Fantasticks hits the stage this weekend


 By Sarrah Peters

News Editor

The Theatre of Gadsden will open its performance of “The Fantasticks” tonight, April 8, at 7:30 p.m. at the historic Ritz Theatre in Alabama City. The shows will also be held Saturday, April 9 and 16 and Friday, April 15 at 7:30 p.m.. On Sunday April 10 and 17 there will be a matinee showing of the play at 2:30 p.m.

Tickets are $14 general admission and $12 for students, military and seniors. For groups of ten or more, tickets are $10. 

The tickets are available at the door an hour before showtime and online at

“The Fantasticks,” is a comedy, according to Assistant Director Paula Ross, but also offers a little bit of everything. 

“It’s hold your sides funny in some places,” said Ross.

“The Fantasticks” features two fathers, Hucklebee played by Keith Owens  and Bellomy played by Dennis Tarkington, want their children to fall in love, so the two pretend to hate each other. The children, Luisa and Matt, fall in love. Once the two fall in love, the fathers must end the feud, so they stage an abduction for Luisa by El Gallo, who also serves as the plays narrator. In the end, the youngsters find the glittering, faraway world isn’t quite what they dreamed it to be.

“The theme of the story is that you have to have experience to have emotions,” said Ross.

Directed by Mike Beecham, the show features Caleb Shaneyfelt in the lead role of El Gallo. Molly Page plays Luisa and Christopher Roden plays her love interest Matt. 

The play is the world’s longest-running musical.

Musical direction is provided by Angie Campbell. Glenda Swinford is stage manager and scenic designer is Toni Griffin.

“It’s not reality, it’s fanciful,” said Ross of the set. “But everyone can see reality in it.”

For more information, visit or the Theatre of Gadsden Facebook page.

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