College of Fine Arts and Design

UCO's Broadway Tonight Series Returns to Edmond with Final Season Production "Summer of '42"

May 6, 2010

After years of performances scheduled at Rose State Performing Arts Theater, the University of Central Oklahoma's Broadway Tonight series returns to Edmond for its final performance of the season, the Oklahoma premiere of the musical "Summer of '42."

Performances are scheduled for 7:30 p.m., May 20-22, and 2 p.m., May 23 at UCO's Mitchell Hall.

Broadway Tonight producer Greg White will direct the production and looks forward to working with four UCO alumni who have worked in theatres and playhouses all over the country, including here in the Oklahoma City metro.

"We are so excited to have professional guests artists who used to go to school here," White said.  

Returning alumni include Jessica Chesbro, Matthew Bergman, Jay Krottinger and Jon Haque.

Chesbro, a crowd favorite who now lives in New York, plays the lead female role of Dorothy, and Bergman plays the lead male role of Hermie. The rest of the cast are current UCO musical theater students.

Based on the memoirs of screenwriter Herman Raucher, "Summer of '42" centers around the lives of Hermie and his buddies who are vacationing on the coast of Maine in 1942.

Hermie becomes infatuated with Dorothy, a beautiful, older woman whose husband (played by Krottinger) leaves home to fight the war in the Pacific.

"The musical begins as an older Hermie returns to the island and reflects back on that time in his life," White said.

"The story plays on dualities-the coming of age, a husband killed, the American sense of World War II-a different mindset, that shift in thought.  It is the moment before innocence lost and is as much about America as it is about Hermie."

Many people will also recognize Haque, who performs locally on a regular basis and who has served on various local theater boards.

For tickets to "Summer of '42," call the Mitchell Hall box office at (405) 974-3375.  For more information and to read White's blog about the production, visit www.uco.edu/broadway.