Laughs, screams to fill Geyer stage
The Geyer Performing Arts Center will be a place for laughs and screams this weekend when “Dracula: The Musical” takes to the stage.
John Cunnard decided to take on the show as director earlier this year after it was suggested to him by Ron Bronson, board president of Actors and Artists of Fayette County.
“AAFC has done the show two other times at the theater, but it has been many years since the last time it was done,” said Cunnard, who said he is impressed with the show and its history.
“At its New York City premiere, patrons stood in line in a blizzard for tickets. At its Australian premiere, every seat for every performance was sold,” he said.
The show has just one set and takes place in the home of Dr. Sam Seward family madhouse in the 1800s.
A newcomer to the neighborhood, Count Dracula is moving next door to the Seward family who thinks he is royalty. It isn't until Dr. Van Helsing comes to try to warn them that they even know that Dracula is a vampire.
“It take some convincing from him, for the family to finally realize that,” Cunnard said. “The show only uses piano music and it's very campy funny.”
He added the show is and appropriate for all ages.
“It is a funny show that has been made even more so because the cast has ad-libbed even more than the script calls for,” Cunnard said.
Ben Pimental of Mt. Pleasant will take on the role of Dracula and Martha Oliver is the stage director for the show. She and Cunnard have worked together before, co-directing Hotel Frankenstein that won best show at the Tottie Awards in 2010.
Cunnard said one of the challenges of putting the show together was filling a cast when most of the actors are either going back to school or college or have work commitments, making a schedule that works for the cast to have as many members there as possible.
“We weren't allowed to rehearse until eight weeks before the show and we didn't even get the music until six weeks before the show, so it was a lot of cramming and learning the music fast,” he said, adding that this is a funny and not too scary way to start the Halloween season.
A dinner-theater option is available for $25 during the show that takes place tonight, Friday, and Saturday evenings at 7:30 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. on Sunday. Without the dinner-theater option, tickets are $12 apiece. Cunnard said Tottie Kiefer introduced him to the theater in 1988 and he has been involved in many, many shows since then.
“My grandfather, Wade Weaver, performed on the stage there in the early 1900s and I know it makes my mother proud to see me carry on his desire of performing live theater,” he said.
Cunnard said he's always surprised to hear from people that live in the area that they have never saw a show at the theater.
“So, it's my hope to get people to come see Dracula: The Musical and open their eyes to the wonderful world of live theater,” he said.
Rachel Basinger is a freelance writer.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Mt. Pleasant Twp. woman aided by Jacobs Creek Area Faith in Action
- Southmoreland High School homecoming court named
- Textile artist to appear at West Overton
- Runners ready to race in Scottdale 5K, 10K
- Scottdale Fall Festival children’s area remains popular spot
- Fundraisers, donations net Scottdale a new police car