Friday, February 11, 2011

SMU Department of Theatre and Dance presents comedy ‘25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee’

WINONA, Minn. — Can you spell hilarious? The Saint Mary’s University Department of Theatre and Dance will present the “25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee” Feb. 24-27.

Catchy musical numbers combine with colorful characters filled with youthful angst and yearnings in this one-act musical comedy directed by Dr. Gary Diomandes and music director Judy Myers.

Feel the anxious anticipation at this fictional spelling bee set in a geographically ambiguous Putnam Valley Middle School. The contestants include a Boy Scout, an allergy-plagued student, an over achiever, a tentative newcomer, the wide-eyed offspring of hippie parents, and a politically aware contestant — six young people in the throes of puberty, overseen by grownups who barely managed to escape childhood themselves.

“25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee” spotlights the unlikeliest of heroes: a quirky yet charming cast of outsiders for whom a spelling bee is the one place where they can stand out and fit in at the same time.

With the underlying theme that losing doesn’t make you a loser, anyone who sees this show is a winner.

The show begins at 7:30 p.m. Thursday through Saturday, Feb. 24-26, and 3 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 27.

Tickets are $10 for adults, $5 for students and seniors and are available at the SMU Box Office, (507) 457-1715, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday or online at

* This show includes adult language and subject matters.