Wyandotte Community Theatre presents Neil Simon’s ‘Female Odd Couple’

Photo by April Bowen Denny

Wyandotte Community Theatre presents Neil Simon’s “The Odd Couple (Female Version)” for one more weekend, at 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday at the Wyandotte Art Center, 81 Chestnut St. The cast includes Dinah Tutein (left) of Rockwood as Mickey, Erika Fesler of Woodhaven as Vera, Barbara Day of Belleville as Olive Madison, Brityn Creutz of Wyandotte as Renee, Joan Stevenson of Detroit as Florence Unger, and Danielle Swint of Wyandotte as Sylvie.

By Sue Suchyta
Wyandotte Community Theatre will end its run of Neil Simon’s female version of “The Odd Couple” at 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday at the Wyandotte Art Center, 81 Chestnut St.

The show is directed by Glen Reynolds of Wyandotte, assistant directed by April Denny of Dearborn Heights and produced by Jeffrey Tate of Taylor.

Barbara Day of Belleville will play messy Olive Madison while Joan Stevenson of Detroit portrays neat freak Florence Unger.

Others in the cast include Dinah Tutein of Rockwood as Mickey the cop, Erika Fesler of Woodhaven as Vera, Brityn Creutz of Wyandotte as Renee and Danielle Swint of Wyandotte as Sylvie.

Jarrod Drew of Detroit plays Manolo Costazuela and Josh Torres of Wyandotte plays Jesus Costazuela.

The play is a feminine update of the original male version. Instead of a poker game, the women meet for Trivial Pursuit. Olive Madison is the self-proclaimed slob, while Florence Unger is the neat freak. Olive reluctantly agreed to let the newly separated Florence move in with her. When their personalities clash, the results are hysterical.

The Southgate Community Players opened the Broadway musical comedy “Dirty Rotten Scoundrels” last Friday. The show is hysterically funny – but it is definitely adult humor, and is not recommended for children.

However, it only runs for one more weekend, at 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday at the Davidson Middle School Auditorium, 15800 Trenton Road in Southgate, so catch it while you can.

When two clever but very different con men find that the French Riveria is too small for both of them, they set up a wager to see who can beat the other at their mutual game and “get the girl.” Along the way they discover things aren’t always as they seem and learn a few lessons of their own.

John Bacarella of Monroe is entertaining as the debonair Lawrence, who runs a successful scam pretending to be a crown prince of a small, destitute country that needs funding for a civil war. He uses this to relieve bored heiresses of part of their fortune, and in turn provides them with the thrills, danger and romantic adventure of a lifetime – plus bragging rights and cocktail fodder in return for being financially finessed.

Leo McMaster of Rockwood is hysterically funny as the crude but clever Freddy, a grifter whom Lawrence reluctantly agreed to tutor and polish up.

Think of Eliza Dolittle – and if you’re clever, you’ll catch Bacarella when, as Lawrence, he delivers a parody of Professor Higgin’s lines in a scene.

Although Lawrence is reluctant to team up with Freddy, the two produce some very funny and entertaining cons.

In “Ruprecht,” debonair Lawrence must convince a gun-toting Oklahoma oil heiress, Jolene, who tries to lasso him into marriage that he has a defective family gene, as evidenced by the seriously deranged Freddy. McMaster is incredibly funny as Freddy, AKA Ruprecht, throwing himself into the role with a comic abandon that is worthy of “Saturday Night Live.” The physical humor and sight gags will keep you laughing throughout the entire scene.

You’ll also love the “Oklahoma” number in which the trigger happy Jolene convinces Lawrence to dance with her by shooting at his feet. The strong dancing and singing of Jolene and the chorus makes the number rousing and fun, and shows off their versatility.

Tracy Glover of Toledo as Christine showcases her amazing voice and her ability to play a multi-dimensional role in a show where very little is what it appears to be at first. Audiences will enjoy the many sides of her character that she portrays as the Colgate soap queen.

Rob Eagal of Trenton as Andre and Annie Mann of Southgate as Muriel are delightful as a crooked cop and a bored heiress who find romance amidst the champagne and craziness. Both deliver some delightfully funny lines with great timing and well-honed wit.

Director Denny Connors of Allen Park provided entertaining scenes as well as choreography. Helping make the show a hit are assistant director Theresa Pauli of Lincoln Park, producer Erin Schmidt of Brownstown, music director Rich Alder of Westland and vocal director Jeni Dusseau of Erie.

The talented cast also includes Allen Park resident Carolyn Sohoza, Brownstown resident Karlene Szekely, Katie Suchyta of Dearborn and Catherine Long of Lincoln Park.

Taylor ensemble members include Jay Carter, Raymond Carter and Larry Hubbert. Trenton talent is represented by Cheryl Eagal.

Monica Almaguer and Charlene Bauer of Woodhaven, along with Wyandotte residents Colette Cerulla, Frank Cerulla, Stephanie Mayville, Brian Moody, Laura Moody and Patrick Reed complete the ensemble.

Tickets are $15 for adults and $13 for students and seniors. The show contains adult content, and is not appropriate for children.

For more information, call (734) 282-4SCP (4727), or visit their Web site at www.scponstage.com.

In honor of the Civil War sesquicentennial, the Players Guild of Dearborn will collaborate with the Henry Ford to present the Tony Award-winning Broadway musical “Shenandoah” this summer at the Henry Ford’s historic Anderson Theatre.

Auditions will be held at 7:30 p.m. June 6 and 7 at the Guild playhouse, 21730 Madison near Monroe in Dearborn.

Performances are Aug. 12, 14, 19, 20 and 21 at the Anderson Theatre. Friday and Saturday performances are at 8 p.m., with 2:30 p.m. Sunday matinees.

The colorful and dramatic saga follows a Virginia family that tries to stay neutral as the Civil War rages. The family is inevitably swept into the Union and Confederate conflict in a touching and heart-rending story of a war that had such a major impact on both the American landscape and its people.

For more information, go to www.playersguildofdearborn.com.