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Enchanted April Enchants Audiences

Written by Ronald Banaszak

Enchanted April, a touching comedy of love, will be the next Production of Pelican Players on April 7, 8, and 9 at the Veterans Theater in Kings Point.

Imagine two taken-for-granted British housewives who take a month away from their husbands in hopes of reviving their spirits. Their month in Italy is indeed restorative. There, among the wisteria blossoms and Mediterranean sunshine, they, their, husbands and two dramatically original travelling companions all bloom again.

Daily Variety commented ďA comical, restorative journey of discovery . . . from darkness to light, from inhibition to unrestrained joy. Beautiful and theatrically rewarding.Ē ďAs good as they come: a lush, thoroughly refreshing theatrical holiday,Ē wrote The Los Angeles Times.

Lotty Wilton, wife of English family solicitor Mellersh Wilton, discovers an ad in The London Times that describes an enchanting castle on the coast of Italy and dreams of spending a month there to revive her dreary marriage. She enlists another woman in the same situation, Rose Arnott, and together they rent the castle San Salvatore. The cost is more than they can afford so they advertise and find two completely different women to rent the castle. Lady Caroline Bramble is a spoiled socialite who just wants to get away from it all. Mrs. Graves is an elderly and very formal member of Londonís elite who prefers to spend time with English authors Tennyson, Carlyle and Arnold, among others.

This eclectic group settles into the castle with the owner, Anthony Wilding, and his housekeeper, Costanza. Lotty soon wishes Mellersh would join her to be revived. Soon both husbands join their wives. The castle and its charms work magic on all. By the end of the play, joy, renewed love, and rejuvenation fill the stage. The mixture of these diverse characters gives rise to humor and pathos.

Act one is set in London and we are introduced to all the characters. Act two takes place at the castle in Italy where magic happens. This production is greatly enhanced a luscious set designed by Chuck Foell that communicates the dreariness of London and loveliness of the Italian castle.

The cast includes familiar members of the Pelican Players and two new additions. Lotty Wilton is played by Brenda Harris, Anthony Wilding by Kevin Steinke, and Erik Hann plays Frederick Arnott. All were in the cast of last fallís Plaza Suite. Ron Banaszak as Mellersh Wilton, Delyse Axinn as Mrs. Graves and Mary Winter playing Costanza have all appeared in previous Pelican Players productions. Newcomers to Pelican Players, but very experienced actors, are Sue Barnett as Rose Arnott and Jessica Mazza as Lady Caroline Bramble.

Pelican Players is a local dramatic group that performs several plays a year. Composed completely of volunteers, the proceeds support scholarships for performing arts students.

Enchanted April opens Thursday, April 7, and runs through Saturday, April 9 in Veterans Theater in Kings Point. The three evening performances start at 7 PM. There is also an additional matinee at 1:30 PM on Saturday.

Seating is cabaret style around tables. So BYOB and snacks.

Tickets are $15 and may be purchased at the Veterans Theater Box Office in Kings Point, 1900 Clubhouse Drive, Sun City Center.

The Box Office is open weekdays from 9 AM to 4 PM.
All are welcome to attend. Donít be afraid of the gatehouse; the guards welcome theatergoers.