Peninsula Players Company Members Honored at Jeff Awards and Black Theater Alliance

Door County’s Renowned Summer Stock Theatre celebrates the Chicago’s Black Theater Alliance Awards (BTAA) and Joseph Jefferson Award nominations of several past and current company members.

The Joseph Jefferson Awards are Chicago Theater’s equivalent to Broadway’s Antoinette Perry “Tony” Award while BTAA honor productions featuring African-American artists and themes.

“Congratulations to our past and current company members on their accomplishments in Chicago,” says Greg Vinkler, Players Artistic Director.  “Every season Peninsula Players tries to bring the best talent there is to Door County audiences, and every season with the announcements of the ‘Jeffs’ and BTAAs I am pleased to see several of our company members being recognized just as that – the best.”

Costume designer Samantha Jones was nominated for a BTTA for her costume design of “The Colored Museum” for Congo Square Theatre Company.   Jones designed “A Day in Hollywood/A Night in the Ukraine,” “Heroes” and “Over the Tavern” for Peninsula Players.

Receiving Jeff acting nominations this year are Cassandra Bissell for “Mary’s Wedding” at Rivendell Theatre Ensemble. Patrons will recall Bissell from Players productions of “Proof,” “Around the World in 80 Days,” “A Man for All Seasons” and several others.

Other Players actors receiving nominations are Cindy Gold (“Rain,” “Spider’s Web”) for “Awake and Sing” at Northlight; Kate Fry (“Into the Woods,” “Bob Almighty,” “Fools,” “Communicating Doors”) for “Oh, Coward!” at Writers’ Theatre; Barbara Robertson (“Moon Over Buffalo,” “Noises Off,” “The Last Night at Ballyhoo “) for “Yeast Nation at American Theater Company; and Timothy Edward Kane (“Broadway Bound” and “Fools”) for Court’s “The Illusion.”

Several cast members of the Players production of “The Taffetas” were nominated, including Heidi Kettenring for the Theatre Center’s “I Do I Do” and Marriott’s “Hairspray;” and Tammy Mader nominated for choreography of Drury Lane’s “Thoroughly Modern Millie;” and McKinley Carter (“Comic Potential” and “Panic”) for the ensemble of Drury Lane’s “Ragtime.”  “Ragtime” ensemble also included Zack Keller (“Over the Tavern”) and Jonathan Weir (“Spider’s Web,” “Rain,” “See How They Run” and “Escanaba in Da Moonlight.”)

The Players props mistress Sarah E. Ross and a former intern Kristin DeiTos were nominated for their costume design of the American Blues Theater production of “Tobacco Road” while longtime Players actor James Leaming was nominated for his set design of “Tobacco Road.”

Other Players’ designers were also nominated including Lindsay Jones, Victoria DeIorio, Nick Keenan, Joshua Horvath and Brian Sidney Bembridge.  Directors who were nominated include Jim Corti and Marc Robin.

Doug Peck, who served as musical director for the Players “Into the Woods,” was nominated for three productions “Cabaret,” “Oh, Coward” and “Animal Crackers.”

The Joseph Jefferson awards annually honor outstanding theater artists in the Chicago theater community since it was established in 1968.

Peninsula Players Theatre is located along HWY 42 between the villages of Fish Creek and Egg Harbor.   Peninsula Players Theatre is a nonprofit professional theatre and a member of Theatre Communications Group (TCG), the national organization for nonprofit professional theatre, and Theatre Wisconsin, the statewide association of non-profit theatres.

The Peninsula Players 75th Anniversary season is sponsored through the generosity and support of Baylake Bank, which has been the Players’ financial partner for more than 50 years.  This season is also supported in part by a grant from the Wisconsin Arts Board, with funds from the State of Wisconsin and the National Endowment for the Arts.

Pictured are Sean Fortunato, Erica Elam and Carter in “Comic Potential,” a comedy in which a scriptwriter kidnaps the “actoid” heading for the scrapheap because of a glitch she has developed for laughter and comedy.

Pictured are Sean Fortunato, Erica Elam and Carter in “Comic Potential,” a comedy in which a scriptwriter kidnaps the “actoid” heading for the scrapheap because of a glitch she has developed for laughter and comedy.

Now on stage at Peninsula Players is Alan Ayckbourn’s “Comic Potential” through Sept. 5.  Joseph Goodrich’s “Panic” will begin Sept. 8 through Oct. 17.  Curtain times are Tuesdays through Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 7p.m., except for Sunday matinees Sept. 5, 26 and Oct. 17 at 4 p.m.   Group and individual tickets are available.  Individual ticket prices range from $29 to $36; there are no performances on Mondays.  For more information or to reserve tickets phone the Peninsula Players’ box office at 920-868-3287 or visit the website at

Peninsula Players is America’s oldest professional resident summer theater and is unique in the country for its diverse productions, continuing loyalty to a resident company, and its beautiful setting of 16 wooded acres along the cedar-lined shores of Green Bay. In the past 75 years, the theater has become a Door County landmark and its cornerstone arts institution, attracting audience members from throughout Wisconsin and across the country.

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