A baby swan, a turkey, a tomcat and a frog will be on stage this weekend at the McPherson Opera House for the McPherson Community Theatre’s production of “Honk.”

A baby swan, a turkey, a tomcat and a frog will be on stage this weekend at the McPherson Opera House for the McPherson Community Theatre’s production of “Honk.”

“Honk” is the musical adaptation of the Hans Christian Andersen story “The Ugly Duckling” and brings a story of tolerance and love.

Production manager and theater president Shannon Brake thinks the production will be a crowd favorite because the story and the characters will appeal to kids, but the emotional themes and humor will connect with adults.

“This show especially resonates to people of every age with many colorful characters,” she said. “For children, the feeling of being left out is something they can identify with in the show. For parents and adults, the experience of letting go and losing a child due to growing up — it is really a coming-of-age story.

“A bonus is the memory of first love and romance. We all remember our first crush.”

Superior cast

Brake and many other directors have been working all year to put this show together. Community theater actors begin rehearsal in May, but the directors begin preparation long before that.

“The show is on our mind all year long, and we meet throughout the year to plan,” said Brake in a release. “But when May hits, we go full force. It takes an unbelievable amount of time to get everything done before opening night.”

Brake describes her cast as dedicated.

“This cast has been unique in the fact that they work tirelessly without complaint and are always willing to give just a little bit more,” she said.

For example, one leading actor, Joe Hirsh, was married only two weeks ago and only missed one day of rehearsal.

“It has been an interesting experience. It was nice to have (the show) to distract me from being nervous about the wedding.” Hirsh said in a press release. “My wife supported me from the very beginning and encouraged me to do it. I am a very blessed man.”

She also describes her cast as talented.

 “I was really blown away during auditions, and knew without a doubt we had exactly the right people we needed for each role.”

Parent Lynn Black, whose entire family participated in last year's community theater show, commented that daughter Molly has improved skills in singing and dancing.

“Being up in front of people and doing something she enjoys is a great way to spend half of the summer,” she said. “She has made friends, and this is just a family.”

Spencer Steinert, who plays the main character Ugly, said he has had fun getting to know people and working with others.

“This production shows that no matter what type of person you are, there is always something about you that can be positive whether you are funny, athletic or into other hobbies,” he said. “Everyone has something good within themselves.”


Under the direction of Lenny Favara and the vocal direction of Tiffney Harms and orchestra director, Russell Kahle, “Honk” is showing for two weekends.

It opens at 7 p.m. Friday and will be performed at the same time Saturday. On Sunday, there will be a matinee showing at 2 p.m.

There will also be performances on June 28 and 29 at 7 p.m., as well as a 2 p.m. show June 30.
Tickets to the musical are $15 for individuals and $13 for groups. For information on the group rate call 241-1952. To purchase tickets online, visit www.mcphersonoperahouse.org, or stop by the McPherson Opera House at 219 S. Main during business hours.