Peterborough, NH – While onstage offerings are on hiatus, the Peterborough Players has been keeping connected with their treasured patrons and community through entertaining, engaging, and original digital programming under their Players Online umbrella.
On October 23rd and 30th the Players will host the first in a new three-workshop series called Playgroup. For patrons and artists alike, Playgroup provides an opportunity to learn, interact, and discover the elements that comprise the theatre they love. Three theatrical subject matter experts will share their knowledge and experience in two-session workshops. Admission is FREE, but registration is required.
The series will begin by welcoming Peterborough Players and Pioneer Theatre Company Former Artistic Director, MacDowell Fellow, and playwright Charles Morey. Morey will present on The Mechanics of Comedy, with a spotlight on his hysterical farce The Ladies Man, produced at the Players in 2016. Moderated by Associate Artistic Director Tom Frey, Session 1 on October 23 will be an overview and discussion of the ins, outs, and “rules” of comedy. Session 2 on October 30 will be a deeper dive into comedy, featuring Frey and Players favorite Kraig Swartz performing brief scenes, including excerpts from The Ladies Man, with thoughts, input, and adjustment from Morey. Participants will be able to submit questions to the artists via chat during each session.
“Playgroup will give people the chance to experience what it actually takes to do what we do, beyond what they see on stage. This is an opportunity to invite patrons to an ‘open rehearsal’ of sorts, and really show them what goes into making theatre – how do we create comedy? How do we workshop a play? How do we interpret great works? We’re excited to bring this unique experience to our audiences, online,” says Frey.
The series will continue with Players Artistic Director, MacDowell Fellow, actor, and playwright Gus Kaikkonen presenting on Shakespeare on November 13th and 20th , and playwright, actor, NHIA graduate, and 2020-2021 member of American Theatre Group’s PlayLab writers group for BIPOC and LBTGQIA+ voices, Tracey Conyer Lee on Playwriting on December 4th and 11th. All sessions start at 7:30pm and will last approximately one hour.
Space is limited for each session, and registration is required. Those who would like to participate in these special events can email firstname.lastname@example.org and indicate in the subject line which workshops they’d like to see. (For example: Playgroup – Morey, Playgroup – Kaikkonen and Lee, Playgroup – All) A reservation confirmation email will be received shortly after, and a second email with log-on instructions for the online sessions will follow a few days prior to the event in question.
For more of the Players’ digital offerings, visit their website, peterboroughplayers.org, and look for Players Online, follow their social media channels, and be sure to sign up for eblasts.
Peterborough, NH – With an eye towards the future, the Peterborough Players cordially invites all to bid, do good, and party with a dazzling online auction, sprint for fundraising champions, and a Virtual Gala! Free and open to all, online events will run from mid-October to early November to raise critical operating funds for the 87-year-old theatre.
Join the Players Online Auction October 11-25th. Over 95 items in all price ranges means that auction participants can support the Players in lots of ways! A host of new items join some Players’ specialties, you can claim the winning bid on a luxurious one-week stay in charming Dinan, France; gorgeous artwork from Peter Milton, Maria (Mia) Mead, Sue Callihan and others; ticket packages for the Boston Red Sox and the Boston Symphony Orchestra; must-have services like lawn care, tree service, dry cleaning, floral design, and family portraits; specialty dinners and catering packages; cooking and baking classes; and unique Players’ experiences like backstage tours and the opportunity to “snuff the famous candles“ before a show in the barn when we return.
And there’s more good reasons to join us! It’s FREE to register, and everyone who registers will be automatically entered to win one of two, $250 gift cards to Depot Square. No bids or purchases are necessary to win these gift cards. The Players Online Auction will be available through 32 Auctions at https://www.32auctions.com/PeterboroughPlayers20. You can also connect through the Players’ website, www.peterboroughplayers.org.
After our Online Auction, the Players will be conducting a one-week fundraising sprint, looking for Players Champions! Members of the Players will be reaching out to their networks to see who’s ready to be a champion for the Players and help us prepare for our robust return. This Players Champion “sprint” will be occurring from October 26-November 2.
