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Show Info

Rumors (Comedy, Farce)
By Neil Simon
Directed by Jillian B. Von Gunten

Performance dates:
Feb. 6, 7, 13, 14, 2015 – 8pm
Feb. 8, 15, 2015 – 2:30pm
Adult situations and language

 Prices: $15, $10 for Senior(55+), Military, Students
Performance location: Zanesville Community Theatre, 940 Findley Ave, Zanesville, Oh.
Tickets may be ordered on-line: Buy Tickets Now or by calling 740-455-6487 to reserve. Wheelchair seating may be ordered on-line or by calling the Box Office.Print your E-Tickets, or pick up your tickets at the Box Office. Season Ticket Holders may order on-line at no charge -Click on the date, Select your seats, and Use “Adult or Senior(55+) or Advertiser – Season Ticket Holder” as the ticket type. No credit card required unless you choose to order additional tickets or to make a donation.

Greg Adams (Ken Gorman) is a native of New Concord where he is currently serving as its Mayor. He also recently retired from Resource Systems after starting the company with his college classmate. He graduated from Muskingum University with a degree in Mathematics. He is married to Eileen Adams, who plays Chris Gorman in the show. Eileen and Greg have 2 grown children, Chelsea and Clare and enjoy traveling to see them as well as general adventuring and exploring.

Greg has been on stage on and off since his college days. One of his early parts was playing Felix in “The Odd Couple” when he shared the stage with his girlfriend (later to be wife) Eileen who played a Pigeon sister. He is looking forward to enjoying the fun of Neil Simon again.

Some of Greg’s favorite roles include: Tybalt in Romeo and Juliet, Falstaff in the Merry Wives of Windsor, Elyot Chase in “Private Lives”.

Greg is returning at the encouragement of his wife Eileen. He is excited about his first appearance with the ZCT group, but feels a kindred spirit, as his grandparents Bob and Mabel Adams were early dedicated members of the ZCT board. He is honored to be involved with an experienced director and share the stage with many seasoned fellow actors for this production.

Eileen Adams (Chris Gorman) – is a native of the Pittsburgh area and has lived in New Concord since graduating from Muskingum University with a degree in Communications and Theater. She is married to Greg Adams, who plays Ken Gorman in the show, and they have two grown daughters, Chelsea and Clare.

Eileen has acted in or directed more than 100 shows over the years, including high school, college, community, church, radio and alumni productions. She has also directed 6th-8th grade students at East Muskingum Middle School the past 14 years.

Some of Eileen’s favorite roles include: Blanche in “Streetcar Named Desire,” Florence in “The Female Odd Couple,” Annie Glenn in “The Annie Glenn Story,” Alice in “You Can’t Take it With You,” Amanda in “Private Lives,” Anne in “6 Rms Riv Vu,” and has played both Pigeon sisters in “The Odd Couple.” She performed a 15-minute monologue of Mary in several area churches this past December.

Eileen enjoys the comedy of Neil Simon and hopes the audience has some hearty laughs during the show. She thanks director Jillian for giving her the opportunity to act alongside Greg. Eileen and Greg met during theatrical productions in college. They both even once played dwarfs in “The Hobbit.”

Enjoy the show, and thank you for supporting ZCT!

Rob Cook (Lenny Ganz) – I’ve been involved in theatre for many years now and have always enjoyed the people at ZCT. After graduate school in theatre at Illinois State University and a few years with the Illinois Shakespeare Festival, I moved to Chicago where I worked with several theatre companies throughout the city. Upon moving to Philo, I was very glad to find ZCT and its tribe of like-minded theatre geeks. I currently work for the Muskingum County Library System and expect everyone reading this to join the Friends of the Library organization. Do it! Some of my favorite shows have included Assassins, The Mystery of Irma Vep, Doubt and Young Frankenstein. I encouraged anyone who has ever thought that they might possibly, sorta, kinda, maybe would like to get involved with ZCT to do so. It’s a lot of fun with some terrific people.
Cindy Houpt (Claire Ganz) – Cindy lives in Newark with her husband Ron and youngest daughter Sarah. She always enjoys another opportunity to perform here at ZCT. She has had the good fortune of performing in several productions, namely Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, and Young Frankenstein. Cindy would like to thank the cast and crew for such a fun Summer. Cindy hopes you enjoy the show as much as she enjoyed rehearsing it!
Jared Gantzer (Ernie Cusack) – Jared Gantzer is happy to be a part of his 2nd show at ZCT. Previous roles include Sergeant Penny in The Hollow at ZCT, and Sam Hendrix in Wait Until Dark at The Renner.
When Jared is not on stage, he juggles for the fire and light group Pyrotechnika. He lives in Zanesville with his wife Sarah, and their three children: Julia, Madeline and Grayson.

Sarah Gantzer (Cookie Cusack) – Sarah Gantzer is excited to play the delightfully quirky Cookie Cusack! Not only does she get to be married to her Jared onstage and off, she gets to be a part of a fantastical cast with some of her best friends! She is especially thrilled to play Cookie because, like Sarah, Cookie believes in sprinkles, and chocolate, and adding love to every bite!

Previous favorite roles for Sarah include Gerda Cristow in The Hollow, Elizabeth Proctor in The Crucible, and Marian the Librarian in The Music Man. She also quite excited to direct Alice in Wonderland Jr. at The Renner in March.

