Quincy Community Theatre musical features anti-bullying theme - Quincy Herald-Whig | Illinois & Missouri News, Sports

Quincy Community Theatre musical to feature anti-bullying message

Posted: Updated:
The cast of Wanda’s World perform the Halloween Dance during rehearsal last week at the Quincy Community Theatre. The QCT will present the regional premiere of “Wanda’s World” at the Oakley-Lindsay Center on Jan. 31. (H-W Photo/Michael Kipley) The cast of Wanda’s World perform the Halloween Dance during rehearsal last week at the Quincy Community Theatre. The QCT will present the regional premiere of “Wanda’s World” at the Oakley-Lindsay Center on Jan. 31. (H-W Photo/Michael Kipley)

By DON O'BRIEN
Herald-Whig Staff Writer

Eric H. Weinberger said that middle school was the "most tortured point in my life." The New York-born-and-raised playwright has used those experiences from his life in his new musical, "Wanda's World."

"I wanted (the show) to be powerful with a message," Weinberger said. "It's about being accepted and learning to accept yourself. It's about a girl with a birthmark. We used that as a symbol. Everyone has a birthmark. Everybody has something they are embarrassed about and gives them some kind of shame. We want to deal with that."

Weinberger said the musical has a strong anti-bullying message.

"It's about accepting differences," he said. "That doesn't mean you're bad or inferior. It just means your different."

Weinberger is bringing his latest work to the Quincy Community Theater. A cast filled with children from the area will present "Wanda's World" Jan. 31-Feb. 3. The Quincy production will be the first of four regional productions of the musical this year. Originally scripted to have adults play the roles, the musical is being worked so that kids can play the parts. Weinberger saw a production in Austin, Texas, where kids were used to play the parts.

"It was a great experience to see the kids do it," Weinberger said. "I hope it will be just fun for the kids in Quincy."

The story centers around Wanda Butternut. In her fantasy life, Wanda is beautiful, confident and always knows what to say. In reality, she has a big birthmark on her face and is terrified to start school in a new town. Thanks to the help of two teachers, Wanda overcomes the odds to feel comfortable in her new surroundings.

Weinberger and the musical's composer, Beth Falcone, will fly in to watch the performances. They will hold a special workshop for the children in the production on Saturday and will offer talk-back sessions for audience members after each performance.

This is the second musical written by Weinberger that the Quincy Community Theater has hosted in recent months. Elaine Bromka came to Quincy in November to put on Weinberger's one-woman show, "Tea For Three." Weinberger is a long-time friend of Lenny Bart, who is the QCT's managing director.

Tickets for the shows are available at the Quincy Community Theatre box office inside the Oakley-Lindsay Center. They're $12 each. Shows will be held at 7:30 p.m. on Jan. 31, Feb. 1 and Feb. 2, and at 2 p.m. on Feb. 3.

Members of the cast will sell "Wanda's World" bracelets featured in the show with all proceeds going to the Sammy Fund. Each bracelet features the slogan "Not everyone eats cheese," a saying that is used throughout the show. Bracelets will cost $1 each.

 

-- dobrien@whig.com/221-3370

 

  • Local HeadlinesLocal HeadlinesMore>>

  • Rowers will take on river in pair of weekend races

    Rowers will take on river in pair of weekend races

    Monday, September 15 2014 9:23 AM EDT2014-09-15 13:23:18 GMT
    Organizer Ray Thomas is not concerned about the recent rise of the Mississippi River and how it could affect the Quincy Five Miler and the Bear Creek Grunt on Sept. 20-21. The race is open to all types of watercraft, such as rowboats, kayaks and canoes.
    Organizer Ray Thomas is not concerned about the recent rise of the Mississippi River and how it could affect the Quincy Five Miler and the Bear Creek Grunt on Sept. 20-21. The race is open to all types of watercraft, such as rowboats, kayaks and canoes.
  • Long John Silver's, open in Quincy since 1976, closes

    Long John Silver's, open in Quincy since 1976, closes

    Tuesday, September 16 2014 6:01 PM EDT2014-09-16 22:01:02 GMT
    The Quincy Long John Silver's restaurant closed Monday night after nearly 40 years in business. Alice Stevenson, area manager with Blue Springs, Mo.-based Summit Restaurant Group, said the restaurant at 3005 Broadway “sold its last piece of fish” at 8 p.m.
    The Quincy Long John Silver's restaurant closed Monday night after nearly 40 years in business. Alice Stevenson, area manager with Blue Springs, Mo.-based Summit Restaurant Group, said the restaurant at 3005 Broadway “sold its last piece of fish” at 8 p.m.
  • Clark County Mule Festival set for Sept. 19-21

    Clark County Mule Festival set for Sept. 19-21

    Tuesday, September 16 2014 1:45 PM EDT2014-09-16 17:45:37 GMT
    KAHOKA, Mo. -- Mike Schantz said making good mules requires three things: a good mare, a good jack and plenty of time with the donkey-horse hybrids. "The more you work with them, the more they become one with you," he...
    KAHOKA, Mo. -- Mike Schantz said making good mules requires three things: a good mare, a good jack and plenty of time with the donkey-horse hybrids. "The more you work with them, the more they become one with you," he...
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and Quincy Herald-Whig. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service and Mobile Privacy Policy & Terms of Service.