These celebrations in support of the Players will come to a close with an entertaining Virtual Gala, streaming online on November 7th. Hosted by familiar Players faces Bridget Beirne, Kraig Swartz, and Associate Artistic Director Tom Frey, this variety show-style party will include performances from Players favorites, appearances from community members, and lots of fun. The evening will benefit the Players’ Second Company Fund a Future program, which creates the next generation of theatrical professionals. Viewers will have the opportunity to donate online or over the phone during the party. An online “cocktail half-hour” will begin at 7pm, the gala will start at 7:30pm EST. This special one-night-only online event is absolutely FREE to view and will be available on the Players’ website and Facebook page.
The Online Auction & Virtual Gala are generously sponsored by Producer level sponsor Sequoya Technologies as well as Director level sponsors Runyon Law Offices, PLLC and the New Hampshire Charitable Foundation. The Players is grateful for their support!
Watch the Players website, eblasts, and social media channels for updates! If you’d like to receive eblast updates from the Players, sign up can be found on the homepage of the Players’ website.
PETERBOROUGH, NH — June 17th would have been opening night of the Peterborough Players 87th year, and the 25th season of the leadership team of Artistic Director Gus Kaikkonen and Managing Director Keith Stevens. The season celebration would have kicked off with Last Call: Bernstein and von Karajan at the Sacher Hotel by Peter Danish - an exploration of a true-life meeting between music giants Leonard Bernstein and Herbert von Karajan.
However, just because Players actors and audiences can't gather for opening night this year doesn't mean that there won’t be a party!
The Players Backstage (from Home) Party will be a little like if a zoom cocktail party and a talkback had a baby. The Players will gather a group of some of your favorite actors, designers, and more (via zoom from home, of course!) to celebrate and answer your Players' questions, pre-submitted by patrons. While this party won't be streaming live, it’s sure to be lively!
How can you join in the fun? Lots of ways! If you’ve got a question, you can submit it to the Players via our Facebook page or by responding to one of our eblasts through June 9th. If you're not the Players e-mailing list, you can sign up on the homepage of the website, www.peterboroughplayers.org. You can also send us an email at email@example.com.
Then, tune in to the Players’ Facebook page, YouTube channel, or website any time after June 17th at 7:30pm EST to watch the video and see if your question gets answered! You’ll also be able to chat along with the “Fauxpening Night” fun between 7:30-8:30pm EST on June 17th on our Facebook or Instagram pages.
Put on some snazzy duds (you can send the Players a snap on social, if you'd like!) and raise a glass to toast what would have been your Peterborough Players Summer 2020 Opening Night! Be sure to visit the Players website and social media channels to get information, including the recipe for the cocktail of the night and more.
Peterborough, NH - Today the Peterborough Players shares the unfortunate news that, due to the ongoing health concerns related to COVID-19 and recommendations issued by health officials, we will not be able to produce our 2020 summer season. This decision was not made lightly, but was eased by our strong belief that the health and safety of our community - patrons, donors, volunteers, staff, and artists alike - is our top priority. You've taken care of us for 87 years. Let us do the same for you.
The Players will remain closed for now, but this is simply an intermission. With your gracious help and support, we've weathered many a storm in the past and come out on the other side. We take this hiatus in anticipation of a joyful return to the stage, with everyone healthy and well, sometime in the future. We very much look forward to reopening and welcoming you back to the theatre as soon as it is safe to gather.
Our staff loves the Players every bit as much as you do. Our small but dedicated team is working hard to make the appropriate accommodations for this unexpected change, and appreciates the patience of our patrons. We will reach out to anyone who has already purchased subscriptions for the summer to ensure that your purchase is handled in the way that feels best to you. We only ask for your patience as we take the time to make this contact with the care that it deserves. We are very grateful for your support and patience during this challenging time.
We will, of course, keep you updated on all the latest from the Players as we know more about our situation. We'll share news through our eblasts, on our social media channels, and on our website.
We know it's a difficult time for many folks. If you're able, your gracious donation will help us make new memories together in the future. While it’s never expected, it’s always appreciated, especially now.
We want to leave you with a few thoughts...During this time, please take care of yourself and others. Reach out to your friends and family. Think of the amazing people keeping things running day-to-day, and the incredible healthcare workers and public servants giving everything to keep us all safe.
