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Carnegie/Bridgeville

Stage 62 gears up for 'Guys and Dolls'

| Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2018, 11:48 a.m.
The Hot Box girls play a vital role in “Guys and Dolls.” They are played by Sara Barbisch (Adelaide), center, and Devon McCune, left, Haley Koontz Donohue, Maura Danielle Reiff, Rachel Perry and Amy DeHaven.
The Hot Box girls play a vital role in “Guys and Dolls.” They are played by Sara Barbisch (Adelaide), center, and Devon McCune, left, Haley Koontz Donohue, Maura Danielle Reiff, Rachel Perry and Amy DeHaven.

There’s something about the New York City underworld that “Guys and Dolls” portrays in a way that continues to pull audiences in, even 68 years after its Broadway premiere.

“I think people like it because it’s simple,” said Stephanie Ottey, who stars as Sister Sarah Brown in Stage 62’s upcoming production of the musical. “There’s something in it that everyone can relate to.”

Ottey, of Scott, and a cast of 30 other performers have since September been rehearsing the postwar tale of gangsters and gamblers ahead of its November debut at the Andrew Carnegie Free Library and Music Hall. In his first time directing a main stage production for the company, Seth Laidlaw is forgoing playing with the musical’s book in favor of putting on a version of the show that theatergoers know and love.

“I think this show is done best when it’s done true to the script,” said Laidlaw, of Beechview.

“One thing I keep pushing with the cast is that I think the real story in this comes down to the female characters,” he added. “The female leads are the groundwork to this, and if anything I’m trying to bring their story out as much as possible.”

The production will feature a live 10-piece orchestra.

The show, which premiered in 1950, is based on characters created by author Damon Runyon and has been revived several times both on Broadway and on London’s West End. Its songbook spawned the crossover hit “Luck Be a Lady,” which Frank Sinatra famously recorded.

Laidlaw said audiences can look forward to a lighthearted show with plenty of laughs and high-energy dance numbers.

“Guys and Dolls” will be performed at the Andrew Carnegie Free Library and Music Hall at 8 p.m. from Nov. 8-10 and Nov. 15-17. Matinees will be performed at 2 p.m. Nov. 11 and 18.

Tickets cost $20 for adults and $15 for students and seniors.

The Andrew Carnegie Free Library and Music Hall is at 300 Beechwood Ave., Carnegie. For more details, go to stage62.com or call 412-429-6262.

Matthew Guerry is a Tribune-Review staff writer.

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