The Newtowne Players Bring Broadway Back to Southern Maryland
Written by Stephanie Taubert Dali
The Newtowne Players of Lexington Park, Maryland were not able to perform on stage for approximately 19 months due to restrictions from the COVID-19 pandemic. But at long last, this community theatre is bringing live entertainment back to their Southern Maryland audience with “A Night on Broadway”. Because of the popularity of this performance, this is the fifth year that The Newtowne Players have put on the popular musical revue. “A Night on Broadway” features 12 supremely talented performers whose singing, acting, and dancing will transport you to the heart of Broadway. As The Newtowne Players’ first indoor show since the beginning of the pandemic, you won’t want to miss this special production.
Director Sarah Gravelle and Assistant Director Jay McKulka chose a wide range of songs from golden age musicals, Off-Broadway musicals, and modern-day Broadway hits. Featuring songs from The Prom, Annie Get Your Gun, Once on This Island, Mean Girls, Come From Away, and more, this show will surely fill your heart with joy and put a smile on your face. If you’re looking for a dose of nostalgia, the show also includes songs from childhood favorites, such as Anastasia, Frozen, Mary Poppins, Aladdin, and The Hunchback of Notre Dame. This show has something for everyone, regardless of your age.
Each member of the cast is a delight to watch on stage. Richard Lehman will have you in stitches with his performance of “Shy” from Once Upon a Mattress. Tessa Silvestro will blow you away with her powerful vocals in “Diva’s Lament” from Spamalot. Neil Compton’s charming rendition of “What Do I Need With Love?” from Thoroughly Modern Millie will have you tapping your feet. And Shelby Miller will transport you to the Land of Oz with her stellar performance of “The Wizard and I” from Wicked. These are just a few of the talented performers who grace the stage during the revue. The show also features stand-out performances by Shayla Johnson, Autumn Mallory, Becky Norris Kuhn, Emily Quade, Tony Aina, Bradley Evans, Chad Mildenstein, and Meg Pugh. Each performer sings an outstanding solo, but duets, trios, and show-stopping group numbers are also sprinkled throughout the performance. The cast members are accompanied by a small on-stage band of talented musicians.
The set designer, Steve Pugh, created a stylish performance space reminiscent of the art deco style of the 1920s. The set blends nicely with the newly renovated theatre space, including a new proscenium arch and a fresh coat of paint in the auditorium. Lighting designer, Dave Keyser, made creative use of lights throughout the show which helped set the mood, and assisted in the storytelling process. The design of the show melds perfectly with the performances.
The best thing about this performance is watching the pure joy on the performers’ faces. It has been a long time since these talented individuals have stepped on stage, so it is wonderful to see them return to doing what they love. Even though the thrill of being on stage is exciting to the performers, the show would not go on without the support of the audience. Any musical theatre lover will be delighted by this musical revue. A Night on Broadway runs for three weekends, September 10 – 26.
Ready to Open our Doors - COVID protocols
Throughout the last 18 months, The Newtowne Players offered a variety of theatre performances presented in new and creative formats to keep its members and the community at large engaged and entertained. Through it all, the ultimate goal was to get back on our stage to present live theatre performances for our community.
On September 10, 2021, The Newtowne Players is bringing its first indoor performance to the stage since the onset of the pandemic - A Night on Broadway. We could not be more excited to have our theatre space once again filled with family, friends, and our community. As we prepare to open our doors for indoor performances, we put the health and safety of everyone in our space as our utmost priority. The Newtowne Players will implement the following COVID protocols:
Additional cleaning between performances to include all high touch surfaces
Hand sanitizer stations available at key locations throughout the building
Opening the auditorium earlier to alleviate congestion in the lobby and promote social distancing
Training of our staff, signage and communication with patrons
But what about masks? Following the guidance and direction of both the St. Mary’s County Health Department (SMCHD) and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), while the community transmission rate is high, meaning more than 100 weekly cases per 100,000 residents:
Masks are required for patrons and staff, regardless of vaccination status, while in the building
Masks may be removed by performers while on stage, and by patrons while actively eating or drinking
While our new HVAC system provides consistent ventilation and air circulation, our space and the nature of audience seating during a performance is close and sustained. We appreciate the full cooperation of our patrons as we prepare to get back to the business of entertaining.
If you have already purchased a ticket for the upcoming show and you are uncomfortable with masking requirements you may opt to receive a credit in the form of a gift card that will be good for any future performance of your choice. Please reach out to the Front of House Chair at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We will continue to monitor transmission rates on a show-by-show basis and will communicate with our patrons via our website, social media and email when changes to our protocols take effect.
Thank you for supporting the Newtowne Players, and we look forward to bringing our shows to life on our stage. We hope to see you soon!
The Newtowne Players Mission
To promote all aspects of the performing arts in Southern Maryland. We provide quality entertainment to the surrounding communities as we foster, promote and increase the public knowledge and appreciation of the arts and cultural activities in Southern Maryland, and make live theatre affordable and available to as many members of the surrounding communities as possible.