The Tyler Civic Theatre Center opens its production of the big-family comedy “Cheaper by the Dozen” tonight in its Braithwaite Theatre, 400 Rose Park Drive.
Performances are set for 7:30 p.m. today and Saturday and 2:30 p.m. on Sunday and next Thursday through Sunday.
The show is part of the theater center’s 65th anniversary observance.
On Wednesday, the city unveiled a historical marker at the center honoring the contributions of the late Al Gilliam, the center’s founding director.
“Sixty-five years ago, Tyler Civic Theatre incorporated and built its home under the direction of Alfred E Gilliam,” Daye Collins, center president, said in a news release. “It only seems fitting that we present a show about family life in the 20s, because that’s where Tyler’s Little Theatre history begins – in 1927 and a family is what we’ve become.”
“Like any family, we have our stories, our times of sadness and our happy memories – our struggles and our victories. Our extended family includes many of you – founders, supporters, personalities, workers and leaders,” she said.
Before each performance the center will recognize a group of supporters. These groups are (by day of recognition): today, donors and advertising partners; Saturday, directors, designers and performers; Sunday; families of casts and crews; May 15; civic leaders; May 16 board members; May 17, military; and May 18, volunteers.
Set in the 1920s, “Cheaper by the Dozen” tells the story of a rigid father who wants to run his very large family like a business to ensure efficiency and productivity. The children, especially oldest daughter Anne, are not thrilled. After a bit of turmoil the daughter and father come to a better understanding of each other.
Mr. Gilbreth, Sean Holliday; Mrs. Gilbreth, Jinny Harris; young adult Anne, Georgi Dumas; young adult Ernestine, Helaina Patrick; young adult Martha, Kate McLeod; Mrs.Fitzgerald, Brenda Korich; Dr. Burton, Heath Huffstetter; Joe Scales, Byron “BJ” Matlock; Miss Brill, Janna Boyd; Larry, Jack Roberts; (the Gilbreth children): Anne, Faith Wilkerson; Ernestine, Nadalie Gill; Frank, Nathaniel Gabbard; Martha, Julia Austin; Lillian, Kaitlyn Oyer; Dan Gavin James, Jackie; Kennedy Fugate; Freida, Miriana Mason; Bill, Carter Oyer; twins, Jesse Stamper and Victoria Weatherby/Andi Rae McCuistion.
Director, DeAnna Hargrove; producer: Sherri Priest; crew, Brooke Boyd and Mike Hargrove.