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Local residents have parts in ‘Mamma Mia’

MARINETTE, Wis. — Tickets are hot for Theatres on the Bay’s summer sensation “Mamma Mia” this weekend on the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay’s Marinette Campus.

Performances will be 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 2 p.m. Sunday.

“It might very well be the fastest-selling show we’ve ever had, said Rebecca Stone Thornberry, Theatre on the Bay artistic director. “Certainly, it’s the fastest-selling show in the eight years that I’ve been here.”

Appropriate and fun for audiences of all ages, “Mamma Mia” has proven popular throughout the U.S. where it premiered on Broadway in 2001. After a long Broadway run and an extensive professional tour, rights only have recently been released for non-professional companies. Music and lyrics are by Benny Andersson and Bjorn Ulvaeus, with some songs developed with Stig Anderson. The book is by Catherine Johnson, and the show was originally conceived for the stage by Judy Craymer. Martin Koch also developed additional materials for “Mamma Mia.”

In the musical, Sophie Sheridan, played by Jacqueline Nutter of Menominee, is getting married to Sky, played by Noah Steffen of Marinette — but she doesn’t know who’s walking her down the aisle. Sophie has no idea who her real father is, and her mother, Donna Sheridan, played by Jennifer Rickaby of Marinette, is no help. According to Donna’s diary, three different men could be Sophie’s dad. Sophie secretly invites all three to the wedding, hoping to answer her question by bringing them all together at her home on the sunny Greek island of Kalokairi. Is it Sam Carmichael, played by Dave Rickaby of Marinette, who left Donna years ago? Maybe it’s world traveler Bill Austin, played by Glenn Sellen of Sobieski, Wis.? Could it be headbanger-turned-London banker Harry Bright, played by James Porras II of Menominee?

Donna’s “Summer Nights” taverna bustles with preparations: Sophie’s bridesmaids Ali, played by McKenna Carvenough of Amberg, Wis., and Lisa, played by Michaela Kaiser of Oconto Falls; Sky’s best friends Pepper and Eddie, played by Bailey Boutin and Ben Everson, both of Marinette; and Rosie and Tanya, played by Kari Moody of Oconto and Brittany Welch of Marinette, who once were part of Donna’s musical trio, The Dynamos. All are on hand to help, along with Father Alexandrios, played by Tristan Schuh of Menominee, to officiate at the wedding.

“Mamma Mia’s” ensemble also includes Lisa Atkinson-LeBoeuf of Menominee; Alyssa Carviou of Marinette; Tyrus Cretens of Marinette; Hannah Fields of Marinette; Emily Rose Halfmann of Marinette; Tammela Kirk of Menominee; Kendra Krouth of Marinette; Lydia LeBoeuf of Menominee; Michele Lemire of Menominee; Cassidy MacArthur of Marinette; Travis Meyer of Menominee; Annalisa Mines of Peshtigo, Wis.; Karah Nelson of Marinette; Colin Nygren of Marinette; Lori Patzke of Menominee; Kenan Pulver of Menominee; and Olivia Smith of Peshtigo.

The production staff includes Director John Thornberry of Marinette; Brittany Welch and James Porras II, musical directors, Marinette and Menominee; Heather Olsen, choreography, Menominee; Joshua LaLonde, scenic design, Marinette; Chris Weber, lighting design, Crivitz; Annalisa Mines, costume design, Peshtigo; and Jared Thomson, stage management, Oconto. Thornberry, of Marinette, is the show’s producer.

Tickets are $18 for adults, $16 for patrons 65 and older and $14 for students with ID (additional ticket fees apply). Tickets for reserved seat sare on sale now at tinyurl.com/mammamiatob. Tickets also may be purchased at the theatre box office one hour before every performance.

Other shows in the upcoming Season of Laughter are “Reckless” by Craig Lucas and Oscar Wilde’s classic, “The Importance of Being Earnest.”

Children’s Theatre productions include “Frozen Jr.”; the third annual Christmas by the Bay concert; and “Anne of Green Gables.” Tickets or multiple shows are available with a 20% discount for six-shows at tinyurl.com/sixshowseasonpass and a 10% discount for the three shows at tinyurl.com/threeshowseasonpass.

For more information, call the main office at 715-735-4301 during UW-Green Bay-Marinette Campus business hours.

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