ProVIDEO Comedy Series Troupe America Inc.
A Second Helping!
The Church Basement Ladies Sequel Executive Producer CURT WOLLAN Written by GRETA GROSCH Music and lyrics by DENNIS CURLEY & DREW JANSEN Company Manager MARILYN RICE
Stage Manager PATRICIA LAIRD
Technical Director/ Production Manager MICHAEL R. MIKULA
Master Electrician DANA KLEIMAN
Sound Engineer KRISTIN CARTER
Tour Transportation MILES COOPER LEASING, INC.
Set Design SCOTT R. HERBST
Costume Design KATRINA BENEDICT
Light Design SCOTT R. HERBST
Sound Design MARK BRODIN
Musical Staging & Music Direction Directed by Choreography DENNIS CURLEY CURT WOLLAN WENDY SHORT-HAYS
Inspired by the books of Janet Letnes Martin and Suzann Nelson including the best-seller, Growing Up Lutheran Special thanks to: Pastor Gary Olson and Lakeview Lutheran Church, ARCA Minnesota, Zion Lutheran Church, Grand Rapids, MN, Jacki Bedworth for making the quilt, Joyce Johnson for sharing her photos of “Lutheran” clothing from 1969-70, Thrivent Financial Community Services and Janet Martin and Suzann Nelson. The operating of cameras or recording devices is strictly prohibited by copyright law. Please turn off anything that will make noise or that lights up including cellular phones. *Musical Numbers, Music & Lyrics by Drew Jansen **Music & Lyrics by Dennis Curley
FRI, JAN 14 – SUN, JAN 16, 2011 | CAPITOL THEATER Overture’s Holiday Light display is sponsored by MGE Foundation A Second Helping! | Overture Center 1
A ProVIDEO Comedy & Theater Series Event
New York Gilbert & Sullivan Players
SAT, MAR 26, 8 pm
$40 â€“ $60 | Capitol Theater
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CAST (in order of appearance) DAVID SIMMONS.................................................................................Pastor JANET BRUCKEN........................................................Mrs. Lars Snustad (Vivian) AUTUMN O’RYAN.............................................. Mrs. Gilmer Gilmerson (Mavis) BECKY BARRETT-JONES.......................................Mrs. Elroy Engelson (Karin) LISA BARK.............................................................................Miss Beverly Engelson
May 1969, Sunday evening, The Luther League Banquet Everyone Knows A Church Basement Lady* ..............Pastor, Vivian, Karin, Mavis God’s Way of Sayin’ * ....................................................Mavis with Karin and Vivian God’s Way of Sayin’ * (reprise) ....................................Mavis with Karin and Pastor
Scene Two Fall 1969, Saturday evening, The Mission Festival Cardamom, Cinnamon, Ginger and Clove* .................................................Beverly You Never Know* ................................................. Karin with Vivian, Mavis, Beverly Mary/Martha** ............................................................................................ Company
January 11, 1970, Sunday afternoon, The Congregational Meeting Old Dog, New Tricks* ...........................................Pastor with Beverly, Karin, Mavis My Baby Wants Beef ** .................................................................Beverly with Karin Get Back In The Game* .............................................................Karin, Mavis, Vivian
Scene Four May 1970, Saturday afternoon, Spring Cleaning Cardamom, Cinnamon, Ginger and Clove* (reprise) ......................Karin, Beverly Vivian’s Bad Trip** ....................................Vivian with Karin, Mavis, Beverly, Pastor The Tales of Your Heart** ........................................................................... Company
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WHO IS WHO IN THE CAST LISA BARK (Beverly ) is no stranger to the basement after being a part of Church Basement Ladies at the Plymouth Playhouse in Minnesota, Beef and Boards Dinner Theatre in Indianapolis, and all three versions of the show on tour. Other national tours include Babes in Toyland and A Christmas Carol with Troupe America, 123 Imagine with Sesame Street Live, and Encore! with Chamber Theatre, produced by Tony Award winner, Spring Sirkin. Lisa’s career has taken her to Dubai, Italy, Barbados, Puerto Rico and Mexico, as well as New York City’s Madison Square Garden and on NBC’s Today Show. Most recent regional credits include the world premiere