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September 23, 2015 - 1:39pm

Press release:

On Saturday, Oct. 3, Notre Dame High School is proud to present the wildly funny, interactive experience of “Joey & Maria’s Comedy Italian Wedding.” You are an invited guest to an anything-but-traditional Italian wedding. The craziest two Italian families you’ll ever meet will make you dance the Tarantella, witness the vows, and take part in some unconventional surprises.

Tickets are $30/person or $55/couple, which includes appetizers provided by the Culinary Arts Department of ARC, salad, homemade spaghetti dinner (sauce compliments of Margie Misiti), homemade meatballs (compliments of ND’s principal, Wade Bianco, his wife Darlene, and Darlene’s 91-year-old mother), dessert, beer, wine, non-alcoholic beverages, basket raffles, 50/50 raffles, and door prizes.

Doors open at 5:30 p.m., cocktails start at 6, and dinner starts promptly at 6:30. Pre-sale tickets are strongly recommended, seating is limited. Seats are filling fast, don’t miss out.

Visit Great Lakes Productions Joey and Maria at and watch the video link at the bottom of the page. See you at the wedding!

August 14, 2015 - 3:26pm
posted by Billie Owens in GCC, music, art, theater.

Press release:

The Genesee Community College Center for the Arts is prepared for another exciting year of events offering a wide range of entertainment including jazz music, graffiti art and dinner theatre. The community is enthusiastically welcome to all events which are listed in chronological order.

The Roz Steiner Art Gallery will host and display "Impromptus," paintings by Jonathon Langfield from Aug. 27 – Sept. 25. Langfield carries on the tradition of American abstraction while infusing an element of graffiti. Utilizing the ideological framework of modernism, his art is executed in a spirit of improvisation. The result is a painterly impromptu. Opening receptions are planned for Thursday, Aug. 27, at 12:30 - 2 p.m. and 5 - 7 p.m.

The Genesee Symphony Orchestra presents a "Fall Festival" performance on Sunday, Sept. 27, at 4 p.m. in the Stuart Steiner Theatre with S. Shade Zajac conducting. Guest soloist Raymond Feng, winner of the GSO Young Artist Competition will perform Greig's Piano Concerto in A Minor, Movement 1. The GSO hosts world-class artists and composers as well as a multitude of well-known local soloists that give audiences a professional-level musical experience. Tickets can be purchased in Batavia at the Senior Center, Roxy's Music and GO ART!, and at the Bank of Castile in Le Roy.

The Kazzrie Jaxen Quartet will take the stage on Friday, Oct. 2, at 7:30 p.m. and bring together the elemental qualities of four creative jazz musicians: the buoyant swing of Bill Chattin's drums; the melodic pulsations of Don Messina's bass; the oceanic depth of Charley Krachy's tenor; and the fiery adventurousness of Kazzrie Jaxen's piano.

Honoring jazz tradition with straight-ahead swing and spontaneous improvisation, the band draws from the collective inspiration from jazz greats such as Lennie Tristano and Sal Mosca, Lester Young, Charlie Parker, Billie Holiday, Bud Powell, Warne Marsh and many others. The quartet plays standard tunes, jazz lines, originals and occasional excursions into the abstract stretching the music in unique and complex directions.

Tickets to the event in the Stuart Steiner Theatre are $8 for adults, $5 for seniors (55+), students (16+) and GCC faculty/staff and $3 for GCC students with ID. GCC alum with ID will receive a $2 discount. Go to for photos and further information.

