The Sound of Music

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Don Gingold / Sunday, November 21, 2021 / Categories: Past Shows

The Sound of Music

July 15-31 Weekends, NCHS Auditorium

Event date: 7/15/2022 7:30 PM - 7/31/2022 3:00 PM Export event
The Sound of Music

The hills are alive with the sound of music! Wait, do we mean Rotary Hill? I think that's the only hill in Naperville.

Actually, we mean the perennial favorite Broadway Musical that was turned into the classic Julie Andrews movie. It was held in Naperville opening July 15, 2022 for three weekends, performed in the Naperville Central High School Auditorium, finally returning to our pre-COVID home that we've performed in since 1991.



"I've seen several versions and this is the BEST Sound of Music I've seen."



Summer Place told the tale of young novice Maria, called upon by her Mother Abbess to care for the children of the widowed Captain Georg von Trapp. She falls in love with the children while the Captain falls in love with her.

But it's not only a love story; the play was set in Austria in the early days of World War II at the onset of the German occupation, and Nazis exert an ever-increasing hold on the life of the von Trapp family, to the point of their plan to escape.

As is the case with many art forms, this play holds a mirror to society. The von Trapps see the future of an oppressive, totalitarian government while others around them either embrace it or hope to just be able to live with it. The play is as relevant today as it was when it debuted in 1959.


Summer Place assembled a talented group of actors, directors and technicians from all over the Chicagoland area to produce this wonderful show. Plus, we  teamed up with the Naperville Chorus to bring you soaring sounds from the Abbey of Nonnberg. Our show opens with the sisters of the Abbey singing evening prayers. The ladies of the Chorus add to our own ensemble of beautiful voices to swell the opening number to angelic heights. We hear them again several times throughout the story, especially the climactic finale.


Our Cast

Maria Rainer Katherine Damisch Katherine Damisch is ecstatic to go to the hills with Summer Place! Recently, she performed as Gwendolyn in The Importance of Being Earnest for Elgin Theatre Company and the Cheshire Cat/March Hare in Alice in Wonderland for Citadel Theatre. Not content to be idle during the pandemic, she performed in 150 online readings with various groups. A Shakespeare veteran, she has played, among others, Ophelia in Hamlet (Elgin Fringe Festival), Macduff in Macbeth (New Place Theatre), Rosalind in As You Like It, and Hermia in A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Citadel Theatre). Musical credits include the title role of Mary Poppins and Janet Van de Graaf in The Drowsy Chaperone (TownSquare Players) and Amalia Balash in She Loves Me (Williams Street Repertory). Proud alumna of Denison University and Northwestern University. This one’s for Dad, who first taught her the sound of music.

Captain Georg von Trapp Matt Whalen Matt is excited to return to Summer Place, and to this role, after playing Captain in 2000 in this theatre with Only a Stage. Previous SPT credits include Kiss Me Kate (Fred/Petruchio), Into the Woods, …Charlie Brown (Schroeder in 2002, Director in 2012) and Grease (Director). Since 2019, his theatre experience has been playing Bill or understudying the three dads in Mamma Mia (Summer Place, Metropolis, Dominican University, Brightside) Other credits include Bud in The Bridges of Madison County, Joseph…Dreamcoat (Brightside), Sweeney Todd, Company (Paul), Drood (Jasper) with Wheaton Drama, Parade (Hugh Dorsey) with Harper College, as well as work with Greenman Theatre- Doubt (Director) Light Opera Works, First Folio, Signal Ensemble (1776-Jeff Award, Musical), and Buffalo Theatre Ensemble. A native and resident of Naperville, he is the current VP of Naperville Jaycees and a graduate of North Central College. He thanks his family, friends and Lauren for their support.

Liesl Christina Peck Christina is grateful to return to the Summer Place Theatre stage! She first appeared in SPT's performance of South Pacific as well as the musical revue, Broadway Backwards. When she is not performing, she is a high school special education teacher. Christina is excited to share the stage with her Rolf and real-life husband, Jason. Many thanks to friends and family for supporting the arts. Enjoy!

