Oliver! Fairfield Area Community Theatre Presents a Musical Classic at FHS June 13–16

Lou Bolster (left) as Fagin, and Liam Robbins as Oliver

Fairfield Area Community Theatre (FACT) is thrilled to share with you the budding talents of its community members in an exuberant and wickedly funny all-ages musical, Lionel Bart’s Oliver!, running June 13–16 at the Micheltree, Slechta, Edgeton Auditorium at Fairfield High School.

Derived from Charles Dickens’ 1938 tale of a tender orphan boy looking for a place to call home, this well-loved story set amidst the poverty of mid 19th-century London has it all—hope and heartbreak, romance and revenge, mischief and misdemeanors, perchancery and pickpocketing, comedic characters and cockney accents—along with a quick-witted script and an award-winning score by Lionel Bart you can’t help but sing along to. From the opening number “Food, Glorious Food” and Fagin’s humorously sly “You’ve Got to Pick a Pocket or Two,” to Nancy’s rollicking barroom “Oom-Pa-Pa,” and the beautiful “Who Will Buy,” feet will be tapping and hearts will be thrumming both on and off stage.

“It’s been a while since we were able to produce an family musical of this scope, and we are thrilled to be working with so many new faces from all around town,” says FACT Director Diana Flynn. “The kids around here (and even a few of the adults) are wielding some serious talent, and we feel lucky to have snagged so many of them for this very fun show we hope everyone—and all of their cousins and grandparents—will come and see!”

Principal youth roles are played by Liam Dowd-Robbins (Oliver) and Violet Hilger (Artful Dodger), joined by Lou Bolster (Fagin), Loreena Hansen and Dustin Matthews (Nancy, Bill Sykes), Erin Epperson (Nancy understudy), Phoenix Haessler and Ledger Logli (Bet, Charley Bates), Andrew MacKenzie and Dee Ann Lantz (Mr. Bumble & Widow Corney), Tommy Brower and Meredith Siemsen (Mr. & Mrs. Sowerberry), Amber and Nathaniel Adkins (Charlotte & Noah Claypole), as well as Richard Morell, Ronda Logli, Doug Marshall, and Gerry Garles (Brownlow, Bedwin, Grimwig, and Old Sally).

The huge ensemble includes (orphans) Aria Reiter, Audrey Bailey, Edmund Adkins, Hailey Bailey, Audrey Robbins, Aviva Bar Shimon, Carsyn Starnes, Cielo Lee, Cricket Reed, Donovan Adams, Edmund Adkins, Ethan Phomvisay, Kahlessi Kelley, Lucy Bowers, Owen Ehret, Serenity Dille, Valerie Kessel, and Zoey White; (pickpockets) Braezyn Stutzman, Brenna Golden, Brooklyn Reinier, Ledger Logli, Peyton Sirdoreus, Quimby Scotton, Reece Rasmussen, Sloan Brower, Thisbe Adkins, and Vivian Miller; plus (sundry adult talents) Alaris Todar, Erin Epperson, Alexandria Adams, Amber Burroughs, Emma Phomvisay, Brian Robbins, Jason Deprey, and Kamilla Mustafaa.

FACT is incredibly grateful for everyone who pitched in, including a local band directed by Jim Edgeton, rehearsal accompanists LeAnne Edgeton and Mindy Phomvisay, miracle-worker (set builder and painter extraordinaire) Alexandria Adams, set and lighting guru Mary Williams, and the many, many, many others helping with choreography, props, costumes, construction, and behind-the-scenes magic. Special thanks also go out to Fairfield High School for the generous sharing of their stage, costumes, and rehearsal rooms.

Tickets for Oliver! can be purchased (cash or check only) at the Chamber of Commerce, 204 W. Broadway (open Mon. to Fri. 9 a.m.–3 p.m.) or at the door. Showtimes are Thursday–Saturday, June 13–15, at 7 p.m., with a 2 p.m. matinee on Sunday, June 16. Tickets are general seating: $10 for youth, $20 for adults.

Lionel Bart’s Oliver! is presented with special arrangement by Cameron Mackintosh.