A User-Driven Site for Theater in Atlanta, Georgia
The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee
a Musical Comedy
by Songs - William Finn; book - Rachel Sheinkin

COMPANY : Rosewater Theatre Company [WEBSITE]
VENUE : Rosewater Theatre [WEBSITE]
ID# 3735

SHOWING : June 04, 2010 - June 26, 2010



Six young people in the throes of puberty, overseen by grown-ups who barely managed to escape childhood themselves, learn that winning isn't everything and that losing doesn't necessarily make you a loser.

THE 25TH ANNUAL PUTNAM COUNTY SPELLING BEE is a hilarious tale of overachievers' angst chronicling the experience of six adolescent outsiders vying for the spelling championship of a lifetime. The competition is intense. The words are hilarious. Let the spelling begin! The show centers around a fictional spelling bee in Putnam County, New York. The six kids face off in the battle of their lives. They compete against each other as well as members of the audience. Three adults help adjudicate the proceedings: a nostalgic former spelling bee winner, a mildly insane Vice Principal and the Official Comfort Counselor completing his community service to the state of New York. The show's Tony Award winning creative team has created the unlikeliest of hit musicals about the unlikeliest of heroes: a quirky yet charming cast of outsiders for whom a spelling bee is the one place where they can stand out and fit in at the same time. This Tony Award-winning musical debuted on Broadway in 2005. Who knows? ... you just might be invited on stage to compete in The Bee yourself! Rated PG-13 for adult content.

Musical Director Leigh Ann McIlvain
Director G. Scott Riley
Marcy Park Leslie Bellair
Chip Tolentino/Jesus Doug Cashell
Logainne Schwartzandgrubenierre Gretchen Rebecca Gordon
Vice Principal Douglas Panch Chad Gordon
William Barfee Ali Gutierrez
Olive Ostrovsky Diane Mitchell
Leaf Coneybear/Carl Dad/Olive's Dad Nicholas Morrett
Mitch Mahoney/Dan Dad Peter Perozzi
Rona Lisa Peretti/Olive's Mom Jennifer Waldman
Click to Submit Cast & Crew Info for this production


by TheatreLover
Saturday, November 6, 2010
Since I just reviewed the GET production of this, I figured I should send my praise the production I liked best. I will make it short and sweet, as it was several months ago I saw this. It may seem like I am not giving enough praise- or detail. But I believe I should say something!
Mitch Mahoney: He could not sing. I liked the mobster character choice, but other than that, he was horribly cast.
Will Barfee: Not original in any way- very disappointing that you made Barf into an unoriginal, mean, depressing kid. Also, the kid needs to cut his hair. Now I saw this production several months ago, so maybe did by now...
Marcy Park: What a talent! She is just perfect in this part.
Olive: She gave Olive depth- she made the character grow! I liked her voice a lot.
Chip: He couldn't really sing, but played Chip perfectly. He was a smart ass horndog- just as I wanted him to be. Also, his southern Jesus was pretty entertaining!
Logainne: She was cute and had a good voice, but for some reason, that I cannot remember, I could not relate to her. Like, I didn't really care when she was eliminated. I just don't remember why I felt this way.
Panch: I did not care for him. He made an impartial word pronouncer who eventually falls for Rona Lisa Peretti into a pedophile. However, I did like some of his one liners- like the partial baseball score one...
Coneybear: Super talented kid. He played three parts. The kid, dad, and Olive's dad. What a voice and talent. Nick Morrett will be going far- I look forward to seeing him in more shows.
Rona Lisa Peretti: My favorite of the cast- and basically the reason I am writing this review right now. After seeing the GET production, I was angry on your behalf, that you were not cast in the same role!! This lady, Jennifer Waldman had a remarkable voice!! I think you could hear a pin drop every time she sang. The way she played the character was perfect. She was an old champion who was sassy, intelligent, and acted superior to others. Why she is not in the GET production with her old cast mates, I do not understand.
Overall a fantastic production except for the following: Mitch Mahoney's singing voice (non existent), the entire performance given by Barf, and the set.
I just wish I had reviewed this sooner! [POST A COMMENT REGARDING THIS REVIEW]
The most hilarious spelling bee ever!
by wonderful1
Monday, June 21, 2010
I thoroughly enjoyed all of the cast in this show! While most of the show is very funny and outrageous, there are some poignant moments for many characters. Leslie Bellair as the "perfect" Marcy Park, learns to enjoy imperfection, Doug Cashell as Chip Tolentino experiences "extreme frustration", Gretchen Rebecca Gordon as the amazingly-named Logainne Schwartzandgrubenierre overcomes her parenting, Ali Gutierrez as William "Barfy" Barfee' learns to trust himself, Diane Mitchell as Olive Ostrovskey gains confidence, and Nicholas Morrett as Leaf Coneybear learns...a Lot! Rounding out the spelling contestants cast is Peter Perozzi as Mitch Mahoney, Chad Gordon as Vice Principal Panch, and Jennifer Waldman as Rona Lisa Peretti...even these characters "learn" something in the course of the show. Although it must be said that in the performance I saw, Mr Perozzi could do with some improvement in the vocal department. All in all, this was a Stellar cast and a Great show! Bravo! [POST A COMMENT REGARDING THIS REVIEW]
Spelling B? No: "Spelling" = A
by playgoer
Saturday, June 5, 2010
The Rosewater Theatre is putting on a terrific production of "The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee." That is due in large part to the highly talented cast, many of whom have professional credits. The show opens strongly with the unsurpassed vocals of Jennifer Waldman as Rona Lisa Peretti. Ms. Waldman carries out her role with confidence and good humor. Later, when she portrays Olive Ostrovsky's mother for one song, she brings down the house with the beauty of her strong, true voice.

