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Written by Dale Wasserman - Music by Mitch Leigh - Lyrics by Joe Darion
Wednesday, September 7th
- Sunday, October 2nd

Wed & Thurs 7:30pm / Fri & Sat 8:00pm
Wed & Sun 2:00pm

Actress Talia Thiesfield explains that the importance of Aldonza from Man of La Mancha is on a par with the roles of Fantine from Les Misérables and Evita’s Evita Perón.

Our thanks to Outthink for producing another great video!


david-majesticOne of the world’s most popular musicals, Man of La Mancha, the “Impossible Dream” musical, is based on Cervantes’ masterpiece Don Quixote, and tells of the adventures of a mad, aging nobleman who embarrasses his respectable family by his adventures.  Backed by his faithful sidekick Sancho Panza, he duels windmills and defends his perfect lady Dulcinea.

At times both inspiring and thought provoking, the story is both very entertaining and very moving, and will warm the heart of everyone whose spirits were ever raised by the prospect of a victory by the underdog against all the odds.  Winner of 5 Tony Awards, including Best Musical.

Starring David Pittsinger.

Original Production Staged by Albert Marre
Originally produced by Albert W. Selden and Hal James

Man of La Mancha is presented by arrangement with
560 Lexington Avenue, New York, New York  10022






Generously sponsored by:







rsz_c7116_brian-019binioncropBrian Binion (A Prisoner / The Barber) is originally from Atlanta, Georgia. Brian is pleased to by joining the Ivortyon family! National tours include: After Midnight, and Wine Lovers. Regional credits include: West Side Story, How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, Zana Don’t, Aida, and I Dream. I am grateful and blessed to do what I love, Philippians 4:13. The University of North Carolina School of the Arts  BFA ’13.



Amy Buckley (A Prisoner / Antonia) rsz_amy_buckley_headshot_coloris delighted to be returning to the Ivoryton Playhouse after appearing last season in their productions of The Bully and I’ll Be Home for Christmas. Notable roles include Mrs. Banks (Mary Poppins), Despina (Così fan Tutte), La Fée (Cendrillon), Adele (Die Fledermaus) and Susanna (The Marriage of Figaro). When not performing, Amy serves as Music Director of the theater program at Walsh Intermediate School in Branford. Amy received her Bachelor of Music from the University of Connecticut, where her study afforded her the opportunity to train at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London. She then went on to receive a Master of Music from The Juilliard School. Amy resides in Westbrook, CT, where she teaches private voice lessons and plays her favorite role of Mom to daughter Viviana Rose. Love and gratitude to Mom, Dad and Cristian for being my ‘understudies’ at home.


Ryan CavanaughjpgCROPRyan Cavanaugh* (Dance Captain / A Prisoner / Captain of the Inquisition) – this is Ryan’s first show at Ivoryton Playhouse and is happy to be apart of this creative show. Favorite credits: Damn Yankees (Goodspeed Opera House), Mary Poppins (Pittsburgh CLO), South Pacific (Asolo Repertory), Shrek: The Musical (Pittsburgh CLO), Damn Yankees (National Tour), The Wild Party (NYC), Parade (NYC). Always grateful for the opportunity to share art and thankful to my loving parents and Jenna for the endless love and support.  Please visit for more!


DavidEdwardsDirectorCROPDavid Edwards* (The Duke / Dr. Carrasco) is delighted to be returning to Ivoryton Playhouse for a third season. Last year he directed and choreographed South Pacific and was the director (and co-author with Tony Javed) of I’ll Be Home for Christmas.  As an actor, he has performed on and off Broadway, and regionally in theatre, tv, and films, including Ivoryton Playhouse’s productions of La Cage Aux Folles, Calendar Girls and The 39 Steps.  His directing credits include multiple productions of The Producers and South Pacific, as well as Showboat, Neil Simon’s Rumors and The Last of the Red Hot Lovers, Dan Goggin’s Meshuggah-Nuns, The Unexpected Guest by Agatha Christie, Connor McPherson’s The Seafarer and By Jeeves (for which he received an Oscar Wilde Award nomination), at such theatres as Westchester Broadway Theatre, Meadow Brook Theatre, Surflight, Gretna Theatre, Florida Rep and Gateway Playhouse. David recently received a Broadway World nomination for directing the world premiere of Bittersuite:  Songs of More Experience at Centenary Stage Company. He has played Cervantes/Don Quixote in 8 productions of Man of La Mancha and is delighted to return to this wonderful musical play as director.


