In response to overwhelming and unprecedented demand, the University of Mary Washington Department of Theatre & Dance is bringing “Always…Patsy Cline” by Ted Swindley back to Klein Theatre. Performances will be July 9-12, July 16-19, and July 23-26 at 7:30 p.m., and July 12, 13, 19, 20, 26, and 27 at 2 p.m. Tickets are $40 for standard admission, $35 for students, senior citizens, UMW alumni, and the military and $25 for groups of 10 or more. Tickets are on sale at umw.tix.com.
“Never in the history of our program have we experienced such a demand for tickets,” said Director Gregg Stull, chair of the Department of Theatre & Dance and the Department of Music. “We are thrilled to be able to offer this thrilling production to the greater Fredericksburg community this summer.”
UMW’s original production ran in Klein Theatre for three sold-out weeks in February.
“Always…Patsy Cline” is based on the true story of Louise Seger, a fan of Patsy Cline, who gets the chance to meet Cline when she comes to her hometown for a show. Louise and Patsy become fast friends, bonding after the show over the troubles of life. Their friendship grew through a series of letters and phone calls that continued until Cline’s untimely death. The musical features many of Patsy Cline’s hits, including “Crazy,” “Walkin’ After Midnight,” and “I Fall to Pieces.”
Virginia Patterson Hensley, known as Patsy Cline, was a country singer from Winchester, Va., who crossed over in the 1960’s from country and western into the pop-music charts. She died at the age of 30 in a plane crash in 1963. Ten years later, Cline became the first female solo artist to be inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame. Her plaque in the Hall of Fame reads: “Her heritage of timeless recordings is testimony to her artistic capacity.”
“Always…Patsy Cline” features two local students in the roles of Patsy Cline and her friend and fan, Louise Seger. Senior theatre major Taryn Snyder, who grew up in Fredericksburg before moving to Rochester, N.Y., to attend high school, plays the role of Patsy. Fellow senior theatre major Emily Burke, who graduated from James Monroe High School, plays Louise. Burke is the recipient of the Susan Mulholland Breedin ’86 Scholarship and Snyder received the Debby C. Klein Scholarship for 2013-14. Both students are members of Alpha Psi Omega, the national collegiate theatre honorary fraternity.
“Always…Patsy Cline” is directed by Stull, with musical direction by Christopher Wingert. Scenic design is by associate professor Julie Hodge and costume design is by associate professor Kevin McCluskey. Lighting and sound designs are by guest artists Catherine Girardi and Anthony Angelini. For more information or to purchase tickets, call the Klein Theatre Box Office at (540) 654-1111 or visit umw.tix.com.