Mixed media paintings by Nate Hodge will be displayed in the gallery from Oct. 8 – Nov. 25. The "Everything Flows" exhibit can be viewed during regular gallery hours, which are Monday-Friday 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. For more information on all upcoming events at the Roz Steiner Art Gallery visit or

In November, audiences are asked to take a trip back in time to a lively Victorian musical hall for a night of dinner theatre where a distinguished ensemble of actors, the Music Hall Royale, stages its flamboyant rendition of an unfinished Dickens' mystery, "The Mystery of Edwin Drood." The show tells the story of the upstanding young Edwin Drood who mysteriously disappears and is presumably murdered. But who the Dickens did it? In the end, the audience gets to decide! The dinner theatre shows will run Nov. 12-15, Thursday, Friday and Saturday, at 7 p.m. and Sunday Matinee at 2 p.m. All tickets are $30 and will include a pasta buffet dinner. The production will benefit the Mental Health Association in Genesee County and advance reservations are required.

"The Mystery of Edwin Drood" is a musical by Rupert Holmes and the original Broadway production was produced by The New York Shakespeare Festival with Joseph Papp as producer and the arrangement by TAMS-WITTMARK MUSIC LIBRARY, Inc., 560 Lexington Ave., New York, NY 10022.

For ticket reservations for "The Mystery of Edwin Drood," or for further information, contact the Genesee Center for the Arts box office at (585) 345-6814 or via e-mail: [email protected]. Information can also be found online at or

It's never too soon to mark your calendars for not-to-miss events already scheduled for 2016.

•    Jan. 29, 2016 at 7:30 p.m. -- The Rochester Rat Pack invites you to join us in the cocktail lounges of the world as we laugh and dance the night away to Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Keely Smith, Etta James, Jimmy Durante, Bobby Darin, Judy Garland, Jerry Lewis and the gang.

•    Feb. 12, 2016 at 7:30 p.m. -- Etta Mae -- an evening of laughter with the reigning "Queen of Southern Sass" and winner of American Comedy Awards: "Stand-Up Comic of the Year." (

•    Sunday, Feb. 14, 2016 at 4 p.m. -- Genesee Symphony Orchestra Mid-Winter Concert at GCC's Stuart Steiner Theatre.

February 27, 2015 - 11:56am
posted by Howard B. Owens in arts, theater, entertainment, Le Roy.

"Shrek: The Musical," based on the Dreamworks animated motion picture, is coming to Le Roy. Performances are at 7 p.m. March 5 and 6 and 4 p.m. March 7 at the Le Roy Junior Senior High School Auditorium. Tickets are $8 presale and $10 at the door.

The show is directed by Jacqueline McLean.

Photos from Thursday's rehearsal.

February 20, 2015 - 11:08am
posted by Howard B. Owens in arts, theater, elba, elba central schools.

The Elba Central School's Drama Club held a dress rehearsal Thrusday night for their performance of the hit Broadway musical "CATS."

A performance originally scheduled for tonight has been moved to 2 p.m. tomorrow. The cast will perform a second show at 7 p.m., tomorrow.

December 2, 2014 - 7:05am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, arts, theater, Batavia HS.

Theater-in-the-round, Shakespeare, celebrating 100 years of live stage performances at your school. These are all heady things to take on for a group of young thespians, but the Batavia High School Drama Club is pulling it all together nicely, says advisor Caryn Burke.

It was actually a student who suggested the club perform Shakespeare's "A Midsummer Night's Dream" this year after noticing the comedy was the first public stage performance by BHS students in 1914. Though none of the students had much experience with Shakespeare, they've all taken to it like sprites to pixie dust.

Burke admits she was a little apprehensive once it was settled that they would perform "A Midsummer Night's Dream."

The first step was for them just to get through a reading of the play.

"A lot of them had no idea how to read or even comprehend Shakespeare," Burke said. "Once they got it, they just ran with it. Once they understood what the show was and what all the dialogue meant and they had a good understanding of it they just took it from there."

The version the students will perform this Friday and Saturday is an adaption suitable for a high school performance by Ken Womble. None of the language is changed and the plot and themes remain the same, Burke said. It's just a slightly abridged version.

Even so, taking on Shakespeare, especially in the theater-in-the-round format Burke prefers for the winter show could be a bit daunting. She says the club has been able to remain focused on its primary goals.

"It's supposed to be fun," Burke said. "It's supposed to be educational, but there's a time and place for Shakespeare and that's not always necessarily in a high school drama club. The kids rose to the challenge."

