Bloomington's Professional Theater Company

Bloomington's Professional Theater Company

Administration & Cardinal Box Office

900 S Walnut St
Bloomington, IN 47401
(812)336-9300 Box Office
(812)336-7110 Admin

General Inquiries

Overview

The Cardinal Stage summer musical is Fun Home, winner of five Tony Awards, including Best Musical, with the cast album also nominated for a 2016 Grammy Award for Best Musical Theater Album.

Fun Home is a coming-of-age story as Alison Bechdel reflects on her father, a brilliant but troubled man whose secrets defined her family. Piecing together the moments that shaped her life, Alison re-examines her unique childhood at the Bechdel Funeral Home and her year of self-discovery when she left for college. Fun Home is a moving and refreshingly honest musical about seeing your parents through grown-up eyes.

“A rare beauty, extraordinary and heart-gripping.” – Ben Brantley, The New York Times

Special Events

Join us for a post-show discussion about generational differences in the American LGBTQ experience, which are addressed by the characters in the show in an honest and open way. More info on the discussion here.

Participate in the Cardinal Stage Book Club and read Alison Bechdel’s Fun Home and join us for a discussion before the show on June 20th. More info on the book club here.

Playwrights

Jeanine Tesori (Music) has written a diverse catalog for Broadway, Opera, film and television. Her Broadway musicals include: Fun Home (2015 Tony Award Winner, Pulitzer finalist); Violet; Caroline, or Change; Shrek the Musical; Thoroughly Modern Millie; Twelfth Night (LCT); John Guare’s A Free Man of Color. Delacorte: Mother Courage (starring Meryl Streep). She has received five Tony nominations, three Obie Awards, and three Drama Desk Awards. The hallmarks of her work have been described as “close-to-the-surface emotion, structural rigor, and rhythmic drive”. Her operas include: The Lion, the Unicorn and Me; Blizzard on Marblehead Neck (MET/LCT Opera/Theater and Glimmerglass Opera commission); and her upcoming collaboration with Tazewell Thompson, Blue was commissioned for Glimmerglass Opera company and will premiere there next season. She wrote the musical featured in the 2016 revival of Gilmore Girls and has also written special material for artists such as The Girl in 14G for Kristin Chenoweth and has been featured in documentaries Show Business and Theater of War. Jeanine Tesori became the founding Artistic Director of a new concert series at New York City Center called Encores! Off-Center for which she has helmed seasons joined by artists such as Stephen Sondheim, Lin Manuel-Miranda, Randy Newman, William Finn, Alan Menken, Renee Elise Goldsberry, Sutton Foster and Jonathan Groff. After producing four seasons of Off-Center concerts, she took one of those concerts, Sunday in the Park with George (starring Jake Gyllenhaal) to Broadway where she produced the 2017 revival, with ATG and Riva Marker. She was the recording producer for Sunday as well as the Original Cast Recordings of Violet; Caroline, or Change; Shrek; Twelfth Night; etc. A lecturer in music at Yale and on the faculty at Columbia University, Tesori has spoken and taught at universities and programs all over the country. She is the founding Creative Director of the non-profit A BroaderWay, an arts empowerment program for young women. She was given the Einhorn Mentorship Award by Primary Stages for her exceptional work with young artists. Her daughter, Siena Rafter, is a sophomore at Brown University.

Lisa Kron (Book and Lyrics) is a writer and performer whose work has been widely produced in New York, regionally, and internationally. Her plays include Well, 2.5 Minute Ride, and The Ver**zon Play. She wrote the book and lyrics for the musical Fun Home (with music by composer Jeanine Tesori), winner of five 2015 Tony Awards including Best Musical. Lisa and Jeanine were the first all-woman team to ever receive a Tony for best score. As an actor, Lisa was most recently seen as Mrs. Mi-Tzu and Mrs. Yang in the Foundry Theater’s acclaimed production of Good Person of Szechuan (Lortel Award, Outstanding Featured Actress). Honors include a Guggenheim fellowship, a Doris Duke Performing Artists Award, and the Cal Arts/Alpert Award. She is a proud founding member of the OBIE- and Bessie-Award-winning collaborative theater company The Five Lesbian Brothers. Lisa currently serves as Secretary of the Dramatists Guild Council and on the boards of the McDowell Colony and the Lilly Awards.

