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Posts in Category: In the Spotlight

In The Spotlight – Glen Grimard (2015) 

Moose in Crazy For You
Posted by Evelynn Decker Thursday, April 30, 2015 12:57:00 PM Categories: In the Spotlight Main Stage

Glen Grimard is in our Spotlight today.  He will be appearing as Moose one of the Cowboy Trio in our production of CRAZY FOR YOU. In his words.....

I auditioned for this show because I am a long-time friend of the first time director and I wanted to do my part to ensure her success.  I went to see a high school production of the show in 2012, when my nephew appeared as a "cowboy" and I was re-introduced to the songs and the book of the show.   The book of this musical is smartly written comedic dialogue.  The classic tuneful songs that are dropped in amongst the scenes are just an added bonus.   I was in the cast of the original Actorsingers production back in 1996.  I wanted to be in the current production because I have improved my stagecraft skills since then and I wanted the opportunity to make my part of this musical better than it was in 1996.  

I’m proud to boast that in May of this year, I mark my 20th anniversary of becoming a member of Actorsingers.  My involvement with the group actually started with the auditions for “Into the Woods” in September 1994.  I wanted to be in that production so badly, but I must have really stunk because I remember the audition form offered the “auditionee” the opportunity of being a tree in the production.  I checked off every box on that audition form, but I didn’t get cast.  I wasn’t even good enough to be a tree!  [I’m glad Barbara Walters is not supplying the questions for this interview – I wouldn’t know what to say if she asked “What kind of tree are you?”]   But I was cast in the very next show that I auditioned for – “They’re Playing Our Song” – and even though I was forced to leave that production due to a physical injury, I’ve been fully invested in the organization ever since.

I have performed with other groups in the area such as Music & Drama, New Thalian Players, Nashua Theatre Guild, Majestic Theatre Trust, Stage One, Colonial Chorus, Burlington Players and StageCoach Productions but I’ve always identified mostly as being a member of Actorsingers.

I was relieved when I found out I was cast.  It’s always a tough interval of time to live through when you’re waiting for the cast list to be revealed.  And then when I saw the name of the character I would be playing, I laughed and suddenly became impatient to get started rehearsing!

I play Moose and this is the same character I played in 1996.  When I found out that I would be playing Moose again, I pulled out a photograph I have, which was taken while I was in costume and on stage in the 1996 production.  I began thinking about the way my acting has matured since 1996 and how that would make Moose in 2015 different.  It’s actually easier bringing the role to life at age 47 than at age 28, because of all that I’ve learned and practiced in the realm of acting since then.  Looking at the picture from 1996, I knew I wanted the character to wear a similar costume and I started growing my facial hair to match.  I watched Actorsingers’ archival footage from the 1996 production and I noted the pitch of the voice I used and that helped me step back into the role.  Moose in 2015 is a lot different from the man he was in 1996 and I’m lucky that I get to show those changes in this production.

My earliest theater memory is performing in a talent show at a campground in Sebago, ME.  I was 11 and I got up on stage and sang “Babe” by Styx, unaccompanied.  I remember singing the song to the musical accompaniment playing in my head – but there’s like a 15 second instrumental part in the middle of the song and when I stopped singing, the audience started clapping.  But it wasn’t the end of the song.  Why didn’t they know that I wasn’t done singing? [I can laugh about it now – but it was so disappointing then.]

I work in a call center in Tewksbury, MA and I’m responsible for providing professional responses to incoming customer email inquiries.  When I’m not working or working on a show, I like being audience to theater performances.  I like to camp and hike.  I like watching TV and writing letters for snail mail correspondence with friends. And I like playing games with friends.

I get a lot from theater. 

Friendship. 

Acceptance.

Fellowship.

Approval. 

Creativity

Challenge

Commitment

Confidence

And no one gives {{{hugs}}} better than show people!  

In The Spotlight - Joel Iwaskiewicz 

Bobby Child in Crazy For You
Posted by Evelynn Decker Wednesday, April 8, 2015 8:51:00 PM Categories: In the Spotlight Main Stage

 

My name is Joel Iwaskiewicz, and I play Bobby Child (who sometimes plays Bela Zangler) in Crazy for You.

I was born and raised in Nashua, NH, which is where my wife, Laura, and I now live.

I didn't know Crazy for You very well, but I could sing almost every Gershwin song in the show.  My wife's encouragement (she's done the show before and LOVES it) was also a driving factor.

I've previously performed in Guys and Dolls, Les Miserables, and The Music Man with Actorsingers.  I've also appeared onstage with Peacock Players, StageCoach Productions, and other area groups.

