Old friends and first-time guests - I’m honored you’ve chosen to spend your time with us. Please, enjoy the show, but know that we’re so much more than what you see on stage. I welcome you to come back for a behind-the-scenes tour, to take a class, explore volunteering, and to learn more about the people and rich history that make The Naples Players your theatre.
Everything you see at The Naples Players today is the result of nearly 70 years of ded icated community collaboration and con stant growth. We are at a point in our tra jectory that demands an exciting evolution.
We’re set to break ground on an expan sion in Spring 2023 that will provide more seating, more education space, and more opportunities for our community to experience the arts. Help us reach our goal by contributing today.
KEVIN KENNEALLY AKA JACOB MARLEYBy Lauren Speirs
Everyone loves a comeback story! All of us at The Naples Players are delighted that Kevin Kenneally is gracing our stage again in A Christmas Carol: The Musical after a two-year hiatus due to a knee injury. Healed and ready to take the stage, Kevin is thrilled to portray Mar ley in this classic production!
Originally from Quincy, Massachusetts, Kevin taught high school English and worked for the federal government before retiring to Naples in
2013. No stranger to acting, he auditioned for quite a few films in Boston - even for Ben Af fleck’s movie, On The Town. Fun fact, you can spy Kevin in the Tom Cruise movie Knight and Day around 51 minutes in!
Kevin joined TNP almost a decade ago for The Drowsy Chaperone. “I was retired and needed something other than home projects and I had done community theater when I could fit it in with teaching in Massachusetts. I thought I would try it again. I auditioned for something in the Tobye that required three accents that I believe were: Russian, Viennese, and Brooklyn. After the audition, I knew I didn’t have the part but later on, I received a call to play Underling in The Drowsy Chaperone. When I arrived here, I thought to myself ‘this is not your usual community theater,’ and it has really lived up to that! Dawn and Charlie (Fornara) are great to work with and they’re a part of the reason I keep coming back. A Christmas Carol was also an opportunity to work with Bryce (Alexander).”
Previous community theaters Kevin worked for were certainly not at the same professional level as The Naples Players. “Usually it was in a school auditorium, it was the director’s first pro duction, and you only rehearse on Tuesdays and Thursdays.” Meanwhile, at TNP, our volunteers rehearse daily and have significant time on stage to prepare with costumes and lighting before opening night, just as professionals would.
You might be wondering how our actors sharp en their skills when not on stage or rehearsing for a production. Kevin explains that one aspect of The Naples Players to utilize is their education program. “I have taken advantage of numerous acting classes here taught by Diane Davis. The educational program has classes for all levels - beginner to experienced actors. It’s a great way to get started for anyone who wants to get involved.”
Professionalism aside, everyone at TNP wants the volunteers to enjoy themselves first and fore most! “During The Drowsy Chaperone, I was so comfortable in my role and had a ball doing it! I knew that was because of Dawn and Charlie (Fornara). There is just so much respect between the cast, crew, and staff. Everyone leaves their egos at the door because anything but camarade rie is not tolerated.”
Kevin was cast in Calendar Girls with a herni ated disc in his back but was still able to perform. “I was doing the back exercises that my physical therapist gave me but I was overdoing it. I looked down one morning and my knee was like a pumpkin - I had a fractured knee and torn meniscus from overdoing my back exer cises. I was on steroids for the inflammation in my back and it turns out steroids weaken your joints. I had to call Cole (Butcher) and tell him I was getting my knee operated on!” So, Kevin was out of Calendar Girls and Paul LoPresti (Mr. Fezziwig in A Christmas Carol ) was in. Kevin could not wait to come back to TNP when he was healed. “As soon as I was cleared by the doctor I thought, ‘I’m doing a show!’”
There’s no need to worry about Kevin’s knee as he goes through rehearsals and performances - his physical therapist says, “motion is lotion” and Kevin added that it’s been really benefi cial physically and emotionally to keep mov ing. “It’s just amazing the energy and the joy that you feel when you come here - it’s like the fountain of youth for us old guys. I’m 73 and when I’m here, you could reverse those num bers. Everyone’s here because they want to be here and they love to be here and they want to put out a good product and have fun during the process.”
It’s a joy to come here and do a show because you know everyone is going to get along and work hard. Things like that bring you back again and again.Kevin Kenneally in The Drowsy Chaperone (left) and Catch Me If You Can (right)
KEVIN KENNEALLY AKA
11 JACOB MARLEY
Of course, when you’ve taken part in as many productions as Kevin has, the memories are endless. A particularly funny one happened while performing in The Drowsy Chaperone. “There was a scene where Mrs. Tottendale is supposed to spit water in my face when the record gets stuck. I also had to do the same to her and I couldn’t per fectly do a spit take so poor Mrs. Tottendale was soaked with water every night!”
Present day, Kevin is thrilled to be back for A Christmas Carol: The Musical. “I’m really excited about playing Marley. I had a solo in She Loves Me which was great, but this one is a really fun number with a lot of cast members involved. (After all) it doesn’t work without all of the ghosts!”
We’re grateful for all of our volunteers and are constantly amazed by their dedication to the organization. Kevin may have been looking for something to do outside of house work but he found a whole lot more than a hobby. “I came here not knowing what I would find. Once I found The Naples Players, I found a home. You feel like you belong here. It’s welcoming, it’s inclusive, and it doesn’t matter your background, age, or political beliefs. What matters is: can you contribute to the show and are you willing to work hard? It’s such a collegial and familial atmosphere here it’s hard not to want to come back. You know when you’ve done something special here, you just feel it.”
INTERESTED IN VOLUNTEERING?
With so many options to get involved, why wait? Contact Director of Volunteer Advancement, Pamela Larkin Caruso today to tell us about yourself and we’ll find the perfect volunteer op portunity for you!
