May 27, 28 and June 2, 3, 4 at 8:00 PM May 29 and June 5 at 2:30 PM
May opens the season with Ken Ludwig’s Lend Me a Tenor. It is comedic gem is set in September 1934. Saunders, the general manager of the Cleveland Grand Opera Company, is primed to welcome world famous, Tito Morelli (Il Stupendo), the greatest tenor of his generation to appear for one night only. The star arrives late and, through a hilarious series of mishaps, is given a double dose of tranquilizers and passes out. His pulse is so low that he is believed to be dead. In a frantic attempt to salvage the evening, Saunders persuades his assistant Max to get into Morelli’s costume and fool the audience into thinking he’s Il Stupendo. Max succeeds admirably, but Morelli comes to and gets into his other costume ready to perform. Hilarity ensues as two Il Stupendos run around in costume while two women grace the stage in lingerie, each thinking she is with Il Stupendo. A sensation on Broadway and in London’s West End, this madcap, screwball comedy is guaranteed to leave audiences teary-eyed with laughter. Show Dates: May 27 and 28, June 2, 3, and 4 at 8 p.m., and May 29 and June 5 at 2:30 p.m.
While there are no curtains on The Playhouse stage, the little theater is proud to “raise the reds” on its season opener, “Lend Me a Tenor,” running May 27th through 29th and June 2nd through the 5th.
Written by Ken Ludwig, this door-slamming and side-splitting comedy will leave audiences in stitches. There is no shortage of laughs in this show, which was produced in London and New York in the 1980s, was nominated for nine Tony Awards, won three Drama Desk Awards, nabbed the Olivier Award for Best Comedy of the Year, and enjoyed a Broadway revival in 2010.
“Lend Me a Tenor” is set in September 1934. The plot revolves around Saunders, the general manager of the Cleveland Grand Opera Company, who is primed to welcome world famous Tito Morelli, Il Stupendo, the greatest tenor of his generation, to appear for one night only to sing the lead in the opera “Otello.” Chaos ensues when the singer is accidentally given a double dose of tranquilizers.
The sleeping pills have left Morelli’s pulse so low that he is believed to be dead. In a frantic attempt to salvage the evening, Saunders persuades his assistant Max to get into Morelli’s costume to fool the audience into thinking he’s Il Stupendo. Max succeeds admirably, but Morelli comes to and gets into his other costume ready to perform. Hilarity ensues as two Il Stupendos run around in costume while two women grace the stage in lingerie, each thinking she is with Il Stupendo. This laugh-out-loud chain reaction of mistaken identity leads to farcical plot twists, double entendres, and musical mayhem.
“I think ‘Lend Me a Tenor’ is an incredible comedic farce. There are hidden jokes throughout the show that will leave the audience in stitches and make them eager to see what will happen next. With such a colorful array of characters, people are sure love every minute,” said Jennifer Catanese. She makes her debut as Diana, the soprano willing to do just about anything to reach stardom.
Keith Sutton plays Saunders, the manager of the Cleveland Opera, and Max, his assistant, is brought to life by Clay Glenny. Dan Weston portrays the over-the-top Tito Morelli, and Chris Wirt takes the stage as Tito’s fed-up wife Maria. Jennifer Powell is Saunders’ daughter, Maggie. Jennifer Catanese is Diana the soprano, and Shelby Metz plays the grand dame of the opera, Julia.
Jeanne Nagurny directs and costumes this production. The set design is by Don Dietz with sound design is by Rick Brown. Lighting is designed by Keith Sutton with technical production by Barbara Hughes.
“Lend Me a Tenor” will continue on May 27th and 28th and June 2nd, 3rd, and 4th at 8:00 p.m. Sunday matinee showings are May 29th and June 5th at 2:30 p.m. Ticket prices are $12 for regular admission, $10 for seniors (age 60 and older) and students (age 6 and older). For reservations call 814-627.0311. The Playhouse is located at 11680 Raystown Rd, Huntingdon, PA, five miles South of Huntingdon Borough right on Rt. 26 in the Village of McConnellstown. For more information, please check the website at www.littletheater.com, like us on Facebook (The Playhouse at McConnellstown), or follow us on Twitter @LittleTheater.