The lead cast is Ross Chua, Andrea Gilebarto, Chelsea Jensen, Evan Bellavia, Lauren Dunn, Cara Ranalli, Alex Mott and Nick Piedmont.

Show times Friday and Saturday 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $8 each and only available at the door. Seating is limited to 100 patrons.

April 9, 2014 - 2:23pm
posted by Billie Owens in theater, GCC.

Press release:

Genesee Community College Forum Players Children's Theatre ensemble is pleased to present "Tales from Japan," a unique collection of traditional Japanese stories written by Patricia Montley and produced by special arrangement with Playscripts, Inc.

Performances are at 7 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, April 25 - 26, with a Sunday Matinee at 2 p.m. on April 27 in the Stuart Steiner Theatre at GCC's Batavia Campus.

The traditional tales presented in the show bring to life subtle and surprising aspects of Japanese culture. Treasure is discovered in unexpected places, beauty is found in all aspects of nature and even the most unassuming characters are heroes. The exciting stories feature a variety of interesting characters from an old woman using her wisdom and wit to save a kingdom from tyranny to a young girl fighting a horrific undersea dragon and a peach boy defeating the village monster.

"These tales speak to all ages. Because they are folkloric, they speak meaningfully to the spectrum of emotions and human experience," said Director Norm Gayford, English professor at GCC.

Special performances of "Tales from Japan" are also scheduled for students from area schools. Batavia, LeRoy, Geneseo, Alexander, Perry and Pavilion, and also homeschool students are being bussed or transported to GCC's Stuart Steiner Theatre in Batavia on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, April 23 - 25, for two shows, 10 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. each day. While most of these school group performances are sold out, there are still plenty of seats available at the public performances listed above.

"Our children's theatre program has always been very well received, and this year is no exception," said Maryanne Arena, director of Fine and Performing Arts at GCC. "Last year we performed for more than 2,000 people at our theatre and on location."

The cast of "Tales from Japan" includes: William Rupp, of Batavia, Kayli Wilson, of Canastota, Amber Lively, of Barker, Christian Hoffman, of Hilton, Kathleen Kwasniewski, of Alexander, Tony Heard, of Fillmore, Ryan McKenrick, of Rochester, Brianna Jones, of Batavia, David Wysocki, of Hamburg, Courtney Amesbury, of Bergen, Jerry Jordan, of the Bronx, Cameron Pollard, of Mount Vernon, Sania Hyatt, of NYC, Kaori Shinchi, of Japan, GCC paralegal instructor Karyn Bryson, and Jordan Griffiths, of Milford, who is also serving as stage manager for the show. Ali Scharvella of Copake Lake is assistant stage manager. William Rupp has served as Tai Chi and Katana trainer as well as mask maker, and Kaori Shinchi as language consultant.

Tickets for the show at the Batavia Campus in the Stuart Steiner Theatre are $8. GCC students with ID and children pay $3. Seniors and GCC faculty/staff are $5. GCC alumni receive $2 off with ID. Contact the Box Office for more information at (585) 345-6814 or [email protected].

For more information, visit

March 5, 2014 - 10:16am
posted by Howard B. Owens in arts, theater, entertainment, Le Roy, le roy hs.

About 150 students at Le Roy High Sschool are busy in rehearsals and stage set up for upcoming performances of "Legally Blonde: The Musical."

The show stars, above, John Snyder, Rachel Glucksam, Danny Weaver and Ashley Webb.

Performances are at 7 p.m. March 20, 21, and 22, in the auditorium at Le Roy HS. Tickets are available online at and are $8 or $10 at the door.

The show is directed by Jacqueline McLean. She described the themes of the show as appropriate for school children in fourth grade and older.

"We picked the show because we had a lot of strong girls, but we also wanted to talk about some things in society that are a little controversial but important," McLean said. "The overlying theme of the show is the overall acceptance of people and people with differences. "

December 6, 2013 - 5:09pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, arts, theater, Batavia HS.