Friedrich (Rolf understudy) Nicholas Baumgartner In his first ever production with Summer Place Theatre and joining his wonderfully talented girlfriend Katie onstage, Nick is so excited to be playing Friedrich von Trapp, to share the story of The Sound of Music with all of you, and he hopes you enjoy the show!

Louisa Lucinda (Lulu) Knight This is Lulu's first performance at Summer Place Theatre and second theater performance ever. She feels that being Louisa is a perfect role for her and is excited to bring out her mischievous nature. She is going to be a freshman in high school and plans on joining the basketball team and softball team. She also loves to sing, play the cello and clarinet. Lulu is grateful for her parents getting her to audition and would like to thank her teachers, friends, and family.

Kurt William Lardner Will is extremely excited to be playing Kurt in The Sound of Music! He just graduated 8th grade from Lincoln Junior High School, soon to be a freshman at Naperville Central High School. At school, Will participates in the orchestra, choir, and school musicals. In his free time, he likes to hang out with friends, play volleyball, and watch TV. In addition to being in The Sound of Music, Will is part of Witty Banter Theatre Ensemble to learn more ways to enhance his acting skills. He has been acting since the age of 6 and is excited for where the arts will take him in the future!

Brigitta Petra Ivanov Petra Ivanov is 11 years old and loves singing and all things creative. She has danced with Chicago's Hubbard Street Youth Dance Program and currently studies voice at Sing With Emily. Music has made a big impact on her life by allowing her to express herself. She even wrote and recorded a song! Her favorite thing about playing Brigitta is that the character is smart and observant. Playing her has been a great joy as has working with Summer Place's Cast, Crew, and Directors!

Marta Kanyaka Jagan Kanyaka Jagan lives with her family in Aurora. She is 10 years old and is entering fifth grade at Gombert Elementary this fall. She loves hiking and outdoor sports as much as she enjoys singing and playing the piano. Kanyaka is excited for her theatrical debut as Marta von Trapp in Summer Place Theatre’s 'The Sound of Music' and is thankful for this invaluable experience.

Gretl Ava Rose Doty Ava, 6 from Downers Grove is so excited to be making her Summer Place debut! Gretl has been a dream role of hers. Most recently she was in BAM’s Les Misérables as Young Cosette, Paramount Theater’s Come Alive, CTWS as a Froglet in HONK, and as the Dwarf in Shrek. Ava loves dancing, singing and gymnastics! She has had an absolute blast with this cast learning a lot! A special shout out to her Papa, Grandma, Uncle Brett, Aunt Megan, SJA friends, Ohlsson Talent, Talent X Alexander, Big sister Aubrey and her puppy Milo! Enjoy the show!

Elsa Schraeder SarahAnn Sutter SarahAnn Sutter is delighted to debut with The Summer Place! A native Californian, SarahAnn holds an MBA and a BBA from the University of North Texas. Texas credits include Cendrillon, Die Fledermaus, Madama Butterfly, Pirates of Penzance, Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, Crazy for You, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, Patience, Pinafore, Babes in Toyland. After 6 years overseas, SarahAnn relocated to the Chicago area, where she has performed in Yeomen of the Guard (Dame Carruthers u/s) & Ruddigore – The Savoyaires; Pirates of Penzance (Kate) – PM&L; Company (Jenny) & Follies (Heidi) – Devonshire; Nine (Mama Maddalena) – Brightside; Merry Mad Mid-Mod – Wheaton Drama; Il barbiere di Siviglia (Berta) & Amahl and the Night Visitors (Mother) with MiOpera. COVID-19 cancellations: Pirates of Penzance (Ruth u/s) – G&S Opera Company, 42nd Street (Dorothy) – HOTT Productions. In August, she will appear in Carmen (Frasquita) for MiOpera. By day, SarahAnn is the Operations Director for Sheep Jam Productions.