Alison Bechdel’s (Graphic Novelist) comic strip Dykes To Watch Out For became a countercultural institution among lesbians and discerning non-lesbians all over the planet. And her more recent, darkly humorous graphic memoirs about her family have forged an unlikely intimacy with an even wider range of readers. Bechdel self-syndicated Dykes to Watch Out For for twenty-five years, from 1983 to 2008. The award-winning generational chronicle has been called “one of the pre-eminent oeuvres in the comics genre, period.” (Ms. magazine). In 2006 she published Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic. Time magazine named it the Best Book of 2006, describing the recursive investigation into her closeted bisexual father’s suicide “a masterpiece about two people who live in the same house but different worlds, and their mysterious debts to each other.” Fun Home was adapted into a musical by the playwright Lisa Kron and the composer Jeanine Tesori. It opened on Broadway at the Circle in the Square Theater on April 19, 2015, and won five Tony Awards, including “Best Musical.” In her work, Bechdel is preoccupied with the overlap of the political and the personal spheres, the relationship of the self to the world outside. Her 2012 memoir Are You My Mother? A Comic Drama delved into not just her relationship with her own mother, but the theories of the 20th-century British psychoanalyst Donald Winnicott. In the New York Times Book Review, Katie Roiphe wrote, “There’s a lucidity to Bechdel’s work that in certain ways … bears more resemblance to poetry than to the dense, wordy introspection of most prose memoirs. The book delivers lightning bolts of revelation, maps of insight and visual snapshots of family entanglements in a singularly beautiful style.” Alison’s comics have appeared in The New Yorker, Slate, McSweeney’s, The New York Times Book Review, and Granta. In 2014 she was named a MacArthur Fellow. Alison lives in Vermont.

Creative Team

  • Director
  • Kate Galvin
  • Musical Director
  • Charlotte Rivard-Hoster
  • Stage Manager
  • Philip Christiansen
  • Costume Designer
  • Christopher Simanton
  • Set Designer
  • Britton Mauk
  • Lighting Designer
  • Mike Inwood
  • Sound Desiger
  • Robert Hornbostel
  • Props Master
  • Nicole Bruce
  • Choreographer
  • Diane Buzell
  • Sound Engineer
  • Macy Kloville
  • Technical Director
  • Erin Gautille
  • Charge Painter
  • Emily Timm
  • Assistant Stage Manager/Child Wrangler
  • Sam Ireland
  • Assistant Stage Manager
  • Chelsea Pell

Cast

Amanda Biggs (Alison) is honored to join this cast of FUN HOME! Ms. Biggs is an internationally prize-winning soprano who resides in Bloomington, Indiana with her two little boys, Maxwell and Miles. Amanda received her undergraduate degree from Western Kentucky University, and did her postgraduate work at Indiana University Jacobs School of Music. Her theater credits include Fantine in Cardinal Stage’s production of Les Misérables, and Mrs. Lovett in Sweeney Todd with WKU Theater. In addition to her theater career, Amanda has a vast operatic repertoire as well a private voice studio. In 2014, Amanda released her self-titled debut album. Ms. Biggs is sought after to adjudicate in solo and choral vocal competitions, along with various talent shows throughout the Midwest. Deemed “a teacher who changes voices AND lives,” Ms. Biggs has a passion for her work in performance and education. Amanda wishes to thank the cast and crew of Fun Home, as well as her friends and family for helping her pursue her dreams!

Lanene Charters (Helen) is absolutely thrilled to be in Indiana to explore and share such a timely and poignant show. Broadway/Tours: Mamma Mia!, Elf (Deb), Annie Get Gun (Dolly Tate u/s), Titanic (Jack Thayer), Big (Diane), Cats (Sillabub). Toured Japan as a soloist with the Tokyo Philharmonic. Favorites: Miss Shields (A Christmas Story), Rosie (Mamma Mia!), Karen/Murial/Norma (Plaza Suite), Gloria (Boeing Boeing), Paulette (Legally Blonde). Lanene is originally from Pittsburgh, PA. and has a BFA from Point Park University. www.LaneneCharters.com. Much love and always many thanks to Mom and Dad. XO Anthony…

Isaac Lochbihler (Christian) is a student at Templeton Elementary and is excited to make his debut for Cardinal Stages. He recently performed as Grasshopper in James and the Giant Peach for Stages Bloomington. He would like to thank his family, teachers, and friends for their support and love, and to the cast and crew for this fun experience!

Rhys Nelsen (John) is thrilled to be playing the role of John in Fun Home. Rhys was singing and dancing before he could talk and walk.  He has previously performed the non-singing role of Dolore in Puccini’s opera Madama Butterfly with Utah Opera and Atlanta Opera. At only seven years old, Rhys has been a member of BEAT’s Mini Sync Show Choir for 3 ½ years and has been studying piano for three. This fall he will be in the second grade at Arlington Heights Elementary. Rhys lives in Bloomington with his musician parents Jeff and Nina and his screaming and dancing two-year-old brother Blair.

