Town and Country PlayersThe Limelight

January 2002

In this issue . . .

  • Banner Budget Year

  • Director and Producers Needed

  • 2002 Season

  • Opening Season Party

  • Veteran on the Mend

  • Club Teams with High School

  • Possible Dues Increase

  • Annual Dues Due

  • New Marketing Plan

  • Promoting Benefits

  • Birthdays at the Barn

  • Impending Renovations

  • Keeping Up the Barn

  • TheaterLinx

  • Another Banner Budget Year
    Town & Country had another successful year, if the balance sheet is any indication. Treasurer Dave Keller reported the 2001 year-end budget figures to the Board recently. Revenue for 2001 finished at $52,981, and expenses topped out at $50,847, for a net profit of $2,134.

    Keller also reported that T & C has $16,277 in the building fund, fueled by raffle proceeds and direct contributions, and $16,363 in retained earnings, which includes 2001 net profits. All productions showed a profit, said Keller, who added that expenses increased significantly in 2001, particularly advertising and utility costs. T & C spent about $8,700 in advertising in 2001 and $7,800 for utilities.

    The tragedy of September 11 didnāt help boost revenue in the fall either, though its direct effect on attendance canāt be measured. In spite of the increased expenses and overall depressed revenue, President Jim Kirkwood says he is proud of the club. "Everyone did a great job this past season," he says. "I thank you for working so hard. We have a fantastic group."

    Kirkwood says copies of the full financial report are available on request. Please contact him at

    Director and Producers Still Needed

    Executive Producer Norm Berger reports that all director slots for the coming season are filled except one, for the May show, "The Murder Room." Jim Kirkwood has agreed to work with Norm in finding someone to fill the slot. They both welcome suggestions for potential directors.

    Norm also needs producers for all shows except the Childrenās Theater productions. If youāre interested in producing and helping the club to another great season in 2002, please contact Norm Berger at

    2002 Season Now Set
    The Board recently released a complete list of shows, show dates, and audition dates for the 2002 season. (You might want to print this e-mail, cut out this section, and display it in a prominent place for quick reference.) Please note that audition times are subject to change per each director and that the days and times this year are different than in past years. Most auditions will be held on Sundays and Mondays at 7:30 PM, rather than Saturday afternoons and Sunday evenings. Watch this site for full details.

    "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum," directed by Keith Soester. Runs April 5, 6, 7, 12, 13, 14, 19, 20. Auditions January 12 and 13. Location to be announced.

    "The Murder Room," director to be announced. Runs May 10, 11, 17, 18, 19, 24, 25. Auditions March 24 and 25. Location to be announced.

    "As You Like It," directed by Ted Nordman. Runs June 14, 15, 21, 22, 23, 28, 29. Auditions April 28 and 29 at the Barn.

    "Honk," (Childrenās Theater), directed by Pat Walsh. Runs July 12, 13, 19, 20. Auditions April 7 and 8 at the Barn.

    "The Hollow," directed by John Nicolazzo. Runs August 9, 10, 16, 17, 18, 23, 24. Auditions June 23 and 24 at the Barn.

    "Fools," directed by Jim Kirkwood. Runs September 13, 14, 20, 21, 22, 27, 28. Auditions July 28 and 29 at the Barn.

    "Pegora the Witch," (Childrenās Theater), directed by Donna Nicolazzo. Runs October 19, 20, and 26 (part of the Fall Festival). Auditions August 18 and 19 at the Barn.

    Big Plans For Opening Season Party
    The T & C Board approved plans for an opening season party this spring so members can socialize, plan for the coming season, and, in general, have a great time. More information will be announced as plans become clearer.

    T & C Veteran On The Mend
    Jane Werner, who has appeared in several T & C shows, including "Into the Woods" and "Guys and Dolls," recently underwent back surgery, her second such surgery in 2001. Jane is slated to perform in a cabaret for Memorable Affairs in January. The Board wishes Jane all the best in her recovery. Cards and wishes can be sent to her at 703 Glendalough Road, Erdenheim, PA 19038.

