“Man of La Mancha” Coming to SSC Stage

SOUTH HOLLAND, IL–The SSC Playhouse announces its spring production of the remarkable Broadway musical Man of La Mancha. This is a play-within-a-play, based on Miguel de Cervantes’ “Don Quixote.” Come dream “the impossible dream” as the most beloved fool in history entertains our senses and inspires us “to reach the unreachable star.” The musical runs Tuesday, April 19 through Saturday, April 23 at 8 pm, with 2 pm matinees on Saturday, April 23 and Sunday, April 24 in the Kindig Performing Arts Center of South Suburban College.

Man of La Mancha is a poignant story of a dying old man whose impossible dream takes over his mind. Cervantes, an utter failure as playwright, poet and tax collector for the government, has been thrown into prison during the Inquisition. There his fellow prisoners confiscate his meager possessions, one of which is the uncompleted manuscript of a novel called “Don Quixote.” Cervantes, seeking to save it, proposes to offer a novel defense in the form of entertainment. The “court” agrees and before their eyes, donning makeup and costume, Cervantes and his faithful manservant transform themselves into Don Quixote and Sancho Panza. They play out the story with the participation of the prisoners as other characters who soon understand that Cervantes’ dream offers them hope and redemption. His dream is Everyman’s dream. His tilting at windmills is Everyman’s great adventure. Man of La Mancha speaks for humankind. Songs include Little Bird, Little Bird, It’s All the Same, Dulcinea, I Really Like Him, and The Impossible Dream.

South Holland residents and SSC students Paul Williams, Jr. plays Don Quixote and Monee Webster plays Aldonza; Wesley E. Perkins, Jr. of Markham plays Sancho Panza. The company includes Dylan Arrington and Jameel Virgil Bowen of Lansing, Debbie Burt-Frazier of Dolton, Ben Branch, Julian Hall, Joshua Hunter and Brynden McCrary of South Holland; Jeremiah Caldwell of Riverdale, Todd Neal of Chicago, Jeremiah Perez of Plainfield, Sabrina Jones of Burnham, Mike Ross of Harvey, Gabreale Rucker of Country Club Hills, Ashley Scarpinato of Oak Lawn, and Jacqueline Perez, Robert Smagacz, Maxine Wilson of Calumet City. Kahlil Slater of Phoenix is the assistant to the director and the stage manager. Production stage manager is Dominic Bellamy-Palma of Crestwood.

Jeremiah Perez of Plainfield is master carpenter, with set builders Mike Ross of Harvey and Jameel Virgil Bowen of Lansing; lighting design is by Lydia Bellamy-Palma of Crestwood; sound engineer is Dwain Whitted of Harvey; sound effects are by Jordan Swierczyna of Crestwood; costumes and props are by Michelle Bryant of Calumet City; publicity is by Ellie Shunko of Lansing. Band members include Marshall L. Bennett of Frankfort, RaAmen Berry of Calumet City, Leslie Hodges of Joliet, Armando Quetzalcoatl of Chicago, and Timothy D. Walker, Jr. of Chicago. Cherita Reed Wilson of Chicago is musical director. The production is produced, directed and staged by SSC Playhouse Director Bobbie Saltzman of Chicago.

Now its 15th year, the SSC Playhouse offers a range of fully accredited classes in theatre and drama to provide students with ample preparation for success in four-year college and university theatre programs. The Playhouse has presented more than 50 theatre scholarships to students. Past productions include Six Degrees of Separation, Godspell, A Streetcar Named Desire, Oklahoma, Liliom and Lend Me a Tenor. The SSC Playhouse: Because Talent Doesn’t Discriminate.

For information or tickets, call the 24/7 box office voicemail line at (708) 210-5741, leave a message and your call will be returned. General admission is $10; seniors, students, and SSC employees, $8; groups of 12 or more also receive the special rate; SSC students with IDs receive a “buy one, get one free” $8 offer. As always, veterans and members of the armed forces may attend a performance free of charge. The production has received generous support from the SSC Foundation and President Don Manning.

South Suburban College is located at 15800 S. State Street in South Holland, Illinois, between Sibley Boulevard and 159th Street. The campus is convenient to Routes 94, 80, 57, and 294. Free, ample, well-lit parking is available.