“Reflections of the Rat Pack” and “The Amish Project” Performances in Ephrata

September 21, 2011

The Sharadin Bigler Theater, just a mile up the road from the Historic Smithton Inn in Ephrata, is home to the Ephrata Performing Arts Center and some of the best local theater I’ve ever seen!  In addition to their regular production season, the theater holds special events from time to time, and we’ve got two coming up in the next two weeks that you’ll want to see:

Reflections of the Rat Pack
Saturday, September 24th

Reflections of Frank, Dean & Sammy Tribute Show is a magical re-creation of the music, antics, and camaraderie of three of the most legendary entertainers of all time–Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Sammy Davis Jr. The performance features three of the most in-demand tribute entertainers in the US: Tony Sands, Dave Michaels and Gino Marino. The strength of their solo performances, which have earned them acclaim in Atlantic City, Las Vegas and around the world, is magnified by the ease and grace with which they reproduce Sinatra’s smooth charm and Davis’ incredible energy, bouncing off Martin’s easy, laid back delivery. The chemistry between these three incredible entertainers will take you on a journey back to the swinging years and make you feel like you are watching the Legends themselves. Reflections of Frank, Dean & Sammy Tribute Show brings back the era of the Golden Years of Entertainment. This spectacular show is one you won’t want to miss!  Buy tickets at ephrataperformingartscenter.com or by calling (717) 733-7966

The Amish Project
Fri, September 30 – Sun, October 2

by Jessica Dickey
Directed by Sharon Mellinger

The Amish Project is a fictional exploration of the Nickel Mines schoolhouse shooting in an Amish community, and the path of forgiveness and compassion forged in its wake. The Amish Project made its original debut at the New York International Fringe Festival in the summer of 2008 and instantly generated buzz in the theatre community.

Introduced by Dickey as a one-woman off-Broadway play, The New York Times hailed her tapestry of interwoven monologues as “Extraordinary,” “compelling” and “a remarkable piece of writing.” “This is not a re-enactment,” Mellinger stressed. “It focuses mainly on the aftermath of the horrible crime. There is nothing graphic but there are some uncomfortable ideas expressed. All of the characters are fictional, although representative of both the Amish and the English communities.”

To give the play greater theatrical heft, Mellinger is transforming Dickey’s one-woman show into a conventionally cast play, with separate actors portraying each character: Kayla Hall as Anna, a young Amish victim; Lauren Elledge as Velda, her younger sister and fellow victim; Matt Good as Eddie Stuckey, the gunman; Kathy Robb as Carol Stuckey, his widow; Paola Gonzalez as America, a young Hispanic grocery clerk; Robyn Payne as Sherry, a non-Amish neighbor; and Larry Gessler as Bill North, a professor and scholar on Amish culture.

“The Amish Project” will be performed in the Sharadin-Bigler Theatre in Ephrata at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 30, under the sponsorship of the Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center. This performance will be a benefit for the Children’s Miracle Network, Penn State Hershey Children’s Hospital, Ticker are $24 and include a wine and cheese reception at 6-7 p.m and performance at 7:30 Saturday, Oct. 1, at 7:30 pm and at 2 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 2, with tickets priced at $15, $8 for students with current ID. Reserve seating online at ephrataperformingartscenter.com or by calling (717) 733-7966