Dept. of Theatre & Dance Presents INTO THE WOODS April 20 - 24
West Chester University’s Department of Theatre & Dance presents INTO THE WOODS from April 20 – 24, 2022 with music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim and book by James Lapine. Directed by Associate Professor of Theatre Charlie DelMarcelle, INTO THE WOODS runs Wednesday – Friday, April 20 – 22, at 7:30 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday, April 23 and 24, at 2:00 p.m. in the MainStage Theatre, E.O. Bull Center for the Arts, 2 E. Rosedale Avenue, West Chester. General admission tickets are $12/$7 students at https://www.wcupatix.com/theatreanddance.
Inspired by the Grimm Brothers’ most popular folktales, INTO THE WOODS imagines what would happen if famous fairytale characters and stories intertwined. Cinderella, Jack (of bean-stalk fame), Little Red Riding Hood, and a Baker and his Wife set out into the forest on their quests to find "happily ever after." Along the way they meet Rapunzel, a Wicked Witch, a lascivious Wolf, vengeful Giants, a couple of charming Princes, and their own destinies. This beloved musical parable about the loss of innocence, the joys and sorrows of adulthood, and the price paid for getting the things you really want, is sure to challenge and delight audiences of all ages.
Director Charlie DelMarcelle says, “It’s great to be back on-stage doing a large-cast musical again, something that has not been available for our performance students since before the pandemic. Stephen Sondheim’s INTO THE WOODS is one of the hardest scores in the modern musical theatre canon. This cast, who is so excited to be singing together again, has really come together beautifully and has risen to the occasion.”
He adds, “Thematically, INTO THE WOODS deals with grief and loss and what comes after happily ever after. Coming out of the pandemic, I think our students are grappling with these huge ideas in a very mature way. I also think the show might resonate with audiences in a slightly altered way.”
INTO THE WOODS will be performed in the intimate, 175-seat MainStage Theatre. Professional set designer Meghan Jones designed the seating to surround the set on three sides, helping audience members to feel closer and more connected to the action.
The cast for Into the Woods includes:
Mar’Keece Barnett (Steward), Raven Burckhalter (Little Red Riding Hood), Kelly Donnelly (Cinderella’s Stepmother), Sarah Ford (Jack’s Mother), Albert Gonzalez (Rapunzel’s Prince), Kylee Gooley (Rapunzel), Grace Halsey (Milky White), JT Hawkes (Jack), Ronnie Hernandez, (Narrator), April Marion (Cinderella), Mia McDermott (Florinda), Hope McGinnis (Baker’s Wife), Clare McKernan (Witch), Matt Melchior (Cinderella’s Prince), Jonah Padula (Mysterious Man/Wolf), Courtney Parker (Giant), Ryan Snopek (Cinderella’s Father), Emily Wiest (Lucinda), Shane Wilson (Baker), Rachel Yates (Cinderella’s Mother/Granny)
The Department of Theatre and Dance at West Chester University, an accredited institution of the National Association of Schools of Theatre, prepares students for the professional and the academic worlds of Theatre and Dance, while raising student awareness of civility, diversity, creativity, problem solving and social responsibility. The department offers a BA Theatre degree program with elective concentrations in Musical Theatre, Performance, and Design and Production, in addition to a dance minor and theatre minor.
Enrolling more than 17,000 students, West Chester University is the largest member of the 14-institution Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education and is currently celebrating its 150th Anniversary year (www.wcupa.edu/wcu150/). Founded in 1871, the University is a comprehensive public institution, offering a diverse range of more than 200 undergraduate, master’s, and doctoral programs in more than 50 fields of study. In addition to the main campus in West Chester, the University offers programs through its graduate center, the campus in Philadelphia, and online. Six colleges and two schools comprise the University: University College, Colleges of Arts and Humanities, Business and Public Management, Education and Social Work, Health Sciences, and the Sciences and Mathematics, as well as the Wells School of Music, and the Graduate School.
Effective Monday, February 28, 2022, mask wearing is now optional at West Chester University. The University fully supports each person’s choices around whether to wear a mask. As a campus committed to civility toward one another, we expect that everyone will be respectful of individual choices on the matter. We will continue to make masks available at facility entrances. As we learn to live with the virus, protocols are subject to change as health conditions warrant.