Shakespeare Comes to Xenia

Josh Jatawick as Benedick and Juliet Howard-Welch as Beatrice. Photo by Lisa Bernheim.

X*ACT, Xenia Area Community Theater, is pleased to present William Shakespeare’s MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING, June 15 through 24th at Kettering Health Network Theater in Xenia, Ohio. This production closes the 2011/ 2012 theatre season.

This production, directed by Lisa Howard-Welch, founder and former Artistic Director of W. Shakespeare & Co. Theatre Company, features a cast of seasoned actors from all over the Dayton and Springfield area. She has assembled an ensemble that brings a multitude of professional, regional and local experience, including Josh Katawick of Springfield as Benedick, Juliet Howard-Welch of Dayton as Beatrice, Elizabeth Dillard of Springfield, as Hero, Jared Mola of Beavercreek as Claudio and Anthony Copper of Xenia as Don Pedro. Katawick and Howard-Welch have been seen locally in numerous productions. Katawick has appeared in both HAMLET and A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’s DREAM with Springfield StageWorks, amongst others, as well as spending last summer with Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey. Howard-Welch is an Actor’s Equity Membership Candidate and has worked both locally and nationally, having stage managed for New Orleans Shakespeare Festival, Dayton Opera and Clark State. She also played the role of Stella in X*ACT’s fall production of A STREETCAR NAMED DESIRE.

Josh Katawick as Benedick, Juliet Howard-Welch as Beatrice & Jared Mola as Claudio. Photo by Lisa Bernheim.

Elizabeth Dillard, a student in Illinois State University’s Acting Program, has also been seen in numerous local productions including HAMLET with Springfield StageWorks, EURIDYCE at Clark State and TWELFTH NIGHT with Playhouse South. Liz has also appeared most recently with Illinois State University’s production of JULIUS CAESAR. Jared Mola was most recently seen in the Dayton Theatre Guild’s production of WITTENBERG, but has also appeared in such shows as MOUSETRAP, LITTLE WOMEN and SEUSSICAL. Mola’s first original play, I LOVE YOU, LET’s LIGHT OURSELVES ON FIRE was produced at Millikin University as part of their studio theatre season. He is now a student at Wright State. Anthony Copper has appeared on the X*ACT stage for seven productions including THE CRUCIBLE, AND THEN THERE WERE NONE, and directed this season’s production of THE UNINVITED. Anthony spent 15 years at Magic Waters Theatre in Bainbridge, Ohio where he acted in, directed and wrote numerous plays.

Also featured is a strong company of performance and production team members from all over the Dayton and surrounding areas, including Adam Hardy, Hayley Justice, Quillin Stocker, Michelle Graham, Kathleen Day, and Mike Fazio of Springfield; Abby Reisinger of Urbana; John Fredland, Ofoname Eguaroje, Nathan Hudson, Cher Collins and Anthony Chiles of Dayton; John Bukowski of Centerville; Kelly Bennington and Jon Hung of Beavercreek; Katie Paeg of Trotwood; Jon Dowler, Lisa Bernheim, Patrick Taylor and Austin Smith of Kettering; and Jacinda Bridger of Vandalia.

This production marks Howard-Welch’s third directing contract during the 2011/2012 theatrical season, having just finished A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’s DREAM for Springfield StageWorks. She also directed A STREETCAR NAMED DESIRE for X*ACT in September, which marked her return to directing following a 9 year break from theatre. During her career, which has spanned 27 years in both the United States and the United Kingdom, she has directed more than 100 regional, pre-professional and professional projects and appeared in over 75 productions. She will soon be preparing her next directorial season, which includes WOMEN OF LOCKERBIE for Clark State’s Theatre Arts Program’s 2012/2013 Season. Lisa is currently the Artistic Director of The Shakespeare Project, and works as a theatre educator and actor’s coach.

General and Production Information
X*ACT – Xenia Community Theatre presents MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING, June 15th, 16th, 22nd & 23rd at 7:30pm and June 17th, 23rd and 24th at 3:00pm at The Kettering Health Network Theater, in Xenia. The venue is located at 45 East Second Street, near the intersection of US 68 and Second Street. Regular information on the production process can be obtained by following the Director’s Blog at Tickets are are $15.00 for general admission seats and $12 for Seniors and Students. Tickets are available at the door, online at, or by calling the theater at (937) 372-0516. Very limited seating is available, so reservations or pre-purchase is strongly advised. This production contains violence, mature themes and situations and is not suitable for children or those sensitive to this subject matter.

For further information, please contact X*ACT by calling (937) 372-0516. If you would like to contact the director for more specific information, you may call her at (937)238-3938 or e-mail at General performance information can be obtained by contacting the theater at (937) 372-0516.

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