West Windsor, N.J. – It’s a typical day in Dogpatch, U.S.A., but life is about to get wackier than usual. M & M Stage brings the rip-roaring, foot-stomping 1950s musical Li’l Abner to life at Mercer County Community College’s Kelsey Theatre Fridays, Aug. 1 and 8 at 8 p.m.; Saturdays, Aug. 2 and 9 at 8 p.m.; and Sundays, Aug. 3 and 10 at 2 pm. Kelsey Theatre is located on the college’s West Windsor campus, 1200 Old Trenton Road. An Opening Night Reception with the cast and crew follows the show on Aug. 1.
Based on Al Capp’s beloved cartoon strip, Li’l Abner combines hillbilly shenanigans with sharp political and social satire. As Sadie Hawkins Day approaches, Daisy Mae Scragg has her eye fixed on Li’l Abner with hopes of catching him in the annual race. But a senator comes to town to inform the citizens that the government has plans to turn Dogpatch into a nuclear testing ground. Can Mammy Yokum’s Yokumberry tonic save the day? And will sweet Daisy Mae ever land her dreamboat? The show premiered on Broadway in 1956, with a film version to follow in 1959.
The show stars Glenn Kraft of Jamison, Pa., as Lil Abner; Amber Payne of Philadelphia, Pa., as Daisy Mae; Kathleen Kutalek of Hightstown as Mammy Yokum; Pat Parton of Hamilton as Pappy Yokum; Del Howard of Lawrence as Marryin’ Sam; Tom Bessellieu of Hamilton as General Bullmoose; Evan Bilinski of Franklin Park as Earthquake McGoon; Charles Denk of Princeton as Sen. Phogbound; Kristina Lunetta of Lumberton as Apassionata Von Climax; Joe Zedeny of Hightsown as Dr. Finsdale; Sally Page of Princeton as Stupefyin’ Jones; Liz Wurtz of Levittown, Pa., as Mayor Dawgmeat; and Tim Moran of East Windsor as Eagle Eye Fleagle.
The ensemble features Reise Bridgers of Hamilton, Mike DiIorio of Hamilton, Kaitlyn Ely of Hightstown, Trevor Frantz of Yardley, Pa., Kimmy Graham of Yardley, Sally Graham of Yardley, JT Kaltreider of Columbus, Phillip McRae of Yardley, Pa., Linda Miller of Princeton, Andrew Millin of Lumberton, Hayley Rubins-Topelski of Langhorne, Pa., Ron SanGiovanni of Burlington, and Matt South of Levittown, Pa.
The production team includes producers Mike Almstedt and Mike DiIorio, director Matt South; choreographer Laura Murey-Ghaffoor, musical director Charlie DeMets, stage manager Angela Fasanella, lighting designer Robert Rutt, sound designer, Nick Mastalesz and costumer Louisa Murey.
Tickets for Li’l Abner are $20 for adults, $18 for seniors, and $16 for students and children. Tickets are available online or by calling the Kelsey Theatre Box Office at 609-570-3333. Kelsey Theatre is wheelchair accessible, with free parking available next to the theater.
CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION REGARDING THE 2014 KELSEY AWARDS, TAKING PLACE AUGUST 16TH AT 8PM INSIDE THE KELSEY THEATRE. COME SEE SOME OF NEW JERSEY’S BEST COMMUNITY THEATER PERFORMERS IN ONE NIGHT ON ONE STAGE!