    T & C Teams With Local High School To Stage Christmas Play
    T & C granted use of the Barn recently to Regina Francois, director of the Central Bucks West High School (C. B. West) drama club, for the schoolās November production of "A Christmas Carol." C. B. West paid T & C $2,400 for the use of the Barn for rehearsals and shows, held at the Barn while the schoolās auditorium was being renovated.

    This unusual arrangement isnāt expected to be repeated because the auditorium should be finished sometime during 2002, but the arrangement itself was considered a public relations success. The high school sold out all performances and kept the Barn in great shape throughout.

    T & C welcomes similar opportunities. If you know a group that might be interested in renting the Barn for productions, please contact Jim Kirkwood.

    Board Considers Dues Increase For 2002
    The Board is currently considering whether to increase membership dues to $35.00 per year for members who donāt wish to park. Under the plan, the fee for members who agree to park would remain at $25.00 per year. The proposal may be brought before the entire membership at the first general membership meeting in the Spring.

    Annual Dues Are Due
    Membership Chair Scott Connard plans to send a membership reminder the first week in January 2002. If you havenāt joined for the coming season but plan to, and if you donāt receive the reminder, please contact Scott.

    Marketing Plan Under Development
    The Board is working on a detailed marketing plan to increase T & C membership, enhance the clubās visibility in the community, and diversify its revenue streams. Kevin Korowicki and Scott Fishman are working together to develop the plan and will present it to the Board at an upcoming meeting. Korowicki says one of the keys to increasing membership is to provide more social interaction for members. "We need to give people a social reason to join," he says.

    Benefits Being Heavily Promoted
    Benefits Chair Scott Fishman is working on a new promotional mailer to entice businesses and non-profit organizations to purchase benefit performances. Fishman aims to start the promotional campaign in January 2002, and then follow-up the mailing with phone calls to improve the response rate.

    In addition, several banks have been approached about purchasing benefits. So far, the response has been highly positive. The Breast Cancer Foundation has also expressed interest in the coming season. Fishman and Kevin Korowicki hope to develop successful relationships with many area businesses, building not just for this year but for many years to come.

    Happy Birthday At The Barn
    Publicity Chair Lynne Anne Donchez was approached recently about the use of the Barn for a childās birthday party after a Childrenās Theater matinee this fall. For $100, some of the children who attend a 2:00 PM matinee will remain at the theater for birthday cake and ice cream. The cast would come down to meet the children as well.

    A second "Birthday at the Barn" party may be scheduled as well. Members are urged to contact Lynne Anne if they know someone who might want to plan a Birthday at the Barn party.

    Impending Renovations
    At the December Board meeting, the Board gave permission to Building and Grounds Chair Joe Spadafora to investigate the cost of repairing the club room floor and "shoring up" the structures that support the floor of the theater. Spadafora is working with a contractor to develop a proposal for the work. The Board will review the proposal before taking further action.

    Keeping Up The Barn
    Building and Grounds Chair Joe Spadafora reported recently that the Barn has been readied for the winter. In addition, many flats and set pieces too large to be stored at the Barn are now being stored at Dan Weidmanās. Spadafora and the Board extend their thanks to Dan for graciously offering the use of space on his property.

    Spadafora also told the Board that he is trying to put a team together to clean and organize the prop room, which is currently in a state of disrepair after a busy season.

    The Board set a date for the annual Barn cleanup — March 2 at 9:00 AM. More to come later.

    TheaterLinx Theater Links, great jumping off point with lots of links for the technical side of theater Tips for Speakers, an article exploring how to put acting techniques to work for public speaking Cast Album Database, database of more than 2,600 recordings of Broadway (and other) musicals; an additional database lists Broadway theatres, the musicals that played in each, and when they played

    Editorial Board
    Editor: Andy McPhee
    Associate Editor: Scott Connard
    Contributors: Lynne Anne Donchez, David Keller

    Last updated 01/08/02