Batavia High School opens its performance of "The Brother's Grimm Spectaculathon: Not your Disney fairy tales" at 7:30 tonight in the high school auditorium.

Tickets are $10 at the door ($8 for students).

There is a second performance at 7:30 p.m. tomorrow.

(submitted photos)

October 25, 2013 - 7:14pm
posted by Daniel Crofts in Announcements, theater, GCC, GCASA.

Press release:

In celebration of Red Ribbon Week, Genesee County Drug Free Communities Coalition, a program of GCASA, presents the North American tour of the new hit stage play “Pass It On…An Evening with Bill W. & Dr. Bob.”  The production is a dramatization of the early history of Alcoholics Anonymous, delivered with a message of hope, help and the miracle of recovery.

This highly acclaimed two-man show comes to Batavia for a one-time engagement on Tuesday, October 29th at 6:30pm, at the Stuart Steiner Theatre at Genesee Community College.

This unique, inspirational and often hilarious theatrical production celebrates sobriety and serves as the centerpiece for an international recovery education project, raising awareness about the solution to North America’s number one public health issue – the disease of alcoholism and addiction.

“Pass It On…An Evening with Bill W. & Dr. Bob” has created excitement among audiences and recovery communities.  The show travels across the United States and Canada, appearing in such cities as Phoenix, Sacramento, Tucson, San Antonio, Delray, Ottawa, Little Rock and now Batavia.  Audiences experience an unforgettable evening of inspirational entertainment that aims to enhance recovery, inspire hearts and reach people who cannot be reached in any other way.

The show transports audiences to the late 1940s to meet Bill W. and Dr. Bob, the beloved cofounders of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA).  They tell their stories, share their experiences, strength and hope, and dramatize key events – such as their legendary drinking sprees and the extraordinary night they met in Akron, Ohio in 1935.

Audiences will be regaled with fascinating and hilarious yarns about the early history of AA – including the writing and publication of "The Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous," the creation of the "12 Steps," and how the protagonists overcame tremendous obstacles as they struggled to develop their new recovery program and pass it on to others.

Reservations are suggested; call Diane at 815-1883 or e-mail [email protected].  A $5.00 donation is recommended.

June 12, 2013 - 10:32pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in arts, theater, GCC, entertainment, Forum Players.

GCC's Forum Players Theater Company presents "Charlotte's Web" this week, opening at 7 p.m. Friday in the Stuart Steiner Theater.

Alumna Jaime Arena directs the production, which also shows at 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday at 2 p.m.

From a press release:

The show is being produced with the support of The BEST Center at GCC by special arrangement with the Dramatic Publishing Company of Woodstock, Ill. Originally published in 1952, E.B. White’s “Charlotte’s Web” chronicles the life of Wilbur the pig  (played by 2010 GCC alumnus Robert Reiss). Born the runt of the litter, Wilbur is saved first by 8-year old Fern Arable (Brianna Jones of Batavia) who stops her father (played by GCC English Professor Norm Gayford) from killing the pig and nurses him to good health. In the barn at the Zuckerman farm, Wilbur encounters a spider named Charlotte (Margaret Gayford, of Warsaw High School), who spins magic when Wilbur’s life is again in danger. A timeless tale of bravery, selfless love, and the true meaning of friendship, the play is adapted for stage by Joseph Robinette.

Other cast members include: Kayli Wilson (Canastota) and Jordan Griffiths (Milford) as narrators; Sania Hyatt (New York City) as Templeton; Courtney Amesbury (Bergen) as Mrs. Arable; William Rupp (Batavia) as Avery; Christian Hoffman (Hilton) as Homer Zuckerman; Alayna Zimbrich (Hilton) as Edith Zuckerman; Tony E. Heard (Fillmore) as Lurvy; Emily Jones (Waterloo) as Goose; and Norm Gayford as Old Sheep. William Rupp, Norm Gayford and Emily Jones will play fairgoers while Brianna Jones, Tony E. Heard and William Rupp will appear as spiders.

