Monthly Archives: February 2019

We are thrilled to announce our cast of Jane Austin’s “Emma” adapted by Michael Bloom

Western Reserve Playhouse is pleased to announce the talented cast of our 2019 Season Production of


By Jane Austen

Adapted by Michael Bloom  

Directed by Keith Stevens


Emma                              Shani Ferry

George Knightley       Eli Ravenson                 

Harriet Smith              Maddie Krucek

Henry Woodhouse     Dennis Runkle    

Mr. Weston                   Sid Freeman

Miss Bates                     Mia Radabaugh

Robert Martin             Eric Coulbourne

Frank Churchill          Michael Knoblock

Augusta Hawkins       Kelsey Tomlinson

Jane  Fairfax                Kayla Lehman

Phillip Elton                 Zach Manthey

Mrs. Weston                Victoria Kirgesner


“Emma” runs at Western Reserve Playhouse from April 19-May 4, 2019

For more information please go to

Again, Congratulations!!!!  

“The Bridges of Madison County” by Jason Robert Brown is coming soon to WRP!

Western Reserve Playhouse is thrilled to announce our second show of the 2019 Season

“The Bridges of Madison County”  by Jason Robert Brown

Newcomer director, Sarah Coon, brings to life this acclaimed musical based on the best-selling novel, THE BRIDGES OF MADISON COUNTY which was developed by the Pulitzer and Tony Award-winning creative team of Jason Robert Brown (The Last Five Years, Parade, Songs for a New World) and Marsha Norman.

A sweeping romance about the roads we travel, the doors we open and the bridges we dare to cross, this 2014 Tony Award-winner for Best Score and Orchestrations captures the lyrical expanse of America’s heartland and the yearning entangled in the eternal question “What if…?”

This story of an Iowa housewife Francesca Johnson and her life-changing, four-day whirlwind romance with traveling photographer Robert Kincaid. It’s an unforgettable story of two people caught between decision and desire, as a chance encounter becomes a second chance at so much more. A musical that you don’t want to  miss and an Akron Area premiere.

The star studded cast filled with some of WRP’s favorites, Artistic Director Dawn Sniadak-Yamokoski as Francesca (Tomorrow Morning), Bernadette Hisey as Marge (Hay Fever and Little Women), Kaity Poschner as Caroline (Little Women), Kim Sullivan as Marian/Chiara (Dogfight), and newcomers, Rob Albrecht as Robert, Kevin Michael Myers as Bud, Cameron Zona as Michael, and Rich Stimac as Charlie.


Directed by Sarah Coon
Musical Direction by Bryan Bird & Dave Stebbins
Stage Managed by Tiffany Bird
Light Design by Kevin Rutan
Costume Design by Luke Scattergood
Set Design by Patrick Ciamacco
Scenic Painting by Noah Hrbek
Props by Sue Snyder
Set Construction by James Gremba

“Bridges of Madison County”  runs March 1-16, 2019. Tickets are $15 to $17 and can be purchased online at


TITLE: Bridges of Madison County
MUSIC & LYRICS BY: Jason Robert Brown
BOOK BY: Marsha Norman
VENUE AND ADDRESS: 3326 Everett Road, Bath, Ohio 44268
RUN DATES: March 1-16, 2019
TIMES OF SHOWS: Friday & Saturdays at 8PM, Sunday March 10, 2019 at 2PM
TICKETS: $17 for Adults and $15 for Students/Seniors
BOX OFFICE: 330-620-7314

Western Reserve was featured in Akron Life Magazine

If you haven’t been to Western Reserve Playhouse for a while — or ever — you might not recognize it. The barn that houses this community theater has stood in the same spot since 1886, but the past year and three months have seen big changes both inside and out, mostly due to the boundless energy and vision of the new artistic director, Dawn Sniadak-Yamokoski.

“We’re trying to do something beautiful,” says the Peninsula native.

With a background singing opera since childhood as well as directing both regular and musical theater productions at venues that include The University of Akron, Woodridge High School and Independence Community Theater, she brings a wealth of ideas and experience to the playhouse’s 63rd season.

Since taking the position of artistic director a little over a year ago, Sniadak-Yamokoski has broadened the theater’s programming from three shows a year to at least one event every month, including eight main-stage shows, two to three youth shows and a $5 Bucks series of staged readings. “The biggest thing is, we added heat and proper air conditioning, so we can have it all year-round,” she says, noting the past summers-only schedule.

Other physical improvements include raising the theater’s 95 vintage seats onto a platform, extending the stage, installing LED stage lights, revamping the will-call area and adding a barn-wood bar for concessions.

And that’s just the beginning, as far as Sniadak-Yamokoski is concerned. She’d like to finish the basement with a proper shop, shower for the actors and classrooms. She also plans more landscaping around the barn, awnings over the actors’ entrance and getting the restrooms compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act.

For a nonprofit that relies on grants, donations and ticket sales for funding, Sniadak-Yamokoski’s wish list of improvements is daunting, but it’s all necessary to spur the theater to put on meaningful shows that challenge the community to experience different perspectives and give back. For example, during the April 2018 production of the musical “Dogfight,” about military friends who play a cruel game in a bar, donating patrons raised money for Wags 4 Warriors, a Brecksville nonprofit that pairs service dogs with veterans dealing with post-traumatic stress disorder. And this Nov. 2-17, see “Hay Fever” about a couple whose quiet weekend is upended when their children bring home unique guests.

“I have countless emails of people who said that their lives were changed within a moment from our stage,” she says. “It’s our job to make them feel something and to make them know they’ve come to a space where they can explore new ideas.”


-Sharon Best

The $5 Bucks Series is HERE! THIS SUNDAY

Also, we start our new 2019 $5 Bucks Staged Reading Series with Noel Coward’s “Private Lives”.  Directed by Ohio Shakespeare Festival’s  Artistic Director, Nancy Cates.  This professional staged reading is filled with actors and actress that have graced The OSF Stage and Western Reserve Playhouse and are bringing this wonderful comedy to WRP’s stage.

In “Private Lives”, passion, laughter, romance, anger, and love set the stage for a battle of the sexes as divorced couple, Amanda and Elyot, find themselves unwittingly thrown together in Coward’s classic comedy of manners. Unknowingly booking adjoining rooms while on honeymoon with their respective spouses, Victor and Sybil, Amanda and Elyot are forced to face their true feelings for each other. Realizing they have made a pair of mistaken marriages, the divorcees attempt to escape their mismatched partners. With haste, and under the cover of darkness, they flee their honeymoon hotel and unsuspecting spouses in search of privacy at Amanda’s secluded Paris flat. Despite their passion for each other, Amanda and Elyot begin to bicker violently, just as they had done during their marriage. It is clear that the couple cannot live with each other, but cannot live without each other either. When they are discovered several days later by their jilted spouses, all four lovers must finally acknowledge just who is really suited to whom. Fast-paced, witty, and passionate, Noel Coward’s comedy is a delightful romp!

“Private Lives” will be presented on February 10, 2019 at 2pm only.
Tickets can be purchased 
on-line and at the door.