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Local business plays starring role in Winter Wonderettes by Roger Beanat Ivoryton Playhouse

Ivoryton – Essex Hardware Store has been a fixture in Essex for many years. It is a gathering place for the community – a place where you can find everything from a bale of hay to a gallon of paint to the best snow shovel! This year, the Ivoryton Playhouse is paying tribute to this icon by setting their holiday show in a fictional Essex Hardware Store. There will be nods to past owners, and audiences might recognize some of the decorations. WINTER WONDERETTES, is a marvelous holiday musical, opening at the Ivoryton Playhouse on Thursday, November 17th, bringing with it a dollop of nostalgia with songs we know and love and a reminder of just how important our community and local businesses are.

It’s 1968, and we are at the Annual Christmas Party at Essex Hardware Store! The quartet of Missy, Suzy, Betty Jean and Cindy Lou, first introduced to us in THE MARVELOUS WONDERETTES has decorated the store and is now prepared to provide the entertainment. And what a fun night of entertainment it is! All your favorite holiday songs, including great ’60s versions of classics such as “Santa Claus Is Comin’ to Town,” “Jingle Bell Rock,” “Run, Rudolph, Run,” and “Winter Wonderland,”- the result is, of course, marvelous! There are lots of laughs and audience participation. A magical night of fun for the whole family, filled with the spirit of the season.

This zany and effervescent evening, with all the festive feels, is directed by J. Clayton Winters and choreographed by Elizabeth McGuire. Musical direction is by Mark Ceppetelli, set design by Martin Marchitto, lighting design by Marcus Abbott and costume design by Elizabeth Saylor.

The cast are all new to the Ivoryton stage: *Katie M. Bates plays Missy, *Daron Elaine Cockerell plays Cindy Lou, Meagan Lewis-Michelson plays Betty Jean and *Emily Kay Shrader plays Suzy. Jordan Adams is swing.

Winter Wonderettes runs through Sunday, December 18th, 2022. Performance times are Wednesday and Sunday matinees at 2:00 pm; evening performances are Wednesday and Thursday at 7:30 pm, Friday and Saturday at 8:00 pm. There are no performances on November 23rd, 24th, or 25th for the Thanksgiving holiday.

Tickets are $55 for adults, $50 for seniors, and $25 for students. Tickets are available online at or by calling the box office at 860.767.7318. (For information on group rates, please call the box office.) For more information on the entire 2022 season, visit The Playhouse is located at 103 Main Street in Ivoryton.

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