I was thrilled to take on such a challenging role... and terrified to take on such a challenging role.Bobby Child is a performer at heart who is trapped in the lifeless world of banking and wealth management.  He has dreams of breaking free and finally letting his spirit out onstage.  I love Bobby's earnestness and his adoration for performers.  I can relate to the exuberance he experiences onstage and the admiration he has for people who create art on the stage.  I can also identify with Bobby's instant infatuation with the character Polly since she's played by a fellow actor I really admire. Bobby is a laundry list of challenges for me.  He tap dances.  He impersonates a Hungarian accent.  He constantly changes costumes (and facial hair).  Fortunately, tackling each of those challenges is endlessly invigorating.

I used to burn Broadway soundtracks from the library onto audio cassettes, and then I'd call my friends and blast the first chords of the Phantom of the Opera soundtrack over the phone.  I thought that was the funniest thing.

My job as a high school English teacher is full of surprises and leaves me feeling fulfilled every day.  I also enjoy cooking, writing, and watching Saturday Night Live.

There's this electric connection between actors and their audience that I've only ever experienced onstage.  It's like being plugged into multiple worlds at once.  My imagination is never more lively or engaged than when I'm acting in or watching a live show.  

In The Spotlight - Heather Armhold 

Follies Girls Entourage member in Crazy For You
Posted by Evelynn Decker Monday, April 6, 2015 12:09:00 PM Categories: In the Spotlight Main Stage

HEATHER ARMHOLD is in our Spotlight today.  She will be appearing as part of the Follies Girls Entourage in our production of CRAZY FOR YOU. In her words.....

I performed in Crazy for You in High School and it was always my favorite show.  I performed in Young Frankenstein last fall with the Actorsingers. I love Actorsingers and couldn't wait to work with the group Again. “I was so psyched! I definitely jumped up and down when I found I was cast in the show.

I have also performed with StageCoach Productions and The Majestic Theatre.

Since the Entourage is not in the script, I got to invent my own character.  I am the Costumer Designer/Wardrobe for the Follies Girls who always wanted to be a Follies Girl but wasn't quite talented enough at dance.  I connect with this because while I love to dance, it takes me a while to catch on.

I think the toughest part of bringing this role to life is to think about how I would react to other characters.  Since the Entourage isn't in the script it's fun to figure it out as I go!

My earliest theatre memory - I was in my preschool's production of Nanny Goats at the age of 4!

I am originally from NJ, but currently reside in Hollis, NH.  I am a work at home mom.  I am an Independent Consultant with Jamberry Nails and with Thirty-One Gifts and Bags. I love to travel, spend time with my two kids (Carter 2.5 and Gabi almost 1), try new foods, and do fun crafts.

There is a huge release in getting to "be" someone else for a little while.  Also, I love my kids more than anything, but it's nice to have some adult time with friends!

 

Actorsingers NHTA Top Finalists - 13th Annual  

Nominations Announced
Posted by Evelynn Decker Friday, December 19, 2014 5:03:00 PM Categories: Actorsingers Teen In the Spotlight Main Stage NHTA

NH Theater Awards Top Finalists

Congratulations to All Finalists!

 

Actorsingers nominations are listed below

 

BEST PRODUCTION - MUSICAL - COMMUNITY

The Music Man – Actorsingers

Young Frankenstein – Actorsingers

 

BEST PRODUCTION - YOUTH

Legally Blonde the Musical - Actorsingers, Teen

 

BEST DIRECTOR - MUSICAL - COMMUNITY

Young Frankenstein - Actorsingers (Paul Metzger)

 

BEST ACTOR - MUSICAL - COMMUNITY

The Music Man - Actorsingers (Michael Coppola as Harold Hill)

Young Frankenstein - Actorsingers (Marc Murai as Dr. Frederick Frankenstein)

 

BEST ACTOR - YOUTH

Legally Blonde the Musical - Actorsingers, Teen (Sean Fitzgerald as Emmett Forrest)

 

BEST ACTRESS - MUSICAL - COMMUNITY

The Music Man - Actorsingers (Caity Glover as Marian Paroo)    

Young Frankenstein - Actorsingers (Sarah Souter as Elizabeth Benning) 

 

BEST ACTRESS - YOUTH

Legally Blonde the Musical - Actorsingers, Teen (Susan Dudka as Elle Woods)     

 

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR - MUSICAL - COMMUNITY

Young Frankenstein - Actorsingers (Eric Skoglund as Igor)

Young Frankenstein - Actorsingers (Stuart Harmon as The Monster)