VOLUNTEERING @ TNP
DEPARTMENTS AND ACTIVITIES FOR FRIENDLY FOLKS OF ALL AGES AND ABILITIES
Come audition for a show! All of our performers are volunteers, with each cast being a mix of veterans, newcomers, and novices.
Fly rail, audio assistant, backstage crew, spotlight operator, board operator...the behind-the-scenes opportunities at TNP are endless!
Assist with repairs, alterations, sewing, ironing, steaming, buttons, hems...you name it! Costumes for every performance are made on site!
Lend a hand with set construction, demolition, painting, and the occasional prop fabrication. Get your hands dirty and have fun doing it!
Greet patrons, scan tickets, work con cessions, hand out programs, and escort patrons to their seats. Be the first friendly face patrons see and experience!LARKIN CARUSO
email@example.com or (239) 434- 7340, ext. 104
Shelley Gothard Kay Harkins Nancy Hayer
Laurie Heaver Joseph Loiacono
Jack Cole James Corsica
Scott Davis Makayla Davis Sarah DeLeonibus
Kat Ebaugh Rosemary Erb Lisa Federico Joseph Femia Ava Foley Alyssa Haney Madeleine Howe
Elizabeth Marcantonio Harry McCartney
Patricia Puia Eileen Reynolds
Olivia LaChance Kelsey LaFrenais
Paul LoPresti Russ Loyet Ray Marasco
Christine Mastrangelo Debron McCartney
Manda Smith Kenny Tran Lindsey Walsh Ciarán Welch
Brittany Ringsdore Sabine Rivera
Roseann Ruggiero Erica Sample Bernardo Santana Judy Scribner David Shaffer Jeff Smith
Robin Bache Gray
Larry K. Harrison
Naphtailda Jean Charles
Erica Tristen Jones
Nuran Joseph Monica Joyce
Pamela Larkin Caruso
Linda L. Mizeur
Sophia Siciliano W. Scott Simmen
Andrea Tanner Mary Taylor Aiden Thayer Bonnie Thayer Mark Vanagas Lorelai Vega Debbie Wesolowski
Emily Van den Berg
Our community needs an organization that brings us together to explore personal creativity and artistic passions. The Naples Players con tinually seeks to enrich, educate, and entertain our community through a superior theatre experience. We are a premier community theatre, seeking to inspire passion for the performing arts through unparalleled access to the process, expe rience, and conversations surrounding the arts and our community.
CELEBRATING OUR DONORS
FALL DONOR APPRECIATION
Please join us in thanking donors who gave between September 15 and October 27, 2022.
Charles and Karen Bang*
Karen & Gary Biernesser
Steve & Mary Buth* Sherlay Cajuste
Robert & Clarice Camp*
James A. Carr
Pamela & Steven Caruso Edwin Cohen
Jacqueline Colaneri Kelly Coleman
Timothy Colligan* Kenneth Commette* John Craun Nancy Cross Ann Daly & Francis Trombly*
Edith C Davis
Clement & Loretta DeLuca
Mary Dix* Janis Drissel Glen Engelmann*
John and Catherine Estey* Karen & Ed Ezrine Lucia A. Fallo
Patricia Flock* Brooks and Joan Fortune Family Foundation
Claire & William Fox* Mitch Frank & Betsy Greenblatt*
Gary C. Galia Peni Gensler
Susan Gibbons* Shelley Gothard Suzanne Goudeau Nancy Gunn* Linda Hall* Isabel Hamro
John F. Houton
Martha Iazzetti* Joseph and Jo Anne Irene*
Judythe & Martin Isserlis Sherri Jablon
Alan & Liz Jaffe* Sandra Jones
Edward & Bonnie Kant* Joanne Katski
Paula & Randal Keenan Kevin C. Kenneally
Dennis C. Kois Sr. Abe Koss
Denise & Donald Labrie*
Jeffrey Lash* Carol Lavezzi Luis Leiva Terry Libby & Larry Siegel*
Support TNP right from your seat!
If you enjoy this performance of A Christmas Carol: The Musical , we encourage you to consider making a gift in support of The Naples Players. Our non-profit theatre is your community theatre and generous gifts from patrons like you make the performances, programs, and arts in our community possible. Thank you.
Paul & EJ LoPresti
Charles L. Marshall Jr. & Richard L. Tooke
Roger Marx & Sharlene Short
Darlene & Mark Miller*
Paul Montgomery* Jeanne Muller*
Norbert S. Norkus*
Robert and Roberta Obler* Marcia O’Meara Marisa & Tim Ouverson
Janice & Don Parmelee* Daniel W. Patterson June Payne
Todd Petersen and Diane Koutsulis
Patricia & John Pollok*
George Schmidt* Marley Schneier
William & Susan Shipman*
Bill & Judy Smith*
Pete & Sandi Spilotro* Frances Stadt* Peter & Janet Swinburn*
Andrea M Tack and Deborah E Moeser*
Mary Ann Tittle*
Robert & Mary Uek*
Joseph & Donna Vaccarella*
Linda Van Houten
Julie Williams Marilyn Witcher* Craig Wobrock
Lisa M. Wolland Nancy Woolf* Geoffrey Wozny* Nathan and Joan Zuckerman*
The Naples Players observes a fiscal year that runs from May 1 - April 30 of the following year, and includes gifts that support our operating budget. Capital Campaign donors are greatly appreciated, and their gifts are hon ored in publications specifically related to the progress of the campaign.
THE NAPLES PLAYERS COMPANY VET
SPOTLIGHT ON: SHELLEY GOTHARD
You might recognize longtime volunteer Shelley Gothard from An Ideal Husband, A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder, or When We Were Young and Unafraid, to name a few recent productions! Shelley has done it all at The Naples Players (TNP) - she’s been on stage, worked as a stage manager, done make-up, sound, and was even an audience ‘plant’ for The Rocky Horror Show. One summer, Shelley even cleaned the lights in the Tobye Studio. Clearly, she is willing to lend a hand at TNP!
