Author Archives: lsegel

Board Nominations and Election 2020

The election is coming up for the Board of Directors of the Theatre Company of Saugus. The election will be at our held at our Annual General Membership Meeting on Wednesday 2 December, starting at 7:30 PM. The meeting will be held via Zoom. All current company members should attend.

The board has nine members, with staggered terms lasting three years. Three members are elected near the end of each calendar year. Officers are chosen by the new and old board members in December.

This year, we need to nominate at least two new people. These terms of these board members are expiring:

  • Amanda Allen, our current president, is term-limited, so we need to replace her with a new person.
  • Deirdre Shaw, our current corresponding secretary, is eligible for a second term, and is willing to continue.
  • Mike Giusti has chosen not to continue, and needs to be replaced.

The other continuing members of the board include: Jeff Bliss, Matthew Garlin, Alicia Murphy, Allison Perry, Sean Perry, and Larry Segel.

The Nominating Committee has selected the following slate for election to new three-year terms starting in January 2021:

  • Victoria Isotti
  • Deirdre Shaw
  • Jill Sliby

The following people have also been nominated as Alternate Board Members. Alternate members also participate in board meetings, but are only called on to vote when we do not have a quorum of regular members.

  • Rosemary DeGregorio
  • Ben Tan

What is required of board members? There is a board meeting every month. During the pandemic, we have met remotely via Zoom. The remote meetings will continue even after the pandemic is over, so commuting to meetings will not be required. Board members also serve on committees, and take an active role in productions and on other company projects.

Many thanks to Amanda and Mike for your years of service!

Steven Friedman

Theatre Company of Saugus mourns Steven Friedman, who passed away on September 7, 2020. Steven was a very entertaining actor in two roles in the TCS production of From Moliere With Love in 2007. We did two short comedies by Moliere, in which he played Villebrequin in The Imaginary Cuckold and Geronimo in The Forced Marriage.

Steven was the beloved husband of Harriet Friedman, who directed the TCS production of Clue, the Musical in 2015. Harriet has been active with EMACT and has worked with numerous local community theatres over the years, sometimes with Steven.

Steven was a retired doctor and a genius at trivia. You can read his obituary here:

TCS Earns Numerous 2020 DASH Awards

EMACT (Eastern Massachusetts Association of Community Theatres) annually gives DASH awards for distinguished achievements, for shows that have been evaluated by their consultant reviewers.  This year the awards were announced at a virtual Gala presentation on August 22, 2020.  Instead of the usual format of six nominees and one winner, because of the pandemic-shortened season, this year they announced a varying number of Outstanding Achievement Awards in each category, for shows or individuals with the highest scores.

The Theatre Company of Saugus’ production of Nevermore:  The Imaginary Life and Mysterious Death of Edgar Allan Poe, presented in October & November 2019, was the recipient of Outstanding Achievement Awards for a Musical in almost every possible category.

  • Best Musical
  • Direction – Jason Hair-Wynn
  • Musical Direction – Shawn Gelzleichter
  • Choreography – Jason Hair-Wynn
  • Ensemble Cast
  • Actor – Benjamin Finn
  • Supporting Actress – Christine Dickinson 
  • Supporting Actress – Caroline Fonseca
  • Props – Amanda Allen, Jason Hair-Wynn, Damien LaCount, Deirdre A. L. Shaw
  • Hair & Makeup Design – Amanda Allen, Jason Hair-Wynn, William Fafard, Jr.
  • Costume Design – Amanda Allen & Jason Hair-Wynn 
  • Lighting Design – Matthew Garlin & Jason Hair-Wynn 
  • Sound Design – James Wlodyka, Mel Ingalls, Jason Hair-Wynn 
  • Set Design – Nicholas Raponi & Jason Hair-Wynn 
  • Set Dressing – Nicholas Raponi & Jason Hair-Wynn 

The TCS production of James and the Giant Peach, presented in February 2020, was the recipient of two DASH awards.