All tickets for the show are $5. An autograph session will be held after each performance. Tickets can be purchased by cash, check or credit card from the GCC box office at (585) 345-6814 or [email protected].

Photos from today's dress rehearsal by Howard Owens.

March 17, 2013 - 2:12pm

Press release:

More than a thousand young students will visit the Genesee Community College campus between March 20-22 to see a performance of "The Boy Who Tricked the Moon" by the GCC Forum Players Children's Theatre. The cast and crew will then take the show on the road for another six performances in six counties between April 7 and May 11.

In "The Boy Who Tricked the Moon" the audience participates in helping an Orphan Boy rescue Clan Chief's son from the moon, which has spirited him away. It's a mystical adventure that includes characters Sky Grandmother and Little Sky Sister who help the two boys. The folktale, staged using masks and creative movement, shows how ingenuity and friendship can triumph over adversity.

GCC will welcome some 1,200 preschool through third-grade students from Batavia, Le Roy, Pavilion, Brockport and Geneseo to campus for daytime performances in the Stuart Steiner Theatre on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday March 20-22.

Following the performances on campus, GCC will take the show on the road for just the second time.

"In these days of limited budgets, many districts cannot afford to bus their children to campus for the show," said Maryanne Arena, director of Fine and Performing Arts at GCC. "We still want them to have the chance to experience a live theatre performance, so we're taking the show to them. We like getting out into the community to share the wonderful talent we have at GCC."

The show will be staged at elementary schools in Hilton, Barker and Medina. In addition, there are public performances scheduled as follows:

•    Friday, March 22, at 7 p.m. -- Stuart Steiner Theatre, GCC Batavia

•    Sunday, April 7, at 7:30 p.m. -- The Stage, Warsaw

•    Saturday, April 20, at 2 p.m. --  Theatre 101, Mt. Morris

•    Saturday, May 11,  TBD  --  Springville Center for the Arts

Tickets are $8 or less, and FREE for ages 12 and under. To purchase tickets or for more information call the GCC box office at 345-6814 or by e-mail [email protected].

The cast of "The Boy Who Tricked the Moon" includes: Brianna Jones, of Batavia, and Kayli Wilson, of Canastota, sharing the role of Orphan Boy; Aidan Bonacci, of Rochester, and Christian Hoffman, of Hilton, as Clan Chief's Son; Bill Rupp, of Alexander, and Alayna Zimbrich, of Hilton, as Shaman; Jordan Griffiths, of Milford, and Rebecca Truesdell, of Batavia, as Moon; Kathleen Kwasniewski, of Alexander, and Amber Lively, of Barker, as Little Sky Sister; Courtney Amesbury, of Bergen, as Sky Grandmother; Sania Hyatt, of NYC, as Boy #1 and a Thunderbird; Lynnsee McGill, of Rochester, as Boy #2; and Kaori Shinchi, of Japan, as a Thunderbird. Several cast members also play additional roles as Trees, Frogs and Arrows.

Crew members include stage manager Jessica Yost, of Medina. Cameron Pollard, of Mt. Vernon, will handle sound. Lighting is by Eric Moultrie, of Dobbs Ferry, and Kaleb Miller, of Le Roy. And Ali Scharvella, of Copake Lake, will operate projections.

March 13, 2013 - 8:07pm

Le Roy high schoolers Margaret Kovach, Erica Parker and Ben Neumann posed in character during a rehearsal of "Anything Goes," Le Roy Jr./Sr. High School's 2013 musical production. They will be playing Reno, Bonnie and Moonface Martin, respectively.

Jackie McLean, chorus teacher for the Le Roy schools and musical director for the play, described "Anything Goes" as an intricate, laugh-out-loud funny show with great characters.

More than 80 kids are involved in this production, including cast and crew members.

With music and lyrics by Cole Porter, the show takes place on a cruise ship and features comic circumstances resulting from three love triangles.