She is originally from Huntington, West Vir ginia and moved to Naples in 2000. To staff and
fellow volunteers, she is also the company veter inarian! Shelley has owned Sabal Palm Animal Hospital since 2010 and TNP is “a break from the real world and my outlet - I make the time to volunteer here.”
As a child in Huntington, West Virginia, there was only one theatre program available and it was provided by Marshall University. “They did musicals and needed kids for certain roles. Our music teacher took us when I was six years old and I was Gretl and my sister was Brigitta in The Sound of Music. We did a few more productions with the college and when they didn’t need kids anymore, I got really into sports (mostly soft ball) and in college I worked backstage.”
Around 2010, Shelley arrived at TNP when she was in A Christmas Carol. “I fell into it because my hairdresser used to be in plays here and it sounded like a really fun thing to do. I love the people and look forward to auditions because I get to see people I haven’t seen in awhile and chit chat. A lot of friends here have really become family as my whole family is in North Carolina.”
This is really my home away from home. I love the TNP Friendsgiving!
Cole (Butcher, Production Stage Manager) makes a great turkey and Esther (Snyder, Exec utive Assistant) always cooks something great.”
This season, Shelley is in Blithe Spirit as Mrs. Bradman. “She’s the doctor’s wife and she likes a bit of gossip - she talks a lot! It’s such a fun group to work with. We cannot get through the seance scene without cracking up. We just have a hard time keeping a straight face because we make each other laugh!” She is reuniting with a few cast members in Blithe Spirit from previous productions. “I have been on stage with Kathy (Barney, playing Madame Arcati) at Marco Players and Studio Players. I’ve also performed with Esther (Snyder) in Ripcord at TNP and we have done Readers Theatre together here.”
Shelley has definitely been in a lot of our com edies and musicals but she finally cracked into our more dramatic and edgy Tobye Studio pro ductions last season! “It took me eleven years to get into the Tobye at all and the first time I was just comic relief in An Ideal Husband! Even in When We Were Young and Unafraid, I was still kind of the comic relief - I was the militant lesbian who got to fight with Bernardo (Santana - fellow volunteer actor). Even though the topic of the show was really serious, we still all had a good time and got along very well. It’s a worth while play and it makes you think. During the talk-backs (mediated by The Shelter for Abused Women & Children) there were people who had been abused and stayed after the show to talk. One man said that he wanted to stay but it hit too close to home and he had to leave. A lot of people got a lot out of it. Our older audience
members could remember this time in history (1970’s) when there were no women’s sheltersthere was no one to call for help. A lot of peo ple thought it was realistic so we thought that was really important to what we were trying to achieve.”
Looking ahead, even though Shelley has done so much with The Naples Players, there are still some personal goals to achieve! “I will defi nitely audition for The Game’s Afoot - I love an Agatha Christie murder mystery! I’d love to stage manage again and I would also consider directing. With a full time job, both of those things are too time-consuming for me to do at the moment - you’re the first one here and the last one to leave! And, you have to keep every one in line!”
With all the memories to choose from, Shelley’s favorite experience was being a part of The Great Gatsby and her favorite show was A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder. All of us at The Naples Players can’t wait for you to make more memo ries with your TNP family!
Proud to be a part of the Naples community.
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ROBIN BACHE GRAY TINY TIM
BRAD BRENNER JONATHON
BRAXTON CABRERA SALLY
JORDAN CRAWFORD BOB CRATCHIT
F. SCOTT DAVIS MRS. CRATCHIT ELIZABETH FINCHER CHRISTMAS PAST LIN HART JACOB MARLEY
KEVIN KENNEALLY MR. FEZZIWIG
PAUL L o PRESTI MRS. MOPS
ELIZABETH MARCANTONIO CHRISTMAS PRESENT
BRET POULTER CHRISTMAS FUTURE
LORELAI VEGA ENSEMBLE SANTI ALEZARD, ALEENA ARICO, ROBIN BACHE GRAY, VERONICA BECERRA, EMIR BILEN, MAXIMUS BOGERT, MADDIE BRENDEL, BRAXTON CABRERA, WILLIAM CONDIT, JORDAN CRAWFORD, F. SCOTT DAVIS, VIVIENNE ENGELMANN, ELIZABETH FINCHER, LIN HART, CINDY HILE, KEVIN KENNEALLY, OLIVIA L a CHANCE, JOSEPH LOIACONO, PAUL L o PRESTI, ELIZABETH MARCANTONIO, LIZZY MEHLER, SYDNEY MILLER, ALEX M MINARIK, GAVIN OTT, BRET POULTER, TOM REX, ROSEANN RUGGIERO,
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Providing the BEST OF PARADISE for more than 50 years.
OUR 69 TH SEASON
IN BLACKBURN HALL
SEP 28 - OCT 23
IN TOBYE STUDIO THEATRE
OCT 19 - NOV 06
IN BLACKBURN HALL
This smash comedy hit follows a cantankerous and spiritually skeptic husband who acciden tally conjures up the spirit of his deceased first wife...and she’s not letting a little thing like death stand in her way of getting him back.
It’s the Golden Age of Hollywood, and aspiring starlet Vera Stark’s two worlds collide when she lands a trailblazing role in an antebellum epic starring...her boss. While Vera’s portrayal of a slave turns out to be groundbreaking, the glitz, glamour and stereotypes of Hollywood are cleverly exposed in this funny and irrever ent satire.
A Christmas Carol: The Musical is a spectacular adaptation of Charles Dickens’ most well-known story. Broadway heavy hitters Alan Menken and Lynn Ahrens breathe fan tastic new life into the classic tale of Ebenezer Scrooge and his ghostly encounters during his search for the true meaning of Christmas.
IN TOBYE STUDIO THEATRE
In a sprawling New Jersey Victorian, a taciturn Yankee widower and a vivacious grandmother from Tennessee find what they least expected - a second chance at love. Told with warmth and humor, Southern Comforts is a beautiful exploration of the intimate workings of all relationships.
