posted June 1, 2006

Summer Repertory Theatre Opens With "Oliver"

Consider yourself invited to Hope Summer Repertory Theatre's (HSRT) 35th season which opens with the Tony-award winning musical, "Oliver," at 8 p.m. on June 16 in the DeWitt Theatre.

Three Equity Guest Artists join over 20 area children and 11-year-old Jesse Dye from Holland in the title role. One of the greatest musicals of all time, "Oliver" won three Tony awards when it appeared on stage over 40 years ago.  Featuring musical classics such as "Food, Glorious Food," "I'd Do Anything," "Where is Love?," "Consider Yourself," "As Long As He Needs Me," and  "Who Will Buy," this show continues to captivate children and adults alike.

 "Oliver" is based on Charles Dickens' moving tale of Oliver Twist, an orphan boy who escapes from the orphanage only to end up in the company of pick pockets. When Oliver has a chance to live a good life, love and hate battle as Sykes and his girlfriend, Nancy, have different ideas for the young boy. Dickens' characters are always larger-than-life, and the musical captures his unforgettable creations.

Equity Artist Mark Kincaid plays the villainous Bill Sykes, and is joined by another Equity Artist, Mark Goetzinger, as Fagin. Christina Hall returns to HSRT as Nancy, and Kevin Milnes brings to life The Artful Dodger. HSRT favorite and Equity Guest Artist Chip DuFord plays Mr. Bumble.

Meribeth Kisner, who has choreographed and directed many shows with HSRT, takes on directing duties for this production. Fred Tessler is the Musical Director and Matt Farmer will choreograph the musical.

After the June 16 opening, "Oliver" will show at 8 p.m. on June 17, 20, 21, 22, 27, 29, July 5, 11, 13, 21, 25, 31, August 3 and 7. In addition, there is a 2 p.m. matinee scheduled for July 13.

While at the ticket office, be sure to reserve tickets for the other great HSRT shows, including the musical "Dames at Sea," the comedy "Shakespeare in Hollywood," and Shakespeare's "A Midsummer Night's Dream." "Memory House" is playing at Snow Auditorium, HSRT's space for contemporary, cutting-edge theatre. The popular cabaret show moves to Till Midnight Restaurant this year, and is the hilarious "Shakespeare Revue." The Children's Performance Troupe is presenting "Miss Nelson is Missing" and "The Rude Mechanicals."

The ticket office is located in the DeWittCenter, on the HopeCollege campus, at the corner of 12th Street and Columbia Avenue in Holland. Prices range from $8-$26 for musicals, and $8-$18 for plays. Season coupons, ranging from $48-$85 are also available. Ticket office hours are 10 a.m-5 p.m., Monday through Friday, 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturdays, and one hour before all showtimes. Tickets may also be purchased by calling 616-395-7890. For more information visit