Local 'actors' join in the fun of the Columbia's 'Tony 'n Tina's Wedding'
Contact: Tonya Lowentritt
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FAMILY ARGUMENT – Mickey Black, also known as Nicky Muscarello, Sr., and Loretta Black, more commonly known as Roxanne Stoehr, give a preview of what is to come at Columbia Theatre’s Tony n’ Tina’s Wedding in Southeastern’s Twelve Oaks March 13-15.
HAMMOND – Area residents have been cast as family members and guests in “Tony n’ Tina’s Wedding,” the interactive Off-Broadway hit spoofing a madcap Italian-American wedding, scheduled for March 13-15 at Southeastern Louisiana University’s Twelve Oaks.
Local cast members will have the opportunity to work with professional actors from New York who have the four lead roles.
The Columbia Theatre for the Performing Arts production includes a pre-show cash bar, a ceremony and reception full of mishaps and laughs, and a buffet dinner with wedding cake, music and dancing.
“Audiences can expect to feel like actual guests at a real wedding of a very eccentric Italian family,” said Columbia Director Donna Gay Anderson. “We all have family members that we prefer to pretend don’t exist. They will all be at this wedding eating, drinking, dancing and embarrassing the other members of the family. It will make our own families seem like Ozzie and Harriet.”
Former Hammond city councilman Nicky Muscarello was among the 23 area residents selected during auditions in January. He has always wanted to participate in community theater, but never had the time until now.
“Donna Gay told me about the auditions, said I would be perfect for the production, and the time just happened to be right for me,” he said. “In fact, I bought tickets to see the show before I even auditioned.”
Muscarello is looking forward to his role in the show and says theater goers can expect a great time.
“Everyone is a character in this play and a part of the show. That’s one of the things I’m looking forward to the most – being able to see how local people are going to interact with the cast,” he said. “I’m just so excited. I’m on pins and needles.”
Although Muscarello has never seen the production, he has heard nothing but great things from those who have seen it.
“My niece was in New York a couple of years ago and said ‘Tony n’ Tina’ was the highlight of her trip,” Muscarello said. “I hope the people of Hammond will find the production is the highlight of this year’s events at Southeastern.”
Cast members from Hammond selected for the production include Larry Dawson as Uncle Lui; Larry Gray as Sal Antonucci; Pat Lanier as Anthony Nunzio, Sr.; Michael Leto as Michael Just; Mary Loving as Pat Black; Muscarello as Mickey Black; William Rushing as Dominic; and Roxanne Stoehr as Loretta Black.
Additional cast members from Tangipahoa Parish include Cary Berthelot, Tickfaw, as Aunt Rose DiMenico; Virginia Fisher, Independence, as Josephine Vitale; Jude Pisciotta, Loranger, as Johnny Nunzio; Emily Varnado, Roseland, as Donna Marsala; and Ponchatoula natives Pamela Canal as Grandma Nunzio, Eddie Guedon as Barry Wheeler, and Jim Reeve as Father Mark.
Rounding out the cast are Erin Callaway, Folsom, as Connie Macogni; Emily Fayard, Metairie, as Nikki Black; Elizabeth Haik, Greenwell Springs, as Marina Gualina; Toni Lukes, Luling, as Gina-Marie Black; Joshua Peterson, New Orleans, as Rick DeMarco; Tiffany Rogers, Prairieville, as Sister Terry; Tanya Stilley, Albany, as Madeline Monroe; and Johnathon Whalen, Metairie, as Joey Vitale.
Tickets for “Tony n’ Tina’s Wedding,” $75 and $65, are available at the Columbia’s box office, located in the theater lobby at 220 East Thomas St., 985-543-4371. Box office hours are noon-5 p.m., Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, and noon-3:30 on Tuesday and Thursday.