Pictured Ashley Webb (Hope), Steven Farnholz (Evelyn) and Natalie Salphine (Mrs. Harcourt)

"The script is jam-packed with funny moments and intricacies," McClean said.

She also said that the cast, which is made up of students in grades seven through 12, "did a great job of making the characters believable."

Danny Weaver and Jayce Seeley play Mr. Whitney and Billy, respectively.

Having "believable" characters is a big change from last year's performance of "Cinderella," which had a fanciful fairy tale atmosphere. With "Anything Goes," the kids have switched to a more realistic setting.

"It was a challenge, but they've done a great job," McClean said. "It's a great group of kids."

For her part, McClean understands and appreciates the challenge of bringing these characters to life. She was in "Anything Goes" as a junior at Batavia High School, which put on its own performance of the show in 2001.

"I picked the show (for the 2013 musical) because I loved it when I was in it," she said. "I understand the challenges, and also the funny moments and the characters, because I lived it. That gives you a different perspective."

As for the music, McClean describes it as old-style jazz with a "huge choral involvement." So in addition to great sets and lots of humor, "Anything Goes" will also boast a large chorus.

Le Roy is known for setting a high bar when it comes to its school musicals. Each year, staff and students like to give audiences something new to look forward to.

This year, audiences can look forward to huge, elaborate tap dance numbers by the whole cast, as well as a six-foot platform of the cruise ship built by Patrick Patton, complete with the look of a real ship and lights that go on at night.

Patton, the father of a Le Roy High School student, has been building sets for these productions for seven years. McClean said he sets a new challenge for himself with each one.

"He's amazing," she said. "(His sets) get better each year."

Performances of "Anything Goes" will be held Thursday, Friday and Saturday in the high school auditorium, at 9300 South St. Road in Le Roy. All performances will begin at 7 p.m.

All tickets are $8 each and can be purchased at the door, via the district Web site or at the school's main office.

Supplemental Photos: Past Performances

February 4, 2013 - 3:15pm
posted by Billie Owens in Announcements, theater.

Batavia Players, Inc., presents D.L. Coburn's Pulitzer-prize winning tragicomedy "The Gin Game" at 7:30 p.m. on Feb. 7-9 at Harvester 56 Theater.

Seating is reserved. Call ahead -- phone is 343-9721; or buy tickets online at <>. General admission is $10. Students and seniors pay $8.

The two-person, two-act play features Peg Marone and Norm Argulsky.

According to wikipedia, it's about Weller Martin and Fonsia Dorsey, two elderly residents at a nursing home for senior citizens, who strike up an acquaintance. Neither seems to have any other friends, and they start to enjoy each other's company.

Weller offers to teach Fonsia how to play gin rummy, and they begin playing a series of games that Fonsia always wins. Weller's inability to win a single hand becomes increasingly frustrating to him, while Fonsia becomes increasingly confident.

While playing their games of gin, they engage in lengthy conversations about their families and their lives in the outside world. Gradually, each conversation becomes a battle, much like the ongoing gin games, as each player tries to expose the other's weaknesses, to belittle the other's life, and to humiliate the other thoroughly.

November 2, 2012 - 8:26pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, arts, Batavia Rotary, theater.

Tonight, I stopped by Batavia High School to get some shots of the backstage scene for the opening of "Guys and Dolls" -- one of the greatest Broadway shows ever -- the last Batavia Rotary show ever.

Tickets are $10 and there are shows at 7 p.m., Saturday and at 2 p.m, Sunday.

August 16, 2012 - 3:56pm
posted by Billie Owens in theater.

Press release:

Camelot -- one of Lerner and Loewe’s most popular musicals -- is the Batavia Players offering for their 16th Annual Summer Youth Theater.

Performances begin at 7:30 p.m. tonight, Friday and Saturday at Elba Central School, 57 S. Main St. in Elba.

Camelot is the timeless story of Arthur, the boy who became king when he removed an enchanted sword from the stone.