musical, French Twist, with the Flying Foot Forum at the Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis, Fiddler on the Roof at the Show Palace Dinner Theatre in Florida, and Disney World. Lisa earned a B.F.A. in Musical Theatre from the University of Minnesota Duluth. BECKY BARRETT-JONES (Karin) is excited to reprise her role of Karin after recently performing in Church Basement Ladies at LaComedia Dinner Theatre and on the national tour of Away In The Basement, A Church Basement Ladies Christmas. Recent stage credits include Fairy Godmother in Cinderella, Mama Noah in Children of Eden, Fanny Brice in Funny Girl, Gertrude in Seussical and Tammy Faye in The Gospel According to Tammy Faye, as well as multiple roles in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat and Show Boat. She has coached numerous voice and piano students through her private studio, and has music directed many shows, including Phantom, Cinderella, Aladdin, Jr., Beauty and the Beast, High School Musical, Willie Wonka and Once on this Island. Becky thanks God 4 Overture Center | A Second Helping!
for the gift of music, her amazing actor/director husband, Alan Bomar Jones, and her supportive family and friends. This is most certainly true! JANET BRUCKEN (Vivian) is a native of Dayton, Ohio and is pleased to be performing again as a Church Basement Lady, having played the part of Mavis at the LaComedia Dinner Theatre last spring and the role of Vivian in the national tour of Away In The Basement, Achurch Basement Ladies Christmas. Janet’s other favorite roles include Miss Hannigan in Annie, Jeanette in The Full Monty, Mrs. Meers in Thoroughly Modern Millie, Aunt Eller in Oklahoma, MeeMaw in Stand By Your Man: The Tammy Wynette Story, Clairee in Steel Magnolias, Parthy in Showboat, Eulalie in The Music Man, Mrs. Medlock in Secret Garden, Mary in Long Day’s Journey Into Night and Jack’s Mother in Into the Woods. As always, Janet wants to say, “I couldn’t do it without you,” to her loving and supportive family. AUTUMN O’RYAN (Mavis) is very proud to be part of the National Tour of CBL2. She originally hails from Ann Arbor, Michigan and has a B. F. A. in Musical Theatre from the University of Michigan (GO BLUE!) Autumn has lived, worked and traveled extensively throughout the US including Alaska. She now calls Rock Island, Illinois her home. Some of her favorite roles over the past 20 years of professional theater include Mrs. Potts in Beauty and the Beast, Aunt Eller in Oklahoma!, Jeanette in The Full Monty, Martha Watson in White Christmas, Mrs. Paroo in The Music Man and originated the role of Liddy Allen in the world premiere of Whodunit, The Musical. Autumn has also been a good and/or an evil witch, a fairy godmother and a variety
WHO IS WHO IN THE CAST of characters in over 100 children’s plays and musicals. Autumn would like to dedicate her performance to Kevin and Dick W. Many, many thanks to Curt and Troupe America for this wonderful opportunity. DAVID SIMMONS (Pastor) An honors graduate of the University of Montana School of Music with a Bachelor’s Degree in vocal performance, David’s career has taken him to every state in the union, 13 countries and 3 continents. His many regional stage credits include President Theodore Roosevelt in the one-man show Bully! and The Medora Musical, Oberon in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Tevye in Fiddler on the Roof, Phantom in the Yeston/ Kopit Phantom and Tony in The Most Happy Fella. National tours include Matthew in numerous productions of Harry Chapin’s Cottonpatch Gospel,
Steven King in Steven King’s Ghost Stories and multiple appearances as Pastor Gunderson in countless national tours of Troupe America’s hit musicals Church Basement Ladies 1, 2, 3. Additional credits include Pilate in Jesus Christ Superstar, Zorba in Zorba, Eddie in David Rabe’s Hurlyburly, Melchior in Amahl and the Night Visitors and Figaro in Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro. Film and television credits include Officer Hegg in the independent civil rights drama Justice and numerous character voices in the Emmy Award winning PBS series Auto Be Good. David is the proud father of one son, Niko, and is forever blessed and grateful for his wife and college sweetheart, Marilyn.
