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Theatre league to present musical | Local

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SHAMOKIN — The Northumberland Theatre League (NTL) will present the musical, “The Last Five Years,” in two performances at 7 p.m. Friday, Feb. 15 and Saturday, Feb. 16 in the auditorium of the Northumberland County Council of the Arts, 2 E. Arch St.

Tickets cost $15 each and may be purchased in advance at Beverly Flowers and Shuey Jewelers or at the door.

“The Last Five Years,” with book, music and lyrics by Jason Robert Brown, is the musical version of the 2014 film starring Anna Kendrick and Jeremy Jordan.

The show is under the direction of Sharon Styer, NTL director.

The play

“The Last Five Years,” first presented in 2001, is an emotionally powerful and intimate musical about two New Yorkers in their 20s who fall in and out of love over the course of five years. The modern musical chronicles the five-year life of a marriage from meeting to break-up and from break-up to meeting.

The show’s unconventional structure consists of Cathy, the woman, telling her story backwards, while Jamie, the man, tells his story chronologically. The two characters meet only once, at their wedding, in the middle of the show. The two-person cast is a great opportunity for actors with range and stamina.

The cast

• Jessica Pachuski, a Kulpmont native playing the role of Catherine “Cathy” Hiatt, is an alumnus of Mount Carmel Area Junior/Senior High School and Misericordia University. She is a graduate student at Misericordia, pursuing a career as a speech-language pathologist. As an undergraduate, Pachuski was a member of the Misericordia Players and performed in several shows, including “Lend Me a Tenor,” “And Then There Were None” and “Godspell.”

• Tony Wondoloski, a Shamokin native playing the role of Jamie Wellerstein, is no stranger to the stage and continues to actively perform in area productions. He started performing as a youth in junior productions and throughout his high school career and has performed locally in community theatre for ACT and MACT. Shows include “The Sound of Music,” “Jekyll and Hyde,” “Sugar,” “High School Musical” and “A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum.” Wondoloski also performed “The Sound of Music” as a student at Susquehanna University. An instrumentalist, he plays in symphonic bands throughout the year.

• Sharon Styer is a graduate of Shamokin Area High School and received a bachelor of science in music education degree from Messiah College with a major concentration in voice and minors in piano, organ and oboe. She retired in 2013 after teaching in the public school system since 1982. She now is an extracurricular instrumental music instructor at Mount Carmel Area Junior-Senior High School and assistant marching band director, percussion instructor and assistant musical director at Shamokin Area High School, as well as PMEA vocal music coordinator for the Line Mountain High School Music Department. A national winner of the Showbiz Talent Award, Styer has been performing and directing musical theatre productions for 40 years. She has appeared as director, actor, singer, dancer and makeup artist in many high schools and community theatres.

• Kevin Styer is the coordinator of stage, lighting and sound production.

The music

Featured songs include “See I’m Smiling,” “A Summer in Ohio,” “I Can be Better Than That” and “If I Didn’t Believe in You,” among many others.

Jason Robert Brown, a Tony Award-winning composer, won Drama Desk Awards for the music and lyrics after the off-Broadway premiere in 2002.

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