  • Outstanding Achievement – Youth Actor in a Play – Brooks Workman
  • Consultant’s Choice Award – Excellence in Original Music – Greg Borodulin

Several TCS members were recognized for work done with other theatre groups:

  • Consultants Choice Award, for Set Construction – Lou Schoenthal for Young Frankenstein at Marblehead Little Theatre
  • Stage Management for a Musical – Jenn Ryan Gelzleichter for Carrie: The Musical at Arts After Hours
  • Direction of a Musical – Samantha Brior-Jones & Nathan Fogg-DeSisto for Beauty & the Beast at Massasoit Theatre Company
  • Choreography – Samantha Brior-Jones for Beauty & the Beast at Massasoit
  • Stage Management for a Musical – Nathan Fogg-DeSisto for Beauty & the Beast at Massasoit Theatre Company
  • Supporting Actor in a Musical – Bobby Imperato for Beauty & the Beast at Massasoit Theatre Company
  • Set Design for a Musical – Nathan Fogg-DeSisto for Beauty & the Beast at Massasoit Theatre Company
  • Set Dressing for a Musical – Nathan Fogg-DeSisto for Beauty & the Beast at Massasoit Theatre Company
  • Hair & Makeup Design for a Musical – Becky Jo Roland for The Addams Family at Arlington Friends of Drama
  • Hair & Makeup Design for a Musical – Kathleen Tringale & Ursina Amsler for Into the Woods at Stage 284

Congratulations to all our winners! And thank you to the EMACT team for all the recognition!

Play Reading Zoom Events in May & June

We can’t wait to see you in person!  But in the meantime, let’s participate in some playreading online.  Giving you a sneak peak at our plans for the 2020-2021 season.

As we are all still staying safe at home – and will be for some time more – TCS is planning an online series of play readings for our potential 2020-2021 season.

These play readings will be conducted via Zoom. All are invited to participate – reading parts in the show or just listening in. The sessions will be on four (4) Saturday evenings May to June 2020, each starting at 7:00PM.

Each Friday before a play reading, TCS will send out an email containing the links to both the Zoom meeting and to the script that we will be reading.

You don’t need to sign up in advance to attend and/or read, but it will be helpful for us to know how many people to expect for readers. If you have any questions or would like to sign-up for any or all evenings, please use the appropriate link below.

After all four play reading sessions have been completed – we will host a final Zoom meeting. This will go to Members only for our General Membership Meeting to discuss the proposed slate of shows, vote on a winter comedy, and approve the plan for the season.

Saturday, May 16 @ 7:00PM – Bloody, Bloody Andrew Jackson 
Saturday, May 23 @ 7:00PM – Spring Awakening
Saturday, May 30 @ 7:00PM – The Importance of Being Earnest 
Saturday, June 6 @ 7:00PM – Much Ado About Nothing

Leo Nickole

We are saddened to learn of the passing of Leonidas A. Nickole, aged 93.  He was the founder of the Theater Company of Saugus, then called the “Town Criers”, in 1968.  He was long honored by the theatre company as a designated Lifetime Member.  He was one of the longest serving and most influential members of the company.  He will be greatly missed.

Leo Nickole was a professor at Emerson College in Boston for many decades, teaching several generations of students.  He specialized in the history and practice of Musical Theatre.

TCS benefited from his role as an educator.  His subject and our avocation, theatre, were the same, and he had much to teach us.  He was always willing to share his knowledge and passion for theatre with us.  Professor Nickole was the organizer or presenter of a series of educational workshops that TCS sponsored over the past twenty years.  Most of these workshops were the inspiration for a show in that genre in the following season.  There were also dozens of general company meetings to which Leo brought guest speakers or performers, who he know from his extensive contacts on Broadway and the professional theatre, as well as from Emerson College.

