Take A Bow
As many you have already heard, Vinnie and Yvonne Yax have retired and relocated to South Carolina. While this is very exciting news for them, as they look forward to being away from the “snowmaggeden” Greenwich winters and closer to their grand kids, it is bittersweet to our Players family as they took their final bow with us in March.
Both active parishioners at Saint Catherine of Siena parish for many years, it was Saint Catherine’s Players that brought this dynamic duo together. Yvonne first joined SCP in 1983 for “Go Out Singing” and Vinnie started in 1985 with “Camelot”…and Camelot it was, as he met his true love and future wife on the stage.
Through the years they have filled many roles with the Players both on and off the stage. Yvonne has had numerous memorable featured roles including Marty, in “Grease,” a most remembered Mother Abbess in the 1997 “Sound of Music,” Madame Liang in “Flower Drum Song,” Madame Thiang in “The King & I,” Mrs. Sowerberry in “Oliver” and finally, Yente in the 2003 “Fiddler on the Roof.” All very unique characters and Yvonne brought a little bit of herself to each of these roles! Off stage Yvonne was our costume designer for numerous shows in the 90’s and party planner supreme for the original opening night celebrations and most of our final cast parties for the last 15 years. Both her children, Joanie and Joey, have been part of the Players as well.
Vinnie played Burt Healy in our first production of “Annie” in 1987, proudly sharing the stage with his daughter Jennifer, who played Annie. His most outstanding role however, and where he showed his true colors, has been that of producer extraordinaire for the past twenty years.
A year-round volunteer job of scheduling, budgeting, paying bills, wrangling, cajoling, setting up chairs, building sets, hanging lights, getting permits, securing show rights, ensuring fire inspections, renovating consulting, peacemaking and being an all around great guy. Vinnie is the quiet and enduring presence that has kept our troupe, this multi-faceted, multi-generational and multi-talented family we call Saint Catherine’s Players, together for twenty years while seeing profits are managed to give back to the Parish when we can and ensuring we have the funds to stage the next year’s production.
Like Yin and Yang, or is that Yin and Madame Liang, the Players owe a huge debt of gratitude to Vinnie and Yvonne. We know that they are only a phone call away and phone calls they will get!! We also expect to see them in the audience next March and every year after!
As the Production Board rallied to tackle the post-Yax era, Jody Breakell and Wendy Blumenthal took on the roles of Co-Producers. Jody has been with the Players for 23 years on and off the stage and for many of those alongside her two children Michele and Chris Suttile, who grew up on the stage like so many young people in our theatre community. When she wasn’t on the stage, she was working behind the scenes as Associate Producer for many years with Vinnie. She soon took on set decorations and brought her partner in crime and life into the SCP family. Wendy has taken to the paint brush and staple gun with great enthusiasm but we have also tapped her talents for PR, desktop publishing, graphics and program layout. Their new roles will be challenging and rewarding, more so than they ever thought!
Exit, Stage Left
Much to our surprise another major script change was on the way. Our longest tenured SCP director, Stuart Adelberg, has made the decision to step down after 24 shows with the Players.
“After a good amount of soul searching, I have decided that it is time for me to step aside as the director of the Players. I have been honored and blessed to work with an incredible group of people who have become very special to me. I am so proud of what we have done together and I have fond memories that I will cherish forever. Thanks for letting me accompany you all on a fantastic 23 year journey.”
We have been honored and blessed to have Stuart at the helm for such an incredible run. He has seen three generations of “Players” come through the church hall over the years and has had an indelible positive impact on each of them. The caliber and consistency of the productions have truly put SCP on the community theatre map in Fairfield and Westchester counties.
Marilyn Adelberg came on board with Stuart and has worn many hats for the Players through the years, from PR to program, to opening night receptions and cast parties. Her most significant contribution however, was bringing the players into the digital age. She created and maintained our website, Facebook pages and our Constant Contact database enabling our many Players, patrons, auditioners and audience members to be up to date with the latest happenings.
Not to be forgotten, Jesse Adelberg, Stuart and Marilyn’s son, has been involved since he could toddle. On stage or back stage, Jesse was a great addition to the invaluable “A-team”.
On behalf of Saint Catherine of Siena Parish, Msgr. Detscher will be recognizing and thanking the Adelbergs for their many years of service to the Players and the Parish this Fall at a Sunday service to be announced. We will keep you posted as plans progress.
On With the Show!
Over the summer our Production Team of Jody Breakell, Wendy Blumenthal, Rita Lapcevic, Patrica Moran, Cyndy and Doug Pulick, Kathy DiGiovana, Melody Andersen, Bill Wright, Allen Jackson, Msgr. Detscher and Father Hoffmann launched a search for a director for our 2015 production. We are pleased to announce that we have engaged Joe Guttadauro, a familiar face to our cast and audiences, to direct, with Lauren Sherwood, another SCP alumnus as choreographer. Both Joe and Lauren have been active in community theatre on and off the stage throughout Fairfield County and we know we are in good hands moving forward with this year’s production of : SEUSSICAL the Musical!
While there have certainly been some major changes to our team, our SCP family remains intact, our alumni and sponsors are supportive and we look forward to many years of the very unique experience that Saint Catherine’s Players has been bringing to all: producers, actors, musicians, crew, costumes, set and lighting designers, patrons, and audiences since Joe Amato began this theatre group in 1981.