 

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS - MUSICAL - COMMUNITY

Young Frankenstein - Actorsingers (Rachel Cerullo as Frau Blucher)

Young Frankenstein - Actorsingers (Mia Berardi as Inga)

 

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS - YOUTH

Legally Blonde the Musical - Actorsingers, Teen (Jill Tokac as Paulette)

 

BEST MUSIC DIRECTOR – COMMUNITY

The Music Man - Actorsingers (Jed Holland)

Young Frankenstein - Actorsingers (Judy Hayward)

 

BEST CHOREOGRAPHER - COMMUNITY

Legally Blonde the Musical – Actorsingers, Teen (Brittney-Lynne Stanley)

The Music Man - Actorsingers (Martha Daniels Holland)

Young Frankenstein - Actorsingers (Donna O’Bryant Metzger)

 

BEST COSTUME DESIGNER - COMMUNITY

Young Frankenstein – Actorsingers (Lindsay Vago)

 

BEST SCENIC DESIGNER - COMMUNITY

Young Frankenstein - Actorsingers (Don Smith-Weiss, Dennis Schneider, Paul Metzger Will McGregor)

 

BEST SOUND DESIGNER - COMMUNITY

Young Frankenstein - Actorsingers (Michael D. O'Keefe)

 

BEST LIGHTING DESIGNER - COMMUNITY

Young Frankenstein - Actorsingers (Rick Brooks, Craig Brennan, Dennis Schneider)

 

 

In The Spotlight - Jenn Morton and Michelle Morrison 

Co-Producers The Music Man
Posted by Evelynn Decker Thursday, May 8, 2014 6:37:00 AM Categories: In the Spotlight

Jenn Morton and Michelle Morrison are co-producers for The Music Man. They just started producing Actorsingers youth shows a few years ago, and we are grateful they volunteered to take on producing a main-stage show! 

 

Jenn and Michelle became involved in Theatre because their children wanted to be in shows. Community theater is a great opportunity for families to work on something together, so they jumped in to help whenever there was a need. They want everyone to know that no prior theater experience is necessary. If you think this might be fun, give it a try! We are glad they did, because they have become valuable production resources for Actorsingers! Jenn and Michelle have made many friends and laughed often with Actorsingers pals. When they are old(er) and gray(er), some of their favorite memories will be of music and laughter that filled the rehearsal rooms and stairways of Actorsingers Hall.

 

They say “The best part of working on a show is getting to know the people involved. The cast members are very talented & have a wonderful time together. And just as important as the cast are the behind-the-scenes volunteers. The many hours and hours that it takes to coordinate every little piece of the show… publicity, the set, the costumes, props, lighting, sound, tickets, concessions, program… many people are spending time & energy thinking about those things and working hard to make sure every piece fits into place, like a giant puzzle.  Then, it all comes together during Tech Week (really, it does!) and you breathe a sigh of relief and have fun!”

 

By day, Michelle works as an account manager in corporate America, and Jenn is a home schooling volunteer-a-holic who works part time at the Nashua Public Library. They both love spending time with family & friends, as well as taking care of their pet menagerie, which includes chickens they inherited with their recently purchased home.

In The Spotlight - Kathy Lovering  

Director The Music Man
Posted by Evelynn Decker Monday, May 5, 2014 11:06:00 PM Categories: In the Spotlight

Kathy Lovering, from Nashua, is the Director of The Music Man. The Music Man is one of Kathy’s favorites and she is thrilled to be turning the pages from the script to an on-stage show!  In fact the first show Kathy saw as a child was when her parents took her to see an Actorsingers production of The Music Man in 1975.  This is the third time that Actorsingers is bringing this wonderful show to the stage, first in 1975, again in 1987, and now, on May 9, 10 and 11 in 2014. “We wanted to do a classical musical that showcases music that everyone is familiar with, and makes you feel good as you leave the theatre.  It has all the elements of an uplifting and fun show that we know will be a crowd pleaser.” 

The 67 member cast brings some interesting statistics to the show in addition to their performing talents. There are also many coincidences in this production of The Music Man.  Two sisters, Marilyn Valentine and Sandra Metaxotos, are performing in this production, in honor of their late sister, Rebecca, who performed the role of Marian for Nashua High School.  Their niece Lindsay Murch and Sandra’s daughter Chloe are in the ensemble. There are nine families in this show, which is a record for the most families in any Actorsingers production. 

