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RVP production opens Saturday in Henry

Published: Wednesday, Oct. 17, 2012 12:35 p.m. CDT • Updated: Wednesday, Oct. 17, 2012 12:36 p.m. CDT
(Photo contributed)
Camilla Russell, Gary Talsky, Patrick Russell, Donald Knuckey Jr, and Aubrey Stiennen prepare to open with RVP's " 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee" Saturday at St. Mary’s Community Center in Henry.

HENRY — Polish up those spelling skills and clear your throat in preparation for the fun-filled and hysterical musical journey of “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee”, presented by the River Valley Players at St. Mary’s Center in Henry.

This musical comedy follows a rag-tag group of prepubescent spellers on their battle for orthographic prowess at the 25th annual Putnam County Spelling Bee. Hilarious, irreverent and full of heart, the musical shines a light on the spirit of competition, what it means to belong, and the fact that the thing that makes us strange is often the thing that makes us special.

In conjunction with the theme, what makes this musical extra special and a little out of the ordinary is the vital role of audience members who will also be in competition for the spelling spotlight. Each show brings up four audience volunteers to participate as on-stage guest spellers which promises unpredictable circumstances and the assurance that no two performances will be the same.

Charlotte Balensiefen, director of the show, commented “The characters themselves are so clearly defined and lovable that every audience member will find someone to relate to, if not all of them. The show’s ability to present sidesplitting laughter alongside moments of sincerity, emotion, and encouragement adds to its appeal as the audience travels back into childhood with the cast of six quirky yet charming outsiders. You will not want to miss out on the fun and great food so reserve your tickets now.”

The show opens on Saturday and plays Sunday, Oct. 27 and 28. Tickets for the show are $26.50 which includes a meal (included salad bar, buffet, dessert and three beverages of choice) served prior to each performance. The meal is served at 6:30 p.m. on Saturday performances followed by the show. Sundays are matinee performances with the meal served at 12:30 p.m. followed by the show. For information, contact Judy at 309-364-3403 or email

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