Brian Michael Hoffman-1-page-0 CROPBrian Michael Hoffman* (Manservant / Sancho) starred as “Horton” in the Off-Broadway revival of Seussical and will be returning to the new Duncan Sheik musical, Because of Winn-Dixie at Alabama Shakespeare Festival in early 2017! Other favorites include Little Shop of Horrors (Seymour), Spamalot (Patsy), ..Spelling Bee (Barfee), Addams Family (Fester), Legally Blonde (Dewey), Wizard of OZ (Lion), Assassins (Czolgosz), You’re A Good Man….  (Charlie Brown), Edwin Drood (Chairman), Jacques Brel….., Threepenny Opera and On Borrowed Time (directed by Joel Grey). Brian led a barbershop quartet at Tokyo Disney Sea in Japan for 3 years, has performed in over 1,900 performances of Annie (some with Broadway’s original red-head, Andrea McArdle, and in the 2014 movie!) and can be heard on the Seussical, Annie: 30th Anniversary, Annie 2 and The Dragonslayers cast recordings.  Broadway/WBTA: Legally Blonde, The Royal Family, Bullets Over Broadway, Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grill, Peter Pan Live and The Wiz Live. Brian dedicates this performance to his Bubba, who always inspired him to chase windmills.


AJ Hunsucker (A Prisoner / Tenorio) is proud to make his Ivoryton Playhouse debut. Last seen in Merry Go Round Playhouse’s Crazy For You. Recent Credits include: National Tour- The Producers. Regional-My Fair Lady, The Little Mermaid (Theatre By The Sea), Fred Barton’s American Showstoppers: Cy Coleman and Jerry Herman (Michael Schimmel Center), S’Wonderful (Pittsburgh Civic Light Opera), High School Musical, Fiddler On The Roof, Hairspray, 42nd Street, Joseph… Dream Coat, Cats (West Virginia Public Theatre), Kiss Me Kate, The Wizard of Oz (Gretna Theatre), And Hairspray (Arizona Broadway Theatre). Love to Family, Friends, and Carson-Adler Agency.


matthewkrobheadshotCROPMatthew Krob (A Prisoner / The Padre) is excited to be making his Ivoryton Playhouse debut! National Tours: West Side Story. Recent credits: Man of La Mancha (Barrington Stage), A Little Night Music (Princeton Festival), Peter and the Starcatcher (Bristol Valley Theatre), The Secret Garden (Arizona Broadway), Spamalot (Roxy Regional Theatre). K, my love to you! Please visit  for more.



J.LudlumHSCROPJames Ludlum (A Prisoner / Pedro)  is thrilled to be making his Ivoryton Playhouse debut! Opera: Rigoletto, Macbeth (Bloch), Lakmé, I Capuleti e i Montecchi, The Mother of Us All. Theater: Julius Caesar, The Maids, Oklahoma!, Romeo and Juliet, Twelfe Night, Measure for Measure, Macbeth, Kiss me, Kate. M.Mus Manhattan School of Music.




Conor McGiffinCROP 3Conor McGiffin (A Prisoner / Maria) is ecstatic to be apart of this classic show at this beautiful theater! His most recent productions include Bullets Over Broadway (First National Tour), Chess (White Plains Theatre), and Jekyll & Hyde (National Tour). He is a proud University of Michigan graduate. To Mom, Dad, Bridget, and Lexie-I love you all




Melissa_McLeanMelissa McLean (A Prisoner / The Housekeeper) happily returns to Ivoryton, having previously appeared in I’ll Be Home For Christmas, Memphis, All Shook Up, Footloose, Hairspray, Joseph…, ….Forum, Lettuce and Lovage, Lost in Yonkers, and The Robber Bridegroom. American Family Theater tours: Wizard of Oz, Babes in Toyland, A Christmas Carol. Favorite Chester Meeting House productions include Crimes of the Heart, Earth and Sky, The Glass Menagerie, A…My Name is Alice. Favorite Producing Guild shows: Heartbeats, Shmulnik’s Waltz. Love to Jeff, my knight in camo armor and our pages, Ian and Caleb.  


Stephen Mir

Stephen Mir (A Prisoner / Anselmo) is very happy to be returning to the Ivoryton Playhouse after he played the Young Man in last season’s production of The Last Romance.  Recent credits include Balthazar, Romeo and Juliet (Hartford Stage), Reynaldo, Hamlet (Hartford Stage), Lt. Joe Cable, South Pacific (Monomoy Theatre), Anthony, Sweeney Todd (NJPAC). Stephen proudly earned his BFA in Acting from the University of Hartford and it seems like the state of Connecticut just keeps bringing him back home. All of my love to my family and a big thank you to Kathy Olsen of Encompass Arts. Here’s to Monday Nights at the Gris!


