Bristol Riverside Theatre Concludes 30th Anniversary Season with WITNESS FOR THE PROSECUTION
Bristol Riverside Theatre concludes its 30th Anniversary season with Agatha Christie's Witness for the Prosecution, running May 9-May 28. Directed by Susan D. Atkinson, the high-voltage thriller by the Queen of Crime drama features an ensemble of professional actors Sharon Alexander, Keith Baker, Kenneth Boys, Hanna Gaffney, Leonard C. Haas, Eleanor Handley, Thomas-Robert Irvin, Kyra Leeds, Matt Leisy, James Luse, William R. McHattie, Christopher J. Perugini, Carl Wallnau, Paul B. Weagraff, and Kylie Westerbeck performing alongside Bucks County community members Missy Andrews, Mari Bernhagen, Drew Burke, Melissa Bushey, David Owen Cashell, Sybil Cooper, Matthew DiMarino, Ginny Fairweather, Maryann Fanning, Michael Gearty, Regina Gluhski, Terri Hall, Sarah Konyves, Donna Rae Lee, Matt Lydon, Sr., Matt Lydon, Jr., Donna McCole, Ronald Pae, Eileen Peters, Dottie Polsenberg, Lesia Pryor, Patricia Rooney, Kurt Scholer, Marion M. Walter, Harriet Zeff, and Margie Zielinski. Previews begin Tuesday, May 9 with opening night on Thursday, May 11. Performances run Wednesday through Sunday until May 28. Tickets start at $33, with discounts for students, groups and military personnel. Tickets are available by visiting brtstage.org or calling the BRT Box Office at 215-785-0100. Bristol Riverside Theatre is located at 120 Radcliffe Street in Bristol, PA.
In Witness for the Prosecution, Leonard stands accused of murder and his wife can prove his innocence. But when she takes the stand, she shockingly denies his alibi. In true Agatha Christie form, audiences can expect twists and turns, emotional outbursts, and quirky characters as his lawyers untangle the truth in this vintage "whodunit" that keeps the audience guessing until the very last scene. After all, they don't call Agatha Christie the Queen of Crime for nothing!
Susan D. Atkinson (Director) theatrical career spans 40 years of directing and producing on both the east and west coasts. She has directed well over 150 plays and musicals in her career, including world and area premieres from such playwrights and composers as Doug Katsoras, Mark St. Germain, Jon Marans, Alan Knee and Larry Gatlin. For BRT, Atkinson directed last season's productions of Bus Stop and Mountain, as well as the smash hit Always...Patsy Cline, Enemy of the People, Tuesdays with Morrie, Little Shop of Horrors, What A Glorious Feeling and Inherit The Wind, The Good Earth, Wintertime, Irma La Douce, Alive and Well, The Price, 110 in the Shade, A Sunbeam, Inspecting Carol, A Moon for the Misbegotten, Arsenic and Old Lace, A Little Night Music, Lady Day at Emerson's Bar and Grill, Holiday, Talley's Folly, Proof, Little Women, A Raw Space and Steel Magnolias. In 1998, Atkinson directed Larry Gatlin's Texas Flyer both here at BRT and at Theatre Under the Stars in Houston, Texas.
Sharon Alexander (Janet MacKenzie) is a popular presence at BRT, having appeared last season in Man of the La Mancha, and previously in A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, Alive and Well, Zorba, Inspecting Carol, She Loves Me, and Evita as well as in many of the company's Musicales. She has also been seen in eleven productions at Walnut Street Theatre including And Then There Were None and Good People, and at Arden Theatre Company in A Little Night Music and Merrily We Roll Along.
Keith Baker (Sir Wilfred Robarts, Q.C.) has steered BRT's artistic vision for the past twenty-five years, helping position the company's vital role in the regional cultural landscape. He has directed more than 40 productions for BRT including Working: A Musical and Jesus Christ Superstar this season, Man of La Mancha (nominated for three Barrymore Awards) and Rumors last season, Lost in Yonkers, Ragtime (nominated for nine Barrymore Awards), Gypsy starring Tovah Feldshuh, Chicago (nominated for six Barrymore Awards), The Balkan Women (winner of a Barrymore Award for Outstanding New Play), The Dresser (nominated for a Barrymore Award for Best Director of a Play) and Dear World (nominated for three Barrymore Awards). His acting credits include numerous productions at BRT including Mountain, Inherit the Wind, Deathtrap, A Raw Space, Barrymore, Defiance, Proof, Hamlet, A Little Night Music, Arsenic and Old Lace, A Moon for the Misbegotten, and Old Wicked Songs, for which he won a Broadway World Award. He started his career as Perchik in Fiddler on the Roof on Broadway and later appeared as Jeeves in the Andrew Lloyd Webber and Alan Ayckbourn musical By Jeeves at the Goodspeed Opera House, and has sung leading roles with Houston Grand Opera, Western Opera Theatre, and Kentucky Opera Association. On television he appeared in two episodes of Stella for Comedy Central. Baker has been nominated eleven times for the prestigious Carbonell Awards, for which he was twice the recipient for Best Actor.
