Gretna Theatre Welcomes Shirley Jones, 5/21

Gretna Theatre is excited to present Academy Award winner Shirley Jones for one
performance only on May 21, 2011 as its season kick-off event. "Jones' one woman show, "An Evening of Stories and Songs" will be a ‘stellar' beginning to the season," said Gretna Theatre's producing artistic director Larry Frenock. "We were fortunate to meet Ms. Jones when we attended her performance at the legendary Feinstein's night club while conducting our season auditions in New York City in March," said Frenock. "I asked if she might consider helping us with this fundraising event at Gretna Theatre and she accepted!"

Shirley Jones starred in the movie musicals "Oklahoma!," "Carousel" and "The Music Man" as well as in "The Courtship of Eddie's Father" and "Elmer Gantry" for which she won the Oscar. She is perhaps best known for her role as Shirley Partridge on the hit 1970s television series "The Partridge Family" starring her real-life stepson David Cassidy. No stranger to the live stage, she starred on Broadway as "Maggie Flynn" and more recently in "42nd Street" along with her son, Patrick Cassidy. All told, she has over 30 motion pictures to her credit, many starring and guest starring roles on television, and hundreds of stage appearances across the country. Married to comic Marty Ingels for since 1977, she had three children (Shaun, Patrick and Ryan Cassidy) with her first husband Jack Cassidy.

Her performance at Gretna will feature a retrospective of highlights from her career, including songs she is known for and additional music she enjoys as well as stories from her many years in show business (including her almost accidental auditions for Rodgers and Hammerstein that eventually led to those leading film roles).

"Her stories alone are worth the price of admission," said Frenock "and anyone who enjoys fine music and this truly gracious star will love this event!" Admission for premium seats (in the first nine rows of the theatre) is $95 and includes a post-show reception to meet Shirley Jones that will include refreshments and beverages.

Regular seats are priced at $50 for this event which is being generously co-sponsored by Benjamin Olewine III, Harold A. McInnes, and William H. and Marion C. Alexander.

Gretna Theatre's 84th Summer Season also includes "Nunset Boulevard: The Nunsense Hollywood Bowl Show" running June 2 - 5 only. "This is the seventh and final "Nunsense" show by author Dan Goggin," said Frenock, "and we are thrilled to present the Pennsylvania and mid-Atlantic premiere of the show directed by the author.

All five of the terrifically funny characters are back, including our favorite, Sister Amnesia!" The comic antics of the fictional Little Sisters of Hoboken have played in thousands of productions world-wide and have even been blessed by the grade school Nuns the author based his series on. Following will be the classic Lerner and Loewe musical "My Fair Lady" June 9 - 19, "Sisters of Swing: The Story of the Andrews Sisters" June 23 - 26, Stephen Sondheim's "A Little Night Music" June 30 - July 10, Agatha Christie's "The Unexpected Guest" July 14 - 17 and the classic "Funny Girl" July 21 - 31. Performances are Thursdays at 2:00 and 7:30, Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 and Sundays at 2:00 weekly during the season. The vast majority of ticket prices have remained the same as last year with the exception of premium seating: Evenings are $36 and $40, Matinees are $30 and $34 each, with discounts available for seniors and groups. Student tickets to any mainstage show
remain at just $10 each! Also included in the season is the Gretna Gala Idol Scholarship Competition on June 25 with registration available online for talented youngsters ages 10 - 16 and auditions at the Playhouse on June 18th. The Theatre for Young Audiences Series features original one-hour musicals geared toward children ages 3 - 10 and their families each Saturday in July at 11 a.m. Tickets for the TYA series are $7.00 with a subscription for all six offerings just $30 each.

Gretna Theatre, as a 501(c)(3) non-profit, is proud to have season media sponsorships by the Lebanon Daily News, WGAL-8 and Ameritech Media, as well as support from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts and many corporate and individual sponsors and patrons. Tickets may be purchased through the website and further information may be accessed at or by calling the box office at 717-964-3627.

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