David Pittsinger bw

David Pittsinger* (Miguel de Cervantes/Don Quixote) American bass-baritone David Pittsinger is renowned as a stage performer of the greatest distinction for his dramatic portrayals in the world’s major opera houses, concert halls and Broadway. His elegant musicianship also puts him in high demand for challenging baroque, bel canto, twentieth and twenty-first century scores. Career Highlights: South Pacific (Emile de Becque) LCT Broadway, National Tour, Ivoryton Playhouse; (Arthur) Camelot Glimmerglass Festival; Metropolitan Opera: Don Carlo (Friar), Manon (Comte des Grieux), Hamlet (Le Spectre), Giulio Cesare (Achilla), The Magic Flute (Speaker) (Dialogues of the Carmelites). NYCO: Don Giovanni (Don Giovanni), Nozze di Figaro (Figaro), Anthony and Cleopatra (Carnegie Hall), Don Quichotte (Don Quichotte), Vienna, Teatro Colon Buenos Aires, Salome (Jokanaan) Portland, Tosca (Scarpia), FGO, Nozze di Figaro (Count), LA Opera, Faust (Mephistopheles), L’Arena Sferisterio, L’Opera de Montreal, Mefistofele (Mefistofele), I Solisti Veneti, Pittsburgh, Rake’s Progress (Nick Shadow), Paris, Brussels, Hamburg, Bordeaux,Carmen (Escamillo), Montpellier, Santa Fe, Blizzard on Marblehead Neck, Glimmerglass Festival, world premiere Phillip Glass’s The Perfect American at Teatro Real, world premiere, and the Metropolitan Opera as the Marquis de la Force in Dialogues des Carmélites, Met HD Broadcasts: Magic Flute, Tosca, Manon, Hamlet, Les Contes d’Hoffmann .Florencia en el Amazonas (LA Opera), Rake’s Progress (Pittsburgh Opera), Appomattox world premiere (Kennedy Center) Sweeney Todd (Broadway Revival Production). Discography includes: Rodgers and Hammerstein At the Movies (EMI), The Perfect American (DVD Opus Arte) Charles Ives Songs (Naxos), La Calisto (Hamonia Mundi), Carlisle Floyd’s Susanna (Virgin), Simon Boccanegra (Ficsco), Faure’s Requiem (Orchestra of St. Luke’s), Rachmaninoff’s The Bells Awards: “Artist of the Year” Awards from NYCO and Pittsburgh Opera, Helen Hayes Nomination “Best Leading Actor” (Kennedy Center). MM: Yale. Of his Helen Hayes Award-nominated performance as Emile de Becque in Rodgers & Hammerstein’s South Pacific at the Kennedy Center, the Washington Times wrote: “His brilliant, knife-clean bass-baritone voice, impeccable enunciation – even with a French accent – and his authoritative, passionate delivery provide the perfect mix of romance, passion, and traditional masculine bravado…His Emile is perhaps the definitive interpretation of this role in our time.”


Thiesflield Talia - 1124Talia Thiesfield* (A Prisoner / Aldonza) is absolutely overjoyed & honored to be returning to her home state to tell this iconic story! Off-Broadway: Marie Christine (Prisoner 1).  Regional: LMNOP (Goodspeed Musicals),Venice (Center Theatre Group), Smokey Joe’s Café, Violet, & Measure For Measure (CT Rep), Romeo & Juliet, Nine, Seven Guitars. Los Angeles: Denis Leary’s Rescue Me Comedy Tour, Coachella Music Festival (w/ The Kills), Stephen Schwartz – Making Good (Ford Amphitheatre, dir. Billy Porter).  TV/Film:  Limitless, Veep, Manhattan Love Story, The Following. 2016 Participant in the NBC Universal Diversity Showcase. University of Connecticut BFA, UC Irvine MFA.  Thanks to Jason for being right when he’s right. Love to Mom, Dad, Chad-dad, Julien. Infinite gratitude to my beloved rocks Cyd & Harold at CLA…#wedontplay!


jamesvantreuren_head shotCROPJames Van Treuren* (The Governor / Innkeeper) is very happy to return to the Ivoryton Playhouse where he performed the role of Georges in La Cage Aux Folles in 2014. This year he appeared in Death Takes a Holiday at the Arvada Center in CO and also played Florenz Ziegfeld in Funny Girl at the North Shore Music Theatre. On Broadway and in national tours James appeared in The Scarlet Pimpernel, Camelot starring Richard Harris, and Singin’ in the Rain. Regional theatre roles include: “Emile de Becque” in South Pacific, “Don Quixote / Cervantes” in Man of La Mancha,  “Judge Turpin” in Sweeney Todd, “Captain Hook” in Peter Pan, “Gerard Carriere” in the Yeston/Kopit Phantom, “Juan Peron” in Evita ,  and “Shaw” in Footloose. Off Broadway: Original Cast of Trolls (Actors’ Playhouse) and Elegies for Angels, Punks and Raging Queens (RAPP Arts Center). Television credits: Law & Order SVU, The David Letterman Show and Another World.