And then, from time to time, think of your favorite Players memory - be it a play that broke your heart or made you think or laugh out loud, a post-show cabaret that brought you joy, a warm and cozy winter reception by the fire, or simply meeting friends, at intermission on the patio on a summer night, to chat about the evening's performance.
That will all be back. We can't wait for it, either.
With endless gratitude for your many years of love and support,
Your Peterborough Players
Gus Kaikkonen, Artistic Director
Keith Stevens, Managing Director
Beth Brown, Advancement Director
Joanne Stevens, Operations Manager
Bridget Beirne, Marketing Director
Peterborough, NH – Peterborough Players is proud to announce their 2020 Summer Season, where “Anything can happen…”! The Players has a lot to celebrate as this summer commemorates not only the 87th year of the Players, but the 25th season of lauded leadership team, Artistic Director Gus Kaikkonen and Managing Director Keith Stevens.
The season begins with Last Call (Bernstein and von Karajan at the Sacher Hotel) by Peter Danish, on stage from June 17th-28th. A new play produced in collaboration with New York’s Phoenix Theatre Ensemble, Last Call is based on a real-life encounter at the Bar of the Sacher Hotel between celebrated classical music figures and cultural icons Leonard Bernstein and Herbert von Karajan. After half a century of intense competition these giants of the 20th century wrestle over art, integrity, choices, values, and the complex nature of forgiveness. Artistic Director Gus Kaikkonen will appear as Bernstein.
Duncan McMillan’s Lungs is a bristling dynamic love story that encapsulates the paradoxes of modern masculinity and empowered femininity in brilliant scenes that quick cut, leap forward in time, change locations instantly and range from comic, to tender, to enraged. Revived last year for a sold-out run at the Old Vic starring Claire Foy and Matt Smith (from The Crown), this Best New Play award-winning piece presents a perfectly imperfect couple grappling with what should be a simple question: whether or not to have a child. Lungs runs from July 1st-12th.
An impassable blizzard strands seven strangers in a country inn. A police inspector arrives on skis to inform them they have a murderer in their midst. In her inimitable style, Dame Agatha Christie creates an atmosphere of shuddering suspense and black comedy in the classic "whodunit" The Mousetrap, on stage July 15th-26th. Produced at the Players in 1996 as part of Kaikkonen and Stevens’ very first summer season, this beloved mystery (also the world’s longest running play!) will serve to celebrate their 25th season at the Players.
This year’s Main Stage musical is a favorite among musical lovers and a timeless masterpiece – Steven Sondheim and James Lapine’s Into the Woods. A dazzling, sophisticated mash-up of the world's most popular fairy tales, the original Broadway production garnered the Drama Desk, a Grammy Award, and multiple Tony Awards. Cinderella, Rapunzel, Little Red Riding Hood, Jack and his Beanstalk, and a fabulous Witch combine forces to fend off a pair of powerful and angry Giants. Sondheim’s witty, ravishing score, James Lapine’s moving, darkly humorous book, and the perfect setting of the Players’ historic barn combine to make this adventure in the woods unlike any other. On stage July 29th -August 9th.
Shaw returns to the Players stage with Getting Married August 12th-23rd. In this humorous, breezy, and thought-provoking play, Shaw turns marriage inside out and upside-down, looking at the institution from every conceivable angle. The wedding day of an Anglican bishop's young daughter brings the bishop's extended family to London for a comic feast – or perhaps a "roast" – of the institution of Matrimony. Originally written for the stage in 1908, its conflicts remain current regarding marriage, its purpose and sanctity.
"Just call it splendid…” the New York Times said of Ben Butler by Richard Strand, the sixth play of the Main Stage season, on stage from August 26th -September 6th. Asking the question, “What if what’s right is not legal?” the play introduces General Ben Butler, a lawyer who finds himself commander of union troops during the Civil War, who knows the law states that escaped slaves must be returned to their owners. But an escaped slave – an extremely singular individual, one Shepard Mallory – arrives at Fort Monroe seeking sanctuary, and makes a powerful case for himself. This clever, funny, beautifully crafted play is part comedy, part historical drama, part biography, and often all at the same time!