Max Detweiler Reed Pence Reed Pence is very happy to return to Summer Place Theatre—after a 49 year absence! His previous appearance on our stage was as a teenage chorus member in our 1973 production, My Fair Lady. More recently, Reed has appeared in the choruses of nearly a dozen productions with New Philharmonic Opera and Main Street Opera (where he also covered the role of Bardolfo in Verdi’s Falstaff). He’s also sung characters such as the Phantom of the Opera, Jean Valjean, and Jekyll & Hyde for the West Suburban Symphony’s Fusion shows.

Mother Abbess Sadie Wynne Sadie is happy to return to the stage to appear in her first SPT production. This is the second time she has appeared in The Sound of Music, having played Maria 25 years ago! Some previous credits include Into the Woods (Rapunzel - Buffalo Theatre Ensemble), Company (April), I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change (Noble Fool Theatricals), The Christmas Schooner (Bailiwick Repertory Theatre), The Great Waltz (Light Opera Works), and Annie (Grace Farrell). Sadie is also thrilled to be sharing the stage this summer with her daughter CeCi! Sadie is one of the music directors at Holy Spirit Catholic Community in Naperville. Much love to her parents (her mom also played Mother Abbess some years ago!), her other daughter Veronica and husband Danny!

Sr. Berthe (Mother Abbess, Elsa understudy) Lori Bush Shepard Lori is delighted to be back with The Summer Place in her second production since moving from the San Francisco Bay Area in 2018. In the real world, she owns a marketing consultancy for software companies. Favorite roles include Cabaret (Sally Bowles), Rogers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella (Cinderella), and Blood Wedding (Bride), all in Wisconsin. Other past productions include Best Little Whorehouse in Texas (Angel), 1940s Radio Hour, Pippin, Camelot, and Medea. She dedicates her performance to the memory of Steve Koek, who played her husband in SPT's Footloose.

Sr. Margaretta Nancy Gallman Witzke By day, I enjoy teaching rhetoric and tutoring English. By night, I am privileged to share some of life's most unforgettable stories through stage and song. Over the past few summers, I have been blessed to play a Dynamite in Hairspray, Maud Dunlop in Music Man, and a nurse in South Pacific. This summer, it has been a dream come true to work with Summer Place's theatre family as each member brings to life one of my favorite musicals of all time, The Sound of Music.

Sr. Sophia Katie Soria Katie is so pleased to be making her Summer Place Theatre debut with this lovely cast, crew, and creative team. She has spent much of her time in recent years with GreenMan Theatre Troupe in Elmhurst, where some favorite onstage credits include Monstrous Regiment, Urinetown, Cash on Delivery!, Shakespeare in Hollywood, Speakeasy or Die Hard, and Pride & Prejudice. There she has also worked on sets (Frankenstein, Doubt), assistant directed (Macbeth, The Laramie Project, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Nickel and Dimed), and served on the Board. Credits elsewhere include Enchanted April, Crazy for You, My Fair Lady, Godspell, Thoroughly Modern Millie, The Full Monty, and more. Offstage she enjoys many activities including badminton, golf, hiking, and crafting. Many thanks and much love to her amazing and supportive friends and family, especially husband David and daughter Allison. It is delightful to be making live theatre again – enjoy the show!

Franz (Captain understudy) Jason Sheldon Jason has appeared in performances in various community theatres in the Chicagoland area, and most recently as Jules in The Summer Place Theatre's production of My Three Angels. He was also cast as Father Dupin in Natural Talent Productions (St. Charles) Hunchback of Notre Dame, as well as Robby the Stockfish in the Stagecoach Player's (DeKalb) production of Urinetown. The Sound of Music is a special show to him and he's very excited to be part this extrodinary cast!

Frau Schmidt Tina St. Angelo Wetzel I'm thrilled to be performing again with SPT! Music Man in 2016 was the last time and prior to that was 1979 Guys and Dolls. I was in the very first SPT production of Sound of Music in 1978. I'm also thrilled to perform again with 1973 SPT cast mate Reed Pence. Working with our director Jorge and this cast has been a great experience. As always, I dedicate this performance to my parents George and Betty and to the wonderful memories of working with SPT founder Don Shanower and the original musical team of Bernie Izzo and Laura Grant beginning in the tent in the summer 1973 through the summer of 1979.

