Upcoming Show: The Glass Slipper
Auditions Dates: Tuesday, 4/30/24 and Wednesday 5/1/24 doors open at 6:30pm to fill out registration forms, doors close at 7pm

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President’s Annual Report 2016-2017



The Children’s Theatre, Inc.

President’s Annual Report


This 2016 – 2017 Season was the first year of my privilege of being President of this wonderful organization. I am looking forward to the new 2017-2018 season as we adapt and grow stronger in many ways. I think our play choices for this upcoming year will be very successful and although we all hope to have The Schwartz Center for the Arts reopen, we have gained a venue of Wells Theatre in Wesley College to begin our performance date schedule. I know many have expressed concerns over a venue but we, as the strong organization that we have become, will find a way to keep the arts in our community. A great many of our goals have been met, and we have more exciting ones ahead that we will strive to achieve as we forge on with our mission.


The mission of the Children’s Theatre, Inc. is to foster and encourage children in the development of and commitment to the highest standard of theatre through instruction, direction, and production of quality performances, whereby, its audiences may gain an appreciation for the arts.



Fortunately, we received grant funds for the 2016-2017 season: ($1,700) from DE Division

of the Arts, which allowed us to focus on all four-regular season shows. The $2,500 grant received from the Kent County Fund for the Arts helped with the extraordinary expenses incurred with a Broadway musical.

With our MUSIC MAN production, we were blessed to have Lori Connor, a local muralist/artist to create a beautiful train scene on five flats which set the stage for this fabulous musical. This was the largest cast ever to be on stage for The Children’s Theatre. It was our intention to do The Sound of Music for our musical, but there were licensing restrictions, which made us go to our backup plan, The Music Man. Lori also did the flats for the forest in ROBIN HOOD. Both professionally painted sets, like her castle flats for last year’s shows, will remain unchanged and used in future productions.


The good news is simply this: our grant writers have done it, once again! The Children’s Theatre, Inc. received funding for the 2017-2018 season from these same state and county organizations. The Delaware Division of the Arts awarded us $2,000. Those adjudicating the grants were looking especially for collaboration with other non-profit organizations. They were delighted with our Maurice Sendak partnership with the Delaware libraries last summer. We received a $2,000 grant from The Kent County Fund for the Arts. We are grateful for the opportunities and support that we have received from these organizations.

In reporting our Visitor count to the state, I am pleased to announce that our numbers have doubled! From July 2016 -July 2017, we have had approximately 10,281 visitors come through the doors of Reith Hall/Old Brick Church in the 2016-2017 season!



Receiving the $2,000 grant check from the Kent County Fund for the Arts for this season’s musical are Patricia Beetschen, President, and Sharon Crossen, grant writer. Presenting the check at the awards luncheon are Joshua Twilley and Rosemary Twilley, founders of the KCFA. (Absent from the photo is John Clendaniel, grant writer.




Our productions are supported in part by The Delaware Division of the Arts, a state agency, in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts. The Division promotes Delaware arts events on www.DelawareScene.com.


2016-2017 SHOWS

The Spell of Sleeping Beauty (November 2016)

The first show of the season brought an old favorite back to the stage. Originally performed as Patricia Beetschen’s directorial debut 15 years ago, this cast of 27 of our children/teens did an outstanding job telling the classic tale with a twist of a beautiful princess, an evil wicked fairy, a spell and a curse, good fairies and magic, but only the kiss of true love, just in time, would break the spell!



Pollyanna (January 2017)

Pollyanna is a classic tale of the greatest optimist of all time. Alexia Nadel played the title role. Pollyanna, the little orphan, whose faith in her father’s promise of finding something good in any situation, by playing a “Glad Game” changed the hearts of townsfolk and her pessimistic and domineering Aunt Polly. With a cast of 21 students, the performance on stage warmed the hearts of many.



The Music Man (March 2017)

With the largest cast that the Children’s Theatre ever assembled on stage (64), The Music Man, led by Josiah Rich as Harold Hill, a fast-talking, swindling salesman, initially mesmerizes the townsfolk with his con-man promise of a boy’s band with instruments. Once the uniforms and instruments arrive his plot soon backfires; Professor Hill has to decide whether to skip town before his true identity is revealed. However, his heart, stolen by the town librarian, (Bella Shade and Alexandra Cseke) makes leaving a con man’s dilemma.



Robin Hood

Robin Hood, the final show of our season, brought the Merry Men together with their leader Robin Hood (Ace Clark) to aid the oppressed and halt the plans of evil Prince John. Robin’s sweetheart, Maid Marian, (Amanda Finney & Julianna Brenner) participate in the plot to return King Richard to power.





A choreographed piece inspired by The Lion King was performed at The Schwartz Center for the Arts during the Dover Days celebration. This was a 20-minute show that explains the 'Circle of Life' through dance and movement. It was designed to make one feel confident within oneself. This piece created and choreographed by Tommy Price, a Children’s Theatre, Inc., alum, utilized a combination of several pop and current top hit songs and was enjoyed by many visitors.

The second offering for Dover Days was “Your Young Men Will See Visions," a short story performed as a one-man play by 14-year-old Nikolas Mandalas. It is the story told of an adolescent Delaware Native American who, on his vision quest, sees the first white men arriving. The story was written by Joseph L. Crossen, Ed.D.

