An original musical, “Doodle” was co-written by Leslie Hochman and Marie Dionisio Fiorello. Hochman will direct the production, which is a celebration of Americana, and features uplifting music and patriotic messages. Showcasing the musical talents of local adults and children, Doodle is heartwarming family entertainment.
Meet the Cast
Amanda Kipila (Doodle Dandy) is 11 years old from Manahawkin, and is excited to be performing in her first Center Players production as Doodle. This August she will performing as Jane in Mary Poppins with Ocean City Theater Company. Her favorite roles include Clara in Miracle of Christmas (Pines Dinner Theatre), Airhead in The Ever After (Dutch Apple Dinner Theatre), Susan Waverly in White Christmas, Young Fiona/Baby Bear in Shrek the Musical and Baby June in Gypsy, along with other ensemble roles. Amanda has been dancing since age 3 and taking vocal lessons since age 7. She had the honor of singing solo and dancing on the Downtown Disney stage. She also performed with the Atlantic City Ballet in their production of the Nutcracker. She performs her own Amanda Rose Tour all over NJ and PA. She would like to thank Center Players for this amazing opportunity.
David Clarke (Elliott Eagle) David is glad to be back at Center Players working with this amazing group. Other shows at this venue include The Good Doctor, The Dinner Party, The Rainmaker, Little Red and the Hoods and The Dolls House. When not on stage David works as an Occupational Therapist in the NYC schools with the Autistic population. When not on stage and not working David loves spending time with his Grandson Daniel, wife Kimberly and Daughter Christina. He wants to thank Leslie for the chance to revisit Dependence and all its wacky inhabitants, having originated the role of Elliott some 12 years ago.
Emma Howson (Girl #1) Emma is very excited to be in this play – she can’t wait to be onstage. While she has never acted in a play at Center Players, she has been in school plays since first grade. Notable roles include Tinkerbell in Peter Pan Jr. and Princess Katrina in The Rotten Princess, an adaption of The Taming of the Shrew. Outside of acting, Emma enjoys playing soccer and piano as well as reading. She would like to thank her mom, dad, and her “cool” brother Wesley, who is not named after Westley in The Princess Bride. Good luck to her fellow cast members!
Rebecca Finkelstein (Girl # 2) is very excited to be part of the cast of Doodle. This is her first time working with Center Players, and hopes to have the privilege to work with them again. She has been in many musicals, such as Shrek Jr. (Teenage Fiona), The Little Mermaid Jr. (Arista), Once Upon a Leprechaun (Fairy). She has been selected for The Monmouth County Arts Middle School for their musical theatre program.
Isabel Pomerantz (Girl # 3) is a 6th grade student in a Freehold Borough school and is so excited to be performing in Doodle. This is her first time appearing at Center Players but she has done many school plays. Some of her prior roles include Twin of the Lost Boys in Peter Pan and The Prime Minister in a recreation of Shakespere’s Taming of the Shrew. She is happy to be playing Girl #3 (the kid jokester of Dependenceville) in Doodle. Isabel would like to thank her mom and Julie Howson for driving her back and forth to rehearsals. Enjoy the show!
Tom Shewchuk (Mayor Arnold Schwartz) is pleased to play the bombastic mayor in this patriotic musical among such a fun and talented cast and crew, so soon after his portrayal of Dr. Bessner in Center Players’ last production of Murder on the Nile. As always, he gives God all the glory, and thanks his wife and daughter for their patience and support.
Jonathan Rothman (Deputy Mayor Sheldon Nagel) Jonathan (Deputy Mayor Sheldon Nagel) has been a regular at Center Players for the past three years, most notably for running tech (lighting and sound cues). This will be his second performance on this stage following his acting in Murder on the Nile as McNaught. He is very excited to perform in this production, and wants to thank the director, cast and crew for this incredible opportunity and their continued support.
Geri Wallens (Stella Loomis) This is Geri’s second performance on the Center Players’ stage. Her latest role of Mrs. Klaus / Mrs. Claus was right here Director Leslie Hochman in I Do Love the Holidays (Sometimes) She has been acting since 2013 and has been in several shows including; Witches Brew, Singing in the Rain, and Company and the Choir Room. Her favorite role was playing the doctor in Bernard Slade’s Tribute. Geri has worked on stage with Leslie and is delighted to again be working with her as director. She is also thrilled to be working with such a talented cast.
