Stewart, Centenary News Service, 318-869-5120
or Marjorie Lyons
Lyons Playhouse Announces Cast for "Mame," Opening July 18
SHREVEPORT, LA -- Seva May
will appear as the life-loving Auntie Mame in the Marjorie Lyons Playhouse
production of the musical "Mame," which opens July 18 for a two-week
Since the opening of the original
production in 1966, "Mame" has been one of the most beloved musicals on Broadway. Based on the novel Auntie Mame, "Mame"
follows the exploits of Mame Dennis, a free spirit who feels that life
is a banquet and that everyone should eat heartily from it. She has become
the caretaker of her young nephew, who has been recently orphaned. She
sets out to show him that the world is a big, joyful place to be embraced
All of this is played to a classic
score written by Jerry Herman, the composer of such other Broadway classics as "Hello, Dolly," "La Cage Aux Folles," "Milk and Honey" and
"Mack and Mabel." His score for "Mame" contains “It’s Today,” “Open a New Window,” “We Need A Little Christmas,”
“My Best Girl,” “If He Walked Into My Life”and the banjo-strumming
title tune, “Mame.”
May, one of the area’s favorite singing
performers, is a veteran of summer musicals at the Playhouse. She has been
seen as Eva Peron in “Evita,” Fanny Brice in "Funny Girl," Charity
Valentine in "Sweet Charity," Aldonza in "Man of La Mancha,"
Velma in "Chicago," Sally Bowles in "Cabaret," Mrs. Johnstone
in "Blood Brothers," and has had featured roles in "Grand Hotel,"
"Nine," "Applause" and "Smile." May has won five Times
Drama Awards and was selected as Shreveport/Bossier’s Favorite Stage Actress
at the inaugural SB Magazine Awards.
Playing Vera Charles, the first lady
of musical theatre and Mame’s best friend, is Peggy Byers. She has previously
appeared at the Playhouse in "Nine" and "The Cripple of Inishmaan."
Byers has numerous credits with the Cavalier Players of Bossier Parish
Community College, including "Agnes of God," "The Foreigner," "Moon Over
Buffalo" and "Noises Off." She also appeared as Doatsy Mae
in a national tour of "The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas."
Bill Gallmann will portray Beauregard
Jackson Pickett Burnside, a Southern gentleman Mame meets while working
at a roller skate counter at Macy’s. He appeared as Emile De Becque
in the Performing Arts Center’s "South Pacific."
Jim Montgomery will be seen as Dwight
Babcock, the stern banker trying to keep Mame’s liberal influences from
taking root. Montgomery, who has appeared in many local productions, has
won four Times Drama Awards for roles in "The Heiress," "The
Diary of Anne Frank," "A Little Night Music" and "Peter Pan."
Most recently, he has been seen in "Electra," "Art," "Gross Indecency:
The Three Trials of Oscar Wilde," and "42nd Street."
Tyler Krieg and Ryan Williams will
appear as Patrick, Mame’s nephew, at 10 years old and as the grown-up Patrick
at 19. Krieg played Peter in "Peter Pan" at University Elementary
and will be attending Caddo Middle Magnet. He is a student with the Peter
Pan Players. Williams won a Times Drama Award for Best Actor in
a Musical for "Blood Brothers" at Marjorie Lyons. Additionally,
he has had featured roles in "Picasso at the Lapin Agile," "Grand Hotel,"
"As Bees in Honey Drown," "A Perfect Ganesh" and "Cabaret."
Dot Hall will be seen as Norah Muldoon,
young Patrick’s Irish nanny. Hall has appeared in "Oliver," "Nine," "How
I Learned to Drive," "Pride's Crossing," and "Wit" at the Playhouse. She
has won three Times Drama Awards for "Fox Fire," "Anastasia"
and "The Cripple of Inishmaan."
Mary Zapcynzski has the role of Agnes
Gooch, the steno gal sent to help Mame write her autobiography. She has
numerous credits, which include roles in "Grand Hotel," "Big River,"
"Merrily, We Roll Along," "Funny Girl," and "Oliver!"
Zapcynzski has also appeared in "Lillies of the Field" at
Eastbank Theatre and "The Exact Center of the Universe" at
Shreveport Little Theatre.
Among the many colorful people who
cross Mame’s zany path are Scott Green as M. Lindsay Woolsey, a successful
publisher; Carol LaBorde and Leonard Yoakum as Mr. and Mrs.Upson, potential
in-laws; Heather Peak as Gloria Upson, the elitist girl who has her eye
on older Patrick; Janin Jones Pou as Sally Cato, Mame’s rival for Beauregard’s
affections; and Anna Maria Sparke-Keele as Pegeen Ryan, a decorator who
catches older Patrick’s attention.
Green has appeared in "Cabaret"
at MLP and "Annie" and "Bye, Bye, Birdie" for the Gilbert
and Sullivan Society. LaBorde has been seen in "The Women," "The Royal
Family" and "The House of Bernarda Alba," all at MLP. Yoakum
has had roles in "Grand Hotel," "Big River," "Assassins," "On the 20th
Century" and "Oliver!" at MLP. Peak was recently seen in "Three
Tall Women" and has numerous credits, which include "Electra," "Lips
Together, Teeth Apart," "The Devils" and "Camino Real." She
won a Times Drama Award for "The Tempest." Pou appeared as
Fraulein Kost in "Cabaret," as Lillianne LeFleur in "Nine" and as
Jackie Kennedy in the world premiere of "Ladies First,"all at MLP.