WHO ARE THE ORIGINAL LUTHERAN LADIES JANET LETNES MARTIN (Coauthor of Growing Up Lutheran) Janet Letnes Martin grew up in Hillsboro, ND where the words “Norwegian and Lutheran” were synonymous. It was no surprise she graduated from Augsburg College, in Minneapolis, MN and married Neil Martin, a 100 percent Scandinavian-Lutheran man from Newfolden, MN. Janet started writing books in 1983. She wrote three books, co-authored three books with Allen Todnem, and one with her sister, Ilene Lorenz, before she teamed up to write and perform with a college friend, Suzann Nelson. Janet and Suzann have written nine books relating to their Norwegian-Lutheran rural background. Their book Growing Up Lutheran, What Does This Mean? won the Minnesota Book Award for Humor, and is the inspiration for all three Church Basement Ladies
musical comedies. Janet and Suzann have performed as a comedy duo “Those Lutheran Ladies” from the state of Washington to Washington, DC as well as in the Medora Musical. Recently Janet switched gears and teamed up with author/artist, David W. Cook II to write a fabulous new humorous book Lemonade for the Lawnboy: The Executives’ Wives’ Cookbook Committee. Her most recent project is the just released, hilarious Fun with Fitness DVD - Jiggle Your Jell-O with Suzann Nelson, David Cook and Greta Grosch. Janet lives in Hastings, MN and feels blessed that her family is all involved in their Scandinavian Lutheran heritage. She is co-owner of Scandinavian Marketplace and the online store scandinavianmarket.com with her daughter and son-in-law, Jennifer and Steve Green. Her daughter Sarah is a national A Second Helping! | Overture Center 5
Overture’s free and low-cost community and education programs are at the heart of our mission to engage the entire community in the arts. In fact, last season, these programs served more people in our community than the total number of tickets sold to all of our performances. These programs are possible only through the generosity of contributors to the Ovation Fund – people just like you who recognize the transforming benefits of the arts and want to ensure that everyone in our community can experience them. Learn more when you make your donation onLine at overturecenter.com/contribute. overture’s free and Low-cost community and education programs incLude: Community Ticket Vouchers, Kids in the Rotunda, Duck Soup Cinema, Take 10, International Festival, Overture Galleries, St. Mary’s A.M. Series, Artist Residencies, Community Arts Access Program, OnStage Performing Arts Series, The Tommy Awards, Educator Workshops, Meet the Artist, Wisconsin Writers Series and Overture After Work
OVATION FUND: Community. Education. Diversity. 6 Overture Center | A Second Helping!