The Main Stage season concludes with The Things They Carried, adapted by Jim Stowell and based on the book by Tim O’Brien. It’s the powerful telling of Tim O’Brien’s personal journey from his innocent years in rural Minnesota to the jungles of Vietnam. A one-person, multi-character tour-de-force that explores and blurs the lines between truth and reality as fact and fiction in this unforgettable soldier’s journey. On stage September 9th-13th.
The Second Company will present two plays for young audiences: The Frog Princess, book by Joseph McDonough, Music and Lyrics by David Kisor, running from June 20th-July 18th, and Peter/Wendy by Jeremy Bloom, August 17th-22nd. The Frog Princess is based on a classic Russian fairytale with a rousing, modern score that finds a young man named Ivan unhappy to discover that his bride turns out to be a frog named Vasilisa. But Vasilisa is really a princess under a curse. To rescue her, Ivan must face many trials and travel around the world, using bravery and kindness to guide him along the way. Peter/Wendy is a lyrical, atmospheric interpretation of Peter Pan, stripped down to its emotional essence. Peter lures Wendy away from her nursery to the magical world of Neverland, where she joins his adventures with Tinker Bell, Tiger Lily, and the menacing Captain Hook.
Local auditions for the 2020 Summer Season will be held on March 5th, 2020 at the Peterborough Players, 55 Hadley Rd., Peterborough NH 03458. Information on what to prepare for this audition can be found on the audition page of the Peterborough Players’ website.
For more information on the Summer Season, Subscription Packages, Barn Door Flex Passes and more, visit our website www.peterboroughplayers.org, or call (603) 924-7585.
Peterborough, NH – A glimpse of summer arrives on February 7th as the Peterborough Players announce their 2020 Summer Season at the Mariposa Museum on First Friday! Artistic Director Gus Kaikkonen will be on hand to reveal the shows that have been chosen, discuss the season in general, and introduce audience members to a bit about each one. Prosecco will be served, to toast the upcoming season.
This summer is a milestone year for the Players, as they celebrate not only their 87th year of operation, but the 25th anniversary year of their leadership team, Gus Kaikkonen and Managing Director Keith Stevens. Under their guidance, the Players has expanded both the theatre and the season, introduced new HD on-screen offerings, undertaken major construction projects like the on-campus housing and more while continuing to create exceptional theatre at the highest level. This summer also marks the 25th anniversary of popular company members Kraig Swartz and Lisa Bostnar, and scenic designer Charles Morgan. The season promises to surprise, intrigue, and delight audiences once again, with newer works, classics, and the mid-summer musical.
As in years past, the Players Summer Season will consist of seven Main Stage shows and two Second Company shows for young audiences. Season Subscription packs, Barn Door Flex Passes, and Single Tickets will go on sale at later dates in the Spring and early Summer.
Join the Players for this exciting announcement and mark your calendars for what’s to come this Summer! Doors open at 5:30pm, and the program will begin at 6pm. Admission is free. The Mariposa Museum is located at 26 Main Street, downtown in Peterborough, NH.
Peterborough, NH – The perfect marriage between a treasured American poet and a beloved actor, Emmy-winner (NYPD Blue) and Tony-nominee Gordon Clapp returns for an encore performance as Robert Frost in A.M Dolan’s Robert Frost: This Verse Business, on stage at the Peterborough Players from February 6th-16th. Artistic Director Gus Kaikkonen directs this lively and inspired solo performance.
Fresh from the Lincoln Center production of The Great Society, Clapp once again breathes life into Frost, poised and waiting for the birth of a new poem. “Why don’t I say some poems to ya I’ve already written...and we’ll see if another one creeps up on me.” Frost’s endless quest to express life through metaphor – and encourage the reader to find their own meaning of life – is beautifully captured through this intimate moment between actor and audience, featuring timeless Frost classics such as Mending Wall, The Road Not Taken and Stopping By Woods on a Snowy Evening.
Celebrated American poet Robert Frost (1874-1963) penned some of the great poems of the twentieth century. He often wrote unmistakable portrayals of New England life that lead the reader on a search for greater meaning. He is the only poet to receive four Pulitzer Prizes for Poetry, as well as receiving the Congressional Gold Medal for his poetry and the Edward MacDowell Medal from the MacDowell Colony. He was also the Poet Laureate of Vermont.