Sparke-Keele won a Times Drama Award for "Merrily,
We Roll Along" and starred as Annie in the Performing Arts Center’s
"Annie Get Your Gun."
Other featured roles are being played
by Alex Lu as Ito, Mame’s devoted servant; Kay Phifer as Beauregard’s
disapproving mother; Benjamin Maxey as Peter Dennis, Mame’s great-nephew;
and Christy Bickham and David Bieler as Cousin Fan and Uncle Jeff, two
Southerners on Beauregard’s plantation. Lu is making his stage debut and
is a student at Centenary College. Phifer has been seen in "Nine"
at MLP, "The Jungle Book" for Peter Pan Players and "Over the
River and Through the Woods" at Shreveport Little Theatre. Maxey, who
is 4 years old, was recently seen in "The Jungle Book." Bickham
has many credits, which include "Camelot," "Carousel," "Nine," "Little
Women" and "Peter Pan," all at MLP. Bieler was last seen at the Playhouse
in "42nd Street." Other appearances include "On the 20th Century,"
"Grand Hotel" and "God's Country."
Appearing in numerous roles as party
guests, New Yorkers, shoppers and friends are Josh Porter, John
Michael Strange, Adrienne Brooks, Jenny Warren, Sarah B. Wilkerson, Trey
Jackson, Rob Laha, Laura Sentell, Garrett Moon, Lindsey Mayo, Lauren Bryan,
Brandon Thorn, Tim Broderick, Don McCoy, Catherine Walsh, JoEllyn Gallmann
and Patty Krieg.
Porter was recently seen in "The
Seagull," "Electra" and "Wit." He received a TDA nomination for
"Grand Hotel." Strange won a TDA for "Greater Tuna" at Shreveport
Little Theatre where he is the managing director. Brooks is the artistic
director for the Shreveport Metropolitan Ballet Company. She is also serving
as the dance captain for "Mame." Warren was seen in "Cabaret"
as a Kit Kat Girl and was in this year's season opening "Wit."
Jackson has had roles in "God's Country," and "Assassins"
at MLP and received a TDA nomination for "On the Wings of a Dream."
Laha appeared in "The Tempest" and received a TDA nomination for
his performance in "Blood Brothers." Sentell is a transfer student
to Centenary and was in "Cabaret." Moon has been seen in "Electra,"
"Wit" and "Gross Indecency," all at MLP. Mayo appeared in "The Seagull,"
"Keely and Du" and "Wit." Thorn was a Kit Kat Boy in "Cabaret."
Walsh also appeared in "Cabaret." Wilkerson, Bryan, Broderick,
McCoy, Gallmann and Krieg are making their MLP debuts.
"Mame" will be directed by
Patric McWilliams. He has won five Times Drama Awards for directing
"42nd Street," "Picasso at the Lapin Agile," "Nine" (co-directed),
"Pride's Crossing" and "Funny Girl" (co-directed). This
season he directed "Electra" and "Keely and Du" at the Playhouse.
Stephan DeGhelder of Washington,
D.C. is the choreographer. His work has been seen previously at the Playhouse
in the acclaimed production of "Grand Hotel." As a performer, he
made his Broadway debut in "Hello, Dolly!" followed by "Celebration"
and "A Chorus Line." New York credits include serving as the
assistant choreographer for "Broadway" starring Teri Garr and Chris
Sarandon, "Dance on a Country Grave" with Kevin Kline, "A Midsummer
Night's Dream" with John Goodman and Nathan Lane, and working with
Agnes DeMille on "Come Summer" starring Ray Bolger.
Don Hooper is the set and lighting
designer. He has won numerous TDA’s for his work at the Playhouse for such
productions as "Into the Woods," "Costal Disturbances," "42nd Street," "Evita," "Angels in America" and "Grand Hotel."
The musical direction is by Kermit
Poling, who is the concertmaster for the Shreveport Symphony. Poling’s
work has been lauded for "Nine," "Cabaret" and "Smile," and
for his underscoring of "Electra" and "As Bees in Honey Drown."
Other technical duties are being served by Ashley Beckham as assistant
director/stage manager; Heather Peak, properties; and Paul Belcher, sound
"Mame" opens July 18 at 8 p.m.
and has additional performances July 19, 20, 25, 26 and 27 at 8 p.m. and
a 2 p.m. performance on July 28. Tickets for "Mame" go on sale Monday,
July 8. The box office is open daily from noon to 4 p.m. Reservations can
be made by calling the box office at 318-869-5242. All tickets are $20.
There will be a preview performance on July 17 at 8 p.m. with tickets priced
at $15. During the regular run, groups of 20 or more will receive a $2
discount per ticket.
"Mame" celebrates the 45th
season of the Marjorie Lyons Playhouse. There will be a reception at the
Symphony House following the opening night performance.
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