Photo Flash: Bergen County Players to Open MYSTERY OF EDWIN DROOD in September
Bergen County Players (BCP), one of America's longest-running little theater companies, is proud to open its 86th season with the Tony Award-winning musical, The Mystery of Edwin Drood. With Book, Music and Lyrics written by Rupert Holmes, The Mystery of Edwin Drood is based on an unfinished novel by Charles Dickens. Under the direction of Steve Bell, The Mystery of Edwin Droodwill be performed at the Little Firehouse Theatre in Oradell from September 8th through October 6th, 2018. Shows will be on Fridays and Saturdays at 8pm and Sundays at 2pm. Tickets can be purchased online at www.bcplayers.org, by calling 201-261-4200 or by visiting the box office at 298 Kinderkamack Road in Oradell during regular box office hours.
Winner of five Tony Awards in 1986, including Best Musical, Best Book and Best Score, The Mystery of Edwin Drood is a musical comedy about a theatre company attempting to stage a musical comedy of the story Charles Dickens was writing when he died. Because the story was never finished, the mystery of who killed Edwin Drood is left to the audience to solve. Depending on the audience's votes, the last half-hour of the show changes at every performance. There are literally hundreds of possible endings.
Rupert Holmes, a former Bergen County resident and an ardent supporter of the Bergen County Players, is perhaps best known as author-composer of the Tony award-winning Broadway musical The Mystery of Edwin Drood and the Edgar award-winning Broadway comedy-thriller Accomplice. He was the first person in theatrical history to be the sole winner of Tony Awards for Best Book, Best Music and Best Lyrics forDrood, which also won the Tony and Drama Desk Award for Best Broadway Musical. His comedy-drama about the life of comedian George Burns, Say Goodnight, Gracie, earned him a Tony nomination for Best Play. His stage comedy-thrillers Accomplice and Solitary Confinement broke box office records, with both shows enjoying runs on Broadway, while the musical comedy Curtains won Holmes the Drama Desk award for Best Book of a Musical, as well as two further Tony nominations. In a unique collaboration, Holmes wrote the original comedy thriller Thumbs! expressly for BCP, which had its world premiere at the Little Firehouse Theatre in 2001.
A Life Member, Past-President, and Board of Governor, director Steven Bell of Hackensack has been active with the Players for over thirty years. He has directed numerous BCP productions, including The Musical Comedy Murders of 1940, The Drowsy Chaperone, Ruthless! The Musical, Urinetown, Modern Orthodox, Curtains, and The King & I, to name a few. Steven also served as musical director for various shows, including Cabaret, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, Aladdin, Man of La Mancha, Beehive, The Music Man, and Company. As a performer, he appeared in such shows as Guys and Dolls, Follies, Anything Goes, City of Angels, Into the Woods and Forum. Steven teaches vocal music atTeaneck High School, and is the Artistic Director of the Teaneck Community Chorus.
The talented cast of The Mystery of Edwin Drood includes Larry Brustofski as The Chairman (of Oakland), Jessica Gundlach as The Stage Manager (of Woodland Park), Eric Schrager as John Jasper (of Paramus), Nancy Feldman as Edwin Drood (of New City, NY), Taylor Rose Rizzotti as Rosa Bud (of West Nyack, NY), Elaine Thoman as Helena Landless (of Ridgewood), Steve Munoz as Neville Landless (of Caldwell), Bryan John Morris as Rev. Crisparkle (of New Milford), Janica Carpenter as Princess Puffer (of Old Tappan), Jim Kelly as Durdles (of Park Ridge), Louie X. Aiello as Cricker, Jr./ Deputy (of Hillsdale), Debbie Zika as Florence Gill (of Hillsdale), Dan Loverro as Horace (of Parsippany), Bill Kaufman as Bazzard (of Paterson). The cast is rounded out with ensemble performances by Ariel Sanchez of Bergenfield, Rafaelle Danta ofNewark, Elisabeth Erdmann of Nutley, Amanda Jean of Teaneck, Alexis O'Neil of Astoria, NY and Joanna Sigurdsson of Bergenfield.
The production team is comprised of Steve Bell (Director), Michele Roth (Producer), David Luke (Producer), Jalm Vanamo (Music Director), Diana Baer (Choreographer), Mark Rinis (Asst. To The Dir.), Kathy Ruland (Stage Manager), Michele Roth (Stage Manager), Staci Block (Improv Coach), Gerard Bourcier (Set Design), Marci Weinstein (Décor), Ron Siclari (Member At Large), Allan Seward (Lighting Designer), Joe Halajian (Sound Designer), Bunny Mateosian (Costumes), Ruth Morley (Costumes), Larry Landsman (Publicity), Jennifer Cottone (Publicity), Peter Simpson (Lighting Operation), John Gregory (Lighting Operation), Terry Noel (Sound Operation), Steven Mintz (Photography), Barbara Mintz (Photography), Joanne Lamneck (Makeup), Iris Weinhouse (Makeup), Christine Francois (Props), Annette Jacobs (Props), Larry Kaiser (Dialogue Coach) and Marci Weinstein (Program Notes).
All performances take place at The Little Firehouse Theatre at 298 Kinderkamack Road in Oradell, home to the Bergen County Players since 1949. Performance times are Fridays and Saturdays at 8pm, and Sundays at 2pm.
Tickets for The Mystery of Edwin Drood are $24 for all performances, and can be purchased online at www.bcplayers.org, by calling 201-261-4200 or by visiting the box office at 298 Kinderkamack Road in Oradell during regular box office hours. Visa, Master Card, and American Express are accepted.
BCP's popular Questions & Artists talkback session will be held following the performance on Friday, September 14, 2018.
BCP offers seating to accommodate patrons who are mobility impaired. These seats can be purchased by calling the box office at 201-261-4200 and will be released for public sale two weeks prior to performance.
Advance discount tickets for students age 25 and under with proper ID are available for $14 by phone or walk-up only, and student rush seats can be purchased for $5 (cash only) starting 30 minutes before curtain at every performance, pending seat availability. There is a limit of one rush ticket per student.
Further information can be found at www.bcplayers.org.
(l-r) Steve Munoz, Rupert Holmes, Elaine Thoman (photos by Barbara & Steve Mintz)
Drood Cast with Rupert Holmes (photos by Barbara & Steve Mintz)