While Mr. Clapp has had an extensive and celebrated career in tv, film, and on Broadway, he is perhaps best known for his Emmy Award winning turn as Det. Greg Medavoy on NYPD Blue. Audiences will also recognize him from films like Eight Men Out and Rules of Engagement, as well as television shows like Damages and Chicago Fire. Of his performance, the Nashua Telegraph has said, “When Clapp walks on…stage, he is fully Robert Frost.”
The Players Gives Community Partner for this production is the Peterborough Town Library. The Players salutes the library for its storied history and the myriad of ways it serves and enriches our community. Patrons are invited to visit the library or their Facebook page to find out more about a ticket deal for library card holders. In addition, the Pay-What-You-Can night for select members of our community will be February 7th at 7:30pm. More details about that program can be found on the Players Gives page of the Peterborough Players website.
Robert Frost: This Verse Business opens on February 6th. Performances are February 6th and 7th at 7:30pm, February 8th at 2pm and 7:30pm, February 9th at 2pm, February 13th, 14th, and 15th at 7:30pm, and February 16th at 2pm. Tickets are $43, and may be purchased online at www.peterboroughplayers.org or by calling the box office at (603) 924-7585 during box office hours.
Peterborough, NH – The Peterborough Players rings in the New Year – and new decade! – with an audience favorite, Always…Patsy Cline, created and originally directed by Ted Swindley, from January 16th -26th . This rousing musical, featuring classic Patsy Cline hits, has not been seen on the Players’ stage since 2003. The Players has a long history with the music of the country legend, having produced a separate look at Patsy Cline’s life in a different show, A Closer Walk with Patsy Cline, in 2014.
Always…Patsy Cline is full of down-home laughs and 27 of Patsy’s hit songs (including Crazy, Walking After Midnight, I Fall to Pieces, Sweet Dreams, and more). In 1961, Patsy Cline was one of the biggest stars in country music. A chance encounter before a concert began the true-to-life, long-time friendship between Patsy and her great fan, Louise Seger. Over beers and bacon-and-eggs, fan and idol became confidants, supporting each other through letters until Patsy’s untimely death at age 30. This rich, heartfelt, toe-tapping musical brings audiences on a journey through one of country music’s greatest friendships.
In her brief career, Patsy Cline left an indelible impact on the music of the 20th century. As one of the first successful crossover artists from country to pop music, she became known for several major hits, including the Willie Nelson-penned Crazy. Popular company member Bridget Beirne returns as Patsy Cline, having played Patsy Cline twice before, once in the Players’ 2014 production of A Closer Walk with Patsy Cline. Fellow Players’ favorite Lisa Bostnar returns as Patsy’s true-blue friend, Louise Seger. The production is directed by Tom Frey, and features a live band on stage.
Players Gives! Be sure to join the Players as they return to First Friday in downtown Peterborough at the Mariposa Museum on January 3rd! Beirne will perform a few Patsy Cline numbers, and be joined by director Tom Frey to discuss their process and collaboration to bring Patsy to life. The event is FREE and open to the public, doors open at 5:30pm and the program begins at 6:00pm. At the Friday, January 17th 7:30pm performance of Always…Patsy Cline, the Players will be hosting their next Pay-What-You-Can evening for select members of the community as outlined on their website. Kindly call the box office if you have any questions regarding Pay-What-You-Can Nights. The Players is also pleased to announce Andy’s Summer Playhouse as their Community Partner for this production. On Saturday, January 18th and Sunday, January 19th, the Players will be collecting donations of any size on behalf of Andy’s, as a way to say thank you to Andy’s for their many years of fostering the next generation of theatre artists and audiences.
Always…Patsy Cline runs from January 16th -26th , 2020. Tickets are $43, and maybe purchased online at peterboroughplayers.org or by calling the box office at (603) 924-7585. Barn Door Flex Passes are still available, and are always a great way to see more for less!
Peterborough, NH – Peterborough Players raise the curtain on their 2019/2020 Winter Season with A Tuna Christmas, a boisterous comedy by Jaston Williams, Joe Sears, and Ed Howard, running from December 5th-15th. As part of the season, the Players announce Players Gives, a program to reach ever deeper into the community.
