Theater Info for the Washington DC region

American Century Theater Stage Door

By • Jun 22nd, 2007 • Category: Reviews

Listen to our review of American Century Theater’s staged reading of Stage Door [MP3 3:16 1MB].

Laura: Last night we saw American Century Theater‘s staged reading of Stage Door in Arlington, Virginia.

Mike: Stage Door is a play by Edna Ferber and George S. Kaufman. The scene is a boarding house for aspiring stage divas. During the evening we get to know all of them. There are love affairs, betrayals, wise cracks, violence, tragedy and comedy. Things are kept quite lively and there are lots of great quotes that can be used when discussing the merits of theater versus the movie industry.

Laura: This show was very well done. It was a staged reading so everybody had a script, but it was very obvious that they weren’t glued to them. They used them when they needed them. The rest of the time they really used their voices and their expressions to convey their messages. It was really a nice show.

Mike: This was a fun show. I think you’ll have a good time at it. Stage Door is not produced that often. It does have a large cast size, over 20 people in it, mostly actresses actually. There are only a handful of men in the show. This show is part of the American Century Theater’s “Rescue” series. It gives audiences an opportunity to see top talent in a thoroughly staged reading of a grand show from the past. These are big and risky shows that most theater companies no longer produce.

Laura: Terry Randall was played by Tara Garwood. She was one of the aspiring young actresses that lived with some of the other girls in New York City trying to make her big break on Broadway. She did an excellent job. She had good emotion in her voice. She had a script with her, but was not tied to the script and really let her expressions and her emotions show in her very powerful scenes.

Mike: Mrs. Orcutt, the landlord of the hotel where all the ladies stayed, was played by Signe Linscott. I really like her. She had so many little mannerisms that were a part of the landlord. Even the way she was walking across the stage with her high heeled shoes clip clopping along. She gave that character a lot of personality. Especially considering it was a stage reading.

Laura: Kaye Hamilton was played by Katherine Foster. She also did a very good job. My heart went out to her. She just seemed to be so sad and so withdrawn. Later on she opened up to Terry about the circumstances that led her here. I think she did an excellent job conveying her wanting to be here in New York to try to make it on Broadway and all of the baggage that she brought with her.

Mike: This was a large cast. There were over 20 different people involved. They did a great job. The Ensemble definitely worked well together. A few people had multiple roles, but it wasn’t confusing. It was a really good time. I think the audience, too, was very appreciative that American Century Theater had put this together.

Laura: Stage Door is playing for one more weekend. Friday and Saturday at 8pm and Sunday at 2:30 pm at the Gunston Theater One in Arlington Virginia.

Mike: The show runs about two and a half hours long with two ten minute intermissions.

Laura: And now, on with the show.


  • Fred Powell, Dr. Randall, Adolph Gretzel: William Aitken
  • Jimmy Devereaux, Keith Burgess: Terry Barr
  • Kendall Adams: Rin Burton
  • Judith Canfield: Cassy Byrne
  • Susan Paige: Miki Byrne
  • Sam Hastings, David Kingsley: James Champlain
  • Kay Hamilton, Ellen Fenwick: Katherine Foster
  • Linda Shaw, Tony Gillette: Leigh Anna Frye
  • Terry Randall: Tara Garwood
  • Olga Brandt: Kari Ginsburg
  • Louise Mitchell: Kacie Greenwood
  • Bobby Melrose: Elish Healy
  • Mrs. Shaw: Rhonda Hill
  • Mrs. Orcutt: Signe Linscott
  • Bernice Niemeyer: Jackie Manger
  • Mary McCune (Little Mary): Mary Myers
  • Mary Harper (Big Mary): Elizabeth Parsons
  • Pat Devine: Jessica Searle
  • Madeline Vauclain: Melissa Tang
  • Jean Maitland: Mindy Woodhead
  • Lou Melhauser, Larry Wescott: D Xavier


  • Director: Terry D. Kester
  • Artistic Director: Jack Marshall
  • Publicity: David Siegal
  • Producer: Ellen Dempsey
  • Props, Box Office: Eleanor Gomberg
  • Executive Producer: Rhonda Hill
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started ShowBizRadio in August 2005 because they love live theater. They each have both performed in and worked behind the scenes in DC area productions, as well as earned a Career Studies Certificate in Theater from Northern Virginia Community College. Mike & Laura are each members of the American Theatre Critics Association, and Mike is a member of the Online News Association.

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