CHURCH HILL THEATRE
Church Hill, Maryland – May 22, 2015
Church Hill Theatre’s 2015 musical, on the 70th anniversary of its Broadway opening, is the Rodgers and Hammerstein classic, Carousel. Called the best musical of the 20th century by Time magazine, Carousel was the second R&H collaboration, following the enormously popular Oklahoma!. Based on the play Liliom, by the Hungarian author Ferenc Molnar and adapted by Benjamin F. Glazer, the original production was choreographed by Agnes de Mille. The original show ran for almost nine hundred performances. Carousel was made into a movie starring Shirley Jones and Gordon McCrea and has been successfully revived many times on Broadway and around the world.
If Oklahoma! cheered audiences in the middle of WWII, Carousel provided a more thoughtful post-war reflection on good and evil, coming down firmly on the redemptive power of love. Richard Rodgers’ almost operatic music, integral to every aspect of the production, differentiates the characters and their emotions, weaving seamlessly into the plot. Set in late 19th century New England, Carousel tells the stories of carnival worker Billy Bigelow, who falls in love with millworker Julie Jordan, and her friend Carrie, who marries Enoch Snow, a fisherman. When both Billy and Julie lose their jobs, he dies during a botched robbery to provide for their unborn child. But the Starkeeper is looking after Billy and allows him to watch over his daughter Louise and ultimately redeem himself.
Director Sylvia Maloney, co-Musical Directors Judith Miller and Sam Stenecker and Choreographer Cavin Moore have assembled a large and talented cast to portray Carousel’s mix of fishermen, carnival workers, mill hands and townspeople in a seaside New England village. Carousel includes such well-known songs as If I Loved You and You’ll Never Walk Alone, with a stunningly beautiful score.
The cast of CHT’s show includes Liz Clarke, Hannah Zerai, Becca Van Aken, Mark Wiening, Matt Folker, Georgiann Gibson, John Beck, Lee Werth, Ira Nelson, Jakob Diggs, Dan McCreary, Jusden Messick, Elliott Morotti, Brandon Walls, Jim Johnson, Abbey Gilbert, Lisa Webb, Kelly Ostazeski, Allison Silver, Jessika Diggs, Maya McGrory, Grace McCreary, Kylie Sommer, Michael Whitehill, Iz Clemens, Connor Christopher, Lindsay McCowan , Isabel McCreary, and Rebekah McCreary.
The principal roles of Billy Bigelow and Julie Jordan are played by Mark Wiening and Hannah Zerai, with Carrie Pipperidge and Enoch Snow portrayed by Liz Clarke and Matt Folker.
The Stage Manger is Stacey Faust. Michael Whitehill and Brian Draper designed, constructed and decorated the set, and Nic Carter conceived the light design with Doug Kaufmann serving as lighting consultant. Assistant Stage Managers are Michelle Christopher and Trystan McCarthy with Tina Johnson, Debra Ebersole and Erma Johnson as costumers. The orchestra includes Judith Miller, Sam Stenecker, Tom Anthony, Ron Demby, Matt Davis, Shelby Clendaniel, Jim Pileggi, Joe Diamon, Ray Diedrichs, Jane Godfrey and Alphonso Ramirez.
Carousel runs from June 5 -21, 2015 with performances at 8 pm on Fridays and Saturdays and 2 pm on Sundays. Reservations are strongly advised and can be made by calling the box office at 410-556-6003 or online at www.churchhilltheatre.org
The women folk let by Carrie (Liz Clarke), center, scold the men folk for their rude behavior in in Church Hill Theatre’s production of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s musical “Carousel” opening Friday, June 5 and playing weekends through June 21. Photo by Pat Patterson.