Director Kathy Lovering and Marilyn Valentine (Widow Paroo) were classmates at Nashua High School. Music director, Jed Holland, met his wife, Martha Daniels Holland, in the second production of The Music Man, and all 5 of their children are involved in this show.  The second production of The Music Man was directed by the late John Liljeberg, whose wife Raelene is the costume mistress for this production. John was an assistant director for the Nashua High School band for many years, and Kathy Lovering and Jed Holland were in band together during that time. With so many coincidences in this production, the third time staging The Music Man is a thrill for all involved, and we hope audiences go out and enjoy the show!

What is the most challenging part of bringing this show to life?  “It’s a huge tech show, huge cast, and it's a period piece which is always a challenge.”

Kathy has been with Actorsingers since 1977, and in addition to directing main-stage shows, she has directed Junior Actorsingers and Teen Actorsingers shows, as well as a few shows at Nashua High South and the Nashua Senior Center.  Kathy has served on the Actorsingers Board of Directors as president, secretary, vice-president and director. Actorsingers has presented Kathy with the Penny Award, the Life Member Award, and the Actorsingers Hall of Fame Award.

Kathy makes her livelihood as an insurance agent “which is not fun!” She also likes gardening and restoring furniture.

In The Spotlight - Jed Holland & Martha Daniels Holland 

Music Director & Choreographer The Music Man
Posted by Evelynn Decker Monday, May 5, 2014 10:37:00 PM Categories: In the Spotlight

Jed Holland is the Music Director and Martha Daniels Holland is the Choreographer for the upcoming production of The Music Man May 9-11. They are thrilled to be working together with this large cast of 67 very talented adults, teens and children! The Music and Choreography is so much fun in this production, including the much loved songs "Ya Got Trouble", "Goodnight, My Someone", "Seventy-Six Trombones", “My White Knight” and “Shipoopi”.

Jed has been involved with Actorsingers since 1981, where he has enjoyed many productions in and out of the Orchestra Pit. Martha has been involved with Actorsingers since 1987, where she met Jed in that year’s production of The Music Man. Jed was playing the piano and she was one of the teenage chorus dancers, and now they are happily married with 5 children. In fact all of their children - Andrew, Becca, Mike, Mary and Christopher - are involved with this production of The Music Man, which makes this production very special for them! They are also excited to be working with their Chilean exchange student Ismael as one of the dancers in this show.

 Since Martha’s appearance in her first show, The Music Man, in 1987, theatre has had such an impact on her that she has been involved in nearly all Actorsingers productions, in one way or another, ever since! Martha takes great pleasure in choreographing shows, but still enjoys being onstage occasionally. Jed loves Music Directing and especially loves working on shows with Martha and the entire family!

 Martha has served as past Actorsingers Vice President and board member. Jed served as the original Actorsingers webmaster and performed that duty for many, many years. Jed is a past unsung hero recipient, Martha is a past Actorsingers Wall of Fame recipient, and both Martha and Jed have received lifetime membership awards.

 By day, Jed is a software engineer, and Martha is a full-time Realtor with RE/MAX Properties and loves her work. For fun, they experience great joy spending time with their family and friends and of course going to see all the live theatre they can!

In The Spotlight - Michael Coppola 

Harold Hill in The Music Man
Posted by Evelynn Decker Monday, May 5, 2014 12:01:00 AM Categories: In the Spotlight

Michael Coppola plays Harold Hill in the upcoming production of The Music Man. Michael lives in Portsmouth, NH with his partner Ron Levesque.  He grew up in the small town of Rowley, MA and has lived in Miami, Newburyport and Epping in between.

Harold Hill is one of Michael’s favorite roles “ I love the whole look and feel of the show - it’s a fun show and a fun time.”  Michael’s  first A/S show was Oklahoma - Curly, then he was in The Producers - Leo Bloom, and then Chicago - Billy Flynn.

Michael has performed in over 100 shows with just about every group in southern NH and the seacoast area. “There are a few out there that I have not had the pleasure to work with, but I'm sure that day will come!”

What was Michael’s reaction when he was cast? ” I was very happy :) I'm not getting any younger and, well, eventually you gotta start playing the older roles.”

Harold is a travelling salesman who makes a living by swindling people and then skipping town. “In real life I am a Real Estate Broker - hmmmmm :)  Not that I've ever swindled anyone or skipped town - just saying. If you need to buy or sell a house ..... call me ;)”

“I think the most challenging part of this or any role in a period piece is keeping the character true to the time period. Whether it is language, body movement, etc., you don't want the audience to watch and think ‘oh look it’s Michael playing a part in a show’.  The best compliment is when the audience says, I forgot it was even you up there :) That’s when you say to yourself - I did it right.”