Sarah lives in Zanesville with her husband Jared, daughters Julia and Maddie, and son Grayson. When not teaching her rambunctious group of 1st graders, she loves leading Girl Scout Troop #1794, coaching R.O.S.A. Soccer, and basically leaving sparkles wherever she goes. She thanks you kindly for supporting the arts in Zanesville.

Matt Swingle (Glenn Cooper) – Be prepared to laugh yourself silly during this fun Neil Simon comedy. I am honored to get to be onstage with some of my favorite people again and to work with one of ZCT’s best directors. I hope by the time the show is over your sides will hurt from laughing and you’ll be scratching your head wondering what just happened. I’ve done several shows with ZCT most recently 9 to 5 , Spring Awakening and Young Frankenstein. This has been another fun experience working with a talented bunch of people. In my spare time, I do have a real job, I’m a Sr Data Architect in Columbus. I’m thankful to have this group of people in my life.
Tahnee Kay (Cassie Cooper) is excited to play the delightful Cassie in this production of Rumors.
Originally from Perry County, Tahnee now lives with her husband and three cats in Zanesville. She has been in productions with New Lexington High School and Community Theatre, Hocking College and Havering College in England, and Zane Trace Players. This will be her fifth show with ZCT. Her favorite role thus far is Doralee in 9 to 5 The Musical.
Tahnee feels blessed to be surrounded by this amazing community of truly talented people and she can’t wait for another show! She hopes the audience enjoys this farce as much as she has.
Cory Roush (Officer Welch) – Cory began acting as a student at Maysville High School, playing roles in Annie, Into the Woods, The Music Man, Annie Get Your Gun, Big, Back to the 80s, and Beauty and the Beast. He returned to the theatre in ZCT’s 51st season with roles in Spring Awakening and 9 to 5, which means that Rumors is the first time he will appear on stage without being required to sing. Cory is a 2012 graduate of Ohio University and has taught Elementary Language Arts at Foxfire Schools and is currently working with the school outreach program through the Muskingum County Library System.
Mollie Gookins Earich (Officer Pudney) – It is great to be back on stage with this particular cast! In my real life, I teach Language Arts for grades 9-12, at the Franklin Local Community School in Roseville, Ohio. I am proud to say that I am a Zanesville Community Theatre and Zane Trace Players veteran actress and have had the opportunity, (for over 30 years!), to portray a wide range of leading roles. However, I LOVE minor roles such as Officer Pudney, because I get to act really tough! Enjoy the show and laugh a lot! Special thanks to my Mom, (Bobie Gookins Rust) and fiance, Max Winland, for their loving support of my “other life.”

Production Staff

Jillian B. Von Gunten (Director) – Jillian has participated in local theater all of her life and currently serves as the President of the Board of Directors for Zanesville Community Theatre. Some of her favorite roles include: Maggie in “A Cat on a Hot Tin Roof,” Alais in “The Lion in Winter,” Nancy in “OLIVER!” and Barbara Fordham in “August: Osage County,” all at Zanesville Community Theatre, and Stella Kowalski in “A Streetcar Named Desire,” at The Renner. Some of her favorite shows to direct were: “The Mystery of Irma Vep,” “HONK,” “The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged),” and “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee.” Jillian currently serves as the Coach for Powerhouse’s SPARKS!! Improv Troupe and works in Zanesville as an attorney at Allen & Baughman, Attorneys at Law.

Director’s Notes:

My first exposure to Neil Simon’s work was in high school. During my junior and senior years, I had the great luck to be in performances of “Rumors” and “The Female Version of the Odd Couple.” Of course, because this was high school, they were edited. Significantly. Regardless, I sort of fell for Mr. Simon. His work is somewhat iconic in the American theater – many try to duplicate it with rare success. His dialogue is fast paced, rhythmic, and, if you ask my actors, occasionally maddening because of the way he repeats, changes, and reinforces his story line. More than anything, his work is funny; his characters find themselves in ridiculous situations with hilarious results. There isn’t a great moral or philosophical question here, just laughter. (We hope!)

Simon’s dialogue only works if you have truly talented actors to carry it off during the show. As a director of a comedy, casting is somewhat an exercise in terror – comedy is hard (don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. They’re lying, I assure you.) and comedians aren’t a dime-a-dozen. This show requires 10 strong comedians and is, therefore, a casting nightmare. However, sometimes the theater gods look favorably upon a poor director and such was my experience with this show. Wowee, these actors! They’re amazing! (And, no, they aren’t paying me to say that.) Directing this show has been one of the most fun directing experiences I have ever had. Yes, ever. I get to come to rehearsal and work with people who are incredibly talented, understanding of the process of character creation and craft of making theater happen, supportive of me and one another, and so kind. I’ve enjoyed nothing so much as watching these folks work – creating characters, breathing life into them, and laughing with one another. It has been a joy and I am so grateful to them.

In short, what you’re about to see is one of my favorite comedies brought to life by some of my favorite people. They are talented craftspeople I’m honored to call my friends. I’m terrifically proud of the shenanigans about to ensue – the loud noises, yelling, drinking, laughing, and all around silliness. I can only hope you enjoy watching the show as much as we’ve enjoyed putting it together. You have my genuine and sincerest thanks for supporting the arts in Southeastern Ohio and for choosing to join us at Zanesville Community Theatre today.

Jan Kiikka (Producer) – has been involved in one aspect of production or another at ZCT for over 20 years. Jan just retired in May 2012 from Franklin Local Schools, though she will still be the drama producer at Philo High School. Jan and her husband, Niel, live in the McIntire Terrace with their five dogs and one cat (and turtles and fish).