He directed dozens of shows for TCS.  Since returning to TCS twenty years ago after a hiatus, he directed several Theatre Company of Saugus shows, including:

  • Light Up the Sky (2001)
  • To Kill A Mockingbird (2002)
  • She Loves Me (2003)
  • Evenings with Shakespeare / Taming of the Shrew (2005)
  • Fiddler on the Roof (2006)
  • From Broadway to Hollywood revue (2008)
  • The Pirates of Penzance (2008)

Leo was also the producer or a production team member of many other TCS shows.  He served many years on the Board of Directors, including terms as Treasurer and President.  Leo continued to be active with us until a few years ago, serving as House Manager for most productions.

He was a founder of the New England Theatre Conference (NETC).  That organization grants the annual Leonidas Nickole award to an outstanding theatre educator.  An award in his name is also offered annually by the Musical Theatre Society of Emerson College.

The burial services were private.  A memorial service will be planned for a later date.

Click here for an article about his career at Emerson College.

Click here for the obituary.


Beyond the Blues

All are invited to participate or listen to the reading of a new script.  Beyond the Blues is a new musical play by Ralph Tufo.  He has invited Theatre Company of Saugus to read the script aloud for the first time, and to provide feedback to the author.  Ralph Tufo is the writer of two other musical shows presented in the last few years:  The Katrina Roadhouse, and I’d Rather Be Lucky Than Good; the cast and crew of both of those shows included TCS members.

The reading will be on Sunday 29 September 2019, starting at 6:00 PM.  Some refreshments will be provided.  The location is the first floor meeting room at Seal Harbor Three in Winthrop, MA.

For the reading it doesn’t matter if we have actors that match the race of the characters, nor the exact age, but it is better if the genders match.  We will read the script aloud.  No singing is required; for the songs, we will play recordings that have already been made by Ralph’s band.

Synopsis of Beyond the Blues:  

It’s 1982 in the Brickyard section of Lynn, MA.  The gritty Urban Legend Bar & Grill is hosting its annual Singer/Songwriter Blues Competition.  Four finalists are vying for the coveted award.  They each sing two original songs, accompanied by dramatic monologues which describe the inspiration behind their songs, the hardships they’ve gotten beyond, and their unique connection to Lynn’s history.  The Blue Blazers Band provide the live musical back-up for the singers.  Who wins the award?  It’s up to the audience who votes for the winner at each performance.


  • Anthony Tagliamonte (Tony Tag) – White Male, 53
  • Mary Hennessey – White Female, 30
  • Albie Tomlin – Black Male, 50
  • Jack Weber – White Male, 33
  • Shakira Murray – Black Female, 21

Saugus Founders Day 2019

UPDATE – Due to the storm coming up the coast and the 90% chance of rain and winds in the area – Saugus Founders Day has been postponed until Saturday, September 14. Same times. Same location.


Every year the town of Saugus holds its annual street fair.  Vendors, artists, games, food, and entertainment!  The Theatre Company of Saugus will present performances from recent and upcoming shows at 10:00 AM – including this summer’s Elf, Jr. and next month’s Nevermore on Saturday,  September 7, 2019.  TCS will have a booth on Central Street in front of Town Hall, where you can enter a raffle and find out about our upcoming season.


Annual Car Wash 2019

TCS will hold its annual summer Car Wash on Saturday, August 10, 2019 from 9:00 AM until 1:00 PM.  At the Saugus Senior Center, 466 Central Street (near Hurd Avenue) in Saugus.

Only $5 to wash your car, or $7 for SUVs, trucks or vans.  Extra to clean inside windows.

If it’s a hot day –  and you would like us to spray you with the hose, there is only a small charge.

You will be attended by the cast for our upcoming production of  Elf, Jr. – so you will be receiving the magical treatment that only elves can provide!

Come help us out and have some good clean fun!  If you are interested in assisting, email us at

But even if you can’t come down and help wash, bring your car down so we can clean it up for you.  Your car is dirty and needs washing.

Proceeds will benefit our summer Youth Theatre Workshop 2019.