Goshen News, Goshen, IN

March 21, 2013

'9 to 5' to be performed in Bristol

By SCOTT WEISSER
THE GOSHEN NEWS

BRISTOL — What to do in a workplace with a bad boss and limited opportunities for advancement?

Hold the boss captive, persevere and triumph — and sing.

Such is the world of “9 to 5: The Musical,” now heading into its final weekend run of shows at The Bristol Opera House. The Elkhart Civic Theatre production marks the musical’s regional premiere.

Director Michael Cripe explained that the show is based on the 1979 movie starring Dolly Parton, Lily Tomlin and Jane Fonda.

“It’s about an office in New York City in the late 1970s,” he said. “It’s about three women who want to get ahead in life — and it’s the ‘boys’ club,’ so all the men in the office are the ones who get promoted and not the women.”

Suffice it to say the status quo is about to change at the office.

“The play is pretty much the same (as the film), except this is a musical, and it’s all music with dialogue,” Cripe said, noting that the show also includes several dance numbers. The music was written by Parton.

Cast members

In the Elkhart Civic Theatre show, the three rebellious employees are played by Stephanie Yoder (Judy), Bridgette Greene (Violet) and Ashlea Romano (Doralee). The boss, Mr. Hart, is portrayed by Byron Brown, with his assistant Roz played by Susan South.

The cast also includes Brock Butler, Zach Rivers, Dan Cotton, Dave Kempher, Maddie Williams, Beth Bloss, Joy Freude, Lenette Votava, Karen McKenna, Kelsey Olsen, Ruth Jones, Cathy Ellesworth, Elijah Turner, Tell Williams, Tom Doughty and Dawn Blessing.

Cripe brings a wealth of theatrical experience to the show. It includes several years on Broadway, where he was part of the “Victor/Victoria” cast alongside Julie Andrews. He’s worked on cruise ships and in Las Vegas, and directed shows at Amish Acres and with South Bend Civic Theatre, in addition to Elkhart Civic Theatre.

As for Cripe’s latest venture, he has a crowd-pleaser.

“They’re laughing all the time,” he said of the audience reaction to “9 to 5.”

Sue King is the musical’s assistant director, with Kay Hoffmeister directing the vocals, Eleni Owens as choreographer and musical direction by Miriam Houck.

If you want to go

9 to 5: The Musical” will be performed Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m. at The Bristol Opera House, 210 E. Vistula St., Bristol.

Tickets cost $15 for adults and $13 for students and senior citizens age 62 and older. They can be purchased by calling the box office at 574-848-4116 through Friday from 1 to 5:30 p.m., or going online to www.elkhartcivictheatre.org.