‘Shrek the Musical' at Steel River Playhouse for 5th anniversary celebration

Shrek the Musical

It isn’t easy being ... GREEN! Bring the whole family to Steel River Playhouse, 245 E. High Street in Pottstown and celebrate the holidays with everyone’s favorite ogre, Shrek! Fun for the “kid” in all of us, Shrek the Musical runs Thursdays through Sundays, December 5th through 22nd. Take advantage of a range of special family events at no extra charge, especially during the Opening Weekend “Five Years on High” celebration in honor of Steel River’s fifth anniversary on High Street!

Here’s your Shrek refresher to access your funny bone … In a faraway kingdom turned upside down, things get ugly when an unseemly ogre – not a handsome prince – shows up to rescue a feisty princess. Add a donkey who won’t stop talking, a vertically challenged bad guy with a “short” temper, a cookie with an attitude, and over a dozen other fairy tale misfits, and you’ve got the kind of mess that calls for a real hero. Luckily, there’s one on hand – Shrek! The familiar music will have you tapping your toes, and the heartwarming story will put a smile on everyone’s face.

Opening weekend includes complimentary photos with the cast (Dec. 5 through Dec. 8), free gingerbread treats (Dec. 5) and candy cane treats (Dec. 6 through 8), and a complimentary reception sponsored by Lily’s Grill (Dec. 6). You can also join the cast and crew for special talkbacks after the show on Sundays, Dec. 6 and15.

Other special events include free “Family Fun Days” on Sundays, Dec. 8 and 15 from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m., immediately prior to the 3:00 pm matinee performances. Designed for ages 6 through Adult, Family Fun activities include comedy/improv and theater games facilitated by Steel River’s expert instructors. Pair this event with tickets to see Shrek the Musical and a FREE talk-back session to chat with the actors after the show. Make it a magical day your family will remember!

But WAIT, there’s MORE! On Saturday, December 14th, you can participate OR observe one-day only Stage Combat and Tap Dance workshops with special guest artists James N. Brown (Certified Teacher, SAFD), Adam Kissinger (Actor/Combatant, SAFD Theatre), and Johnnie Hobbs, III (Los Angeles tap dancer, actor, director, and producer). Divided by age groups, the workshops will cover unarmed stage violence as well as tap dance history, technique, and choreography. Sign up by December 5th, and receive $3 off tickets to the first weekend performances of Shrek the Musical. More information is available at www.steelriver.org.

And while you’re at Steel River, be sure to check out the new concession and retail area, where you can pre-order your intermission treats for fastest service, including Sly Fox Beer as well as an assortment of wine, sodas, indulgent treats, and healthy snacks. There’s great holiday shopping too, with Silver Shoppe jewelry and authentic gemstones, glass ornaments (including limited edition Shrek themes), and Steel River logo items (wine glasses, cheese trays and more).

The cast of Shrek the Musical includes Bryon Smith* as “Shrek” (Reading), Erica-Anne Bossman as “Fiona” (Bensalem), Michael Roman as “Donkey” (Reading), Joe Ciresi as “Farquaad” (Limerick), Ebony Pullum as “Dragon” (Philadelphia), Stephanie Haring as “Gingy” (New York), Jordan McAndrew as “Young Fiona” (Pottstown), Denise Webb as “Mama Ogre/Witch” (Coatesville), Sebastian Coates as “Young Shrek/Baby Bear” (Douglassville), Amanda Morrell as “(Mama Bear” (Phoenixville), Maddie Aicher as “Pinocchio” (North Coventry), Connor Kirk as “Elf” (Chester Springs), Becka Melanios as “Queen Lillian/Sugar Plum Fairy” (Birdsboro), Ashley West as “Teen Fiona/Knight” (Downingtown), Ben Williams as “Pig” (Pottstown), Taylor Ruffo as “Pig” (Royersford), AJ Sermarini as “Pig/Knight” (Barto), Jocelyn Shank as “Ugly Duckling” (Douglassville), Robert Webb as “Wolf” (Coatesville), Zach Reynolds as “Peter Pan/Knight” (Norristown), Olivia Helmer as “Puss-in-Boots” (Gilbertsville), Burt Merriam as “Captain of the Guard/Bishop” (Pottstown), Trent Soto as “Knight/Humpty Dumpty” (Boyertown), Nathan Esser as “Mouse” (Blue Bell), Liam Keenan as “Mouse” (North Coventry), Ben Helmer as “Mouse” (Gilbertsville), Madison Devlin as “Blue Bird” (Gilbertsville), Charles Delaney as “Thelonious/Guard” (Collegeville), Carly Silberman as ”White Rabbit”, and as “Ensemble and other characters”: Anna Pederson (Gilbertsville), Hannah Paczkowski (Pottstown), Sabrina Paulino (Coatesville), Lindsay Lohr (Schwenksville), Breyana Clark (Pottstown), Kendall Bowden (Gilbertsville), Karissa Smith (Boyertown), Abby Webb (Coatesville). The director is Deborah Stimson-Snow and the music director is Richard Lewis. *Mr. Smith appears courtesy of Actors’ Equity Association

Shrek the Musical runs Thursdays at 7:30 pm, Fridays and Saturdays at 8p.m., and Sundays at 3 p.m., December 5th through 22nd. Tickets are $15 - $27 and may be purchased online. Steel River Playhouse is located at 245 E. High St., Pottstown, PA 19464. Purchase tickets at www.steelriver.org or by contacting boxoffice@steelriver.org or 610-970-1199. Please note: children under 4 will not be admitted to the theater.

Steel River Playhouse is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) charitable education and performance facility that seeks to strengthen community, inspire creative exploration, educate, and entertain, through the presentation of quality performing arts events and education for diverse audiences. Designated as a “gateway” performing arts center, Steel River provides affordable, high quality performances, comprehensive educational offerings, and enriching volunteer opportunities in all aspects of theatre arts. The organization embraces emerging and established artists, and supports community by serving as a magnet destination for economic development and a platform for shared experiences by diverse audiences. Students and volunteers of all ages and backgrounds are encouraged to explore and grow their skills by working side-by-side with professional instructors, performers, directors, and designers. More information is available at www.steelriver.org.

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