LANGHORNE >> Neshaminy Valley Music Theatre will present its 63rd annual production, "My Fair Lady," on March 29, 30 and 31 and April 5 and 6 at Neshaminy High School’s Theodore Kloos Auditorium, 2001 Old Lincoln Highway in Langhorne.
Friday performances are at 8 p.m., Saturday performances at 3 and 8 p.m., and Sunday at 3 p.m. The production will be directed and choreographed by Barrymore Award-nominated director/choreographer Stephen Casey.
"My Fair Lady" is based on George Bernard Shaw's play Pygmalion, with book and lyrics by Alan Jay Lerner and music by Frederick Loewe. The musical tells the story of Eliza Doolittle, a young Cockney flower seller, and Henry Higgins, a linguistics professor who is determined to transform her into his idea of a “proper lady.”
Who is really being transformed is the question at the heart of this beloved musical. The score boasts such classic songs as “I Could Have Danced All Night,” “The Rain in Spain,” “Wouldn’t It Be Loverly” and “On the Street Where You Live.”
The original Broadway and London productions starred Rex Harrison and Julie Andrews. The musical's 1956 Broadway production was a critical and popular success winning six Tony Awards. It set a record for the longest run of any show on Broadway up to that time. It was followed by a hit London production, the popular 1964 film version, and many revivals including the currently successful run on Broadway. My Fair Lady has been called "the perfect musical."
The Neshaminy Valley production includes a cast and crew of over 50 community members from throughout the Delaware Valley region and beyond (cast and crew list by hometown follows).
Tressa McCallister of Willow Grove stars as Eliza Doolittle and Ken Marblestone of Langhorne as Professor Henry Higgins. Marblestone was awarded Outstanding Actor in a Musical in 2016 by the International Music and Entertainment Awards for his role in Neshaminy Valley’s production of The Music Man. The other cast members include Michael Powell of Hatboro as Alfred P. Doolittle, John Humphreys of Doylestown as Colonel Pickering, Ben Deschner of Newtown as Freddie Eynsford- Hill, Linda Schwandt of Fairless Hills as Mrs. Higgins, Rita Enders of Langhorne as Mrs. Pearce, Nancy Obern of Newtown as Mrs. Eynsford-Hill, Barry Dratch of Newtown as Jamie, and Joe Harris of Trevose as Harry. An ensemble portrays a range of other characters and sings and dances through numerous production numbers.
The production is being directed and choreographed by Stephen Casey, who has received three nominations from Philadelphia’s Barrymore Awards and has directed or choreographed productions for Bristol Riverside Theatre, Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival, Bucks County Playhouse, Montgomery Theatre, and Arizona Broadway Theater, and eleven prior productions with Neshaminy Valley including last year’s production of Young Frankenstein, as well as Anything Goes, Oklahoma, Curtains, and Guys and Dolls.
Jack Sariego serves as music director for the production. He has extensive experience as a director and musical director in the Philadelphia region and in Mississippi and has performed with many theater companies throughout the region in a number of operatic and musical theater leading roles.
Neshaminy Valley Music Theatre was founded in 1956 and has been producing a musical each year since. The mission of the nonprofit theater group is to raise funds through these productions and award scholarships to graduating seniors of the Neshaminy School District who plan to continue their studies in the fine or performing arts in college. To date the organization has awarded over $150,000 in scholarships.
All the participants on stage and behind the scenes are volunteers and include individuals who have performed professionally along with those who have their first performance experience with the Music Theatre.
Neshaminy Valley has received national recognition for its annual productions including 32 nominations and six wins from the International Music and Entertainment Awards including awards for Outstanding Leading Actress in a Musical, Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Musical and Outstanding Scenic Design for a Musical (Hello, Dolly!, 2017), Outstanding Leading Actress (Anything Goes, 2014), Outstanding Leading Actor (The Music Man, 2016), and Outstanding Direction of a Musical (Nice Work If You Can Get It, 2015).
Tickets for My Fair Lady are $22 general admission, $20 for seniors and $12 for youth 14 years and under when purchased in advance and an additional $2 when purchased at the door. Neshaminy Valley continues its popular flex-ticket policy: any ticket purchased is good for any seat for any show date and time, so that patrons can purchase a ticket now and decide later which performance to attend. A group rate is also available for groups of 15 or more.