July 20, 2006


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A match made in Maine
Hardworking Manchester actor co-stars with Sally Struthers
By Heidi Masek hmasek@hippopress.com

George Peihl is known around Manchester for 30 years of theater involvement, including founding Stage One Productions. Last year, he took a trip down to New York to audition for the Ogunquit Playhouse, a 74-year-old summer theater in Maine. True, he wasn’t a stranger there. Kim Starling, an associate artistic director at Ogunquit, had come from Manchester and worked at the Palace Theatre and Stage One.

But everyone must audition to act at Ogunquit, and Peihl ended up with the part of the sheriff in The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas, with Sally Struthers as Miss Mona.

This year he’s back in Maine, rehearsing Hello, Dolly! with Struthers. She plays Dolly Gallagher Levi, a “matchmaker extraordinaire” whose latest client is herself. He plays Horace Vandergelder, who has hired her to find him a wife.

“I had a few people pulling for me ... it’s really a wonderful place to work,” Peihl said.

“I had hoped he would come back. I certainly put my vote in,” Struthers said. Struthers stressed that all actors must audition but said the company “didn’t need pushing,” to select Peihl again. “He stole the show last year he was so incredible,” Struthers said.

Peihl had played the role of the sheriff before but hadn’t played Vandergelder. “It’s wonderful, thrilling piece of theater,” he said.

This is Struthers’ fourth year at the theater, and she said “it’s getting to be a habit.” She is well known as Gloria in All in the Family in the 1970s and has dozens of TV, film, stage and voice credits.

“I look forward to this now, it’s like a working vacation,” Struthers said. She can enjoy evenings for two weeks during rehearsals, and summer days in Maine during the two weeks of performance, she said.

Peihl started performing in Manchester in 1976 when he worked for the Merrimack Valley Theater Company. He also produced summer stock at the Palace Theatre for 18 years. Stage One produces dinner theater at the Chateau Restaurant, 201 Hanover St.  Manchester.

When asked if his hometown contingent tends to fill the Ogunquit audience, he said, “There do seem to be a lot of folks from Manchester who come up.… A lot of people didn’t expect to see me up here.”

Hello, Dolly! by Michael Steward and Jerry Herman runs Tuesday, July 25, through Saturday, July 29, and Monday, July 31, through Saturday, August 5, at 8 p.m. at John Lane’s Ogunquit Playhouse, 10 Main St., Ogunquit, Maine, (207) 646-5511. Tickets are $36 to $46, ogunquitplayhouse.org.

07/20/2006 Variations on a theme
07/13/2006 I Hate Hamlet
07/06/2006 Serious theater
06/29/2006 L.A. in Peterborough
06/22/2006 Da Vinci to Rube Goldberg
06/15/2006 Peter Bridges remembered
06/08/2006 From Hairspray to monkeys
06/01/2006 Special Theatrics
05/25/2006 Live Brit-com
05/18/2006 Evil stepsisters earn the yuks
05/11/2006 A message to mom
05/04/2006 Meet the cast
04/27/2006 'I hope i get it'
04/20/2006 Find yourself in Yonkers
04/13/2006 Nashua rocks The Wiz
04/06/2006 Nashua rocks The Wiz
03/30/2006 Cabaret is Mnchester bound
03/23/2006 A 42nd Street detour
03/16/2006 Actor-director wants your ideas
02/23/2006 Yellow Taxi's Theater Festival opens March 1
02/16/2006 Herding CATS
02/09/2006 An actors' studio
02/02/2006 A thing about love
01/26/2006 Spring theater season warming up
01/19/2006 Gearing up for the big night
01/12/2006 This Phantom is not a menace
01/05/2006 Jim Kelly, sci-fi writer and alternate historian
10th anniversary at Capitol Center
10 Ways To Survive The Audition
A Chorus Line
A Figaro Worth Cheering
A 'Living Newspaper' on stage
A tale of two wives
A Tribute To Music
Actorsingers Deliver On Superstar
Beauty and the Beast
Bedford Off-Broadway Gets Spooky
Being The Beatles, 1964 The Tribute
Bringing NYC to Wilton
Creating the venue from antiques
Crimes Of The Heart
Curtain to rise on Dana Center
Dana Center Takes Center Stage
Ensemble elevates Palace’s Godspell
From stage to the silver screen
Great play, too bad it’s over
Greater Tuna
Humble Boy
It’s cabaret, hear it sing, joke, tease
It's Child's Play
Jesus Christ Superstar
Kids Tackle Edgar Allan Poe
Local boy hits the big time, doesn’t lose his head
Lowell theater opens with a winner of a satire
Madco welcomes Boston actor-director
Meet John Sefel, Director
Meet Suzanne Delle, Yellow Taxi’s driver
Music Man to run three weekends
New Thalian Players
Palace announces 2005-06 season
Peterborough Players’ Solidarity is solid gold
Plaid (II)
Playing with man’s best friend
Proud of the Peacock
Racy, crazy blast at the Palace
Reviving His Passion
Robert Dionne, The man behind the Majestic
Rosemary Dann
Secrets Every Smart Traveler Should Know
Short-Attention Span Theater
Side Show
Sideshow slips sideways
Spending The Summer On Stage
Stages of learning
Steel Magnolias
Suessical: The Musical
Theater Of The Imagination
Theater Kids Without A School
Theater in the park draws big
The Drawer Boy
The Festival
The Five best shows of 2005
The Prisoner Of Second Avenue
The Russian/American Kids Circus
The Senator Wore Pantyhose
The Tony Awards, they're grrrrreat
The Warmth Of The Cold
Three nights, three shows at the Palace

Under the Caribbean with the little mermaid

Wake up to ‘night Mother