Rolf Gruber (Captain understudy) Jason Peck Jason is so excited to be doing live theatre again with Summer Place! He was last seen as Professor in Summer Place's 2019 production of South Pacific. Jason is thrilled to be the Rolf to his wonderful wife's Liesel! He wants to thank his family and friends for all of their support. Enjoy the show!

Herr Zeller Rick Love Rick is excited for the challenge of playing a character so unlike himself (and who makes him shudder). For Summer Place, he has recently appeared in A Christmas Carol - A 1940’s Radio Show, Mamma Mia! (Harry Bright), and Footloose (Rev Shaw). He has appeared in several other Naperville area productions, starting at Kidz Kabaret. Other favorite roles include Mr Bumble (Oliver), Grandpa Joe (Willy Wonka), and Geppetto (My Son Pinocchio). He moonlights as Santa.

Baron Elberfeld, Head Crew Chris Knight Chris is excited to be performing and volunteering with Summer Place Theatre again. He has been in several previous SPT productions including Footloose, Anything Goes, and Jesus Christ Superstar. When the theatre isn't calling, Chris works from home as an electronics engineer. He also loves to cook and is a nationally certified beer judge. Chris lives in Lisle with his wife, Sandra and daughter Lucinda and is proud to share the stage with them in this production of The Sound of Music.

Baroness Elberfeld, Ensemble Antoinette 'Toni' Higgins-Thrash Toni's last performances were in The Producers, Legally Blond, and Seussical. She received her BA in Theatre and Dance, and completed a 2-1/2 year improv program at Second City. Prior to retirement she served as Cultural Arts Programmer for Arlington Heights, Schaumburg, and Northbrook Park Districts. As a Charter Member of the National Association of Dance and Affiliated Artists, she continues to take dance classes, and most recently has been enjoying background film work in the Chicagoland area. She's thankful for good health, hope, faith, life, love, family, friends...Praise God From Whom All Blessings Flow!

Frau Zeller, Ensemble Sandra Knight Sandra is excited to be in her first stage performance since high school. She fondly remembers singing the Sound of Music along with her mom when she was a child. She thanks her husband Chris, for his guidance and encouragement, and her daughter Lulu, for daring her to audition, and is glad to now be sharing this musical with them.

New Postulant, Ensemble Ceci Wynne CeCi is thrilled to be a part of The Sound of Music this summer. She just completed her freshman year at Plainfield East High School, where she played Aunt Davida/Fat Friar/Viktor in Puffs!, and was a Villager/Ball Attendee in another Rodgers & Hammerstein musical, Cinderella. CeCi performed at Carnegie Hall this summer with the Young Naperville Singers, a group she has sung with since the 1st grade. She would like to thank the entire cast for making her first real community theater experience one to remember. She is also excited to get to share the stage with her mom, who is playing Mother Abbess. Being in the show is one of her favorite things!

Admiral von Schrieber Don Gingold A regular for nearly 20 years here at Summer Place, favorite roles were Lazar Wolf (Fiddler), Ringmaster/Bailey (Barnum), Ben (Secret Garden), Doc (West Side Story), Senex (Forum), Henri (My 3 Angels), Elisha (Anything Goes), Announcer (Bleacher Bums), Book Voice (How to Succeed), Scrooge (1940s Christmas Carol) and Host of Summer Lovin'. "Thanks for so many great memories!"

Ensemble Angela Clark Angela is thrilled to be a part of this talented cast of The Sound of Music. She worked with Summer Place once before as Sabrina in The Mighty Ted. Angela is an active member of theater at her school where she performed as Angela Lure in Trap and as Mabel in A Simpler Time. She also assisted with Descendants at BrightSide Theatre by being the dance captain for the kids and performing as Snow White. She has learned so much about performing through Sound of Music’s rehearsals and will be using what she learned in all shows going forward. Outside of theatre, she loves sewing, drawing, and researching praying mantis care and cultural anthropology. Angela would like to thank her amazing friends and family for supporting her throughout these rehearsals and listening to all her excited rambles.

