthood, and the price paid for getting the things you really want.

Directed by Bob Cline, with musical director Joe Elefante, this enchanting musical drama will be presented April 29 and 30; and May 6, 7, 8, 12, 13, and 14 at our Playhouse, 23 North Passaic Avenue. Tickets are available Online through Ticket-leap or by calling our box office (open two weeks prior to April 29) at 973-635-7363.

New Trustees Elected

At our March 9 Election Meeting, the following Trustees were unanimously elected:

President Chris Furlong Vice President Roy Pancirov Secretary Joelle Bochner Treasurer Kathy Rex Business Manager Steffi Denmark

Joining the group is Past President Debby Hennessy. Trustees serve for two years, July 1, 2005, through June 30, 2007.

Auditions for Jersey Voices

Auditions for "Jersey Voices", our summer gala of six one-act plays to be presented July 29-30 and August 5-6, will be held at The Playhouse on Sunday, May 22, and Tuesday, May 24. For further information, call Bob Denmark at 973-952-0052 or e-mail

News from Here and There...

...Rich Maloy, Bobby Selig, Heather Darrow, Carol Cornicelli, and Patrick Field will be performing in 4 Wall Theatre's upcoming production of "Big River" ...Paul Bettys and David Neal performed in Kate Schlesinger's production of "Inspecting Carol" at the Summit Playhouse...also at the Summit Playhouse, Roy Pancirov and Jim Boderick will be performing in Joanne Scanlon's production of "A Delicate Balance" ...Tom Hodge just performed in "Rashomon" at The Barn Theatre in Montville.

Extreme Makeover — Theater Edition

Ever consider building a house in Italy in just 5 weekends? Home building and makeover shows have become so popular nowadays — most Saturday mornings at the Chatham Playhouse, volunteers come together to do the same type of things that you see on TV!

Look how over the course of less than 100 hours the world of San Salvatore featured in our production of "Enchanted April," was built, painted and decorated to welcome its London visitors (and audiences!) from the cold, dark, rainy London club rooms to open, wisteria-covered terraces.

How Do They Do It?

Image Steve Ruskin & Chris Furlong stabilizing a raised platform. There are so many levels of involvement in building a set. There's the designer who lays out exactly what will be built, what the measurements are and the materials that will need to be purchased. The carpenters cut the wood, nail & screw everything together (walls, windows, shutters, staircases, porches, trees...), sand things down and check the stability and safety of the pieces built. Our painting crew then comes in to add on the colors, shadows and textures that make the world come to life. Finally, our set dressers add all of the finishing touches, such as flower boxes, creeping vines, curtains and wall hangings.

Image Roy Pancirov filling in the wall to the "house" In addition to all of the building involved, we also have our furniture & props teams that rent, borrow and buy items that we may need for a particular show (tables, chairs, desks, lamps, sometimes even stoves, beds and refrigerators). Once all of those elements are put together, it is the lighting designer who with timing, intensity and color sets the mood for the entire world. With lighting, the world we have created becomes that of a late-night stroll in a beautiful spring garden, a sunny afternoon on the Mediterranean, or a gloomy day in a London reading room.

Image L-R: Cody Dalton & Julianne DiPietro performing on the completed set of "Enchanted April")

Are All Of These People Volunteers?

Yes! Yes! Yes! It doesn't matter what level of experience you have — all are welcome, and all learn. The best part of it all, is the great sense of togetherness that comes from learning and accomplishing things as a team. We've seen people with no experience at all come up with new and ingenious ways of engineering things that drop from the ceiling, or how to build something that collapses easily. It's amazing how quickly a few hours can go by, and the amount of progress that just a few people can make in bringing a world to life.

Take some of our lady carpenters as an example. Several were curious, but shy to use some of power tools involved. After a few safety lessons with the saws, router and air-compressor, they have become some of the most consistent and welcome volunteers on Saturday mornings. From teenagers to grandparents, men and women, from all different backgrounds — all are welcome and encouraged to come. Construction begins for our next production on Saturday, March 19th at 10am. Come join our group of volunteers in the creation of the fairy tale surroundings for our spring musical, "Into the Woods." If you want more information, please Get Involved or e-mail us about volunteering. Or, call us at 973-635-7363 and leave us a message saying you are interested in volunteering with us. We look forward to hearing from you!