West Windsor, N.J. – An 11-year-old girl is about to bring some joyful changes to a household desperately in need of better times. Pierrot Productions presents the Tony Award-winning musical based on the children’s classic, “The Secret Garden,” at Mercer County Community College’s Kelsey Theatre. The show is presented Fridays, Oct. 10 and 17 at 8 p.m.; Saturdays, Oct. 11 and 18 at 8 p.m.; and Sundays, Oct. 12 and 19 at 2 p.m. Kelsey Theatre is conveniently located on the college’s West Windsor Campus, 1200 Old Trenton Road. A reception with the cast and crew follows the opening night performance on Oct. 10.
Based on the 1911 novel by Frances Hodgson, the show is set in the early years of the 20th century. Mary Lennox is an English girl born and raised in India during the British Raj. Orphaned by a cholera outbreak, she is sent to Yorkshire, England, to live on the estate of her embittered, reclusive Uncle Archibald and his invalid son, Colin. Mary is befriended by a young chambermaid, Martha, and her brother, Dickon, as well as the estate’s kindly old gardener, Ben Weatherstaff. Soon she is engrossed in bringing the estate’s neglected garden back to life. And as the garden begins to blossom, so too does Mary, Cousin Colin and, ultimately, Uncle Archibald.
The musical’s book and lyrics are by Marsha Norman, with music by Lucy Simon. It premiered on Broadway in 1991 and was the winner of five Tony Awards. It ran for 709 performances.
The cast stars Morgan Wambach of Mapleshade as Mary Lennox; Bill Kamps of Burlington as Archibald Craven; Katie Rochon of Lawrenceville as Lily Craven; Jeff Price of Monmouth Junction as Dr. Neville Craven; Noah Hinsdale of Princeton Junction as Colin Craven; Jim Petro of Hamilton as Albert Lennox; Nicole Spadafino of Flemington as Rose Lennox; Samantha Sharpe of Basking Ridge as Martha; Noah Barson of Richboro as Dickon; Kyla Donnelly of Levittown, Pa., as Mrs. Medlock; Matthew Cassidy of Morrisville, Pa., as Ben Weatherstaff; and Jenne Carey of Princeton as Ayah.
Also featured are Dwayne Bailey of Hamilton as Major Shelly; Reba Holley of Pennington as Mrs. Shelly; Wayne Irons of Princeton as Lt. Shaw; Ellen LaCorte of Titusville as Mrs. Holmes; Alan Naidoff of Princeton as Lt. Wright; Amanda Ramus of Fairless Hills as Alice; and John Russell of Mercerville as Major Holmes. The vocal ensemble includes Haley Ackermann of Maple Shade as Betsy; Lindsay Deal of Clementon as Jane; and Mary Lynch of Maple Shade as Miss Winthrop. The children’s chorus includes Mary Rose Brendel of Cranbury, Teddy Brendel of Cranbury, Julia Underwood of Maple Shade, Julia Patella of Cranbury, Vidhi Sapru of West Windsor, Sofia Staub of Hamilton and Madeline Fox of Lawrenceville.
The production team includes producer Pete LaBriola, director Kat Ross Kline and music director Peter De Mets. Jaci D’Ulisse is the assistant director and stage manager. Evan Paine is the sound designer and M. Kitty Getlik is the lighting designer. The set design is a collaborative effort among D’Ulisse, Ross, Mary Lynch and master builder Jim Petro.
Tickets for “The Secret Garden” are $20 for adults, $18 for seniors and $16 for students and children. Free parking is available next to the theater. Tickets may be purchased online or by calling the Kelsey Box Office at 609-570-3333.
For a complete listing of adult and children’s events for the 2014-15 season, visit the Kelsey webpage or call the box office for a brochure, visit: