“Lost in Yonkers” Opens Church Hill Theatre’s 2015 Season

January 3, 2015
By

Church Hill Theatre
Church Hill, MD
January 2, 2015

Neil Simon’s prize winning play Lost in Yonkers will open Church Hill Theatre’s 2015 season with performances from January 16 to February 1, 2015. Directed by Pat Patterson, Simon’s heart-wrenching comedy, set in the early days of World War II, is a loving tribute to dysfunctional Jewish family values. Can two young teenaged boys survive a year with their cane-wielding grandmother and addled Aunt Bella? Will the mobsters really knock off their dad or scary Uncle Louie? Find out as CHT recreates the hothouse atmosphere of a crowded apartment in 1942 Yonkers, New York.

Simon’s 1991 play won Pulitzer, Drama Desk and Tony awards for best play and some critics consider this semi-autobiographical comedy to be his finest work. Lost in Yonkers was also adapted for the screen in a successful 1993 release featuring Richard Dreyfuss. Mercedes Ruehl, Irene Worth and Kevin Spacey all won numerous acting awards for their roles in the original stage play.

Patterson has double-cast the roles of Jay and Arty Kurnitz with brothers Steven and Zachery Goss (Chestertown) and Tim Daly (Queen Anne) and Drew Claxton (Grasonville). Minnie Maloney (Millington) will play Bella Kurnitz, the boys’ mentally challenged aunt who hopes for happiness with a 40-year-old movie usher. Jeff Daly plays the boys’ father Eddie, who went deeply into debt to the mob to pay family medical bills. Rachel Goss plays their Aunt Gert, who can’t talk properly, and Dylan Lyles, a Chesapeake College student, plays their exciting Uncle Louie—a man with a gun. Kathy Jones (Kent Island), with extensive CHT credits, plays Grandma Kurnitz, the boys’ stern and rather terrifying German-born grandmother.

Charles (Pat) Patterson last directed How the Other Half Loves at CHT and recently appeared as Matthew Harrison Brady in the Garfield’s production of Inherit the Wind. His production team includes co-producers Sylvia Maloney and David Bowering, assistant director and costumer Sheila Austrian, and stage manager Stacey Faust. Michael Whitehill designed and constructed the set, which was finished by artist Brian Draper. Nic Carter and Doug Kaufmann designed the lighting and Chris Rogers put together the music and sound cues. Brian Boyles of Chestertown provides hair styling guidance. Alison and Robert Lynch will operate the lights and sounds during the production and Jusden Messick will assist with set and costume changes.

Lost in Yonkers runs from January 16 to February 1, with performances on Fridays and Saturdays at 8 pm and on Sundays at 2 pm. CHT offers special 2 for the price of 1 tickets on opening night, Friday, January 16, but only for those who call for reservations. The special offer will be honored at the box office on opening night if tickets are still available. Call the box office at 410-556-6003 or visit the website www.churchhilltheatre.org for details and reservations.

Grandma Kurnitz (Kathy Jones) admonishes Jay, left (Steven Goss) and Arty, right (Drew Claxton)  for playing football  in the living room  in Neil Simon’s  play Lost in Yonkers playing  January 16 through Feb. 1, 2015 at Church Hill Theatre. (Submitted Photo)

Grandma Kurnitz (Kathy Jones) admonishes Jay, left (Steven Goss) and Arty, right (Drew Claxton) for playing football in the living room in Neil Simon’s play Lost in Yonkers playing January 16 through Feb. 1, 2015 at Church Hill Theatre. (Submitted Photo)

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