The Music Man was the first live show Michael ever saw, with his Mother and Grandmother.  “There was a travelling show and it came to our high school - I'm guessing I was probably about 13 years old or so. They had a complete band and everything. It was just very captivating. “

Why does Michael do theatre?  “Well,  where else can you be a travelling salesman one month, maybe a mass murderer a few months later, then become a fairy tale character, a baseball player, a gambler, a loving husband, a hated father, a roller-skating bride groom ..... You get the idea.  It’s truly the best way to express yourself creatively that I know, while giving something to others, might they be looking for a laugh, a cry, something thought provoking or just a few hours away from reality.”

As mentioned above, Michael is a real estate broker and has been since 1991. “When I have any free time, I enjoy spending it with friends, playing games, cooking, travelling - you know, the basic stuff lol - I'm not a triathlete or a skydiver or anything interesting like that.”

In The Spotlight - Caity Glover 

Marian Paroo in The Music Man
Posted by Evelynn Decker Sunday, May 4, 2014 9:52:00 AM Categories: In the Spotlight

Caity Jeanne Glover, from Manchester, plays Marian Paroo in The Music Man, her very first show with Actorsingers!  Caity has always wanted to play Marian since she sang ‘Till There Was You” in a middle school concert, “When the opportunity presented itself to audition, I couldn’t pass it up!”

When Caity found out she was cast as Marian “ I screamed! And it was very early in the morning so I woke up my roommate, oops!“            

Marian is the town librarian, and the music teacher. “I connect with Marian because although she gives off a cold persona, she is smart and strong and hopeful.  And she wishes on the evening star, which is something I have done many times in my life. J “

Caity finds the most challenging part of bringing Marian to life is making the portrayal of her unique. She has a clear idea about what motivates Marian, “and I see her as so much more than just a ’stuck up librarian’”.

Caity’s earliest theatre memory was when she was 10 “my mother thought it would be a good idea to get me involved in theatre because I was a chatterbox who was always singing and dancing. My first show was a musical about Robin Hood and I played one of his merry men. And that was it; I was bitten by the acting bug and haven’t stopped performing since!”

Caity has worked with many area theatre groups including StageCoach Productions in Nashua, Milford Area Players, Nashua Theatre Guild, and most recently The Community Players of Concord.  “Being involved in theatre makes me feel like I never really have to grow up; I love the ‘play’ aspect of it.”

When Caity isn’t on stage she is a call analyst for a nurse coaching hotline. For fun she enjoys bike riding, baking, watching the Bruins, and she is obsessed with theme parks and roller coasters!!

In The Spotlight - Craig Plummer  

Marcellus in The Music Man
Posted by Evelynn Decker Friday, May 2, 2014 5:23:00 PM Categories: In the Spotlight

Craig Plummer, from Brookline, NH, plays Marcellus Washburn in The Music Man.

Craig describes Marcellus as ”a former compatriot of Harold Hill (or, as I refer to him, Gregory) who is a sort of loveable, bumbling, faithful sidekick character.  I feel that I have a lot of Marcellus in me and look forward to bringing that out on stage. The biggest challenge for me is truly being Marcellus and not just being myself on stage.  I have always loved to sing but doing so while trying to be someone else is a whole different level.  Hopefully my enthusiasm and connection to the part will shine through.”

Why did Craig audition? “I love to perform and the role of Marcellus seemed like a perfect role for me to audition for.  I also wanted to have the opportunity to perform on stage with both of my kids.  The opportunity to be involved with something that we all enjoy so much is a true joy!  I was overjoyed to not only be cast in the show, but to be cast in the role of Marcellus.  I hope to bring an "exuberant goofiness" to the role!”

Craig is no stranger to the stage “I had the good fortune to be in Annie with the Actorsingers a couple of years ago, and participated in a show called Midsummer's Magic, put on by Stagecoach 2 summers ago. I also had the good fortune to be portraying Thomas Jefferson in 1776 last summer with Bedford Off Broadway.  Where else in my life do I have the opportunity to get on stage and do what I love to do for a crowd of people?  The thrill of performing and hearing the audience laugh and applaud is unmatched in other parts of my life.”

What was Craig’s first memory of theater? “I had the role of one of the Trolls in The Hobbit in elementary school.  Some might say typecast but I vehemently disagree :-)”

Craig owns his own business doing college advising for families in the Southern NH and Northern Massachusetts areas. “ I am fortunate that my work is a joy to me, and that I get so much out of helping the families with whom I work.  For fun, I am an avid golfer and am working toward participating in more road races as a runner.”

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