Eric J. Olson (Bruce) makes his Cardinal Stage debut with Fun Home, having appeared as Bruce in the show’s Indiana premiere at the Phoenix Theatre. He spent two years as Houdini in the 1st National Tour of Ragtime, has been seen Off-Broadway with Theatreworks/USA, and in touring and regional productions across America and Europe, including The Goodspeed Opera House, Trinity Repertory Company, Sacramento Music Circus, The Falcon Theatre, Disney’s Hyperion Theatre, Gateway Playhouse, Performance Riverside, Fullerton Civic Light Opera, and the Kennedy Center, to name a few. In Indiana, Eric has appeared at the Phoenix (Bloody, Bloody Andrew Jackson, American Idiot, Peter & The Starcatcher, Avenue Q, and many more), Actors Theatre of Indiana (The Mystery of Edwin Drood, Cabaret), and HART (The Merchant of Venice).  Film & television appearances include Garry Marshall’s Raising Helen, The Shower Singer, Ed/Ted, and Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Eric sends all his love to his beautiful family!

Sean Puent (Roy) is a student at Indiana University, double majoring in Theatre & Drama and Media with a concentration in Cinema and Media Arts. Previously for Cardinal Stage: a staged reading of Kurt Vonnegut’s God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater (Norman Mushari). Previously for IU Theatre: Three Sisters (Fedótik), City of Angels (Jack/Yamato). Recent credits also include: an independent project for Joshua Robinson: Heathers: The Musical (Hipster Dork), a staged reading of The Well-Tempered Clavier (Louis). He is also a member of the Jacobs School of Music’s Singing Hoosiers and will serve as a Varsity choreographer for the coming year. Sean is from Chesterton, Indiana.

Elena Rupp (Small Alison) just finished 6th grade and will be headed to Jackson Creek Middle School in the fall. She started acting in Stages productions several years ago with The Aristocats, A Year with Frog and Toad, Wizard of Oz Jr as Auntie Em, and in The Little Mermaid Jr as Ariel. The highlight of her acting career was participating in her first Cardinal Stage production, Mary Poppins. She also played an orphan in Oliver!  She keeps busy with singing and dancing in the Syncopation show choir with BEAT. She also enjoys several other activities, such as Girl Scouts and playing with the Pantera Volleyball club. She would like to thank Kate Galvin for giving her this amazing opportunity to play Small Alison, even if it meant dying her hair brown.

Natalie Shea (Medium Alison) is an upcoming senior at Ball State University, majoring in Musical Theatre. She is from West Fargo, North Dakota and is incredibly excited to join Cardinal Stage Company in this magnificent production of Fun Home. Her recent credits include Mary (Staged Reading of National Pastime), Natalie Goodman (Next to Normal), Mary Poppins (Mary Poppins), and Holly (The Wedding Singer). Natalie’s upcoming roles include Heather (American Idiot) at Ball State this fall. She would like to thank the phenomenal cast, crew and creative team for making this experience unforgettable. Natalie cannot believe she is fortunate enough to tell this important story. She would also like to give her love and gratitude to her family for all their support and love that has shaped her into the artist and person she is today!

Marcela Weltsek-Medina (Small Alison), a Canadian native, is a young actor whose passion is musical theatre. Fun Home, and the role of young Alison, marks Marcela’s first major role with Cardinal Stage. She is honored to play such a complex and meaningful role. Marcela has acted since second grade when she played the role of Child Witch in Macbeth with the Ivy Tech Theatre Company. Other productions include Oliver! with Cardinal Stage as a member of the Orphan chorus, Sunny in Sunny on the Highway with the IU Children’s Theatre Program, and multiple original roles with the Bloomington Playwright’s Project’s musical theatre camp. Marcela is a proud member of Bloomington BEAT’s Synchronicity and Syncopation and a founding member of Jaywalkers, a local Hip Hop company. She hopes that with Fun Home she will make a difference in the way people understand the LGBTQ+ community by doing what she loves.

Double Cast Schedule – Role of Small Alison:

  • Elena Rupp:
  • Friday, June 15 at 7:30pm
  • Saturday, June 16 at 2pm & 7:30pm
  • Sunday, June 17 at 7pm
  • Thursday, June 21 at 7:30pm
  • Saturday, June 23 at 2pm and 7:30pm
  • Marcela Weltsek-Medina:
  • Sunday, June 17 at 2:00pm
  • Wednesday, June 21 at 7:30pm
  • Friday, June 22 at 7:30pm
  • Sunday, June 24 at 2pm and 7pm
  • Wednesday, June 27 at 7:30pm
  • Thursday, June 28 at 7:30pm
  • Friday, June 29 at 7:30pm
  • Saturday, June 30 at 2pm and 7:30pm
  • Sunday, July 1 at 2pm

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