The Wagner College Theatre presentation of “Seussical, The Musical,” by Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty, will play its final week on the Main Stage from Wednesday, April 27 through Sunday, May 1.
The show is directed by Tony Award-winning actress and Wagner College theater professor Michele Pawk, who was a member of the original Broadway cast (playing Mayzie LaBird) when “Seussical” was staged at the Richard Rodgers Theatre 10 years ago.
This is a rather personal project for Pawk and, judging by the huge pile of Dr. Seuss books scattered around her office, one that she’s clearly excited about.
“My son was born before we went into production for ‘Seussical’,” Pawk said. “He lived in my dressing room, and we had ‘Seussical’ lyrics going around his baby room at home. It’s no wonder that returning to ‘Seussical’ feels like a homecoming for me.”
The creators of “Seussical” combined over two dozen of Dr. Seuss’s story for this show, which the director described as “simple storytelling that kids of all ages will have no trouble understanding.”
After rehearsals got underway in March, director Pawk said that she was pleasantly surprised by the high standards at Wagner College and the caliber of the theater students.
“The crew is unbelievable,” she said. “In just 10 days, the set was built. The cast … it doesn’t get any better. We have such a wealth of talent here at Wagner, I could have cast the show three times over, and I’ve got some really great students assisting me. Keely Davenport, Megan Kelley and Kendra Stockton, my stage manager, have been unbelievably helpful already.”
For several graduating seniors, “Seussical” will be their final performance with the Wagner College Theatre: Justin Scalzo (Cat in the Hat), Billy Cardone (Horton), Melissa Waterbury (Mayzie), Ben Cordia (Young Kangaroo), Regan Featherstone (General Schmitz), Elisia Francani (Sour Kangaroo), Tom McVey and Caitlin Ferchaw (Mr. and Mrs. Mayor), Jill Butterfield, Jackie Nuzzo, Kerri McNeill (Bird Girls), Sal Pavia, Mike Dineen (Wickersham Brothers), Hope Clarke and Michelle Wilson (Whos), and Ryan Rhue, Danielle Matarese, Sammi Cohen, Carissa Massaro and Megan Hurley as characters from the Jungle of Nool.
Pawk noted that the “Seussical” script has been revised over the years, making its core message much more clear: “As long as you believe in something with an open mind and heart, anything is possible. There are terrible things going on in the world, but as long as we keep our hearts and minds open, we can affect change for the good.
“Does it really matter what side of the bread you put the butter on?” Pawk asked rhetorically. “Dr. Seuss’s stories serve as a constant reminder of the important things in life.”
Evening shows (8 p.m.) are scheduled for Wednesday, April 27 through Saturday, April 30.
Matinees (2 p.m.) are scheduled for Saturday, April 30 and Sunday, May 1.
For tickets, visit or call the box office at 718-390-3259.