Ensemble Mike Levins Mike is thrilled to be back on the stage and in his first show with The Summer Place Theater. He has previously appeared as Nathan Detroit in “Guys and Dolls”, The Rabbi in “Fiddler on the Roof” and “13”, Harold Ickes in “Annie”, and Mingo in “Crazy for You”. He thanks his wife, Sue, and son, Matt, for their unending love and support.

Ensemble Laura Miller Previously seen as bloody Mary in South Pacific, Laura is really excited to be returning to the stage again with Summer Place. Some of her favorite rules include Aunt Eller in Oklahoma, Sister Berthe in Sound of Music, Yente in Fiddler on the Roof. Mrs. Paroo in The Music Man. Mrs Lynch in Grease. While serving as an apprentice at Pheasant Run Playhouse, Laura served as a singing voice and assistant to Dawn Wells from Gilligan's island fame.

Ensemble, Jewish Wife, Fraulein Schweiger (Sisters understudy) Katie Paulsen Although she is no stranger to Naperville area theatre, Katie is thrilled to be performing in her first Summer Place show! She hails from Wheaton and graduated from Wheaton College with a degree in Communications/Theatre Arts and a Spanish minor. Favorite past shows/roles include A Christmas Carol (Ghost of Christmas Past), The Little Mermaid (Arista), Seussical (Wickersham Brother), Evita (Dancer/Eva's sister/Funeral trio), and The Tempest (Sebastian). Special shoutout to her incredibly talented boyfriend Nicholas Baumgartner for auditioning and doing this show with her. Enjoy the show!

Ensemble, Ursula, Soloist Nun (Maria understudy) Grace Catherine Politowicz Grace is delighted to be returning to The Summer Place. Since her last Summer Place production, 2016's “50 Years of Musicals,” Grace Catherine earned her BA in Music with a concentration in Vocal Performance. Upon graduation, she began teaching general music and conducting children’s choirs at a local Christian school, working with its youth in kindergarten through 8th grade. Grace Catherine also thoroughly enjoys helping with the school’s preschool program. Aside from these educational roles, she finds great satisfaction in providing piano and voice lessons for all ages through her private music studio. Grace Catherine is grateful to her family and friends for their loving support and would like to thank the directors, cast, and crew of “The Sound of Music” for welcoming her back to the Summer Place Theatre stage and making the experience so positive and memorable.

Ensemble, Rally-goer Christianna Tai Christianna is overjoyed to join Summer Place Theatre in her first ever musical theatre production! When not at rehearsals or performances, Christianna can be found teaching music, raising caterpillars and butterflies, or reading The Count of Monte Cristo with her book club.

Ensemble, Jewish Husband, Crew Garrett Wong Garrett is excited to be making his debut at Summer Place Theatre. He loves acting, working in the tech booth, and creating sets. His most recent roles were Monsignor O’Hara in Sister Act and Oberon in Midsummer Night’s Dream, and has been involved in theatre since childhood. Garrett attends College Of DuPage and is looking forward to what his future holds.

Ensemble, Rally-goer Laura Zimmermann This is Laura's first show with Summer Place. She had a nice time.


Featuring the ladies of the Naperville Chorus as Sisters of Nonnberg Abbey

Patrice Basso, Janet Blubaugh, Lynn Brown, Marilyn DiCola, Joanne Fries, Christine Guthrie, Leslie Hayward, Margo Jonah, Janet Lumsden, Kathy Owen, Sarah Sippy, Kelley Trombly-Fretag



  • FlutesMichelle Mathena, Cathie Kukec
  • OboeHeather Winters
  • ClarinetChristina Kuckie
  • Soprano SaxKevin McOlgan
  • BassoonNyketa DiCesare
  • HornsLisa Nuske, Jennifer Young
  • TrumpetsPaul Ohde, Scott Kelley, Christina Morris, Andres Ruiz
  • TrombonesVenessa Gronke, Jack Grooms
  • TubaDaniel DiCesare
  • PercussionWilliam Winters
  • GuitarsClayton Floyd, Greg Comonal
  • HarpBarry Riskedal
  • ViolinsKatie Lyda, Bryan Monk, Katie Brown, David Hwang
  • ViolaTed Hatmaker, Canchen Li
  • CellosMichelle Akin, Nila Senthilkumar, Sabina Fijor
  • BassMelissa Parkinson