WHO ARE THE ORIGINAL LUTHERAN LADIES representative for the Norwegian Fjord Flatware Company. She is thrilled her daughter, Katrina Benedict is the costumer of this musical, and that Trina’s husband, Andy knows how to make egg coffee. Her granddaughters Sophia, Ariana and Myana Green and Nora Benedict are the love of her life. She dedicates her contribution to this play, to her late husband, Neil, whom she misses dearly. SUZANN NELSON (Co-author of Growing Up Lutheran) As half of the knowledgeable, funny, 100 percent Norwegian-Lutheran duo, “Those Lutheran Ladies,” Suzann Nelson could just list her name under Janet Martin’s bio and type “ditto.” Names and a few places might differ, but their histories are similar and often identical — from the month and year they were baptized and confirmed Lutheran to the day in 1968 when they graduated from the same Norwegian-Lutheran college. One of Suzann’s daughters said that Janet and Suzann share a brain — something they considered a compliment until they realized she probably meant each had only half a brain. They haven’t had time to consider the real meaning yet because they are too busy writing and publishing books about rural life in the fifties, developing new book and product ideas, speaking and performing. Lately they have been working with theatre
folks who, Suzann says, “are kinda different from the farm families I grew up with.” Nelson began life as a Johnson on a “Noah’s Ark” farm — two cows, two pigs, two chickens and two brothers —close to where the Kensington Run stone was found. After graduating from high school in Evansville, MN, Suzann boarded a train for the nearest Sin City, Minneapolis. She graduated with a Scandinavian Studies major from Augsburg College where she also met her 100 percent Norwegian-Lutheran husband, Ron, and someone named Janet Letnes — both decent, wholesome folks who had grown up in North Dakota eating cream on bread. After further study at the Universities of MN and Oslo, Suzann directed Concordia College’s Language Village, Skogfjorden, and in off-seasons had three-piece suit jobs where she dabbled in government, public policy work, and putting on pantyhose. Eventually, Suzann and Ron moved to Grand Rapids, MN where they raised their two 100 percent Norwegian-Lutheran daughters, Senja and Siri. Now a mother-in- law, widow, and owner of an online bookstore ruralroutebookstore.com, Suzann spends her days and nights pondering ways to pay off her mortgage, looking for misplaced things, being fascinated by creative ideas her four grandchildren develop, and ironing used wrapping paper.
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WHO’S WHO IN THE PRODUCTION GRETA GROSCH (Playwright) Since 1989, Greta has worked as a freelance writer and performer across the country and has a wealth of experience in both commercial and business theatre. An original cast member of Church Basement Ladies, Greta originated the role of Mavis and wrote the script for Church Basement Ladies 2, A Second Helping. A graduate of Mankato State, she bought her first guitar in the 90s and began writing comic songs. This led to a season at Dudley Riggs Brave New Workshop and a love of sketch comedy. She continues to write and perform original material with a variety of groups, and her company, Girl With Guitar, provides educational and entertaining programming, ranging from training seminars to company parties for organizations across the country. For more information visit gretagrosch. com. In addition, Greta is the head writer for the Medora Musical in Medora, ND, is a voice over and commercial artist, travels the country as a motivational speaker, and is a founding member of the Silly Sisters and the Looney Lutherans (thelooneylutherans.com). She wishes to extend a huge thank you to her coworkers for their contributions and support, to Curt for this opportunity, and to Janet and Suzann, what a trip. Greta dedicates this show to her sister, who married a real live Norwegian bachelor farmer and now lives in Norway on a Christmas tree farm. Seriously.
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DENNIS CURLEY (Co-Composer, Co-Lyricist) is a native of Syracuse, NY, and a graduate of Northwestern University (Evanston, IL). He composed music for Vampires! Horror!; Love After Hours; Church Basement Ladies 2: A Second Helping; U Betcha: The Making of a Minnesota Boy Band; Pride and Plot of Pointlessness; and Whistling Past the Graveyard. Dennis is the arranger of Schoolhouse Rock Live! and Schoolhouse Rock Live Too! (both published by MTI). In the Twin Cities he recently performed in Power Balladz (Lab Theatre), Hot ‘n’ Cole (Ordway Center), My Way (Ordway Center), Mrs. Man of God, Orphan Train (History Theatre), Christmas Carole Petersen (Loring Playhouse) and Warm Beer Cold Women (Guthrie), as well as appearing as a Holiday Singer in the lobby of Ordway Center during The Sound of Music and White Christmas. Dennis sings with the Twin Cities’ rock band Pizazz, and is a co-founder and executive producer of Table Salt Productions (TableSaltProductions.com). DREW JANSEN (Co-Composer, Co- Lyricist) A native of Little Rock now residing in Minneapolis, Jansen is in the midst of a multi-faceted career as a performer, writer and composer. In addition to creating the scores for Troupe America’s mega-hits Church Basement Ladies and How To Talk Minnesotan
