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Press Release - Matilda

The Spring Lake Theatre Co. is excited to present the Monmouth and Ocean County debut of Matilda the Musical, opening on August 15, 2019, and running through August 25, 2019, produced by Patricia Barry and directed by Kerry White, with musical direction by Jeff Brown and choreography by Christine Baglivio.

Inspired by the twisted genius of Roald Dahl, this Tony Award-winning musical tells the story of Matilda, an extraordinary girl who, armed with a wonderful spirit and a sharp mind, dares to take a stand and change her destiny. Packed with high energy dance numbers and memorable tunes, Matilda is a joyous girl power romp. Children and adults alike will be thrilled and delighted by the story of a special little girl with an extraordinary imagination.

Some of the most notable songs include “Naughty,” “When I Grow Up,” and “Revolting Children”.

Olive O’Reilly takes on her dream part as Matilda Wormwood in her first major role.

Director Kerry White shares what makes her excited about Olive and the production in general:

“I love watching the children grow and create such incredible art. They were all wonderful at auditions, and have grown leaps and bounds through every rehearsal. One of my favorite things in the world is watching kids take what we give them and then making it a unique expression.

Our Spring Lake Theatre Workshop and Dance student Olive O’Reilly was in our youngest theatre workshop class. She auditioned just to be in the chorus. However, we saw a spark in her at auditions. We were all so captivated by her smile and charm. Although she was young and had never had a role this large before, she had an intangible quality about her, and we needed to trust our instincts.

In every respect Olive has delivered as I’ve never seen a kid work so hard in all my years. She memorized every word of the show, not just her own but everyones. She takes direction home with her and rehearses until it’s perfect. With her mom’s help, she demonstrates incredible dedication and commitment to her craft. I am honored and privileged to be a part of this show and overjoyed with this entire experience, specifically watching Olive and her castmates grow and become phenomenal performers.”

Olive will be playing opposite of Tyler Cicardo, who is also taking on one of his dream roles as Miss Agatha Trunchbull, the tyrannical headmistress at Matilda’s school, who believes that “All children are maggots.”

Miss Honey, Matilda’s kind hearted teacher will be played by Tracy Lantz, who has been doing shows at the Spring Lake Theatre since childhood. She will be playing alongside her son, Cooper Lantz, who is returning to the stage in Spring Lake in the role of Bruce after starring for 13 months as Young Charlie in Kinky Boots on Broadway. Cooper got his big start as Winthrop in the Spring Lake Theatre Company’s production of Music Man in 2017, and he is excited to be back!

Matilda’s neglectful parents, Mr. and Mrs. Wormwood will be played by Anthony Preuster and Lauren Brancato respectfully, with Stephen Doucette taking the role of the older brother, Michael.

Featured in the role of the nice librarian, Mrs. Phelps, is Ali Gleason.

They are joined by a group of talented children in Matilda’s class: Annina Valenti as Lavender, Adriella Goncalves as Amanda Thripp, Jason Katz as Nigel, Mollie Widmeier as Erica, Grace Brancato as Alice, Annie Kissinger as Hortensia, Maggie Campbell as Tommi and Hope Wilton as Penelope.

Also in the play is Steven Copp, Nick D’Ambrosia, Sean McLaughlin, Nicolás R. Hewgley, Lily DelPresto and Genevieve Duska.

The Big Kids are played by Claudia Barry, Michele Clark, Gwyneth Fahy, Keegan Foy, Addison Golden, Maria Guerrero, Abigail Gurzo, Sydney Katz, Maura Kerr, Olivia Kutcher, Fiona O’Brien and Bethany Weise.

Jillian Daino, Kenadi Egan, Lillian Mon, Madeline Mon, Sailor Oakes and Ben Ricker plays additional students.

Tickets can be purchased in person or by calling the Box Office Monday through Saturday 11:00 am to 5:00 pm, or online at

Contact person: Pat Barry

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