Italy’s own perform in Bye Bye Birdie

Image: Father and daughter, Gary and Tess Clark are busy getting ready for the big performance.

Father and daughter, Gary and Tess Clark are busy getting ready for the big performance. (Cindy Sutherland)

Picture yourself back in the 1950’s when the military draft was in full swing. You are crazy about the rock-and-roll singer Conrad Birdie who just got drafted. Conrad is coming to your town of Sweet Apple, Ohio to give one lucky girl from his fan club a real “last kiss” on the Ed Sullivan Show before going into the Army.

This production is starring some of Italy’s own! Erika Larsen, Tess Clark, Gary Clark, Sydney Lowenthal and Nanette Clark.

Erika Larsen has the starring role as Kim MacAfee, the lucky fan club winner chosen to receive Conrad’s last kiss. Larsen has many productions under her belt such as Pride and Predjudice, A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, and Fiddler on the Roof, just to name a few.

Tess Clark (Italy High School graduate 2009) is Margie, a teenage fan club member in love with Conrad. She sings many songs such as: We Love You Conrad, Honestly Sincere, Telephone and many more. Tess said, “I have participated in Bethlehem Revisited, but this is my first real play and I just love it. It takes a lot of time to practice the dances and songs. My job is to freak out a lot when I see Conrad it is a lot of fun.”

Gary Clark plays Mr. Johnson, father of Harvey Johnson. They are the geek nerd family. Clark is no novice to the stage as he has performed at Bethlehem Revisited for about eight years.  Gary had a walk on part in the play Annie and played Colonel Beauregard Sweetwater in the play Mischief in the Magnolias.

Sydney Lowenthal (Stafford Elementary 4th grader) has a part as one of the townspeople. Sydney has also performed in Bethlehem Revisited, Annie and Fiddler on the Roof. Sydney’s mother Nanette Clark is playing in the orchestra.

The play is at the Chautauqua Auditorium-Getzendaner Park. So come out to the Chautaugua this weekend and enjoy the night at the theatre!

Play times are: Friday and Saturday October 28-29 at 7:30 PM.
Sunday, October 30th at 2:30 PM

Advance Tickets-Seniors and Students-$10.00 Adults-$12.00. You can get your advance tickets at:

  • Ellis Co. Historical Museum – 201 S College Street, Waxahachie
  • Chamber of Commerce – 102 YMCA Drive, Waxahachie
  • Dr. Jerry Ellis, DDS, – 404 W Main Street, Midlothian

Tickets at the door are $2.00 more.

Order tickets online at

Call Kasi Jones at 972-646-1050 for group ticket information.