Village Theatre Troupe Presents "Bye Bye Birdie"

Village Theatre Troupe Presents "Bye Bye Birdie"
Posted on 03/30/2009

The Village of Orland Park Theatre Troupe has chosen an American Broadway classic for its spring show. "Bye Bye Birdie" tells the story of a rock and roll singer who is about to be inducted into the Army.

"This is a timeless story with great music and lots of excitement," said Orland Park Recreation Program Supervisor Irene Buikema, the show's executive producer.

Conrad Birdie, an Elvis Presley type, will bid a typical American teen-age girl good bye with an all American kiss. Kim MacAfee in Sweet Apple, Ohio wins the honor. Richard Donnellan, Jr., of Palos Hills, appears as Birdie with Alyssa Barron of Orland Park portraying MacAfee.

"People of all ages love this show because of its music, the dances and its great American story," said Orland Park Theatre Troupe Resident Producer/Director Frann Carnivele-Sidlow.

Written by Michael Stewart, with music and lyrics by Charles Strouse and Lee Adams, respectively, "Bye Bye Birdie" opened on Broadway in 1960. It was made into a movie in 1963 starring Dick Van Dyke, Janet Leigh, Ann Margret and others.

"Dick Van Dyke appeared in the 1963 movie and a year later appeared in the movie ‘Mary Poppins'," Carnivele-Sidlow said. "His performance in ‘Bye Bye Birdie' is one of my all-time favorites," she added.

"It means a lot to be able to bring the Broadway classics to the Orland Park stage," Carnivele-Sidlow said. "We grew up with these shows and it's great to see a whole new generation enjoy the story and the music from almost 50 years ago," she added.

Jim Mazeika is the show's assistant director with Elissa Metropoulous serving as musical director. Desiree Mikols is the show's choreographer.

Staged at the Carl Sandburg High School Performing Arts Center, performances are Friday, April 24 and Saturday, April 25 at 7:00 p.m. with a 2:00 p.m. matinee on Sunday, April 26. Tickets are $18 for adults, $16 for seniors and students and $14 for children.

Judie Crisanti, of Chicago, appears as Rose Alvarez while Ryan Flynn of Homer Glen portrays Albert Peterson. Lemont's Kathy Janik appears as Mrs. Peterson with Justin Putman playing Hugo Peabody. Kevin O'Sullivan of New Lenox is Mr. MacAfee with Alice Trull of Hickory Hills portraying his wife. Bob Szepanski and Carol Suich, both of Orland Park, play the mayor and his wife. Louis Sidlow, of Oak Forest, appears as their son, Randolph.

Other Orland Park residents in the cast include Christopher Casper, Kathy Dudas, Kelly Dillon, Jenny Griffin, Angela Heidegger, Alexa Keefe, Eve Moyar, Jill Nachel, Jim Sharp, Ryan Sotzen and Haley Suich.

Those from Frankfort include Samantha Kosinski and Alexis Lubienski. Cast members from Homer Glen include Jayna Evans, Lizzie Lorang, Melanie Lorang, Jaclyn Marta, Mitchell McLaughlin and Ashley Miletich. Cast members from Olympia Fields include Nur Johnson and Yahya Johnson.

Oak Forest residents appearing in the Orland Park show include Nathanial Hoerger, Micaela Humenik and Janet Wittenmyer. Those from Lockport include Cassie Balaskas and Nick Koroyanis. The cast also includes Randy Trull (Hickory Hills), Maria Welser (Mokena) and Katie O'Sullivan (New Lenox).

Advance tickets may be purchased at Orland Park's Franklin E. Loebe Recreation Center, 14650 South Ravinia Avenue. For more information, call the Orland Park Recreation Department at 708/403-7275.