WHO’S WHO IN THE PRODUCTION The Musical and the History Theatre’s The Gangster Musical and A Servants’ Christmas, he is also one of the busier voice-over actors in the Twin Cities. His baritone may have prodded you to purchase anything from HOM furniture to Ordway theater tickets to Andersen windows. If you’ve ever activated a credit card over the phone, he probably talked you through the process. You may also remember him as the emcee in those quirky Minnesota Millionaire Raffle television commercials from late 2007, or as long-running Patio Town commercial. Also on the small screen, Jansen enjoyed a two season run as Ernie, the unctuous announcer and musical commentator on Comedy Central’s cult classic, Let’s Bowl. Drew was a contributing writer for television’s Mystery Science Theater 3000 and has created text for numerous greeting cards, t-shirts, coffeemugs and syndicated comic strips. An accomplished pianist, he has had the honor of accompanying such legends as Celeste Holm and Carmel Quinn, and recently manned the keyboards in Las Vegas for Whose Line Is It Anyway? stalwarts Greg Proops and Chip Esten. Drew is a proud graduate of Saint John’s University in Collegeville, Minnesota (Class of 1983) and continued his education at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis. CURT WOLLAN (Producer/ Director) is the President and Executive Producer- Director for Troupe America, Inc. He has directed many National Tours including Steel Magnolias, Driving Miss Daisy, The 1940’s Radio Hour, Big River, Hank Williams - Lost Highway and Stephen King’s Ghost Stories. He has also co-produced three National Tours of Forbidden Broadway, directed M*A*S*H’s Jamie Farr and William Christopher in the National Tour of The Odd Couple, the National Tour of Moon Over Buffalo starring
Gavin MacLeod, the National Tour of The Sunshine Boys starring Dick Van Patten and Frank Gorshin and Same Time, Next Year starring Mackenzie Phillips and Adrian Zmed. At Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium, he directed Cottonpatch Gospel starring “WKRP in Cincinnati’s” Gary Sandy. In the last three years, Curt has directed five National Tours of Church Basement Ladies, two starring M*A*S*H’s William Christopher as the Pastor, and has directed another ten productions across the country with Church Basement Ladies 2: A Second Helping running in Kansas City starring Barry Williams of TV’s “The Brady Bunch” as the Pastor. Curt has been based at the Plymouth Playhouse since 1979, and has directed most of its productions, notably the musical comedies Church Basement Ladies, Church Basement Ladies 2: A Second Helping, How To Talk Minnesotan The Musical, I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change and Diamond Studs which won the Twin Cities Kudos Award for Best Direction, Best Choreography and Best Musical. Each summer Curt produces and directs The Medora Musical in the beautiful North Dakota Badlands and each holiday season, he directs Dollywood’s Babes In Toyland for Dollywood in Tennessee. Curt dedicates this show to the memory of his mother, Lorraine, who’s church kitchen legacy serves as an inspiration for his work on this production. curtwollan.com WENDY SHORT HAYS (Choreographer) has been connected with Troupe America for over 25 years. She created the choreography for the original production of Church Basement Ladies as well as subsequent tours and productions. She is thrilled to have “another helping” with this brilliant creative team. In that time she has choreographed such favorites as A Day in Hollywood, A Night in the Ukraine, A Second Helping! | Overture Center 9
WHO’S WHO IN THE PRODUCTION Nunsense, Do Black Patent Leather Shoes Really Reflect Up?, Pump Boys and Dinettes, 1940’s Radio Hour and Diamond Studs for which she earned the Twin Cities Drama Critic Award for Best Choreography. She was on the writing team for The Lovely Liebowitz Sisters and her original choreography of Pump Boys and Dinettes has been produced over 24 times locally, on national tour, and for an extended run at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville. She is the Artistic Director of VISTA Productions which was chosen from over 400 applicants to represent Minnesota at the Fringe Festival in Edinburgh, Scotland. Her work has also been seen on the stage of The Medora Musical, Hey City Stage, Great American History Theatre and numerous national tours. Some of her directing credits include West Side Story, Wings, Children of Eden, Lost In Yonkers, Into The Woods, A Christmas Carol and Beehive.