This murderously funny whodunit is full of twists, turns, and belly laughs as the story of Broadway star William Gillette unfolds. Wil liam invites fellow castmates to his castle for a weekend of revelry, but when a murder takes place the tone changes and deadly-comedic hi larity ensues.
The inspirational story, based on the memoir of Maria Augusta von Trapp, follows an ebullient postulate who serves as governess to the seven children of the imperious Captain von Trapp, bringing music and joy to the house hold. But as the forces of Nazism take hold of Austria, Maria and the entire von Trapp fami ly must make a moral decision.
SPONSORED BY: SPONSORED BY: SPONSORED BY:
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From the publication of Dickens’ immortal Christ mas story in 1843 until the present, these words have become synonymous with curmudgeons who reject the merriment of the festive season even as the goose is getting fat!
Actually, the phrase is often misunderstood. When Scrooge decries Christmas as a ‘hum bug’, it is often taken as a way of showing displeasure and bitterness. But Scrooge didn’t just hate Christmas at the start of the tale –to him it was a complete fraud.
“Humbug” first appeared in a 1750 issue of the Oxford and Cambridge Monthly Miscellany, where it was described as “a word
another planet, these words recall only one thing: Ebenezer Scrooge’s reaction to Christmas!
But where did the saying come from?
very much in vogue with people of taste and fashion.” It seemed to have started as a trendy slang coined by the ‘cool kids’ of the era, though its be ginnings are unclear. Humbug was used enough that its definition, at least, is clear. According to the Oxford English Dictionary, it referred to “a hoax; a jesting or befooling trick,” as well as “anything not really what it pretends to be,” like a sham or fraud. Eventu ally, people started using it to mean nonsense in general.
When Scrooge repeatedly calls Christmas “humbug,” he signals his belief that Christmas tricks people into feeling cheerful and thankful when they have no reason to.
“What reason have you to be merry?
You’re poor enough,”
he tells his nephew. Scrooge also believes that society uses Christmas as an excuse to wrangle money out of wealthy people like him. He refuses to donate to a Christmas collection for the poor and even complains about having to pay his clerk, Bob Cratchit, for an entire day off. “A poor excuse for picking a man’s pocket every twenty-fifth of December!” he says.
Basically, Scrooge considers Christmas a financial and emotional scam on a global scale—a humbug any way you slice it.
is simply a demonstration of contempt, and in this context one way Dickens uses it is to show Scrooge’s irritation at his nephew’s cheerfulness.
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(IN ALPHABETICAL ORDER)
(Fred/Ensemble) is a junior at Gulf Coast High and is delight ed to be portraying the role of Fred and making up a part of the ensemble in this fantastic show. His most recent roles include Sam Carmichael in Mamma Mia!, en semble in Something Rotten!, and Frank Abagnale Sr. in Catch Me if You Can. He is beyond grateful for his family for their continued support as well as the cast and crew. He hopes you enjoy the show!
ALEENA ARICO (Ensemble) is a sophomore at the Community School of Naples, and is so excited to be performing in her first adult show! You may have recently seen her as Ariel in The Little Mermaid JR , as well as Disney’s The Descendants, The Wizard of Oz JR , Moana JR , Junie B. Jones JR , and Once on this Island JR . She would like to thank Bryce, Dawn, Charlie, Lucia and everyone who made this incredible show possible! She hopes this show makes your holiday season magical!
ROBIN BACHE GRAY (Mrs. Fezziwig/Ensemble) is thrilled and delighted to be mak ing her musical debut on The Naples Players’ stage! She was previously seen as Mrs. Michalis in TNP’s The Great Gatsby. When not on stage you can find her at her art gallery – Gallerie Indigo. Many thanks to my friends and family for their continued support and a special thanks to Bruce, my wonderful husband who holds down the fort at home; I love you B!
VERONICA BECERRA (Ensemble) is excited to be part of The Naples Players. This is her debut theatre performance. She has always wanted to be part of a musical. She loves dancing and everything that involves entertainment. Thank you to her two daughters, Fernanda and Alexa, for the support they give her on this new adventure.
EMIR BILEN (Tiny Tim) is a talented pianist and singer training in classical music. At his young age Emir has participated in productions such as The Lion King as Simba, Tosca with Naples Opera, Aladdin singing “Arabian Nights” & “A Whole New World,” Hansel & Gretel, Matilda as Bruce, and The Prince of Egypt performing “When you Believe.” In 2021, Emir proudly served his country by singing The Na tional Anthem. In his free time Emir Bilen loves to compose, sing, and play the piano with his favorite teacher Mrs. Larissa.
(Ensemble) is 13 years old and attends Corkscrew Middle. His previous roles include Jojo/Seussical JR, Professor Marvel/The Wizard of Oz JR, Flounder/The Little Mermaid JR, and Randolf/Bye Bye Birdie. Outside of theater, he enjoys playing video games, playing flute, and hanging out with his friends. He would like to thank all of the TNP staff for making this show happen and giving him this opportunity! He hopes you enjoy the show!
MADDIE BRENDEL (Ensemble) A freshman at Naples High, Maddie is so glad to be a part of this production of A Christmas Carol: The Musical . You may have recently seen her in Something Rotten! Teen in the ensemble, Matilda JR as Lavender, and The Little Mermaid JR as Jetsam. She would like to thank everyone who helped make this show spectacular! Enjoy the show!
BRAD BRENNER (Ebenezer Scrooge) is pleased to be performing again with TNP! He has performed in Connecticut, New York, and New Jersey in The Rimers of El dritch, A View from the Bridge, The Miracle Worker, and many others. He has per formed in Coney Island Christmas, My Fair Lady, Sister Act, Miracle on 34th Street, Chicago, Footloose, Calendar Girls, The Cake and Something Rotten! with TNP. Brad is happy to be part of the wonderful TNP family! He thanks his wife Christine Mas trangelo who currently puts up with his nonsense and his twin daughters Erin and Kelsey who used to put up with it.
