Swift Creek Mill Theatre mainstage set to delight patrons throughout season

By: Sherry Williams Kidd | Twitter: @PGJournal
Posted: April 28, 2019 | 12:30 p.m.

VIRGINIA – Swift Creek Mill Theatre has announced the lineup for their much-anticipated upcoming 2019-2020 mainstage season. There will be stories featuring mysteries, musicals, marriages, mayhem, and more. 

Swift Creek has been considered the premiere playhouse in Central Virginia for over 50 years.

Swift Creek will kick off its 54th season lineup with Holmes and Watson, by Jeffrey Hatcher. Dates for this production are September 14 through October 12, 2019. Sherlock Holmes is dead, or so it is assumed. The world knows the great detective went over the falls at Reichenbach with his nemesis, Professor Moriarty. As the body of Holmes was never retrieved, a number of frauds, fakes, and outright charlatans have come forward to lay claim to his identity. Of course, it then falls to Dr. Watson to disprove them. Then, a telegram arrives informing Watson that three men, each claiming to be Holmes, have been committed to a remote asylum off the coast of Scotland. Now, Watson must discover if one of the madmen is indeed the real Sherlock Holmes. Whew—what a pickle! Opening night is September 15, a preview is slated for September 14, and pay-what-you-can is September 13, 2019.

The Mystery of Edwin Drood, by Rupert Holmes, will run November 16 through December 28, 2019. This can best be described as a different story every single night! Based on the final novel of Charles Dickens, which was unfinished, this hilarious whodunit invites the audience to solve its mystery by choosing the identity of the murderer. The tale is presented as a show-within-a-show, as the Music Hall Royale, a delightfully loony Victorian theatre company, presents Dickens brooding mystery. There is great music, lots of musical hall dancing, and some really fun and hilarious twists along the way. Opening night is November 16, a preview set for is November 15, and pay-what-you-can is November 14, 2019.

Alice Murphy, portrayed by Grey Garrett, has a heart-to-heart with Mama Murphy, portrayed by Jacqueline O’Connor during their current showing of Bright Star. (Swift Creek Mill Theatre)

Daddy Long Legs, by John Caird and Paul Gordon, will run January 25 through February 22, 2020. Based on the classic novel, which inspired the 1955 movie starring Fred Astaire, Daddy Long Legs is a beloved tale in the spirit of Jane Austen, The Brontë Sisters, and “Downton Abbey.” Daddy Long Legs features music and lyrics by Tony Award-nominated composer and lyricist, Paul Gordon (Jane Eyre), and Tony-winning librettist and director, John Caird (Les Misérables). This is a rags-to-riches tale of newfound love. Opening night is January 25, a preview is January 24, and pay-what-you-can is January 23, 2020.

I Love You! You’re Perfect! Now Change! This hilarious production is by Joe DePietro and Jimmy Roberts and will run March 21 through May 2, 2020. The longest-running off-Broadway revue in history is revised for the 21st century. This celebration of the mating game takes on the truths and myths behind that contemporary conundrum known as “the relationship.” Explore the journey from dating and waiting to love and marriage. Then, witness the agonies and triumphs of in-laws and newborns, trips in the family car, and pick-up techniques of the geriatric set. This over-the-top hilarious revue pays tribute to those who have loved and lost, to those who have fallen on their face at the portal of romance, to those who have dared to ask, “Say, what are you doing Saturday night?” Opening night is March 21, a preview is set for March 20, and pay-what-you-can is March 19, 2020.

Unnecessary Farce, by Paul Slade Smith, will run May 30 through June 27, 2020. Just imagine; there are two cops, three crooks, and eight doors. In a cheap motel room, an embezzling mayor is supposed to meet with his female accountant, while in the room next-door, two undercover cops wait to catch the meeting on videotape. There is confusion, of course, as to who’s in which room, who’s being videotaped, who’s taken the money, who’s hired a hit-man, and why the accountant keeps taking off her clothes. Go figure. Opening night is May 30, a preview is set for May 29, and pay-what-you-can is May 28, 2020.

“I want to welcome all of Virginia to Season 2019-2020,” said Tom Width, Artistic Director! “I am delighted to offer you an eclectic lineup of shows with something for everyone: a psychological thriller that searches for a legendary sleuth; a musical romp through Dickens’ final tale; a love story sung to perfection; a re-imagined version of a classic about couplehood; and a raise-the-roof, slightly naughty farce. All were chosen with you, our loyal patrons, in mind. As always, I promise you great productions, with the finest Central Virginia talent, both onstage and behind the scenes. I am so proud to have been a part of this, The People’s Playhouse, for 43 of its 53-years, and I hope you will join us as we head into year 54!”

The theatre has been the best kept secret in performing arts in Southside Virginia as their shows continue to dazzle locals and reinforce their reputation of high-quality productions for the whole family. (Swift Creek Mill Theatre)

Swift Creek Mill is one of the oldest registered landmarks in the nation and is home to the historic Swift Creek Mill Theatre, a not-for-profit, that has been providing Central and Southside Virginia professional performing arts for over 50 years. The Mill, as patrons call it, has long been a beacon for cultural arts and a trusted resource in the area. Find out more about The Mill at swiftcreekmill.com. 

Season, individual show, and dining tickets are available for evening, matinee, weekend, and weekday shows. Dining is offered two hours prior to each performance, and depending upon show-time maybe dinner, lunch, or brunch. For more information about the Mainstage Season at Swift Creek Mill Theatre, dates and times for specific shows, the price of tickets, dining, and more contact info@swiftcreekmill.com or call 804-748-5203.

“The Mill is changing, growing, and adapting for our audience, and for our community,” said Steven Koehler, Managing Director. “Through all these changes, we will always remain the People’s Playhouse. The new season will continue to bring new ideas, new programs, fresh approaches, and new opportunities. So many small adjustments are in place: brunch, Theatre (sippy) cups, our Cabaret series, the hiring of Andrea Huntjens as Food and Beverage Manager, giving us a fresh and exhilarating take on food, and so much more. Thanks to all of you who are a part of our theatrical home; the southern-most professional theatre in the Greater Richmond region, the largest arts organization in Chesterfield County, and your Playhouse for more than 50 years.”

There is nothing quite as magical as spending time at the theatre. Far-away places, love, mystery, intrigue, laughter, sadness, and that one magnificent character or song that affects you so profoundly, that it stays with you your entire life.

Copyright 2019 by Womack Publishing
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