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Dance inspired by The Lion King                               “Your Young Men Will See Visions”

Summer Theatrical Arts Workshop

July 31-August 4, 2017

The workshop was attended by 23 children (ages 8-13), who had an opportunity to learn and perform a complete, full-length play, after only one week of rehearsals! In between rehearsing they also had a lot of fun doing sidewalk chalk drawing, bubble blowing, theatre games, face painting, and other theatre arts activities. Along with the excellent assistance from our three teen volunteers, Kaitlyn Clendaniel, Kathyrn Suter, and Luana Spalluto, directors, Sharon Crossen and Patricia Beetschen, were amazed with the talent and commitment of these young actors. Without a stage, curtains, lights, and wings, this full-length play went off without a hitch in Reith Hall. Our standing room only audience was transfixed and transported into the medieval setting of The Princess Knight.


Our coffers were enhanced with donations in categories: $50 (BRONZE), $100 (SILVER), $150 (GOLD), $200 (PLATINUM), and $500 and up (DIAMOND). We look forward to these and additional sponsors for the 2016-2017 Season.


James & Marina Rogin *

Mr. Paul Bunker*

Edelman Spine & Orthopaedic Therapy

Law Office of Laura A Yiengst, LLC

Joseph & Sharon Crossen

Estate of Shirley Clark

Platinum Sponsors

Patricia Parsons–Beetschen

Northgate Laundromat

Pizza Delight by Giacomo, Inc. (Store #1)

Kristi M. Galloway

Gold Sponsors

Michael & Sara Soules

McGinnis Auto & Mobile Home Salvage, LLC

Silver Sponsors

Ross Jahren

Kathleen, Paul & Viktor Kress

John & Deborah DeMarie

Matt & Marie Hartigan

Bronze Sponsors

Cassidy Yiengst

Kylie Yiengst

If you or your business would like to be a sponsor to our tax exempt organization, please send your check to The Children’s Theatre, Inc. c/o Treasurer, P.O. Box 823, Dover, Delaware 19903. All donations are tax deductible. Your name will be printed on all programs for the 2016-2017 season. We thank you in advance for your generous support.

*Founding members, Marina and Jim Rogin donated the Flatforms risers.

 *Paul Bunker gave a generous donation as a deduction from the price of our new transportation trailer.

As reported at our August 30, 2017, Annual Meeting, our financial picture remains strong according to our treasurer, John Clendaniel.


Scholarships were presented to two deserving high school seniors for $500 each. The scholarship committee recommended Amanda Finney and Rachel Sawicki for this honor. Their applications, letters of reference, community service and commitment to The Children’s Theatre, Inc. made them perfect candidates for this award, which is now in its fourth year. Amanda Finney will be attending the University of Pittsburgh majoring in Pre-Med, while Rachel will begin her studies at the University of Delaware in Communications. We wish them the best of luck as they begin their college studies, and we invite them to visit us during their semester breaks.

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                 Amanda Finney                            Rachel Sawicki


Once again, The Children’s Theatre, Inc., presented volunteer awards. Plaques for our Volunteer-of-the-Year 2016-2017 honorees were presented to Sheng Yang, Laura Nadel, Mary Bell Roisland, Steve Mercer and David Barish as they were called to the stage at the Schwartz Center for recognition during intermission at our final production, Robin Hood. We thank them and all of our volunteers for giving of their time and talent. Please contact any board member to see how you may become a volunteer.




The Children’s Theatre’s 2017-2018 Season

TICKETS: All seats for all public shows are $10.

Auditions for A Dickens Christmas Carol: Tuesday, September 11, Wednesday, September 12 @ at Reith Hall, 304 South Governor’s Avenue, Dover, DE. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and close at 7:00 p.m. when auditions will begin. Rehearsals for those chosen for the cast are on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday evenings from 6:30 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.

The Venue for our first show, A Dickens Christmas Carol will be Wells Theatre, Wesley College (Slaybaugh Hall), in Dover, DE. Performance dates are November 18 @ 7:00 p.m. & Sunday (Matinee) @ 2:00 p.m.

Auditions for Night at the Wax Museum will be Monday, November 20 and Tuesday, November 21, doors open at 6:30 p.m. and close at 7:00 p.m. when auditions will begin. Performance dates are January 20-21, 2018.

Auditions for our musical are January 22 & 23, 2018. Performance dates are March 24, 25, and the school show will be on March 26.

Auditions for Lady Pirates of the Caribbean will be on March 26 & 27, 2018 and performance dates are May 19 & 20, 2018.

**Please note that dates are subject to change, the venue for our shows may change. Depending upon dates we receive to do our musical, we may have to adjust rehearsals and performance dates.

This 2016 - 2017 year in review was prepared by Patricia Beetschen and presented at the annual meeting on August 30, 2017.


Support The Children's Theatre Inc.

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The Childrens Theatre, Inc. organization is supported, in part, by a grant from the Delaware Division of the Arts, a state agency, in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts. The Division promotes Delaware arts events on www.DelawareScene.com.


Funding in part also provided by The Kent County Fund for the Arts.