The story begins as Arthur learns that he is to be married to Guinevere in order to maintain peace for the idyllic kingdom of Camelot.

Featuring such favorites as "If Ever I Would Leave You" and "The Lusty Month of May," the pageantry and magic includes Merlin, invisible castles and the beginning of the Knights of the Round Table.

Lyrics and book by Allan J. Lerner, music by Frederick Loewe. Directed by Pat Burk.

July 26, 2012 - 12:17pm
posted by Ann Winters in theater, entertainment, comedy.
Event Date and Time: 
October 25, 2012 - 7:30pm to October 28, 2012 - 4:30pm


April 20, 2012 - 1:24pm
posted by Billie Owens in Announcements, theater, WNY Arts Society.

"Legally Blonde" is a musical with music and lyrics by Laurence O’Keefe and Nell Benjamin, and script by Heather Hach. Local auditions are scheduled next weekend and the show will premiere in Genesee County in July.

The show is based on the novel "Legally Blonde" by Amanda Brown and the 2001 film of the same name.

It tells the story of Elle Woods, a sorority girl who enrolls at Harvard Law School to win back her ex-boyfriend Warner. She discovers how her knowledge of the law can help others, and successfully defends exercise queen Brooke Wyndham in a murder trial.

"Legally Blonde" will be directed by Ann Marie Gsell, with vocal direction by Jacqueline McLean, choreography by Kris Ashley, and produced by Jason Juliano in conjunction with the WNY Arts Society.

Auditions are at 6:30 p.m. on Saturday, April 28, and at 1 p.m. on Sunday, April 29 (with call backs at 6:30 p.m. on the 29th). Auditions are at Stuart Steiner Theatre at Genesee Community College, 1 College Road, in Batavia.

Auditioners are asked to prepare a song of at least 16-bars from a modern/pop musical that showcases his/her vocal abilities. An accompanist will be provided. Auditioners are asked to bring their own sheet music. There will be a dance/movement portion of auditions; those auditioning should come prepared to dance. Those considered for a role will be asked to stay or return for call backs to sing a song selection from the show and read from the script.

(The musical was recorded in September 2007 and aired on MTV in October 2007. Following this, a reality TV show was aired showing the audition process for the next person to play Elle Woods on Broadway.)

In the Genesee County premiere, performances of "Legally Blonde" will be at 7:30 p.m. July 12-14 and there's a matinee at 2 p.m. July 15.

For more information, those interested in auditioning can call Jason Juliano at (716) 390-7615 or visit

March 22, 2012 - 9:00pm

Back in the spring of 2003, an ambitious group of local thespians decided to take a risk by boldly staging in Genesee County what no local troupe had staged here before: Shakespeare. Nine years later, "Shakespeare in Springtime" is thriving. This weekend the group is celebrating its 10th springtime with a repeat production of its first show, "A Midsummer Night’s Dream."

“Shakespeare wrote so many plays, and we wanted to choose something familiar that we could do justice to,” Director E. Jane Burk says of the group’s original decision to perform the show nine years ago. “It was very well-received. It showed us that there really are some people out there who are willing to come see Shakespeare.”

The characters, comedy, and iambic pentameter may be the same as it was a decade ago, but make no mistake — this show is “entirely different” and definitely “not a repeat of last time.” Whereas the pioneer effort took place in a Midwestern 1950s carnival, this time around the show has a San Francisco setting circa the 1960s. The traditional fairy characters have been changed to hippies, demonstrating, Burk explains, “the difference between establishment and anti-establishment.”

Cast members agree that despite the large gap in time periods, the play translates easily from the intended Shakespearean setting to the more contemporary backdrop.

“The characters are universal,” says Malloryann Flanagan, who has the role of Puck. “A lot of the themes are still prevalent in society and are still relevant today.”

