The cast for The Great American Trailer Park Musical has been announced by UW-WC’s Assistant Professor Brad Ford, who is directing and producing the spring play.
Cast members and their characters include:
- Mary Wittmann as Betty (den-mother type)
- Danielle Rogne as Lin (short for Linoleum)
- Sheena DeLong as Pickles (sweet but not too bright)
- Missy deIrueste as Jeannie (agoraphobic wife of Norbert)
- Collette Merrill as Pippi (runaway stripper who moves into Armadillo Acres Trailer Park and creates a lot of chaos)
- Carl Liden as Norbert (“regular guy” - married to Jeannie for 20 years)
- Christophe Jenkins as Duke (Pippi’s obsessive and possessive boyfriend).
The production staff includes: Katie Kottke, Assistant Director; Ernie Brusbardis, Vocal Director; Lisa Schnabel, Choreographer; Daniel Steubs, Lighting Manager; Dan Koenings, Scene Shop Supervisor; and Amy Kottke, Stage Manager. The production crew includes Samantha Jacob, Josh Pope and Daniel Steubs.
The very fun and sometimes silly performance comes with this warning: “Contains tacky outfits, bad perms, exotic dancers, 80s nostalgia, road kill, strong language, and spray cheese – everything a musical should be!” The “triplets of tackiness” - Betty, Lin and Pickles tell the story of the trailer park (Armadillo Acres) which is “a little bit country and a little bit rock and roll – but 100 percent trashy.”
Written by David Nehls and Betsy Kelso, The Great American Trailer Park Musical was first produced at the 2004 New York Musical Theatre Festival. Nehls wrote the script based on his experience as a young paperboy who found his neighbors in a nearby trailer park to be “the people who had the hot cocoa and cookies for me and would always engage me in conversation. They were the coolest people on the paper route; and they were so lovely,” he said. Never looking down the trailer park lifestyle, the authors portray the characters as generally sincere loveable people (although they may be uneducated and a bit lazy at times).
According to The New York Sun review, “The Trailer Park meets South Park in this big-hearted new musical comedy with a cheeky script and infectious score.” The New York Times deemed it “undeniable fun.”
Three performances are planned, including Friday and Saturday evening, March 7 and 8 at 7:30pm and a Sunday matinee on March 9 at 2pm. All performances take place in the University theatre, located on the second floor of the campus at 400 University Drive in West Bend. Tickets are $12 adults and $9 for seniors (over 62) and youth (under 18). Reservations are recommended and can be made by phoning the campus at 262-335-5208.