Ole to Participate in Indiana Community Theater Association Festival!

The Board of Directors of Ole Olsen Memorial Theater have voted to participate at the Indiana Community Theater Association Festival March 17-19 in Kokomo. The Festival allows community theater groups to present either a One Act Play or one hour of a Full Length Play. We will be presenting the 2nd act of this season’s “Steel Magnolias”

In order to compete, we will need to pay $40 membership to the ICTA & $30 per performer. Total cost to compete would be $350. Ole hasn’t done this in many years & this is an opportunity to get back into it showcasing our talent, along with gaining statewide publicity. The cast of Steel Magnolias is excited to participate. We will have more details as they become available. What we need from our membership are donations to cover the costs. Anyone who would like to make a donation can mail it to the Peru Depot along with a note earmarking it for the festival or let a board member know.

Awards will be given out for: Outstanding Production, Outstanding Performers, Outstanding Supporting Performers, Top Techie Award & Outstanding Director. Three groups will advance to the Regional Competition.


New Awards Announced for Upcoming Annual Banquet

Ole Olsen’s Board of Director’s have announced 5 new recognition awards for its membership who go above & beyond. Members are asked to begin submitting names of those who they feel are deserving. Submissions will be accepted up to and including the day of our membership meeting on March 19. They can be given to any board member via email or in writing.  Board members are listed below.

The following award recipients will be announced at this year’s annual banquet & all nominees will be invited:

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“Making a Difference” Award – this is for individuals who have made a difference in our group. It is not required that it be a member. This could have been this year or in previous years.

“Behind the Scenes” Award – this is for individuals who have worked behind the scenes including backstage, lights, sound, promotion, music, set building/design, or costumes. It is not required that is be a member. This could have been this year or in previous years.

“Caught in the Act” Award – this is for individuals who are actors/actresses in one of this season’s plays. It is required that the nominee be a paid member.

“Standing Ovation” Award – this is for an individual who has contributed in any way to one of this season’s shows; as a director, actor/actress, or in any capacity who has gone above & beyond to help with this season’s plays. It is required that they be a paid member.

“Pledging/Hazing” Award – this is for an individual who is new to our group this season performing or contributing for the first time. Since we allow individuals to participate in their first show without becoming a member, membership is not required.

“Volunteer of the Year” – this award is for a member who has volunteered endless hours in making our group successful this season. It is required that they be a paid member.

“Hall of Fame” – this award is for a member who has given to our organization over a period of at least 10 years. It is also required that they be a paid member for 10 consecutive years. j

Members of Ole Olsen’s Board of Directors include: Alan Myers, Kelly Makin, Christy Sullivan, Cathy Converse, Shannon Banter, Debby Myers, Kelly Mathias-Williams, Jim Walker, Stephanie Wagner. If you would like to nominate someone for any of these fantastic awards, please contact one of these people.


Cast announced for Ole Olsen’s 3rd show of the season – “LUV”

Ole Olsen’s 3rd production is entitled “LUV” a comedy directed by Alan Myers. Two men & one woman have been cast for this funny show! Keith Martin will portray Milt; Mark Esch will portray Harry; & Samantha Grudzien will play Ellen. The trio will work as an ensemble! Show dates are Feb 23-26 & March 3-5.


Show dates are Fluv1eb 23-26 & March 3-5.

Back to the Summer Kid’s Play & Theater Workshop

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 Congratulations to our 16 young thespians for a terrific show! Connor Bahney, Zoe Kesler, Jakob Bertoline, Miguel Sebastian, Kiearra Springer, Deklyn Finnigan, Lehna Wagner, Maya Wagner, Makenna Johnson, Taylor Johnson, Conner Stanley, Carleigh Mercier, Kaelynn Mercier, Zoe Wylam, Ayanna Terrell, Dyon Terrell. Also thanks to Jayne Kesler, Stephanie Wagner, Alan Myers, Tiffany Smith, Bryan Bertoline, & Tom Cavanaugh.

Cole Porter Review History

Since 2005, Ole Olsen Memorial Theatre has presented an original revue as part of the Cole Porter Festival commemorating the birth of Cole Porter in Peru, Indiana.  As of the tenth production, “Kountry Fried Cole” in 2014, over one hundred local volunteers have performed over 120 different songs composed by Porter in productions placing them in modern motifs and popular genres, including a morning news program, soap opera, murder mystery, science fiction adventure, and fairy tale.     The revues also feature lesser-known pieces by Porter, with “Night and Day” being the only song performed in all productions.  Being an annual revue gives the creators more freedom to dig more deeply into the Cole catalogue, and with the assistance of the Cole Porter Family Trust, they have been able to include songs from all periods of Porter’s prolific career.  As of the tenth production, “Coffee” and “Stereophonic Sound” had been performed as often as “You’re the Top”, and “I Get a Kick Out of You” appeared in as many productions as “Plumbing” and “Pets”.         By combining his extensive library with a different genre each year, the revues have proven to be a very fitting celebration of the inimitable talent of Cole Porter.  Regardless of the genre portrayed, his music always fits effortless, with usually no re-writing, as if the material was written specifically for each production.  Regular attendees also admire how a song like “In the Still of the Night” could be the threatening lament of a ninja-dressed murder suspect one year and then a countrified joke regarding third-shift moon shining in another.     As we hear often during the Cole Porter Festival, “What other composer could you do this for?”

2005:  Timeless Cole Co-Written by Kurt Schindler & Kelly Voss; Co-Directed by Kelly Voss & Kurt Schindler

2006:  A Cole Reception Written and Directed by Kurt Schindler

2007:  A Cup O’ ColeWritten and Directed by Kurt Schindler

2008:  Night & Day: A Soapy Cole Written and Directed by Kurt Schindler

2009:  Radio Cole Written and Directed by Kurt Schindler

2010:  Timeless Cole 2.0 – Now With Recycling! Previous material from Timeless Cole, Co-Written by Kurt Schindler & Kelly Voss New Material Written by Kurt Schindler Directed by Kurt Schindler

2011:  Cole Blooded Murder Written by Patricia Piper; Co-Directed by Patricia Piper and Tammy Hileman

2012:  Once Upon a Cole Story by Nancy Bender; Script by Nancy Bender and Kurt Schindler; Co-Directed by Nancy Bender & Kurt Schindler

2013:  Cole In Space Written and Directed by Kurt Schindler

2014:  Kountry Fried Cole Story by Sunny Holtzlander; Script by Sunny Holtzlander & Kurt Schindler;    Directed by  Sunny Holtzlander

2015: Prehistoric Cole Co-Written by Alan Myers & Kurt Schindler;  Co-Directed by Alan Myers & Kurt Schindler