Our Production Team


Director Jorge Bermudez Jorge returns to Summer Place after directing another R&H classic with our 2019 production of South Pacific. He received an MFA in Theatre Pedagogy - Performance from Virginia Commonwealth University. During his time there, he had the incredible opportunity to teach acting and directing at the undergraduate level, participate in a pre-Broadway musical workshop (Amazing Grace), and perform as Edna in their production of Hairspray. Other selected directing credits include A Chorus Line, West Side Story, Miss Saigon, Chess, Jesus Christ Superstar, and the play Memory of Water. A huge thank you to all friends and family for coming to support me, this show and the arts - may your heart want to sing every song it hears!

Music Director Emma Gingold Emma has been fortunate to participate in lots of Summer Place shows in many different roles, but her favorite role is Music Director! Some past SPT shows include South Pacific, Footloose, Jesus Christ Superstar, and Camelot. She serves on the Board of Directors as Vice President and is the group's volunteer coordinator. When she's not at rehearsal, Emma accompanies for choirs and Solo & Ensemble festivals, teaches piano lessons, and music directs other Chicago-area theatre productions. She lives with her husband, her dog, and her cat in Elmwood Park.

Vocal Director Mary Barrios My previous experiences include directing for Elmhurst Children’s Theater, teaching music in the classroom, and over 35 years of private lessons. I play several instruments and have written children’s songs. I am so fortunate to work with a talented team on “The Sound of Music”!

Choreographer Jake Ganzer Jake is excited to return to Summer Place Theatre, where he also choreographed "Jesus Christ Superstar" and directed "...Spelling Bee." You may also have seen his work at Victor J. Andrew High School ("Shrek," "Freaky Friday") and Citadel Theatre ("Annie," "...Charlie Brown"). He hopes you enjoy the show!

Stage Manager Taylor Weisz Taylor is excited to be stage managing her first show In the area. Taylor moved up here just at the start of the pandemic from her hometown of Peoria. She was last seen in Tarzan the Musical “Terk” and Addams Family “Wednesday”. As much as she can’t wait to get back on the stage, she is enjoying being behind the scenes again. Thank you to my family for their love and support !

Costumer Rebekah Ryden Rebekah is excited to begin her costuming career with Summer Place Theater! She has had a passion for historical and theatrical costuming her entire adult life with a focus on 1910s, 40s, and 50s styles, and enjoys dressing historically in her daily life. She is currently working on a historical sewing project: a skirt drafted from an 1895 sewing manual. Aside from sewing, she enjoys books and movies, playing Dungeons and Dragons, and caring for her plants.

Technical Director, Scenic Designer, Master Carpenter Sam Dempsey Sam has been involved in the entertainment industry for the past 25 years. He received his BA in theater from North Central College, and his MFA in technical direction from SIU. After receiving his masters, he was the technical director for Pfeiffer Hall and the North Central College Theater department. He was promoted to Production Manager for the Fine Arts department as the Wentz Concert Hall was being constructed. After leaving the college Sam has involved himself in various community events such as the Naperville Jaycees Last Fling. Sam has worked on more shows and concerts that he can list. Sam is pleased to "come out of retirement" to help with SPT with their production of The Sound of Music!

Light Designer, Carpenter Bequita Dempsey Beq is excited to join the SPT crew! She spent most of her teens & twenties stage managing, light designing, singing, & dancing at North Central College. Most of her best summer memories are of working on productions like: Guys & Dolls, Evita, Joseph with friends & family. Favorite onstage credits include: 42nd St at NCC, Pacific Overtures at Porchlight Musical Theatre & Oliver at New American Theatre. "Its been so much fun getting back to the art I love, working with my husband & now teaching our sons, Hank (4) & Dean (2)." In her real life, Beq is an entrepreneur & 2022 Treasurer for the Naperville Jaycees.