BRAXTON CABRERA (Jonathon/Ensemble) attends Oakridge Middle and is ecstatic to be performing in his first adult TNP production. You might have seen him carry ing the banner as Jack Kelly in Newsies Teen or alone in the universe as Horton the Elephant in Seussical the Musical JR. He would like to thank the entire cast and crew for being so supportive and for building a great environment to work in.
WILLIAM CONDIT (Ensemble) is currently an 8th grader who is excited to be in this production of A Christmas Carol: The Musical! He has done three KidzAct shows at TNP including The Little Mermaid JR, Matilda JR, and most recently Seussical the Musical JR. When not performing he can be found reading, bike riding, and playing chess. He is an Odyssey of the Mind World Champion and likes playing baseball. He is so grateful to the production staff for their support and working day and night to make sure the show is a success. Enjoy the show!
(Sally/Ensemble) is a senior at The Village School. Her past credits include: Legally Blonde (Elle Woods), Heathers (Heather MacNamara), and A Chorus Line (Cassie). She is very excited to be a part of this amazing show! She would like to thank her family for supporting her, as well as the TNP staff for help ing put on this fantastic show. She hopes you enjoy the show!
F. SCOTT DAVIS (Bob Cratchit/Ensemble) is active in various theater groups in Florida and Michigan. Scott is thrilled to be returning to the TNP after playing various roles in the ensemble of A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder. Recent roles with TNP include Vicomte de Nanjac/Phipps in An Ideal Husband. Scott’s recent stage credits include Max Detweiler/The Sound of Music with Michigan’s Grosse Pointe Theatre, The Studio Players as Ed/Torch Song, and The Laboratory Theater as Girolamo Savonarola/Botticelli in the Fire. Scott is a speech-language pathologist and owns his own company. Scott dedicates this show to his late sister, Meredith Nickol. “Love to mom and Tim, my biggest fans.”
VIVIENNE ENGELMANN (Ensemble) is a sophomore at Gulf Coast High and is so ex cited to be in A Christmas Carol: The Musical. She has been doing dance all of her life and got into musical theatre about a year ago. This is her third show with TNP with the other two being in the Ensemble in Mary Poppins and Something Rotten! Teen. She is currently in Mamma Mia! (Ensemble) and The Little Mermaid (Ursula/Dance Cap tain) at her school. She would like to thank her dance teachers, vocal coaches, everyone who has helped put this production on stage, and of course her family...also her idol, Zendaya. Enjoy!!
ELIZABETH FINCHER (Mrs. Cratchit/Ensemble) is excited to be part of another amaz ing production with The Naples Players! She has also performed in TNP’s productions of Footloose, Bye Bye Birdie, White Christmas, The Music Man, and My Fair Lady. Other credits include Cosette/Les Misérables (showcase scene), Ophelia/The Omelet Murder Case, and Marian Paroo/The Music Man Jr. Elizabeth would like to thank her family and friends for all their love and support and TNP for blessing her with another opportuni ty to showcase her gifts and talents alongside her wonderful theatre family. She gives all glory and honor to God!
LIN HART (Christmas Past/Ensemble) first trained at Indiana University and then at Ball State University’s Department of Theatre & Dance. Before relocating to Flor ida in 2017, Lin worked at the Eugene O’Neill Theatre Center, developing scripts for Off-Broadway productions. She won an LMDA award through the Kennedy Center for her work on a new musical adaptation of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. In addition to music directing shows and classes here at TNP, Lin keeps busy working and teaching around SWFL. All the love to her gorgeous, talented wife Emily and a huge thank you to this amazing production team and cast!
CINDY HILE (Ensemble) is looking forward to performing again at The Naples Players, having appeared in Calendar Girls, Guys and Dolls, and TNP Readers Theatre. She has performed at The Marco Players, CFABS, The Studio Players, The Lab Theatre, and in commercials and independent films. Cindy is a tap dancer with the Recreation Tappers of SWFL. A special thanks to husband Bob for his support, to Diane for her teaching and guidance, and to Bryce for this very special opportunity!
(Jacob Marley/Ensemble) is happy to be “linked” once again with The Naples Players. Favorite TNP roles include Mr. Maraczek/She Loves Me, Judge Group/Miracle on 34th Street, Colonel Gilweather/Something’s Afoot, and Underling/ The Drowsy Chaperone. Thanks to the entire TNP team, both on and off stage, for bringing this wonderful production to life! Love to Linda for her love and support.
OLIVIA L aCHANCE (Ensemble) is a sophomore at GCHS. This will be Livy’s 20th perfor mance, and her 8th with TNP. Her favorite past credits include: Wednesday/The Add ams Family, Jane/Mary Poppins, Gertrude/Seussical the Musical JR, and Sophie/Mamma Mia! She’d like to thank everybody who made this show possible. Enjoy!
(Ensemble) I am so proud and appreciate being awarded TNP Life Member Award and then to continue to be a part of this legendary production of A Christmas Carol: The Musical. Over the years Naples, FL has been so fortunate to have such an abundance of talent who have provided outstanding productions. The management teams of Music Direction, Director/Choreography, Stage Management, Costume Designs and Scenic Designs, under the leadership of the Executive Artis tic Director, Bryce Alexander. The Naples Players productions have been enjoyed by patrons from across the county. To my wife, Isabella who is supportive in all my en deavors, love to you always. Enjoy this wonderful production and many blessings to all during this holiday season and thank you for supporting The Naples Players.