Directed by:  David Edwards

Choreographer:  Todd Underwood

Musical Director:  Paul Feyer

Stage Manager:  James Joseph Clark*

Scenic Designer:  Daniel Nischan

Lighting Designer:  Marcus Abbott

Sound Designer:  Tate Burmeister

Costume Designer:  Liz Cipollina

* member of Actors Equity

Join us for an opening night reception with the cast following the performance on Friday, September 9th.  Light refreshments will be served.




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Check back here for more photos and info!


Impossible Dreams –
Man of La Mancha
At the Ivoryton Playhouse

The Ivoryton Playhouse will open MAN OF LA MANCHA on September 7th and the timing could not be more appropriate. The media fueled fear and divisiveness; the circus that is the current political situation and the general instability of the world at large make dreaming impossible dreams an inviting and desperately needed antidote.

One of the world’s most popular musicals, MAN OF LA MANCHA, is based on Cervantes’ masterpiece Don Quixote, and tells of the adventures of a mad, aging nobleman who embarrasses his respectable family by his adventures.  Backed by his faithful sidekick Sancho Panza, he duels windmills and defends his perfect lady, Dulcinea.

The show itself has Connecticut roots. It was the Goodspeed Opera House, which took a TV adaptation of “Don Quixote” by Dale Wasserman and turned it into “MAN OF LA MANCHA” the musical with music by Mitch Leigh and lyrics by Joe Darion, back in 1965.

img_4442Winner of 5 Tony Awards, including Best Musical, MAN OF LA MANCHA is a remarkable show and one of the great theatre successes of our time. This is a play-within-a-play – a poignant story of a dying old man whose impossible dream takes over his mind. It’s All the Same, Dulcinea, I’m Only Thinking of Him, The Impossible Dream, I Really Like Him and Little Bird remain in your thoughts and in your soul well after you see the show.

David Pittsinger*, who performed here last year to great critical acclaim as Emile de Becque in SOUTH PACIFIC,  will be playing Don Quixote.  He will be joined by Talia Thiesfield* as Aldonza, Brian Michael Hoffman* as Sancho Panza, Jimmy Van Treuren* as the Innkeeper, Amy Buckley as Antonia, Melissa McLean as the Housekeeper and Matthew Krob as the Padre. The motley crew of prisoners and muleteers include Brian Binion, Ryan Cavanaugh*, AJ Hunsucker, James Ludlum, Conor McGiffin and Stephen Mir.

cast-of-man-of-la-manchaThe show is directed by David Edwards who is doing double duty by also appearing on stage as Carasco. Choreographed by Todd Underwood, the set is designed by Daniel Nischan, lighting by Marcus Abbott and costumes by Elizabeth Cipollina. Musical direction is by Paul Feyer.

MAN OF LA MANCHA opens at the Ivoryton Playhouse on September 7th and runs through October 2nd, 2016. Performance times are Wednesday and Sunday matinees at 2pm. Evening performances are Wednesday and Thursday at 7:30pm, Friday and Saturday at 8pm. There will be two additional Saturday matinees on September 24th and October 1st at 2pm.

Tickets are $50 for adults, $45 for seniors, $22 for students and $17 for children and are available by calling the Playhouse box office at 860-767-7318 or by visiting our website at  (Group rates are available by calling the box office for information.) The Playhouse is located at 103 Main Street in Ivoryton.

Photograph by Anne Hudson
Picured – David Pittsinger* and Thalia Thiesfield*

*denotes member of Actors Equity

Members of the press are welcome at any performance.  Please call ahead for tickets.

Generously sponsored by Middlesex Hospital, Essex Meadows and Guilford Savings Bank



ct-logo-2012_for_largeLooking for something to do?  Ivoryton Playhouse has been voted best place to see live theatre by readers of The Shoreline Times for three years in a row.  Come to Essex and visit our historic, professional theatre – a Connecticut treasure!


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Did You

Don Quixote is considered one of the most influential works of literature from the Spanish Golden Age and the entire Spanish literary canon. As a founding work of modern Western literature and one of the earliest canonical novels, it regularly appears high on lists of the greatest works of fiction ever published, such as the Bokklubben World Library collection that cites Don Quixote as authors' choice for the "best literary work ever written".