Sound Design Bill Ryden I became involved in musical theater as a parent volunteer when my daughters started doing shows with CYT (Christian Youth Theater) in 2012. I started mixing sound for the shows soon after that and have enjoyed it ever since. I love the challenge, the attention to detail and the feeling of emotion you get when it sounds just right. My favorite saying for mixing sound is, "if the audience doesn't notice us, we've done our job." I live in Joliet with my wife Kim of 27 years and our four children. For the past six years, I have been serving as Pastor of Hope Lutheran Church in Shorewood.

Sound Design Elle Asunta Elle Asunta is new to the SPT crew and is ecstatic to be a part of! She recently graduated with a BA in theatre design from the University of South Florida and has moved to Illinois to pursue a masters in sound and cinematography. She has worked in set design, light design, and sound design for the past four years as well as being a musician for 11 years. “I’m looking forward to the Sound of Music and the people I’ll meet along the way!”

Asst Stage Mgr Gianna Salerno Giana is a stage management major at Baldwin Wallace University in Cleveland. She saw her first professional production at age 4 and has been involved in theatre crew since 5th grade. When she's not behind the scenes or in the audience of a show, she enjoys traveling, ballroom dancing, and roller coasters.

Props Mgr Angela Friis Angela is a Celebrity Makeup Artist, working on some of the most known faces in Hollywood. Angela wears many hats on production as well as doing casting and associate producing. She has worked behind the scenes in a local theater in AZ and is excited to learn more along the way in this area of arts.

Build Crew Bre Sakalis Bre is new to the Summer Place Crew, and is super excited to get back into theater again! She has worked in theater since high school and received her BA in Theatre Production Design from Western Illinois University. After graduating, she worked at Ozark Actors Theatre in Rolla, Missouri and at Joliet Junior College. The scene shop is where she first started her theater career, and she is happy to be back at it again.

Producer, Assistant Director Don Gingold Besides the Admiral's hat in his juicy little cameo, Don wears numerous others: Producer, Assistant Director, set builder, Announcer, as well as President of The Summer Place for the past four years. Kate, his wife, rock, and biggest fan, gets an uncredited role as Producer's Director! "Just a few more hours, and I'll be back home to you."


Director’s Note

Depending on the point of view, this production has either been six months or thirty years in the making.

Based on the 1949 memoir of Maria von Trapp, The Story of the Trapp Family Singers, The Sound of Music chronicles the adventures of a young postulant seeking her true calling when she meets a widower with 7 children and becomes conflicted as to what her true calling actually is. The now iconic movie was released in 1965. This happened to be the very first movie my 5 year old brother ever saw. It was his first time in a movie theater. It was his first time seeing a movie in color and it happened to be a movie musical. Like millions of others, he fell in love with the musical. He loved the opening sequence, he loved the music, and of course he loved the story. From this moment, his passion for the movie, never waned and over the next twenty some years (some of which I wasn’t born yet) my brother would be whispering in my ear about how the hills are alive.

So, it would make sense that in 1992, when I was making plans to direct my first full length musical, my brother would be (politely?) encouraging me to begin with the Sound of Music. At that point, I had never seen it which he had found utter blasphemy. I had graduated college the year before but somehow, I had missed this show up until then. I had never seen the movie despite repeated showings on television. If a local community theatre had mounted a production, I seemed to miss the chance to see it for one reason or another. At that point, I was only familiar with some of the songs from the movie. As a result, I was somewhat mildly interested in the show but not a particular fan of it. We thus decided on another musical and my directing career officially began. This same exact process repeated itself for thirty years whether it was a show I was planning to produce or a project I was applying to direct. Whenever a company advertised that they were going to present the Sound of Music, my brother would ask me if I was going to apply. It became a sort of inside joke between us.

