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Who's Who in THE ANNIVERSARY - Written & Directed by Scott Albert

Updated: May 7

Matthews Playhouse of the Performing Arts and Indian Trail Parks and Recreation are proud to present an exciting evening of dining and entertainment with an all-new dinner theatre production, THE ANNIVERSARY!  This moving story about timeless love is an original musical theatre piece featuring beloved classics such as Cheek to Cheek, Young at Heart, Love & Marriage, I'm Gonna Live Till I Die. THE ANNIVERSARY is written by Scott Albert and performed with musical arrangements by John Nipe and choreographed by Vanessa Davis.

Learn more about the cast and production team below.

Scott Albert - Writer / Director

Scott Albert has acclaimed credits as both a performer and director, but this new venture into writing is an experience he will never forget. Scott won the MTA Award for Best Director in 2023 for Fort Mill Community Playhouse’s version of Next to Normal. He has also has been nominated for directing The 25th Annual Spelling Bee and Snapshots. As a performer, he played the Beast in the national tour of Beauty and the Beast. Other stage credits include national tours of Unsinkable Molly Brown, and Battle Cry of Freedom. Scott would like to thank his wife, Carol and three kids (Lilli, Hailey, Dylan) and would like to dedicate this show to his late father, Terry, who gave him the theater bug many, MANY years ago.

Cast (listed alphabetically)

Joe Burnette - Jonathan/James

Joe Burnette has been in the entertainment industry for 20 years after graduating  Northwestern High School with International Thespian Honors and as a Best Thespian. Joe has earned a lifetime eligibility to SAG/AFTRA and has performed in Los Angeles and New York. He has most recently found a home with the Fort Mill Community Playhouse performing in several roles in “Now and Then” as Jaime, “Lost in Yonkers” as Louie, “It’s a Wonderful Life” as Ed Bailey. Joe proudly serves on the Board of Directors at FMCP, and is very excited to perform with The Matthews Playhouse, with their impeccable reputation for outstanding productions.

Karen Christensen - Eleanor 

Karen Christensen was last seen at Matthews Playhouse in Godspell in 1996 and is happy to return! She has performed with almost every company in the Charlotte area including Theater Charlotte, Piedmont Players, Children’s Theater of Charlotte, Actors Theatre of Charlotte, Queen City Concerts, Queen City Theater Company, CPCC Summer Theater, and most recently, Davidson Community Theatre (Ms. Andrew in Mary Poppins). Karen has traveled around the world as a singer/dancer for Renaissance and Norwegian Cruise Lines. Please continue to support local theater!! For you, Dad! 

Peter Liuzzo- Johnny

Peter Liuzzo (Johnny) is excited to make his Mathew’s Playhouse Debut. You may have recently seen him in his MTA award winning performance of Gabe Goodman in Next to Normal at FortMill Community Playhouse, Roger in Rent or Jamie in The Last Five Years.

Peter is thrilled to be sharing the stage with such wonderfully talented people. Thanks for supporting our show.

Kevin Roberge- John

Kevin is in his 20th year performing in the Metrolina area.  He was recently seen in Theatre Charlotte’s production of Something Rotten as Nostradamus and as Huckabee in The Fantastiks.  Prior to that, Kevin was seen as the D’ysquith family in A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder for CPCC Summer Theatre for which he received his sixth MTA award.  Other recent roles include Detective Hanraty in Catch Me If You Can, Black Stache in Peter and the Starcatcher, Edward Bloom in Big Fish, Dan in Next To Normal, Wilbur Turnbladt in Hairspray and Gomez in Addams Family. He will be seen in the title role of Sweeney Todd this summer at CSD Summer Theatre in Davidson.  Kevin thanks his talented wife, Melissa and equally talented three children, Amanda, KC and Hannah for their constant love and support.

Ally Teeples - Ellie

Ally is thrilled to be in her first show at Matthew’s Playhouse and a part of this fun little show! Ally is from Orange County, CA, where she worked for 8 years as a character performer at events all over the Southern California area. Her recent credits include Eva Peron in Evita, Sister Mary Robert in Sister Act, and Beatrice in Best Little Whorehouse in Texas. She was recently Natalie in Next to Normal at FCMP, for which she recently won a Metrolina Theatre Award for best supporting actress in a musical. 

Production Team (listed alphabetically)

Vanessa Davis - Choreographer

Vanessa Davis is thrilled to be working with Matthews Playhouse on this original, romantic production. She choreographed The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee and Snapshots the Musical, solo work in Addams Family the Musical and Clue the Musical.  She is also the Director for Carolina Kids Voices Tree Choir where her children's group sings and dances at the Singing Christmas Tree each year. She is also a local actor performing at area theaters and a few of her credits include Clue, A Catered Affair, Titanic, Odd Couple, You Can't Take it With You and Deathtrap. She would also like to thank her family for all of the support with her artistic dreams. 

Kelsey Marshall - Stage Manager

Kelsey is excited to be stage managing the debut of "The Anniversary" with Matthews Playhouse. She serves as Secretary on the Board of Directors at the Fort Mill Community Playhouse and most recently stage managed their award-winning production of "Next To Normal." Kelsey is also a writer and MFA candidate who debuted her original one-act play "The Lake" at Summerfest 2018 in New York City.

John Nipe - Music Director/Arranger

John is excited to serve as Music Director/Arranger for this debut production, and honored that Scott placed such trust in him. He would like to thank Scott, Vanessa, Kelsey and Matthews Playhouse for a wonderful creative environment, and the amazing cast for their talent, attitude and dedication. John is a member of the Rock Hill Theatre Board of Trustees, and the creator/arranger/director of their long-running "In Concert" series. His most recent full stage production was "Sweeney Todd" in July 2023, for which he received the Metrolina Theatre Association award for Outstanding Musical/Vocal Direction. John and his wife, Amy, are the parents of Eleanor, a sophomore Art History major at Savannah College and Art and Design. They most definitely spoil their dog, Ray.

About the Matthews Playhouse

The Matthews Playhouse of the Performing Arts is a community based non-profit theatre committed to enriching the lives of children, adults, and families by inviting them to participate

in the world of performing arts and education. We commit to this mission by ensuring the excellence of our cultural programs for the participation and enjoyment of the people in our community.

About Indian Trail Parks and Recreation Department

The Indian Trail Parks and Recreation Department is dedicated to offering its community memorable experiences while providing residents with quality parks, recreational facilities and programs. They offer a whole host of amenities to Indian Trail residents, including three park facilities and top-notch programs for all ages throughout the year. 

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