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Barefoot in the Park

Written by Neil Simon
Directed by Fred Krauskopf

November 28, 29, December 5, 6, 12, 13, 
14*(matinee performance), 19, 20, 2014

Doors open at 6:15.  Dinner at 7PM, Show at 8PM

MATINEE PERFORMANCE ONLY- Doors open at 12:15PM, Lunch at 1PM, Show at 2PM.

Dinner Rolls with Butter
Cole Slaw
Beef Pot Roast
Whipped Potatoes
California Blend
Chocolate Mousse


Paul and Corie Bratter are newlyweds in every sense of the word. He's a straight-as-an-arrow lawyer and she's a free spirit always looking for the latest kick. Their new apartment is her most recent find; too expensive with bad plumbing and in need of a paint job. After a six day honeymoon, they get a surprise visit from Corie's loopy mother and decide to play matchmaker during a dinner with their neighbor-in-the-attic Velasco, where everything that can go wrong does. Paul just doesn't understand Corie, as she sees it. He's too staid, too boring and she just wants him to be a little more spontaneous, running "barefoot in the park" would be a start!

"A bubbling, rib-tickling comedy." - The New York Times

"Critic weeps joyfully...I don't think anybody stopped laughing while the curtain was up last evening." - New York Daily News

1964 Tony Award Nominee for Best Play  

Produced through special arrangement with Samuel French, Inc.


DAVID THOMPSON (Lord & Taylor Deliveryman / Stage Manager) - Dave is a long-standing Arena board member and is currently serving as the treasurer for the theatre. Dave received the Service to the Theatre award in 2004 and was nominated for an Arena Award for Featured Actor in Ten Little Indians in 2005. He has also been presented the Arena Theatre Darrell Monroe Lifetime Achievement Award from a very grateful Board of Directors in 2013. He was also seen as Colonel Protheroe in Murder at the Vicarage. Dave, along with Fred and the stage building crew, is primarily responsible for all the sets you see here at Arena. He is also active in the Study Connection and remodeling his lake cottage.

FRED KRAUSKOPF (Director) - Fred has been a part of the Fort Wayne theater scene for thirty years and this is his second stint as a director, having directed last season’s production of Plaza Suite. He has been in some thirty shows and has stage managed another twenty. Fred has also been on Arena’s Board of Directors for over twenty-five years. While acting, directing and stage managing, he also has been building sets at Arena. At seven shows a season for over twenty-five years, that makes one hundred seventy-five plus sets he has built! Fred also lends his talents to the Civic Theatre and the Department of Theater at the University of Saint Francis. He has received two awards for acting, several Directors Awards from very grateful directors who have benefited from his expertise and the Arena Theatre Darrell Monroe Lifetime Achievement Award in 2013 as well as the Civic Theatre Volunteer of the Year award. He would like to thank his wife, Jayne, for her understanding and Dave Thompson for his friendship and for all of his help. Neil Simon has been Fred’s favorite playwright and screenwriter since the mid-1960s when he was then known as “Doc” Simon and was a regular on The Tonight Show.


Actor Bios


MICHAEL COALE (Paul Bratter) - Michael is thrilled to be making his Fort Wayne acting debut at the Arena Dinner Theatre.  After studying Opera/Music-Theatre at Southern Illinois University Carbondale, he appeared in dozens of productions performing in over 20 states. He was most recently seen in Chicago as Dromio of Syracuse in Shakespeare's The Comedy of Errors and as Yvonne in The Book of Liz by Amy and David Sedaris.  Other favorite credits include Baby With the Bathwater (John), The Wizard of Oz (Scarecrow), Gross Indecency...(Carson), and Cabaret (The Emcee).  Michael would like to thank the wonderful cast and everyone at Arena for their hard work and dedication, and his family (especially his wife Allison) for their love and support. 


GLORIA MINNICH (Corie Bratter) - Gloria Minnich was most recently seen in The Mousetrap at Arena.  Other shows at Arena include Blithe Spirit, Laughing Stock, Same Time, Next Year, Stepping Out, Plaza Suite, Almost, Maine, Any Wednesday, Last of the Red Hot Lovers, Vanities, Crimes of the Heart, and Death By Chocolate. She appeared in The Road to Mecca, Durang: 5 Comedies in 1, Private Lives and Proof at the Civic Theatre and You Can’t Take It With You, Henry IV, and Eleemosynary at First Presbyterian Theatre.  When not onstage, she teaches drama and dance classes at area schools.  She is a member of the Fort Wayne Dance Collective Touring Company, which performs in schools across Indiana. This past summer she spent time in England and studied with the Royal Shakespeare Company.  She also worked with Drama Resource where she trained in Commedia dell’Arte.  She is honored to be a part of this fantastic cast and would like to thank the director and crew for all of their incredible work.  She would also like to thank her loved ones for all their support and encouragement, and the spirit of her mom, Clara, who always reminds her to get a “terrific kick out of living.”


CAROL HOWELL –WASSON (Ethel Banks) - Carol was last seen on the Arena stage as Maxine in Stepping Out. Prior roles include an ensemble member in A Christmas Survival Guide; Mrs. Stancliffe in Sex Please, We’re Sixty (Arena Award); Mildred Sloan in Squabbles; and she won Arena Awards for the roles of Mama Rose in Gypsy; Mother Superior in Nuncrackers; Linda Loman in Death of a Salesman; Rosemary in Picnic; and Big Mama in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof. At the Civic Theatre, she appeared as Martha in White Christmas (Anthony Award); and as Yenta in Fiddler on the Roof. Regional credits include performances at the Black Hills Playhouse, Chicago Light Opera Works, and the Alliance Theatre in Atlanta. Carol will be directing the play Rounding Third this season and is thrilled to return to the Arena stage during the holiday season! Happy holidays to all!


KIM DETWILER (Victor Velasco) - We welcome Kim back to our stage after his having last been seen in his Arena Award winning role as James in See Jane Quit last season. Kim has appeared inSex Please, We’re Sixty, Squabbles and Love, Sex and the
 I. R. S.
here at Arena, as well. He has acted in numerous productions at IPFW, Civic, and First Presbyterian over the years. Kim spent several summers at The Black Hills Playhouse in Sioux Falls, SD. He has also performed in Dunkirk, Ireland, and at The Kennedy Center in Washington, D. C., in Larry Life’s production of Hair.


BRIAN H. WAGNER (Harry Pepper the Telephone Repairman) - Brian is so pleased to return to the Arena stage after having last been seen as the waiter in Plaza Suite. He last stage managed Arena’s season opening production of Violet. Brian directed See Jane Quit and Same Time, Next Year in Arena’s 2013–2014 season. He won the Arena Best Director Award for the 2011–2012 season’s Sex Please, We’re Sixty. Brian also won a Best Actor award for that season’s Moonlight & Magnolias. He is a multiple award-winning actor and technician having won several Arena and Civic Awards since costuming his first show at Arena in 1979, Play It Again, Sam. By day, Brian is proud to be employed as the Executive Director of Arena Dinner Theatre.

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