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'Spelling Bee' on stage

Jill Benson, front, leads the spellers in a song. The spellers are Shea Johnson, from left, Ben Watson, Cassidy Wood, Jordan Hocum, Janine Hunstad and Anthony Reynolds. (Tribune photo by Gary Miller)

WILLMAR -- "The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee" will be presented at 7:30 p.m. today through Saturday in the theater at Ridgewater College, Willmar campus.

Tickets are $5 general admission and are available at the door or by reservation by calling 320-222-7605.

The one-act musical comedy begins with Rona Lisa Peretti, played by Jill Benson, entering the gymnasium to set up. As she passes by the microphone, she has a flashback to the moment when she won the third annual spelling bee by correctly spelling syzygy. The spellers, played by Cassidy Wood, Ben Watson, Janine Hunstad, Shea Johnson, Jordan Hocum and Anthony Reynolds, are introduced as they enter, and sing about their anticipation of the bee.

The official word reader is Douglas Panch, played by Jim Cofer. Panch introduces the intimidating-looking comfort counselor, Mitch Mahoney, played by Brian Dempcy, who is doing this as his court-mandated community service.

Other cast members are Ray Kristiansen, Anthony Jaekel, Jon Wood and Lisa Dusek.

Colin Wasmund is the director.

Jane Kochis is the music director, Gayle Marcus is the vocal director and Jon Wood is the choreographer.

Members of the pit orchestra are Greg Anderson, Brian Pearson, Sherry Pearson and Jane Kochis.

Stage managers are Cassie Morales and Colin Wasmund, with Justin Gilsrud as the assistant stage manager.

Lights and sound operators are Ben Schlitter, Shawn Crusan and Jesse Delaney.

Wardrobe is by Anica Birkland and Jody Bombeck.

Box office is by Liz Reeb, Andrew Clancy and Johnny Pistulka.

Members of the production crew are Alex Estum, Elham Omer, Jordan Hocum, Zach Bertram, Jared Thomas, Jeremy Muñoz, Jeremy Muñoz, Aimee Johnson, Shyann Krumrey, Tricia Rooney and Sharon Mount.

Set construction is by Brooke Barrett, Johnnie Miller-Alexander III, Jacob Bothun, Brooks Morton, Isaac Davies, Nathan Nietfeld, Jordan Dettmann, Tyler Pendleton, Joseph Haugen, Travis Peralta, Dillon Herem, Adedamola Sobande, Justin Howell, Scott Thiemann, Timothy Jackson II, Michael Todd, Danielle Kaminsky, Abdifitah Yare and Shane Kampsen.