Johnna Leary recently graduated with a B.A. in Musical Theater from Shepherd University. She previously worked as the Arts and Styles Section Editor of the Shepherd University newspaper, The Picket and interned at the Contemporary American Theater Festival. She also writes as a local correspondent for DC Metro Theater Arts. Johnna frequently performs in educational and local theater productions. Her favorite roles include Johanna (u/s) and Young Lucy in Sweeney Todd at Shepherd, Briar Rose/Sleeping Beauty in Enchanted Sleeping Beauty at Pumpkin Theatre, Cosette in Les Miserables at Way Off Broadway, Olive Ostrovsky in The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee and Maggie in Lend Me A Tenor at the Washington County Playhouse. She can also be seen on several documentaries and mini series on Investigation Discovery Channel, the History Channel, and National Geographic.
"Everything's Coming Up Roses" as Gypsy debuts this Saturday at the Washington County Playhouse Dinner Theater! The ultimate book and backstage musical displays one of the most infamous "stage mothers" in musical theater while providing the back story and origins to one of the most famous burlesque artists, Gypsy Rose Lee.BWW Interview: All Bets Are Off! GUYS AND DOLLS Opens at Old Opera House September 7, 2016
Unlike Anything Goes or some other lighter summer shows set on ships, Christina Anderson's phenomenal new play, pen/man/ship, currently running at the Contemporary American Theater Festival, is a stunningly crafted and unforgettable voyage that confronts modern controversial issues, such as race, religion and gender, in an intriguing historical context.BWW Interview: THE DIXIE SWIM CLUB Will Make a Splash at Washington County Playhouse July 21, 2016
At its basic essence, a play tells a story. But when the audience has difficulty understanding the story and the language, the message, no matter how poignant or powerful, is lost. The Wedding Gift, a world premiere play at the Contemporary American Theater Festival, is a visual feast for audience members, but due to the storytelling method, many audience members are unable to understand the imaginative story.BWW Review: CATF NOT MEDEA Is a Deeply Imaginative and Powerful Piece of Theater July 19, 2016
The 2016 CATF mission statement lists their vision as 'The Ultimate Theater Experience', and Not Medea, one of the five plays in rotating rep at the festival, completely satisfies this expectation. A highly creative and completely immersive theatrical experience, Not Medea is brilliantly written by Allison Gregory and expertly directed by Courtney Sale.BWW Review: CATF THE SECOND GIRL is a Stunning and Spirited Show July 15, 2016
A show about older women celebrating and commiserating aging has been done countless times in entertainment, from Steel Magnolias on stage to The Golden Girls on television. However, 20th Century Blues, a world premiere play at the Contemporary American Theater Festival written by Susan Miller and directed by Ed Herendeen, breaks the mold when it comes to the female ensemble dramedy.BWW Interview: NEW VOICE PLAY FESTIVAL Will Debut New Work at Old Opera House June 23, 2016
The New Voice Play Festival, opening on June 24 at the Old Opera House in Charles Town, WV, provides the opportunity for audiences to witness completely new and original plays from playwrights all across the nation and vote on which play is their favorite. The four plays chosen this year vary in topics from mysteries to the mystical and present various challenges to the actors and directorsSummer Stages: BWW Top Picks for Summer Theater in West Virginia June 10, 2016
Opposite of many summer stock seasons offering Golden Age musicals and classic plays, theaters in West Virginia this summer will offer many new, thought-provoking premieres, modern twists on classic works of theater and contemporary musicals in some of the state's professional theaters. Listed below are four of the top picks for live theater shows this summer, but these are only a small offering of the many fantastic performances and live theater seasons occurring in West Virginia.BWW Interview: Apollo Civic Theatre Will Play BINGO: THE WINNING MUSICAL May 12, 2016
Get ready for even more craziness with the Verdeen cousins as a huge helping of southern fried comedy, the farce Rex's Exes, debuts at the Old Opera House. Directed by Will Heyser-Paone, this stand-alone sequel written by Jones-Hope-Wooten, the comedic trio behind hits such as The Dixie Swim Club and The Hallelujah Girls, will premiere at the Old Opera House. Gaynelle Verdeen refuses to admit that she's turning 50, so her cousins attempt to throw her a surprise birthday party. However, the surprise is on them when the cousins are forced to turn the party into a full fledged family funeral!