Kenneth Boys (Mr. Carter) has appeared in 26 productions at BRT most recently in Mountain and Laughter On The 23rd Floor. His Broadway/national tour credits include Raggedy Ann and Camelot, and Off-Broadway he has been seen at the Lucile Lortel Theatre in Walk Two Moons, Anne Of Green Gables, Great Expectations, and Sarah, Plain and Tall, which he premiered at Dallas Theatre Center. His other regional credits include productions at Pittsburgh Public Theatre, Virginia Stage Company, Luna Stage Co., and Paper Mill Playhouse.
Leonard C. Haas (Mr. Myers, Q.C.) last appeared at BRT in Rumors as well as in The Little Prince in 2011 and subsequently toured with the production to an Off-Broadway run at the New Victory Theatre. Other productions at BRT include the title roles of The Dresser (for which he garnered a Barrymore Best Actor nomination) and Hamlet. He has been performing in the Philadelphia region for over 25 years, getting his start at People's Light, where he has acted in over 30 productions as a member of their Resident Company of Artists. He received a Barrymore Award for his work in The Fantasticks at People's Light & Theatre Company, and additional Barrymore Award nominations for The Invention of Love at The Wilma Theater and All My Sons and A Midsummer Night's Dream, both at Arden Theatre Company. He is now a member of a touring production of Jo Strømgren Kompani's A Doll's House, having performed at the Philadelphia Fringe Festival, and in Oslo, Norway.
Eleanor Handley (Romaine Heilger) was seen last season in BRT's production of Rumors as well as in Lost in Yonkers, which earned her a Barrymore Award nomination. She has starred in Taming of the Shrew, Blithe Spirit, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Much Ado About Nothing, and Comedy of Errors at Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival, and King Lear, The Three Musketeers, Troilus and Cressida, and Twelfth Night, all at Hudson Valley Shakespeare. She has been featured on television in Unforgettable, Royal Pains and As The World Turns, and has just wrapped on filming "Outcall" with The Sopranos' Federico Castelluccio.
Matt Leisy (Leonard Vole) returns to BRT directly from the Broadway First National Tour of A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder where he played Monty Navarro at such theatres as the Kennedy Center in DC, the Ahmanson Theatre in LA and The Princess of Wales Theatre in Toronto. He last appeared at BRT as Younger Brother in Ragtime and Richard Hannay in The 39 Steps. Leisy won a Barrymore Award nomination for The History Boys at the Arden Theatre, for a role he also performed at the Repertory Theatre of St. Louis. Other credits include the Matt (the Boy) in the long running Off-Broadway production of The Fantasticks, the PBS broadcast production of Carousel at Lincoln Center, Algernon in The Importance of Being Earnest at Arizona Theatre Company, Jack Pickford in Ghostlight at Signature Theatre, Mr. Bingley in Pride and Prejudice at Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, and Young Scrooge in A Christmas Carol at Alabama Shakespeare Festival.
Carl N. Wallnau (Mr. Mayhew) returns to BRT where he was featured in Laughter on the 23rd Floor, Evita and What you Will. He has performed in the first national tour of Titanic and Off-Broadway productions at Second Stage, Pearl Theater, Lark Theater, and New York Music Festival. In addition to regional credits at Paper Mill Playhouse, Orlando Shakespeare Festival and Asolo Theatre, he has appeared locally at Arden Theatre Company as the title character in Bruce Graham's play Funnyman as well as at People's Light and Theatre Company, Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival, 1812 Productions and Cape May Stage. He will be returning this year to the Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival for his fifteenth season, this time as Dr. Watson in their production of The Hound Of The Baskervilles.
Community ensemble members, working as actors, dramaturgs, and documentarians, include
Since 1986, BRT has continued to bring critically acclaimed professional theatre to Bucks County. The theatre is the recipient of over 68 Barrymore Award nominations for Excellence in Theatre, given annually by Theatre Philadelphia. Under the direction of Artistic Director Keith Baker, Founding Director Susan D. Atkinson, and Managing Director Anne S. Kohn, the theatre serves as a cultural hub for the community. In addition to its mainstage productions, BRT offers four concerts including the holiday tradition An American Christmas Songbook, the new play development series America Rising, and the summer theater arts camp ArtRageous. For information, visit www.brtstage.org.