Fredonia Opera House To Present ‘Christmas On The Great White Way’ Musical Revue Saturday

FREDONIA — The 1891 Fredonia Opera House will present “Christmas on the Great White Way,” a special holiday musical revue, on Saturday at 7:30 p.m.

The holiday program features a variety of well-known holiday songs that have been showcased in Broadway musicals.

Some of the best-loved holiday songs were featured in Broadway musicals: “We Need a Little Christmas,” from “Mame”; “White Christmas,” from “Holiday Inn”; “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas,” from “Meet Me in St. Louis”; “Christmas Bells are Ringing,” from “Rent”; “There is a Santa Claus,” from “Elf: The Musical”; “Twelve Days of Christmas,” from “Promises, Promises”; and “Hard Candy Christmas,” from “The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas.”

“Great White Way” stars several of Chautauqua County musical theatre performers, including Julie Costantini, Jennifer Davis, Jim Foley, Katie Ryan, Christopher Switala, Steve Wendell, Holly Weston and James Welch.

Costantini is the vocal music teacher and musical director at Maple Grove Junior-Senior High School. A resident of Jamestown, she received her bachelor’s degree in Music Education from the State University at Fredonia and her master’s in administration from the University of Pittsburgh. At the Lucille Ball Little Theatre in Jamestown, she has played the roles of Maria in “Sound of Music,” Grace in “Annie” and ensemble roles in “Chicago,” “Spamalot,” “Ring of Fire” and “Forbidden Broadway.” She played Cosette in “Les Miserables” at Jamestown Community College and was the winner of the second season of Chautauqua’s Got Talent.

Davis is a vocal and general music teacher at Chautauqua Lake Secondary School in Mayville. She directs three vocal ensembles in addition to teaching general music, guitar, songwriting and piano/theory.A native of Rochester, Davis earned a bachelor of music degree from SUNY Fredonia and a Master of Music from the Eastman School of Music. Davis has performed regionally in shows at the Lucille Ball Little Theatre.

Foley has lived and worked in Jamestown for 16 years. He teaches instrumental music at Maple Grove Junior-Senior High School, where he also coaches track and field and started a judo program. He has appeared on stage at the Lucille Ball Little Theater as well as the Scharmann Theater at Jamestown Community College in such roles as King Arthur in “Spamalot,” Gomez Addams in “The Addams Family,” Felix Unger in “The Odd Couple” and Javert in “Les Miserables.” He is active as a tubist with the Jamestown Community Orchestra, Chautauqua Concert Band and formerly with the Jubilee Brass Quintet.

Ryan is a trained vocalist with more than 16 years of classical, jazz and theatrical performing experience. She received her bachelor of music education and masters of music education from SUNY Fredonia, where she studied under the tutelage of Dr. Gwen Coleman-Detwiler. She has received solo and ensemble musical honors and has performed in numerous venues and productions, including recent local productions of “Annie,” “White Christmas,” “Chicago” and “Spamalot” at the Lucille Ball Little Theater. She teaches general and vocal music at Chautauqua Lake Central School, where she has five choirs under her direction.

Switala is a resident of Jamestown and financial services professional at Southern Tier Financial. He was seen in the title role in Lucille Ball Little Theatre’s 2016 production of “Jekyll & Hyde.” He was the lead singer in “Up With People’s” world tour of “The Festival” and a U.S. Tour with American Family Theater. He also appeared in motion picture, commercial print and media work during his residence in New York City.

Wendell lives in Fredonia and teaches at Silver Creek Central School. He directed three musicals for Fredonia High School and has been the acting coach for the past six productions there. He has also performed in half a dozen musicals in Jamestown including “Chicago,” “Spamalot,” “The Addams Family” and recently, “Hairspray. “

Weston was most recently seen on the Lucille Ball Little Theatre of Jamestown stage as Emma in “Jekyll & Hyde,” Gretchen in “Boeing,” and Bombalurina in “Cats.” When she is not on stage performing, Weston is actively involved as a choreographer at Little Theatre and at area high schools. She was a member of the Junior Guilders from 1992 to 2002 and continues to volunteer with the organization as choreographer. In 2014, Weston joined the board of directors of the Lucille Ball Little Theatre. She is a graduate of the American Musical and Dramatic Academy in New York City.

Welch is on the faculty for the State University at Fredonia School of Music as a collaborative pianist and instructor of class piano. In past summers he has worked on the faculties for the Interlochen Summer Arts Camp and the state Summer School of the Arts Choral Program as a collaborative pianist for instrumentalists and vocalists on repertoire including art song, opera, musical theater, choral, jazz, pop and instrumental. He has performed with Peter Schickele, Renee Fleming, Lee Hoiby, Dawn Upshaw, Jake Heggie, Ian Clarke, Eric Ewazen and Jason Robert Brown.

Christmas on the Great White Way is supported with public funds from the United Arts Appeal of Chautauqua County. Tickets are $17 ($15 for Opera House members) and may be purchased in person at the Opera House Box Office or by phone at 679-1891, Tuesday through Friday, from 1-5 p.m. Tickets may be purchased online at www.fredopera.org anytime.

The 1891 Fredonia Opera House is a member-supported not-for-profit organization located in Village Hall in Fredonia.

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