New Castle News

April 26, 2013

On Stage: ‘9 to 5’ clocks in at New Castle Playhouse

Sam Luptak Jr.
New Castle News

NEW CASTLE — The New Castle Playhouse will open the musical comedy “9 to 5” at 7:30 p.m. in Augustine Auditorium.

The show is based on a 1980s movie. The show and its theme song of the movie spawned one of the biggest hits ever for Dolly Parton.

Showtimes are set for 7:30 p.m. on April 26 and 27,

The Playhouse version stars Mary Ann Mangini as Judy, Cynthia Harding as Violet and Dawn Savage as Doralee in the three lead female roles. It is directed by Playhouse veteran Brent Rodgers.

This farcical romp of hilarious revenge and retribution is described by the Playhouse website as follows.

“Pushed to the boiling point by their boss, three female co-workers concoct a plan to get even with the sexist, egotistical, lying, hypocritical bigot.  They conspire to take control of their company and learn there’s nothing they can’t do - even in a man’s world.”

For newcomer Dawn Savage, having the opportunity to work at the Playhouse and play this role have been an absolute thrill. Savage who lives in New Brighton, makes a 40-plus minute drive each day for rehearsal, but she says it has all been worth it.

“I’ve never felt as good as I do with this cast,” she said. “There is so much talent and personality here. To come to a playhouse where I knew no one, I have so many more new friends now.”

Savage is a local celebrity of sorts already. She has recorded a CD of mostly original country music that has received some local airplay on several radio stations here as well as in Pittsburgh.

She has done well at several local competitions, and she was the 2011 winner of Rocket to the Stars.

She and her new band have just begun performing in the area recently, and she plans for another single to be released soon.

Yet, with all that going on, the opportunity to play this role came at the perfect time.

“Being able to do all these different things is a blessing from God. I give him all the credit.” Savage said. “Thank God for the job I have that gives me the freedom to pursue all of the things I love. I give all the credit to him.”

For Savage, her role in “9 to 5” marks a return to the theatrical stage, where she hasn’t been since she graduated college in 2011.

“It is such a blessing to have landed this role,” she said. “In the beginning my character is a character none of the others like. She is seen as a ditzy blond. They all think she is having an affair with the boss, but they find out quickly that is not who she is.”

“Dolly Parton wrote a great song for this show, ‘Backwoods Barbie’. In it she says that someone is more than what they look like. You can’t judge a book by its cover. That is true of Doralee. Throughout the show you get to see her unravel and evolve. She starts out very obedient, but she becomes more independent. By the end, people really like her. Once they get to know her they quit passing judgment. It happens all the time. We pass judgment on people because of how they look.”

Savage says she hopes everyone comes out to see this show.

“It’s absolutely hilarious, but there is also a moral hidden in the comedy,” she said. “It makes a point about how far we have come with respect for women. This show is very big on empowering women.”

If you’re going ...

•The New Castle Playhouse will present the musical ‘9 to 5’ Friday, Saturday and Sunday and May 3, 4, 5, 10, 11 and 12 in Augustine Auditorium. Friday and Saturday showtimes are 7:30 p.m. Sunday showtimes are 2 p.m.

•For tickets, call (724) 654-3437.