McCarl Gallery History Dinner Theatre Series Opens Sept. 17

by Public Relations | Aug 08, 2017

Aug. 8, 2017

Jonathan Kruk as Rip Van Winkle

The Foster and Muriel McCarl Coverlet Gallery at Saint Vincent College has announced the third season of its history dinner theater series.

“This series will take participants on a journey from Rip Van Winkle’s 20-year nap in the mountains to Sally Ride’s journey into outer space,” commented Lauren Churilla, director, “and from Abigail Adams to Thomas Jefferson, we will journey through the stories of the American Revolution, women’s role in the new republic and the struggles of the new nation. Harriet Tubman will engage audiences on a musical journey from slavery to freedom. In addition to the show, guests will dine on a gourmet dinner of their choosing while they are regaled with tales and stories of the past. This year’s series will run from September 2017 to May of 2018.”

The first show of the series, The Legend of Rip Van Winkle, will take place from 6 to 9 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 17. Master storyteller Jonathan Kruk returns to regale visitors with the legend of Rip Van Winkle, a man who after evading his nagging wife, Dame Van Winkle, fell asleep in the Catskills for 20 years. “Kruk’s storytelling is both enchanting and invigorating,” Churilla commented. “Rip Van Winkle is a highly interactive show and will feature the musical accompaniment of Jim Keyes. Kruk has performed at countless libraries, historic sites, summer camps and festivals. He has been featured on CBS Sunday Morning, Al Jazeera America, The O’Reilly Factor, the Travel and History Channels, WAMC and WHUD radio.”

Ticket price includes a menu choice of chicken and salmon duet or sundried tomato ravioli. All meals are served with a salad, sides and a desert. Registration is open for the Legend of Rip Van Winkle until Tuesday, Sept. 12.

The second show of the series, Abigail Adams, will be held on Friday, Oct. 13. “Abigail Adams is a woman who calls it like she sees it and Kim Hanley shows us a woman who will confront something that needs to be addressed, even if it makes her uncomfortable,” Churilla said. “Abigail is an upperclass woman who married a man she respected, a life partner who took her seriously. Although Abigail is sometimes belatedly considered elitist for believing that uneducated Americans had not earned a vote, Kim reminds us that our first Second Lady and second First Lady wanted a knowledgeable electorate able to make informed decisions. Ms. Hanley’s interactive programs involve audience members who begin with large piles of money that grow smaller with each tax act that the British Parliament passes, illustrating the economic tyranny the colonials faced under British rule. Abigail contrasts this inequality with a look into an egalitarian marriage of two intelligent, articulate people who value themselves, each other and their relationship.” Ticket price includes a menu choice of grilled 10 oz. strip steak or chicken marsala.

Additional upcoming shows include Thomas Jefferson, portrayed by Steve Edenbo on Thursday, Dec. 7; A Visit With Harriet Tubman on Friday, March 16, 2018; and History Alive! Sally Ride – Who Wants to be an Astronaut? on Friday May 4, 2018.

Tickets can be purchased for individual shows for $65 for adults, $35 for students and $25 for children. Group rates are available for parties of ten or more.

Contact Lauren Churilla at 724-805-2188 or visit the McCarl Gallery website,, for more information. Tickets can be purchased online or by phone.


Photo: Jonathan Kruk as Rip Van Winkle


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