When Don Gingold, president of Summer Place Theatre and I had our first communication about this production it was back in January of this year. By this time, I had finally seen the movie but one time in 2012 and had seen the stage production twice. I confessed that I really didn’t remember much about the details of the show. I was more familiar now with the overall plot and the characters but in terms of the many intricacies, I was not a Sound of Music aficionado. This does not bother me, however, as it provides the enjoyable opportunity to look at a script with new eyes and perhaps contribute a fresh spin to a story that has been told multiple times before. I also relayed to him the narrative about my brother and because he has been one of my biggest champions, I felt a personal responsibility to do this show with as much dedication, authenticity, and dignity possible.

Well, here we are! What has been most interesting about this journey from concept to production are the differences between the stage version, the movie and then the new stage version. When I began analyzing the script, I was completely surprised by many things. The song order was different. Some of the songs functions in the show are different than they are in the movie. Some of them are sung by additional characters. Some songs were cut and replaced by others. And even other songs were cut out entirely. Yet, when I read the script as originally intended, I became immediately excited. The story is a lot more layered, and the characters have more depth in this version than the Hollywood movie version of the story. Don was equally focused on ensuring that all plot points including the political elements got the attention they deserve and without necessarily watering it down. But you can decide for yourself on all these matters. Your experience is your own and that is one of the reasons seeing live theatre so unique.

So, sit back and enjoy what we hope is a production of Sound of Music that contains something you may have never seen before. Perhaps you will see something that may resonate with you that that hadn’t previously. Or maybe you will just let the show take you to a familiar place of happiness like visiting an old friend. Feel free to laugh, cry, agree, disagree, and/or otherwise emote with us.

I’d like to give a huge thank you to the entire team for their outstanding contributions in putting this production together. The joy I get in directing a project really is about collaboration. There is no greater reward than being with people, creating with people, and telling stories for people.

Thank you to my brother for being the best champion, supporter, and sounding board I could ever ask for. You have been telling me all these years that the Sound of Music was a beautiful story. I finally get it.

And thank you Maria von Trapp and the Trapp Family Singers for fighting for what you believed in and for surviving to write down and tell your story in the book that led to everything we are still talking and singing about today.

The hills are indeed alive…

These are the moments I live for. With much love and appreciation,

I dedicate this to Steve Koek who initially brought me to Summer Place Theater in 2019. Without him, I wouldn’t have found these amazing people.

Jorge Bermudez, Director, Sound of Music 2022


Producer's Note

Auf Weidersehen, Goodbye

At the end of 2022, I’ll be retiring from this wonderful group, having been its President for four years and involved in it for almost 20. My wife and I have a new chapter we’ve been wanting to start and can’t put it off any longer.

But talk about going out on a high note! The levels of talent, experience, passion, and kindness in a production are the highest I’ve ever seen, and I’ve been in some wonderful shows with some wonderful people. Thank you, Jorge, Emma, and Jake, for leading us again, Mary and Taylor for joining us, and our cast and crew for telling a story that’s even more important to heed its warnings now than when it was written 70+ years ago.

Thanks to our board for keeping us afloat, Jeff for keeping me honest, Steve for some sage advice, Ted for remembering our roots, Emma for talking me into it and Christina – once in a post she referred to me as “our beloved president.” - that means the world; thank you for that.

And a big thank you to the many smiling faces I’ve seen as I’ve greeted you at our door, either to take your ticket or to ask you how you enjoyed the performance. Thank you for helping to keep live theatre alive in Naperville now and for years to come.

Don Gingold, President, The Summer Place




Suggested by "The Trapp Family Singers" by Maria Augusta Trapp
Presented by arrangement with Concord Theatricals 
on behalf of The Rodgers & Hammerstein Organization

View the Show Program 


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About The Summer Place

The Summer Place, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization and receives our funding through sales of affordably priced tickets, program ads, concessions, grants, and from the kind donations of our patrons.

We are Naperville's Community TheatreSM. Our all-volunteer board, crew and cast work hard together to produce entertaining plays and musicals for the Naperville area. We invite you to get involved! We are a proud member of the Naperville Area Chamber of Commerce

The Summer Place, Inc.                                                                                                                                     

P.O. Box 2394
Naperville, IL 60567


Partially supported by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council Agency.


And by a grant from the Naperville Special Events & Cultural Amenities Fund.

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