Want to go?
WHAT: Harlequins Community Theatre’s 85th Season (Next to Normal the musical, Apron Strings, and Moonlight and Magnolias)
WHEN: 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays & 2 p.m. Sundays; The season opens October 19, 2012
WHERE: Harlequins Theatre, 414 Wayne St, rear, Sandusky
COST: $15.00 for musicals; $10.00 for all others
For sixty-some of those 85 years Jack and Joyce Mulaney have been members. “Dr. Squire’s wife was a cousin and we went and saw a few plays,” says Jack, speaking of the theatre’s founder, Dr. Squire.
Jack and Joyce thought it might be fun to try, so they auditioned for the last play of the season and both got parts. That was in the early 1950s and they’ve been with the theatre ever since.
The longevity of Harlequins Community Theatre stems from its dedicated and active members; some of who have never been onstage for patrons to applaud.
“I was in a skit once for members only and I wrote my own lines and I still flubbed them,” says long time member and techie Nate Fuller. Fuller did tech theatre in high school and college but never had any formal training. Tech theatre usually refers to any help behind the scenes, not just lights, sound and set building although Harlequins would never turn down talent in those areas.
“If you can sew, paint or hand an actor a prop we’d welcome you,” says Jennifer Wertz, a board member of the theatre. Many people don’t realize how much time and talent, of all kinds, it takes to put on one production.
Nestled to the south of the Follett House on Wayne Street but sequestered behind a law firm, Harlequins Theatre is not the showy diva it needs to be to get noticed. However, once it opens its bright red doors the atmosphere is palpable with the possible fantasies a theatre can bring to life. “We hear it all the time…. I never knew this [theatre] was here,” says Wertz.
Not an organization to rest on its laurels, Harlequins members are always recruiting and initiating new blood into the fold as well as trying different types of theatrical experiences. This past summer Harlequins produced Evil “Dead the Musical,” a cult favorite, under a new endeavor they coined “Harlequins on Edge”.
New member Kristyna Peitz took baby steps into the fold appearing as a “Merry Man” in “The Somewhat True Tale of Robin Hood” last spring before literally getting her hands bloody by excelling at severed heads, wigs and demon blood for “Evil Dead.” Peitz is an actress, makeup artist and special effects all rolled into one.
Harlequins is always looking for more talented members like Peitz, Fuller and Jack and Joyce Mulaney to be a part of continuing the Harlequins tradition for another 85 years!