Introducing The Gingerbread Players
Now in its 37th year, The Gingerbread Players
of Saint Luke's Church have long been blessed by a group of theatrically
talented parishioners whose spring musical and fall play productions
have become a tradition for the local theater going community of Forest
Hills. The Gingerbread Players stage 2 seasonal productions each year,
as well as host musical concerts, readings, as well as vocal and instrumental
recitals. Material has ranged from operas, musicals, plays, and one-man
shows to original musical or theatrical works by members of the church.
Auditions are held for new actors and people
are always needed to work behind the scenes.
Each production is a true labor of love for the
"behind-the-scenes" crew as well as those on stage. Rehearsals
take place on weekends for about three months, with performances on
weekends. The shows offer children a unique opportunity to learn about
the theater and work as a team with adults; players range in age from
eight to eighty.
What's in a name?
We already have an Amahl, said Harriet
Morin. Lets do Amahl and the Night Visitors! It was
fall 1972, and Harriet, then organist and choir director of Saint Lukes,
was referring to young Chip Stokes, a member of the Saint Lukes
congregation and, at the time, understudy for Amahl in the New York
City Operas production. It seemed an excellent idea, so Harriet
filled out a cast using members of the choir and interested parishioners.
The planned single performance, following a regular Sunday service,
was so popular that a second was added the following week.
Encouraged by the success of Amahl, the next
year Harriet decided to do a musical theater version of The Magic Nutcracker,
this time drawing principally on the churchs junior and youth
choirs, and an annual tradition was born. With visions of Tchaikovskys
gingerbread men dancing in our heads, we thought of selling gingerbread
at intermission, and someone suggested we call ourselves the Gingerbread
In recent years, the troupe has expanded its
season to two productions, devoting springtime to family-oriented musicals,
fall to classics of the legit theater ranging from Chekhov
to Shakespeare to Shaw.
How Can I Join this Wonderful Group?
The same way you get to Carnegie Hall
practice! By which we mean: show
up, try out, volunteer,
let us know how well you can sing, dance, act, carry a spear, push a
broom, sew a costume, paint a set, build a platform, pull a curtain,
manage the box office or do any of the other myriad tasks that go into
putting on a show. We need you in order to keep going, so if youre
interested in working onstage or behind the scenes, just tell us who
you are! There wasnt that easy? You just joined the Gingerbread
Players of Saint Lukes. Actors should be at least eight years
old. (There is no upper age limit.)
Contact us care of Saint Luke's Church: