A array of entertaining stage shows will highlight Cresson Lake Playhouse’s 45th season.
Paul Seymour, the playhouse’s artistic director, said this season is going for the laughs and taking a comedic approach to many of the shows.
“We’re opening the season with two really humorous shows, and that’s unique for us,” he said. “It’s a varied season, with a slant toward comedy, but we’re also doing some serious performances.”
The season kicked off May 28 with the musical “I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change” and it tackles love in all its forms.
Set in the modern world and told in a series of vignettes and songs, the show traces the overall arc of relationships throughout the course of a life.
“This is really charming, and it’s a comedic look at what happens when you get into relationships,” Seymour said. “The whole thing is extremely funny.”
The show will wrap up Sunday.
Next up will be the musical “Disenchanted” on stage June 18 to 29, and it features a cast of all women.
The show takes a hilarious look at the famed storybook princesses, and these ladies are disgruntled, disenchanted and ready to tell the truth.
Snow White and her posse of princesses are out for a night on the town getting a few gripes off their chest in this tale with grown-up humor that’s anything but Grimm.
Forget the princesses you think you know – the original storybook heroines have come to life to set the record straight.
“There are nine Disney princesses represented in the show, and they are angry because they feel like they’ve be objectified,” Seymour said. “This is another really funny show.”
A performance that is sure to have audiences tapping their feet to the music, “Newsies,” will be presented July 23 though Aug. 3.
Based on the real-life Newsboys’ strike of 1899, this Disney musical tells the story of Jack Kelly, a rebellious newsboy who dreams of a life as an artist away from the big city.
After publishing giant Joseph Pulitzer raises newspaper prices at the newsboys’ expense, Kelly and his fellow newsies take action.
With help from reporter Katherine Plumber, all of New York City soon recognizes the power of “the little man.”
“This is our family show and features a large cast of 35 with only six of them being women,” Seymour said. “ ‘Newsies’ is popular right now and we know we will sell tickets. I also feel confident that we can get a fantastic group of men to do this, and there’s a lot of buzz about people auditioning for this show.”
The comedy play “The Odd Couple” will be performed Aug. 29 to Sept. 7.
Based on the Neil Simon’s play, “The Odd Couple,” this version sees the lead characters transformed into Olive Madison and Florence Unger.
Olive and a group of girlfriends are enjoying their weekly Trivial Pursuit night in Olive’s messy and ill-equipped apartment. As the game continues, Florence arrives, fresh from being dumped by her husband.
Fearful that the neurotic Florence might attempt suicide, Olive invites her to move in as her roommate. However, Olive and Florence have very different personalities.
Where Olive is messy, untidy and unconcerned about the state of her apartment, Florence is obsessively clean, tidy and obsessed with hygiene.
Olive’s easy-going outlook on life soon clashes with Florence’s highly-strung neurotic tendencies, testing their friendship to the limit. When Olive organizes a double-date with the Costazuela brothers, their differences come to a head and sparks fly.
“This is the female version of ‘The Odd Couple’ where Neil Simon rewrote it for women,” Seymour said. “If you like to laugh, this is a good show.”
The curtain will close on the season with “Of Mice and Men” Oct. 3 to 12.
Adapted from John Steinbeck’s novel, “Of Mice and Men” tells the story of two drifters, George and Lennie, with delusions of living off the fat of the land.
To earn money for their own place, the two men find work on a ranch where George finds himself tasked with caring for the man-child Lennie.
When tragedy hits the ranch, George is faced with a moral question: How should he deal with Lennie before the ranchers find him and take matters into their own hands?
“This is a very serious piece and the classic story that people know,” Seymour said. “We’d really like to appeal to some high school English and literature classes; I think it would be really fun for a story that they’ve read to see it acted out on our stage.”
Cresson Lake Playhouse has scheduled the following productions:
• “I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change,” Sunday.
• “Disenchanted,” June 18-29.
• “Newsies,” July 23-Aug. 3.
• “The Odd Couple,”
Aug. 29-Sept. 7.
• “Of Mice and Men,”
Curtain times: 7:30 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays and 2 p.m. Sundays.
Tickets: $15, $19 or $23. Flex plans also are available.
Reservations: 814-472-4333 or www.cressonlake.com.