Broadway World
by A.A Cristi – October 19, 2021

Season 13 at The Encore Musical Theatre Company continues with the ever-popular, Always…Patsy Cline. The first female solo artist to be inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame, Cline is best known for hits like Crazy, I Fall to Pieces and Sweet Dreams – just a few of the songs that will be revisited in this touching piece.

Based on a true story, the musical explores a unique friendship between the legendary singer and a Texas housewife, Louise Seger, whom she befriended at a Honky Tonk in 1961. The two women corresponded until Cline’s tragic death in 1963. Told through the heartfelt and often hilarious memories of Seger, Always… Patsy Cline is an endearing tale that combines down-home humor, unbridled heartache and many of Patsy’s most memorable hits.

Written and originally directed by Ted Swindley, this production will be directed by Encore Artistic Director, Dan Cooney. Encore mainstay, Tyler Driskill, last seen music directing their season opener, Smokey Joe’s Café, will be on board for this production as well. Starring as Patsy Cline is Hope Elizabeth Schafer, an actor based out of New York City, who most recently performed in The Encore’s Queen Tribute Concert. Sonja Marquis, a critically acclaimed Michigan actor who appeared in The Encore’s 2013 production, will be reprising her role as Patsy’s friend, Louise.

The production is sponsored by Dexter resident, Jan Lyons, who previously sponsored The Encore’s Back to Broadway Summer Concert Series. “We are so grateful to Jan Lyons for her continued generous support,” says Artistic Director Cooney. “Producing theatre during these uncertain times is a risky business. It’s because of the support of sponsors, like Jan, that we are able to bring the high-quality productions that we strive for into our new space.” The show marks the second mainstage production in The Maas Theatre, The Encore Musical Theatre’s new performance space inside the newly renovated, historic Copeland building.