(Mr. Fezziwig/Ensemble) Paul is excited to perform on The Naples Players stage again, and most recently performed as Herr Von Hussler in Mary Poppins He has performed at TNP over the years in the productions of Calendar Girls, as Tom Buchanan in The Great Gatsby, Lt. Brannigan in Guys and Dolls, D.A. Mara in Miracle on 34th Street, The Music Man, My Fair Lady, Hello, Dolly!, Anything Goes, Fiddler on the Roof, The Secret Garden, and Cabaret. He has also performed at The Marco Players in one of his favorite roles as Paul Verrell in Born Yesterday. Paul is a Senior Vice President - Investment Officer at Wells Fargo Advisors during the day. He would like to thank his wife, E.J., and family for their support of his love for the theatre.
(Mrs. Mops/Ensemble) is so honored to help bring such a beautiful, classic story to life. Endless thanks to EVERYONE who has worked and donated tirelessly to keep this place alive. We are SO lucky. Thank you Mom & Dad for your unwavering support that fuels me every day…and to my fluffy boys Gus and Banks for the cuddles when I get home at night. Credits: Mary Poppins/Mary Poppins, Rosie/Bye Bye Birdie, Eliza/My Fair Lady, Louise/Gypsy, Janet/The Drowsy Chaperone, The Wedding Singer, Mamma Mia!, Guys and Dolls, Chicago, The Rocky Horror Show and more.
LIZZY MEHLER (Ensemble) is a current junior at Gulf Coast High and is beyond ex cited to be back with The Naples Players. Recently you might’ve seen her in Mamma Mia! (Tanya), Something Rotten! (Ensemble), Catch Me If You Can (Glamazon), Le gally Blonde (Delta Nu/Dance Captain) and High School Musical (Ensemble/Dance Captain). She would like to thank Charlie, Dawn, Erica, and Bryce for giving her this opportunity and for continuing to push her in her theatre career. She would also like to thank her family for always supporting her. She hopes you enjoy this magical show and wishes you a happy holiday!
SYDNEY MILLER (Ensemble) A newcomer to The Naples Players, Sydney was born and raised in Los Angeles where she not only trained with a professional dance company in ballet, tap, and jazz; she also honed her singing and acting chops. After playing Molly in a local production of Annie, she knew she wanted to maintain a deep connection to the stage whenever and wherever she could. Although she received her degree in TV and Film Production, she never strayed far from the theater, starring in a number of productions over the years. Following a brief stint in New York, she now lives in Naples with her hubby and their adorable pup, Scout!
ALEX M MINARIK (Ensemble) is excited to be playing Teen Scrooge/Ensemble at today’s performance of A Christmas Carol: The Musical! He is currently a junior at GCHS and is a Vice President of the drama club. Aside from performing, Alex en joys stage management and choreography, recently winning at the state level with his own piece! Some of his favorite credits include Barnaby Tucker/Hello, Dolly!, Ryan Evans/High School Musical, Mike Costa/A Chorus Line, and Emmett Forrest/Legally Blonde. Alex is so thankful for everyone who is a part of the production for putting in the work to make the performance possible! A big thank you to his mom, dad, and sister for always supporting him. Enjoy the show!
GAVIN OTT (Ensemble) This is Gavin’s first show as a part of The Naples Players and he is so excited to be here. He has been acting for eight years now and wouldn’t trade it for the world. Gavin has been in several shows including Little Shop of Horrors, Grease, and Chicago. He’s so happy to find a new place to showcase his talent. Enjoy the show.
BRET POULTER (Christmas Present/Ensemble) Bret’s love of theatre began at the age of 15 with a production of Fiddler on the Roof and he has been singing, dancing and act ing ever since. His TNP credits include Mary Poppins, Sister Act, Miracle on 34th Street, Chicago, Mamma Mia! and Footloose. His TheatreZone credits include The Mystery of Edwin Drood, Aida, On A Clear Day You Can See Forever, Wonderful Town and Gypsy. When not on stage, Bret can be found working with students here at TNP as a KidzAct instructor. Bret is currently preparing his students for Newsies JR as their director and choreographer. A special thanks to the amazing staff at TNP and to JNL for his con stant love and support.
TOM REX (Ensemble) is very excited to be back on stage with TNP in this production of A Christmas Carol: The Musical. Tom’s recent TNP stage credits include Mary Poppins, Footloose in Baker Park, Becky’s New Car, Escanaba in da Moonlight, and Readers The atre. Tom has also trained with TNP and worked backstage. Tom’s recent stage credits with The Studio Players include Nuts, Circle Mirror Transformation, and Don’t Talk To The Actors. Tom also performs virtually for Loud Voices Silent Streets, a production company and worldwide artistic community. Tom is thrilled to be sharing the stage for the first time with his incredibly talented nephew Max and would like to thank his wife, Deb, and their dog, Lola, for their continued support.
ROSEANN RUGGIERO (Christmas Future/Ensemble) started with Bye Bye Birdie at TNP in 2019 and has been involved regularly both on stage and off ever since. Having previously worked in and studied acting in New York and New Jersey, she was a stalwart in New Jersey community theater, where she acted in or directed over 100 shows at var ious theaters. Roseann is very proud and humbled to be part of this show and organiza tion. Buona Natale!
LORELAI VEGA (Emily/Ensemble) is so excited and happy to be taking part in telling the story of A Christmas Carol: The Musical . Nothing fills her with holiday spirit more than sharing the stage with this incredible cast. This summer you may have seen her as Portia in Something Rotten! Teen or the previous summer as Linda in The Wed ding Singer Teen. She is so glad you’re here and she hopes you enjoy the show!
RENEE VREHAS (Ensemble) is 10 years old and currently a 5th grader at Sea Gate Elementary. Renee has shown a tremendous interest in the theater from an early age and is ecstatic to have the opportunity to be a part of this production! Renee has previously participated in two KidzAct productions at TNP (Schoolhouse Rock in 2021 and Beauty and the Beast in 2022), as well as Cinderella at Pine Ridge Middle School in 2022. Her interests outside of the theater include drawing, knitting, and swimming. Renee is extremely grateful to be a part of this production and would like to thank everyone involved!
