The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee

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Jul 12 2013 01:00
Aug 19 2013 03:00

Munster, Ind. –Theater at the Center, 1040 Ridge Road, Munster, is T-H-R-I-L-L-E-D to present a heartwarming production of the two-time Tony Award-winning musical comedy The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee. Audiences will enjoy the fun July 11 through August 18 when Theater at the Center spells out another winner with The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee. Featuring witty and endearing music and lyrics by William Finn and a delightful book by Rachel Sheinkin, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee is the touching story of a group of prepubescent overachievers who are pitted against one another in the spelling challenge of a lifetime. The production will be directed by David Perkovich with a press opening on Sunday, July 14 at 7 p.m.

The New York Times raves asking, “Can you spell i-r-r-e-s-i-s-t-i-b-l-e? Spelling Bee is riotously funny and remarkably ingenious. Gold stars all around.” The Wall Street Journal calls the production “…perfect in every possible way – that rarity of rarities, a super-smart musical that is also a bona fide crowd-pleaser. An ingenious blend of simplicity and sophistication, it’s not merely funny, it’s wise.”

The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee is a tuneful, clever and uproarious tale that follows the story of six over-achieving and quirky adolescents vying for a spelling championship, overseen by equally colorful adults. Through the ups and downs of the bee they’re forced to learn that winning isn’t everything and that losing doesn’t necessarily make you a loser. The comical bar is raised exponentially as four volunteer audience members get the opportunity to become part of the action as an on-stage bee contestant.

Created through a workshop process, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee opened Off-Broadway where it became an instant success thanks to universal rave reviews and incredible buzz. The show eventually moved to Broadway where it ran for 3 years. Nominated for six Tony Awards, including Best Musical, it won two Tonys, including Best Book of a Musical.

The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee cast stars Rose Le Tran as “Marcy Park”, Cory Goodrich as “Rona Lisa Peretti”, Nicole Miller as “Olive Ostrovsky”, Bear Bellinger as “Mitch Mahoney”, Frank J. Paul as “Isaac ‘Chip’ Berkowitz”, Landree Fleming as “Logainne Schwarzandgrubenierre”, Jonathan Wagner as “William Barfee”, Patrick Tierney as “Leaf Coneybear” and Jake Mahler as “Douglas Panch”.

The Artistic Team, led by Theatre at the Center Artistic Director William Pullinsi, features Direction by David Perkovich, Choreography by Nicole Miller and Musical Direction and Orchestrations by William A. Underwood. The design team includes Scenic Designer Inseung Park; Lighting Designer Denise Karczewski; Sound Designer Barry G. Funderburg; Costume Designer Brenda Winstead, Wig Designer Kevin Barthel, and Props Designer Bridget Earnshaw. The Stage Manager is Matt McMullen, the Production Manager/Technical Director is Ann Davis; and TATC’s General Manager is Richard Friedman.

Founded in 1991, Theatre at the Center is a year-round professional theater at its home, The Center for Visual and Performing Arts, 1040 Ridge Road, Munster, Indiana. Theatre at the Center is Located off I-80/94, just 35 minutes from downtown Chicago, and has free parking.

Performances are Wednesdays and Thursdays at 2:00 p.m.;; Fridays at 8 p.m.; Saturdays at 4 p.m. and 8:00 p.m.; Sundays at 2:30 p.m. and select Thursday evenings and Saturday 2:30 p.m. performances. Individual ticket prices range from $38 - $42. To purchase individual tickets call the Box Office at 219.836.3255 or at 800.511.1552. Group discounts are available for groups of 11 or more and gift certificates, perfect for all special occasions, are also available. For more information on Theatre at the Center, visit

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