Flanagan and her sister, Caryn Burk, are the only two cast members who also appeared in the original production. But although the majority of the ensemble did not take part in the first “Shakespeare in Springtime” show, many of them have been seen in at least one other production put on by the group. One such actor is Paul Judkins, who has the part of Egeus.

“It’s always a challenge,” says Judkins, who cites his favorite previous Shakespearean role as the title character in "Julius Caesar." “You can’t use your natural language — you have to find the meaning behind the words. At first it was mystifying.”

Derrick Pechie, who has the role of Oberon, the fairy king, agrees that understanding the language gets easier with time:

“My first lead role in a Shakespeare play was in 'Richard III' two years ago. I did not know what I was saying. But now I can read the script and right away I know what it’s talking about.”

The difficult language and seemingly hidden meanings are exactly what makes Shakespeare so attractive to cast member Shellene Bailey, however.

“The language is sneaky,” she declares. “It’s very in-depth and very funny. There are lots of jokes and innuendos. It's very beautiful.” 

Performances are at 7:30 p.m. March 22-24 and at 2 p.m. March 25 at the Harvester 56 Theater (located at 56 Harvester Ave. in Batavia). There will also be a dinner theater performance at Terry Hills on the 31st.  

March 20, 2012 - 3:44pm
posted by Billie Owens in Announcements, theater, GCC.

Rehearsals and set construction are well under way as Genesee Community College prepares to launch its Spring 2012 theatrical season with a production of the Neil Simon comedy "God's Favorite."

The curtain goes up at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, March 29 when the GCC Forum Players, in conjunction with the Genesee Center for the Arts, take the stage in the Stuart Steiner Theatre.

"God's Favorite" is loosely based on the biblical Book of Job, with God and Satan making a bet involving a wealthy Long Island businessman whose faith is tempted by a wisecracking messenger from God.

The cast and crew, under the direction of Fine and Performing Arts Director Maryanne Arena, reflect the GCC community of faculty and students, as well as local performers. They include Jerry Newell, of Attica, as pious businessman Joe Benjamin, and Rochester's Ben Liebrand as the tempter Sidney Lipton.

Rounding out the cast is: Patrick Dodge, of Warsaw, as prodigal son David Benjamin; Tyler Eldred, of Dansville, as son Ben Benjamin; Perry's Sara Stabley as Ben's twin sister Sarah Benjamin; Nikole Marone, of Batavia, in the role of Joe's long-suffering wife Rose Benjamin; Rochester's Whitney Sellers as maid Mady; and Bobby Steeves, of Albion, as the butler Morris.

GCC technical theater faculty member Ed Hallborg tackles the set design and technical direction of the comedy, with students Alison Scharvella (Copake Lake) and Roger Williams (Kendall) sharing stage manager duties.

"The cast and crew work incredibly hard and have shown an amazing amount of dedication to their craft," Arena said. "I am extremely proud of each and every one of our performers and crew members."

In addition to the debut performance on Thursday, tickets are also available for the 7:30 p.m. shows on Friday, March 30, and Saturday, March 31, as well as a 2 p.m. matinee on Sunday, April 1.

General admission prices are $8 for adults, $5 for seniors (55+), students and GCC faculty and staff, and $3 for Genesee students with valid ID. GCC alumni receive a $2 discount with valid alumni ID card. The theater box office is open from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Wednesday through Friday and one hour before the start of each performance.

Reserve tickets are available through the box office at [email protected] or by calling (585) 345-6814. Payment is accepted via cash, checks, and Visa or MasterCard credit cards.

Genesee Community College is located in Batavia, just two minutes from NYS Thruway Exit 48. Visit for door-to-door directions sent via email.

February 19, 2012 - 1:50pm
posted by Amy Vlack in theater, school, elba, Drama, High School Musical, musical.
Event Date and Time: 
February 24, 2012 - 7:00pm to February 25, 2012 - 7:00pm

The ECS Drama Club presents The Music Man, February 24 and February 25 @ 7:00 each night.  Cost is $6.00 for seniors and students, $8.00 for adults.

Elba Central School Auditorium




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