A Tuna Christmas features popular company members Tom Frey (2 Pianos, 4 Hands) and Kraig Swartz (Fully Committed) and is directed by Artistic Director Gus Kaikkonen. In this boisterous and hilarious romp, Frey and Swartz portray over 20 different characters – everyone in the tiny, tight-knit, irreverent town of Tuna, Texas. As usual, the annual tree decorating contest is underway, and who knows if Vera Carp will once again take the prize. Joe Bob is trying to salvage the local theatre production of A Christmas Carol from both the town censors and the wrath of the electric company. Didi is arming the good people in town with protection against the Christmas Phantom, who’s wreaking holiday havoc and may (or may not!) be Bertha’s fresh-from-probation son, Stanley. And everyone just wants a burger from the Tastee Kreme. The Players welcome audiences to celebrate Christmas in the Greater Tuna area – a great way to add a laugh to your holidays.
In addition, the Players is pleased to announce Players Gives. The program aims to expand the reach of Players’ productions by providing reduced-cost tickets to select groups, while lending a helping hand to meaningful organizations who do a lot of good in the community. The Players look forward to being able to lower barriers to opportunity, show gratitude, and give back to some wonderful organizations, groups, and institutions.
At the Friday, December 6th 7:30pm performance of A Tuna Christmas, the Players will hold the first of three Pay-What-You-Can Nights during the Winter Season for members of select groups who serve our community each day and help make it such a great place to live and work. Members of the Armed Forces, Police, Firefighters, EMTs, Nurses and Health Aides, Teachers, and Artists are invited to see the performance with a guest for whatever they feel they can pay. The Players simply ask that you bring ID such as membership cards, websites, business cards, or anything that establishes belonging to these groups. Pay-What-You-Can tickets may be purchased ahead of time over the phone with our box office, or in-person on the evening of the performance.
In celebration of A Tuna Christmas, on December 7th at 2:00pm, December 7th at 7:30pm, and December 8th at 2:00pm, the Players will be collecting cans of tuna in the lobby on behalf of End 68 Hours of Hunger-ConVal and the Peterborough Food Pantry. For every can of tuna you bring to the Peterborough Players, you will be entered to win 2 tickets to the 2020 Summer Season at the Players! One winner will be chosen per show during those three performances.
Regular priced tickets to A Tuna Christmas are $43 and are on sale now. Subscriptions and Barn Door Flex Passes are available and are a great way to see more for less! Gift Certificates make holiday shopping easy. Tickets and more information can be found at www.peterboroughplayers.org, or by calling the Box Office at (603) 924-7585.
Peterborough, NH – The Peterborough Players is making its first journey to the London Stage! Discover Europe Ltd and the Players have teamed up to offer theatre and travel fans alike the opportunity to take a truly unique, insider’s tour of the London theatre scene from April 26 - May 3, 2020.
This small-group tour will allow travelers to experience the joy of a week in London seeing plays, meeting the people who make London theatre wonderful, and enjoying the beauty of springtime in London. Everything will be arranged for you by Discover Europe, a highly regarded local small-group travel company with over 20 years’ experience. As a very special bonus, Players' favorites Artistic Director Gus Kaikkonen and company member Kraig Swartz will be traveling with the group as artistic hosts!
The trip includes 6 nights' accommodation in a first-class hotel, including all taxes and service charges, all ground transportation as detailed in the itinerary, breakfast daily, 1 afternoon tea and 2 dinners, a Discover Europe tour guide throughout, the best seats to 4 major productions and special tours and discussions arranged exclusively for our group. You will have the chance to really explore and experience the best of London.
To ensure that the group will see the best the West End has to offer, the four productions included in the trip will be chosen at a later date. Travelers will have the opportunity to explore the modern drama of London and see it with a lens focused on the legacy of dramatic production from the Globe Theatre to the National Theatre. While the tour will have the theatre at its core, there will be plenty of time to explore other things like England’s historic homes and galleries to give travelers a glimpse into the world of London beyond the stage.
For a full itinerary and to be a part of this very special, inaugural theatre tour, contact Kelsey Matson at Discover Europe for more information: firstname.lastname@example.org, (866) 563-7077.