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SCOTT R. HERBST (Scenic & Lighting Designer) has designed many national tours including Hank Williams-Lost Highway, The 1940’s Radio Hour, Cotton Patch Gospel and Stephen King’s Ghost Stories for Troupe America. In addition to his work with the Plymouth Playhouse, he also designs lighting for The Old Log Theatre in Excelsior, Minnesota. His past tour work includes the National Tours of The Odd Couple starring Jamie Farr and William Christopher of M*A*S*H and Moon Over Buffalo starring Gavin MacLeod from The Love Boat and the Mary Tyler Moore Show. Scott now happily stays off the tour bus, and at home with his lovely wife Mary and family. KATRINA BENEDICT (Costume Designer) is thrilled to be a part of Church Basement Ladies 2: A Second Helping and Away in the Basement
WHO’S WHO IN THE PRODUCTION based on the writings of Suzann Nelson and her mother Janet Letnes Martin. She works as a freelance costume designer and draper at various theaters in the Twin Cities area. Her most recent designs include Church Basement Ladies 2: A Second Helping, Away In The Basement, A Church Basement Ladies Christmas Kirby! for the History Theater, Sherlock’s Last Case for Minnesota Centennial Showboat and various productions at Normandale Community College.
Horrors, The Lovely Liebowitz Sisters, A Closer Walk With Patsy Cline, An Evening with Groucho starring Frank Ferrante, and an eight-year run of a new musical based on Howard Mohr’s best-selling book How To Talk Minnesotan titled How To Talk Minnesotan The Musical, the offBroadway success I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change, and the new musicals based on the best-selling book Growing Up Lutheran titled Church Basement Ladies and its sequel Church Basement Ladies 2: MARK BRODIN (Sound Designer) A Second Helping!. In 1997, Troupe Mark designs and mixes sound for live America produced a highly acclaimed theater, churches, recording artists and national tour of The Odd Couple corporate events. With 15 years experi- starring M*A*S*H’s Jamie Farr and ence, you may have heard his work William Christopher and in 1998at the Chanhassen Dinner Theatres 99, the national tour of Moon Over in Minneapolis, The Medora Musical Buffalo starring Gavin MacLeod. In or on TV and radio. Mark won an 1999/2000, Troupe America produced Emmy for his documentary Delafield. Hank Williams, Lost Highway starring Jason Petty, and in 2001/2002 TROUPE AMERICA, INC. produced and toured the national (Producer) has been touring theatrical tours of The Sunshine Boys starring productions from coast to coast and Dick Van Patten and Frank Gorshin in Canada since 1987 under Executive and Same time, Next Year starDirector/Producer Curt Wollan. Past ring Mackenzie Phillips and Adrian Troupe America tours include six Zmed. Troupe America produced seasons of Mr. Pickwick’s Christmas, the third incarnation of Church two seasons of Dylan Thomas’ A Basement Ladies entitled Away in the Childs’ Christmas In Wales, five tours Basement: A Church Basement Ladies of Pump Boys and Dinettes, two tours Christmas at the Plymouth Playhouse of Stephen King’s Ghost Stories, in Minneapolis this past holiday three tours of the stage version of season. www.troupeamerica.com. the Emmy Award-winning TV series “Schoolhouse Rock, Live!,” a coproduction of The Gifts of the Magi with the Lamb’s Theater Company of New York and tours of On Golden Pond, Driving Miss Daisy, Steel Magnolias and Forbidden Broadway A with Big League Theatricals of New OF York. Troupe America also operates IS the popular Plymouth Playhouse in the YOURS Twin Cities area, having produced a TO four-year run of Nunsense, a four-year run of Pump Boys and Dinettes, and Consider a planned gift today. critically acclaimed productions of Diamond Studs, A Day In Hollywood A Night In The Ukraine, Little Shop of overturecenter.com/contribute
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