BEALEY CATE WHITE (Ensemble) is performing in her first main stage show at The Naples Players, having previously performed as Mayzie in Seussical the Musical JR this summer at KidzAct. Before moving to Florida, she performed in more than 30 shows in Delaware and Pennsylvania. A 7th grader now living in Bonita Springs, some of her fa vorite roles include Sharpay in High School Musical, Jr., Flounder in The Little Mermaid JR, Michael Banks in Mary Poppins, and Jana in the Holocaust drama A Child Shall Lead in which she won best young actress of the year at the historic Everett Theatre in Middle town, DE. She made her professional debut in 2019 in Christmas by Candlelight at the Candlelight Dinner Theatre in Arden, DE (Barny Award for Best Ensemble).
CREATIVE TEAM BIOS
BRYCE ALEXANDER (Director) is thrilled to lead the exemplary team at TNP. As a result of Bryce’s dedication to the SWFL community, which is demonstrated through his work at The Naples Players, Bryce was called the “Champion of the Arts’’ by Gulfshore Life Magazine in 2020, and “Man of the Year” in 2021. He was also named one of Collier County’s Top 100 most influential business leaders by Naples Illustrated for 2022 and 2023; and listed in Gulfshore Business’ “40 Under 40” in 2022. In the community, Bryce is a member of the Advisory Council for Leadership Collier at the Naples Chamber of Commerce and the Vice Chair of the Collier County Emergency Medical Authority. His wife, Katie, continues to serve as the foundation of his success.
(Costume Design) first stepped on the stage as an actor at the age of 9 as an orphan in Oliver! She holds a B.A. degree in Psychology from Barrington College. Her love of theatre was an avocation throughout her professional career in New England. After relocating to Naples in 1999 with her husband Mark Vanagas, she was hired by The Naples Players in 2002 as the first Costume Shop Supervisor. She will always be grateful for the opportunity to turn her avocation into a fulfilling, creative career that has allowed her to continue to grow her skills as a designer. She is proud to have developed the Costume Department into a professional quality shop. She really enjoys working with the volunteers and the laughter that can always be found on the 3rd floor.
DIANE DAVIS (Assistant Director) has taught adult acting workshops with Showcase for 15 years at TNP and is now teaching her 92nd class; has directed and produced; is a veteran actor who has performed in every venue from dinner theater, TV com mercials, Kodak demo films, mystery theater, on stages in Boston, NY, and Naples; and has led several theater boards. She has coached for KidzAct, directed Readers Theatre, AD’d for other TNP shows and performed with TNP in Broadway Bound, Enchanted April, Six Dance Lessons, Crazy Mary, Rumors, Barefoot in the Park, and Other Desert Cities, as well as performing with other local theaters. She has been a guest speaker on “The Magic of Theater” for local Naples groups and offers private coaching for auditions or for other public presentations.
CHARLES FORNARA (Music Director, Conductor) has music directed over 150 pro ductions, including, at TNP: Something Rotten!, Mary Poppins, Gentleman’s Guide, The Wedding Singer, She Loves Me, Mamma Mia!, Chicago, Sister Act, The Rocky Horror Show, Catch Me If You Can, Legally Blonde, The Spitfire Grill , Les Misérables, All Shook Up, 42 nd Street and many others, as well as over 20 teen productions for KidzAct. Also in Naples for TheatreZone, he has music directed more than 30 shows including Bridges of Madison County, Aida , The Secret Garden, Legs Diamond , Sweet Smell of Success, Grand Hotel , Little Women and Hair. Originally from Providence, RI, Chas conducted Jim Steinman and Roman Polanski’s Dance of the Vampires in Stuttgart, and has taught and coached singers all over the US and Germany, now offering private lessons here in Naples. A proud member of Actors’ Equity, he has appeared in almost 100 musicals, operas, and concerts, including several appearances here in Naples with TheatreZone - most recently as the title role in Sweeney Todd . Much love to his beautiful wife, Dawn, and a big thank you to this wonderful orchestra!
(Choreographer) is a native of New York and has served as director and choreographer for TNP’s Something Rotten!, Mary Poppins, The Wedding Singer, Mamma Mia!, Chicago, Sister Act, The Rocky Horror Show, Catch Me If You Can, Legally Blonde, The Spitfire Grill, and 42nd Street, among others; and with KidzAct for many productions, including Joseph…Dreamcoat, Hairspray, Dis ney’s Camp Rock, Les Misérables and CATS. She has choreographed many shows for TNP, including Gentleman’s Guide, All Shook Up, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, Thoroughly Modern Millie and Cabaret. As a performer, she has been seen in the National Tours of 42nd Street, Seussical the Musical, Anything Goes and Grease. A proud member of Actors’ Equity, she has been seen here in Naples in TheatreZone’s Sweeney Todd (Beggar Woman), Jekyll & Hyde (Lucy), Stepping Out with Donna McKechnie, Legs Diamond (Kiki) and Hair, among others. Other recent roles include Sheila (A Chorus Line), Sally Bowles, Velma Kelly, Bombalurina (CATS) and Ulla (The Producers). Love to husband Chas and her family.
JUDI MASCIARELLI (Properties Coordinator) joined the many volunteers at The Naples Players in 2014, assisting in the scene shop. Combining her graphic arts back ground, interior design, and love for transforming unique bargains, she found her niche in the props area and has worked on productions including Young Franken stein, My Fair Lady, Miracle on 34th Street, Oklahoma, The Music Man, and Bell, Book and Candle, Guys & Dolls, White Christmas, She Loves Me and Calendar Girls. Originally from Gloucester, MA, Judi enjoys Naples and the TNP with her author husband, Jim.
