Comedy, Workshop, Fun And More at Wheaton Drama This Summer

While many people are making vacation plans, the volunteers at Wheaton Drama are involved with Playhouse 111's numerous summer activities.

June through September is traditionally a very busy time at the Playhouse, and this year is no exception. Wheaton Drama volunteers have represented the organization at the St. James Farm Homecoming Celebration and Taste of Wheaton events already this summer, and will also be present at Wheaton's July 4 parade.

Helping at the Taste of Wheaton were Ben Aylesworth, Larry Boller and Marge Uhlarik-Boller, Suzanne Compton, Bruce Ebner, Donna, Jake, and Ron Fletcher, Kathy Heinze, Dee Hicks, Amy Johnson, Amber Jones, Andy and Julie Kanturek, Martha McMillan, Steven Merkel, Joann Scott, Glenn Sokol, Rochelle Sproviero, and Jim Van de Velde.

An extensive group of volunteers and musicians are part of Wheaton Drama's current production. Running through June 19 at Playhouse 111 is the 2010-2011 season finale, "1776". This entertaining dramatization of the weeks leading up to the creation and signing of the Declaration of Independence is proving to be incredibly popular with audiences. Tickets are still available, but patrons are encouraged to act quickly to secure their seats. Call 630-260-1820 or visit

While "1776" has the stage Thursdays-Sundays, entertainment for the June general membership meeting and the summer studio show are sharing rehearsal space the rest of the week.

To be performed at the June 21 general membership meeting is a cutting from "You're A Good Man, Charlie Brown", directed by Susan Able Barry. Guests are welcome at the general meetings, which are generally held the third Tuesday of the month at 7:30pm at the Playhouse (visit the Wheaton Drama website to check dates for future meetings). After a meeting to discuss theatre business, entertainment is presented with refreshments and social time to follow.

The 2011 studio show is Steve Martin's comedy, "Picasso at the Lapin Agile". This entertaining show sees Albert Einstein and Pablo Picasso in a Paris bar in 1904. Joined by interesting bystanders, Einstein and Picasso ponder art, science, romance, and the joys and trappings of the creative process. "Picasso at the Lapin Agile" tickets are only $10 each and seating is general admission for this limited engagement production. Performances are Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays from July 15 to 24. Tickets can be purchased now by calling 630-260-1820, or online at

Set construction for "Picasso" begins Saturday, June 25 and faces the exciting challenge of having a very compressed build schedule.

Directed by Peter Lemongelli, "Picasso at the Lapin Agile" features Dave Amato, Harmony Barry, Zach Gibson, Margie Gustafson, Sara Malloy, Jim Quan, Daniel Scobey, Lars Timpa, Debbie Trueblood, Stevan Vujic and Tom Walker. Production management is by Steve Schroeder, and Jo-Ann Ledger is the assistant director. Jen Neidl is the stage manager. "Picasso at the Lapin Agile" is presented by special arrangement with Samuel French, Inc.

Also underway are preparations for the summer Children's Workshop, which runs July 18 to 23. This very popular annual program offers theatre education for students 1st Grade through High School. For more information, visit

The 2011-2012 directors and production staff are now bringing together crew and planning for auditions and performances. Auditions for the five main season productions are open to all, although if cast, actors (and technical staff) are required to join Wheaton Drama for a nominal fee. As it becomes available, audition information will be posted at

The 2011-2012 season opens with the high-energy, Monty Python-style comedy, "Incorruptible", then takes a warm, family turn with "On Golden Pond". Audiences will then enjoy the chills and secrets of the thriller, "Bad Seed", followed by the farcical romp in the dark, "Black Comedy". The 2011-2012 season closes with the hilarious musical comedy adapted from the movie of the same name, "Dirty Rotten Scoundrels". Season and individual tickets are available for purchase now at, or call 630-260-1820.

While Wheaton Drama's volunteers certainly do a lot of work during the summer and throughout the year, there is a good share of fun to accompany the efforts. The 2011 Colby Committee is meeting now to plan Wheaton Drama's July 30 awards night for volunteers. Named after the late Colby Jones, a long-time Wheaton Drama member, the Colby Awards provide an opportunity for members to wear their finest and celebrate the work of the volunteers who excel behind the scenes. Beverages, hors d'oeuvres, and desserts accompany the awards ceremony and entertainment.

Wheaton's Front Street Cocina, Genghis Grill, Graham's Fine Chocolates & Ice Cream, The Bank Restaurant and Cellar Bistro, and Naperville's Egg Harbor are on board to donate food items to the Awards thus far this year. Additional local businesses are very welcome to participate and can contact for information.

At play since 1931, Wheaton Drama's home is Playhouse 111, 111 N. Hale Street in downtown Wheaton.

Article by Jo-Ann Ledger for Wheaton Drama. Contact:

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