Patrick K Carty (Professor Griffin Neidenheimer)Patrick is happy to be back at Center Players. You may, or may not, have seen him as Bill in I Do Love the Holidays (Sometimes). Patrick has been busy this past year performing in shows including The Secret Garden(Ben), A Little Night Music(Carl-Magnus),Kiss Me Kate(The General),All My Raisins in the Son(Felix) & Savior(Peter). Patrick is thrilled to be reacquainted with old cohorts, as well as making new friendships. Theatre is his passion, but the center of his universe is his beautiful 15 year old red-headed daughter Julia.
Dot Gallop (Violet) has had the pleasure of sharing the stage with Leslie in productions such as Titanic, Pirates of Penzance, Steel Magnolias, and That’s the Spirit! She is thrilled to finally work with her as a director and is having a blast with such a fun and talented cast.
Sara Winchell (Althea Snutkins) grew up in South Jersey, taking lots of music lessons while participating in school, church and community choirs and music ensembles. In high school, she discovered the Drama Club, and went on to earn a BA in Theatre from Fordham University, a degree which went unused for many years while Sara pursued serial careers (she is now on her third.) She reentered the theatre world a couple of years ago with Spotlight Players in Matawan, where her most recent roles were Madame Armfeldt in A Little Night Music and Harriet/Baptista in Kiss Me Kate. Sara is pleased to make her Center Players debut in Doodle and thanks Leslie for the opportunity.
Ellen Konopko Silberberg (Althea Snutkins Assistant) I am thrilled to be making my debut as a chorus member this season. Singing is my passion and I’m having a great time being part of the cast of Doodle! Last year was the first time, since I was in school, that I returned to performing. I was part of the Concord Chorals under the direction of John and Cynthia Balme. We performed in Carnegie Hall and other venues in Monmouth County. Love to my wonderful husband Jeff, and my dear kids Paul, Jason, Lauren, and mini Poodle Bear.
Ebeny Torres (Dominique) is entering her senior year at Regis College studying Communication and Spanish. She is proud and honored to be working with such a talented cast and director in her debut production at Center Players, since moving to Freehold two years ago. She has always had a passion for theater and it shows through each and every role she has taken on. Ebeny has taken on roles from various musical productions including, Once on this Island, Lola in Dear Edwina, Edwina, Sandy in Grease, Rosie in Bye Bye Birdie, Audrey in Little Shop of Horrors and Thomas Aquinas in Godspell. She would like to thank her mother Evelyn for encouraging her to participate in the show and her family for attending. Enjoy the show!
Leslie Hochman (Director)
Leslie is extremely happy to be directing this delightful musical written by herself, along with one of her best friends Marie Dionisio Fiorello. Doodle originated 12 years ago, and she wants to thank Bernice for allowing it to come to life again on the Center Players stage. Her cast and crew for this show have been a joy to work with. Other shows she has had the pleasure to direct here at Center Players include I Do Love the Holidays (sometimes), Brighton Beach Memoirs, You’re a Good Man Charlie Brown, Snoopy, and several children’s productions including The Musical Adventures of Horatio Wolf.
Many thanks to her wonderful producer Roberta, her fantastic musical director Justin, and her super stage manager Zach. Much love to her family Bob, Louis, Brian, Mike and Kate.
Justin Ryan (Musical Director)
This is Justin’s first show with Center Players, and he is very excited to be a part of this production. Favorite past shows include Company, Crazy For You, and Once on this Island. He would like to thank Leslie for this opportunity and to thank his Dorothy for all of her love. Best of luck to the cast and crew.
Zach Berman (Stage Manager) Zach is very happy to be stage managing Doodle. He has recently stage managed I Do Love The Holidays (Sometimes), Chapter Two, Brighton Beach Memoirs and Bus Stop at Center Players. Recent productions you may have seen him in include Crossing Delancey as Sam the Pickle Man, The Passion of Dracula as Renfield and The Musical Adventures of Horatio Wolf and Little Red as Horatio Wolf. He made directorial debut by co-directing Murder on the Nile this spring with Bernice Garfield-Szita. He would like to thank his director Leslie Hochman and the cast and crew for all of their hard work and dedication as well as his father and Bonnie for their love and support.