Players teach us a little about being successful without trying
Nov 07, 2013 | 1526 views | 0 0 comments | 223 223 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Arik Clark as J. Pierrepont Finch in the Leland & Gray Players’ upcoming production of “How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying.”
Arik Clark as J. Pierrepont Finch in the Leland & Gray Players’ upcoming production of “How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying.”
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TOWNSHEND- Leland & Gray Players present “How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying,” a wildly satirical hit musical by Frank Loesser and Abe Burrows. Performances will be November 14, at 7 pm; November 15, at 7:30 pm; November 16, at 3 and 7:30 pm; and November 17, at 3 pm. Based on a real-life mid-20th century success guide by Shepherd Mead, the story centers on a young window washer, J. Pierrepont Finch, who begins a meteoric rise from mail room clerk to head of the dubiously-directed World-Wide Wicket Company. “How to Succeed …” first opened on Broadway in 1961 with Robert Morse playing Finch. It’s since been revived three times, most recently with Daniel Radcliffe as the lead. Full of snappy wit, naïve romance, broad burlesque, hummable tunes, and foot-tapping dance, this show will leave audiences laughing and singing for a long while after curtain call.

The plot boldly lampoons the notion in corporate America that one can rise to the top with little more than charm and chutzpah. And, in the process s/he can garner praise, attention, and romance. Were it not for the fact that Finch, the center of the satire, is such a deep-down good person, the mood would be far less ebullient. As it is, we revel in the ruse as much as in the result—an honestly happy ending.

The company includes Arik Clark as J. Pierrepont Finch and Addie Mahdavi as Rosemary Pilkington; Jesse Cannella is JB Biggley, Patrick Hauer is Bud Frump, Jasmine Domenick is Hedy Larue; Zoe Soule is Bratt; Madison Cannella is Smitty; Gabriel Vanni-Phillips is Jones; Kayla Williams is Miss Krumholtz; Kenny Cashman is Mr. Womper; and Adam Culver is Mr. Twimble. Supporting cast includes Sarah Anderson, Vinnie Ferrizzi, Violet Webster, Jessop Burrow, Sean Kiziltan, Sam Thibault, Mariah Maytas, Sage Hall, Nathaniel Van Osdol, Anastasia Stevens, Natalie Cullen, and Summer Performing Arts Exploration participants Skye Richardson from Townshend Elementary and Veronica Stevens from Newbrook Elementary.

Ann Landenberger is director; Abby Wicker, L&G ’02, is assistant producer and head costumer; Ron Kelley is music director. In the the pit band is Dan Dewalt, pianist; Fraser Query, drums; Susie Francy, reeds; Tom Walters, bass; Daniel Timmermans and Carl Judd-Wright, trumpets. Kristen Carmichael-Bowers is vocal coach; Mae Cramp is set designer with assistance from crew and Players’ parents. Johanna Gardner. Madison Cannella, Rachael Turner, and Mariah Maytas are choreographers. Crew includes Genevieve Darling, Olivia Reilly, Rachel Spence, Greer Bills, Summer Bills, Stephen Scott, Max Cramp, Nate Laning, Sage Hall, Grant Cullen, Brittany Sablovski, Alexa Litchfield, Fairen Stark, Mehram Zain, Oly Gurik, Alexis Lawrence, and Sam Harrison. Sound crew is aided this year by training with music faculty member Tom Walters. Parent volunteers assist in many facets of production.

The prices for the tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for students and seniors. For information and reservations email verbatim@svcable.net or call Annie Landenberger at (802) 365-7355, ext. 204.
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