JUSTIN MILLER (Lighting Design) designs lighting environments for both the stage and architecture. Lighting design credits: Pirates of Penzance and Glory Denied at Op era Naples; The Wild Party, The Rivals, 4 Saints in Three Acts at Carnegie Mellon; Night of the Living Dead (Microscopic Opera); The Glass Menagerie Project (Arena Stage); Caroline or Change, Our Town, Stuff Happens, Suddenly Last Summer at Georgetown University. New York credits: Saints!, War Zones, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, and many others. Justin is also the founder of JKM Lighting Design in Naples – providing residential and commercial architectural lighting design services. For more information, please visit JKMLightingDesign.com
JACOB MYNY (Sound Design) is excited to return to The Naples Players! Jacob is the Resident Sound Designer at The Kalamazoo Civic and comes from South Haven, MI. Jacob earned his BFA degree from Western Michigan University Theatre De partment. He has traveled around working in New Hampshire, Florida, and Michi gan. Some of his favorite previous works include, The Cake (The Naples Players), The Fantasticks (Jean’s Playhouse), Much Ado About Nothing (Hope Summer Repertory Theatre) and Newsies (The Kalamazoo Civic). For more information about Jacob and his works visit his website: mynyinc.com
CREATIVE TEAM BIOS
LUCIA STANDRIDGE (Stage Manager) grew up in Milan, Italy and studied Theatre Arts Administration at Liberty University. In college, she has stage managed aca demically and professionally and directed children and peers on stage and in audio dramas. Most recently, she just finished a summer contract with the Traveling Play ers Ensemble as a camp director. Her stage management credits include The Will Rogers Follies, Parade, A Christmas Carol , Fiddler on the Roof (Alluvion Stage Com pany); Tecumseh! Outdoor Drama (Scioto Society); and Color Me Beautiful (Build ing Bridges Productions).
NICOLAS VALDEZ (Associate Conductor) Originally born and raised in Northern Cal ifornia, Nicolas Valdez is now a St. Louis-based singer, pianist, and music director. He has had the privilege of performing with multiple professional theatres and ensembles in the St. Louis area, such as the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra, The Muny, The Reper tory Theatre of St. Louis, Metro Theatre Company, Max and Louie Productions, New Line Theatre, and Webster Conservatory. His favorite music directing credits include: Head Over Heels, Cry Baby, Be More Chill, Songs for Nobodies, La Cage aux Folles, Any thing Goes, Bridges of Madison County, Footloose, Newsies, Amelie, American Idiot, The Drowsy Chaperone, and The Glorious Ones. He currently serves on faculty at Webster University within the music department and theatre conservatory and is pursuing a MS in Speech-Language Pathology from Fontbonne University. Visit nicolasmariovaldez.com for more!
BRADLEY VAN HOUTEN
(Sound Design) earned his bachelor’s degree in Theatre: De sign & Technical Production and Theatre: Stage Management from Western Michi gan University. Originally from Michigan, he now calls Florida and The Naples Play ers home. Since starting with TNP in 2013, Brad has worked on countless productions and has enjoyed seeing how Team Sound has grown over the years. He is especially excited to expand opportunities for involvement in the future as TNP grows. In his off time, you can find Brad working on his Private Pilot’s License or enjoying a walk with his fur baby Malone, a Cocker Spaniel Mix who knows just how cute he is.
SADIE WARD (Scenic Design) Sadie Ward is a Twin Cities artist. She is happy to be back at TNP after designing the set for The Savannah Sipping Society. You may have seen some of her scenic and prop design work at Park Square, Theatre in the Round, Theatre Unbound, Theatre Pro Rata, The Phipps, Stages Theatre Company, Lyric Arts and Minnesota Opera. In our disposable modern world, she tries to incorporate recy cled and upcycled elements into her theatre designs and artwork. In Minneapolis she is a co-founder of Next Stage Rental and Market, a theatrical rental house, and is the Executive Director of the Minneapolis Green Theatre Alliance.
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BOARD OF DIRECTORS
ALAN JAFFE Executive Vice President
OTTO IMMEL Secretary
ROBIN BACHE GRAY Membership
TERRY LIBBY Facilities
PAT POLLOK Development
Executive Artistic Director/CEO
Resident Costume Designer
MOLLIE BERMAN Costume Shop Supervisor
Production Stage Manager/ Internship Director
PAMELA LARKIN CARUSO
Director of Volunteer Advancement
JOHN COOPER Box Office Staff
KENZIE CURRIE Programs Administrator
Chief Financial Officer
Director of Patron Services
ADAM FASANO Box Office Staff
LEXI FITZPATRICK House Manager
LUKE JACONIS Box Office Manager
DENNY GLASS Immediate Past President
BETH PETRUNOFF City Council Liaison
TNP STAFF & LEADERSHIP 2022-2023 SEASON
Director of Institutional Giving & Events
CARL JOHNSON Box Office Staff
MAYA KLEINSORGE Education Assistant
TREVOR LW LONG Director of Production
WENDY LOPEZ AGUIRRE Lobby Attendant
MARY ANNE McKERROW KidzAct Costume Designer
Assistant House Manager
SUMMER PLISKOW Arts & Health Specialist/ Box Office Staff
Director of Community Education & Wellness
DAN RAMIREZ Box Office Staff
Resident Scenic Designer & Artist
Executive Assistant to the CEO
LAUREN SPEIRS Marketing & PR Specialist
BRADLEY VAN HOUTEN Head of Sound
JASON WAGAMAN Technical Director
CRAIG WALCK Head of Lighting
JESSICA WALCK Associate Artistic Director
CARLY ZEUNER Company Manager
PLUTO BOLL Sound Intern
GREGORY COULTER Stage Management Intern
MAL HOELAND Lighting Intern
JILLIAN FEIGENBLAT Props Artist in Residence
DAYNE SABATOS Costume Artist in Residence
TNP acknowledges that we are on the traditional territory of the Calusa and Seminole peoples; and we acknowledge with respect the diverse histories and cultures of all the native people in this region.
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