Photo Flash: OVER THE TAVERN Opens At Theatre At The Center

Over the Tavern opened to a full house Sunday at Theatre at the Center in Munster. The play by Tom Dudzick is directed by Ericka Mac with Janet Ulrich Brooks as Sister Clarissa, Logan Baffico as Rudy, Cory Goodrich as Ellen, Isabelle Roberts as Annie, Eric Slater as Chet, Julian Solis as Georgie and Seth Steinberg as Eddie. Over the Tavern offers a hilarious look at family life in the 1950s. Over the Tavern continues its run through August 11.

In Dudzick's semi-autobiographical play, set in 1959, audiences meet Rudy Pazinski, a precocious 12-year old student who feels God put us on Earth to have fun. He matches wits with ruler-wielding Sister Clarissa when he shares his plans to shop around for a more fun religion. We also meet the entire Pazinski family, who live in a tiny apartment above the neighborhood bar they run, as they face both the real and comical struggles of life, including Rudy's questioning the rules of the Roman Catholic Church just as he is about to receive the church sacrament of confirmation. An earlier run of Over the Tavern was a smash-hit with Theatre at the Center audiences in 2005.

Janet Ulrich Brooks (Sister Clarissa) returns to TATC after receiving a Jeff-nomination for her performance as Ann Landers in the TATC production of The Lady with All the Answers. Janet is a Company Member of TimeLine Theatre where credits include portraying Maria Callas in Master Class and also a production of Bakersfield Mist, as well as Jeff-nominated performances in The Audience, 33 Variations, A Walk In The Woods, All My Sons and other favorite works. Her most recent credits include The Children at Steppenwolf Theatre and Pipeline at Victory Gardens. Her film credits include roles in Divergent, One Small Hitch and Conviction, as well as television credits with roles in Chicago Med, Fire and Justice and Boss. Janet was the first recipient of the Ed See Outstanding Theatre Alumnus Award from the University of Central Missouri.

Logan Baffico (Rudy) is making his TATC debut. He was most recently seen as Hero Boy in the Rail Events' The Polar Express. His other credits include Benjamin in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat and Chip in Beauty and the Beast at BrightSide Theatre. He also appeared as Posh Boy in Billy Elliot at Porchlight Theatre, Sebastian in The Little Mermaid and James in James and the Giant Peach at Stage Door Fine Arts Theatre.

Cory Goodrich (Ellen) returns to TATC for her 14th production, having previously appeared in Steel Magnolias, Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown and Ring of Fire: The Music of Johnny Cash. She is a five-time Jeff nominee including a Jeff Award for her role of June Carter in Ring of Fire and another for her role of Mother in Drury Lane's production of Ragtime. Cory has also performed in productions at the Marriott Theatre in Lincolnshire, Chicago Shakespeare, Candlelight and Drury Lane. As a singer/songwriter, Cory has four solo albums.

Eric Slater (Chet) is also making his TATC debut. He has worked in Chicago at The Goodman Theatre, Steppenwolf Theater Company, Writers Theatre, Court Theatre and Chicago Children's Theatre. His Off-Broadway credits include productions at the Public Theater, York Theatre, The Kitchen and Theater for the New City. Film and television credits include Chicago Fire and Widows.

Seth Steinberg (Eddie) joins the cast as another TATC debut. He recently performed as Joey Oren in the Roundabout Theatre Company's production of If I Forget and appeared as Nathan Lukowski in the The Full Monty at Theater Wit in Chicago. As part of the Another Door Theatre Project, he appeared in The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, Pippin, Bare, a Pop Opera and Heathers the Musical and has performed in several musicals with Repertory Company at the Actors Training Center in Wilmette.

Isabelle Roberts (Annie) is making her TATC debut. She has appeared in Alice in Wonderland: Alice's Rock and Roll Adventure at Chicago Children's Theatre; The Sound of Music at Lyric Opera of Chicago, Bye Bye Birdie at Drury Lane and Sunday in the Park with George at Chicago Shakespeare Theatre.

Julian Solis (George) returns to the TATC stage after making his TATC debut in A Wonderful Life. He also appeared as Rudy Pazinski for the TATC season preview last August. He was also a featured soloist for the Northwest Indiana Symphony for two consecutive seasons.

Ericka Mac is making her TATC directorial debut. She has served as Assistant Director of Company at Writers Theatre. She also served as Associate Director for the U.S. Premiere of Ride the Cyclone at MCC Theatre and Chicago Shakespeare; the World Premieres of both Diary of a Wimpy Kid the Musical and Alice's Rock and Roll Adventure at Children's Theatre Company; The Little Mermaid at Chicago Shakespeare and Guys and Dolls at Marriott Theatre.

The creative team for Over the Tavern includes Scenic Designer Angie Weber-Miller, Lighting Designer Shelley Strasser-Holland, Sound Designer Michael Patrick, Costume Designer Brenda Winstead, Wig Designer Kevin Barthel and Properties Designer is Emily Hartig. Stage manager is Jessica Banaszak. Artistic Director Linda Fortunato is teamed with TATC General Manager Richard Friedman and Ann Davis, TATC Head of Production.


Founded in 1991, the 410-seat TATC is a year-round professional theater at its home: The Center for Visual and Performing Arts, 1040 Ridge Road in Munster, Indiana. TATC is an accessible venue with plenty of free parking and is located off I-80/94, just 35 minutes from downtown Chicago.

Performances are 2 p.m. Wednesdays and Thursdays; 7:30 p.m. Fridays; 3 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Saturdays; and 2:30 p.m. on Sundays. Individual ticket prices range from $42-$46. To purchase individual tickets, call the Box Office at 219-836-3255 or Tickets.com at 800-511-1532. Group discounts are available for groups of 11 or more. Student tickets are $20 and gift certificates are also available. For more information on Theatre at the Center, visit www.TheatreAtTheCenter.com.

Photo Flash: OVER THE TAVERN Opens At Theatre At The Center
Cast of Over the Tavern Photo Flash: OVER THE TAVERN Opens At Theatre At The Center
Seth Steinberg, Julian Solis and Logan Baffico Photo Flash: OVER THE TAVERN Opens At Theatre At The Center
Isabelle Roberts Photo Flash: OVER THE TAVERN Opens At Theatre At The Center

Logan Baffico, Erika Mac and Seth Steinberg

Photo Flash: OVER THE TAVERN Opens At Theatre At The Center
Seth Steinberg, Eric Slater, Logan Baffico and Julian Solis. Photo Flash: OVER THE TAVERN Opens At Theatre At The Center
Janet Ulrich Brooks Photo Flash: OVER THE TAVERN Opens At Theatre At The Center
Cory Goodrich Photo Flash: OVER THE TAVERN Opens At Theatre At The Center
Logan Baffico with his family Photo Flash: OVER THE TAVERN Opens At Theatre At The Center
Eric Slater Photo Flash: OVER THE TAVERN Opens At Theatre At The Center
Linda Fortunato, Sean Fortunato, Asher Fortunato Photo Flash: OVER THE TAVERN Opens At Theatre At The Center
Seth Steinberg, Julian Solis and Logan Baffico with Cassi Russell Photo Flash: OVER THE TAVERN Opens At Theatre At The Center
Phil Potempa, David Potempa. Peggy and Chet Potempa Photo Flash: OVER THE TAVERN Opens At Theatre At The Center
Jessica Banaszak. Case Koerner


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