The other female voices are also wonderful. Leslie Bellair, playing the "not all business!" Marcy Park, brings strength and delicacy to her role. Diane Mitchell, as Olive Ostrovsky, has a sweet, pure voice and makes the audience truly care for her. Gretchen Gordon, as Logainne BigLongCompoundLastName, adds a thrilling, powerful voice to a quirkily endearing performance. They all drive the show with their enthusiasm and professionalism.

Of the men, Nick Morrett impresses most, in all three of his roles. You can hardly believe that the goofy, irrepressible Leaf Coneybear is morphing into the more flamboyant of Logainne's two dads, then into the straitlaced, gloriously-voiced father of Olive. It's a wonderful set of performances.

Chad Gordon, as Vice Principal Douglas Panch, adds a lot of the comedy to the show. At the performance I saw, he impressed up until the last scene and epilogue, when he suddenly seemed unsure of his lines. That problem will probably disappear later in the run. Doug Cashell, as Chip Tolentino, throws himself totally into his role, but shows occasional vocal strain as a result. A little more control and a tiny bit less abandon would help his performance.

Ali Gutierrez uses his long hair as an advantage in his role as William Barfee (which wasn't the case in "How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying" last year) and his "magic foot" action is impressive and fluid. His voice uses some of the weird inflections of the Broadway original, but generally sounds quite good. Peter Perozzi lands his work as an actor as comfort counselor Mitch Mahoney and Logainne's other dad, but his sour solo singing mars the show.

The production has an ambitious lighting scheme that is generally successful. Occasionally, though, the actors don't find the light and play a scene obscured in semi-darkness. That too is likely to improve in the coming weeks of the run. The simple set is functional and works surprisingly well in a production in the round that frequently sends actors up into the aisles.

Audience participation consists of four pre-selected members brought onstage to take part in the spelling competition. One is allowed to stay around longer than the others, and luckily it was not one of the hammy ones in the performance I saw. It's a funny bit when Vice Principal Panch gives this audience participant an impossibly long word, then answers with a curt "no" to each request for definition, origin, and repeated pronunciation. The show is light and good-humored, delivering a great evening (or afternoon) of entertaining theatre. I thoroughly enjoyed it. [POST A COMMENT REGARDING THIS REVIEW]
Agreed at last. by BenAround
Finally playgoer and I agree. I know too many of the actors in this show to write an unbiased review, and just saw the show on its closing weekend, so I bowed out.

This was a great effort on the part of the ensemble and it paid off. I particularly enjoyed the chemistry they displayed on stage. Each developed a distinct character and gave a solid performance. I was not disappointed with the singing at all. The powerful trio from Ms. Mitchell, Ms. Waldman and Mr. Morrett was clearly one of the highlights of this show.

Even though this production has closed, I urge you all to see another one. (There are several in the coming weeks, I hear). This show deserves another look-see.

As usual, my two cents is overspent,


Roméo et Juliette
by Charles Gounod
Capitol City Opera Company
The Bridges of Madison County
by Marsha Norman and Jason Robert Brown
The Front Porch Players
The Man Who Came to Dinner
by Kauffman and Hart
Lionheart Theatre Company
The Man Who Came to Dinner
by Kauffman and Hart
Lionheart Theatre Company
Almost, Maine
by John Cariani
Centerstage North Theatre
BattleActs! Comedy Improv Competition
Laughing Matters
Daddy Long Legs
by John Caird (book) and Paul Gordon (songs)
The Legacy Theatre
Laughing Matters Winter Wonder Laughs
Laughing Matters
Midnight at the Masquerade
by The Murder Mystery Company
The Murder Mystery Company in Atlanta
Stories on the Strand
Atlanta Radio Theatre Company
The Bachelor! A Double Date of Death!
by Marc Farley
Agathas: A Taste of Mystery

©2012 All rights reserved.