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Jul 03, 12

Upcoming July Events

Timber Lake Playhouse (TLP), northwestern Illinois’ non-profit professional summer theatre, is pleased to announce some exciting events that are coming up in July.

One of the most explosive movie musicals in recent memory bursts onto the stage with exhilarating results. When Ren (played by Henry McGinniss) and his mother (Mount Carroll’s Susie Rogers) move from Chicago to a small farming town, Ren is prepared for the inevitable adjustment period at his new high school. What he isn’t prepared for are the rigorous local edicts, including a ban on dancing instituted by the local preacher (played by TLP alumni Karl Hamilton), determined to exercise the control over the town’s youth that he cannot command in his own home. To the rockin’ rhythm of its Oscar and Tony-nominated top 40 score and several new songs written for the stage version, Footloose celebrates the wisdom of listening to young people, guiding them with a warm heart and an open mind. Footloose runs July 5th through 15th. Performances are at 7:30pm, Tuesday through Saturdays and there are 2pm matinees on Sundays and Wednesdays. New this season, there is also a Saturday matinee performance on opening weekends at 2pm. Tickets are selling fast and available through the box office during regular business hours, 11am – 6pm daily at  815-244-2035 or online by CLICKING HERE. Timber Lake Playhouse is located at 8215 Black Oak Road, Mount Carroll.


You’re A Good Man, Charlie Brown

“An average day in the life of Charlie Brown.” It really is just that, a day made up of little moments picked from all the memorable stories of Charlie Brown, from Valentine’s Day to the baseball season, from his wild optimism to utter despair, all mixed in with the lives of his friends including Lucy, Linus, Schroeder, Sally and, of course, Snoopy. This beloved musical has been bringing the joyful spirit Charles Schultz’s Peanuts comic strip to families for over 40 years. Performances are approximately one hour long and are on July 10, 12, 13 & 14 at 2 pm and August 7, 9, 10 & 11 at 11 am. Tickets are $6 per person and available through the box office or online by CLICKING HERE.

Children and Teen Workshops

Saturday, July 14 from 10am-2pm TLP will hold the Children Day Camp. Child must have completed first grade and limit is age 12. Camp includes ticket to You’re A Good Man, Charlie Brown. Cost is $25 per student.

Children will take classes from theatre professionals that include Acting, Props, Costumes and Scenic Design. They will be able to see the backstage process of a production, then watch a performance of the show they learned about throughout the day.

TLP will be holding its annual weeklong teen workshop July 16-20 for teens Ages 13-18. Classes include acting, dance, voice, writing and improvisation taught TLP Resident Actors. Classes will be held 10 am to 4pm daily. Lunches are provided. Cost is $125 per teen.

To register for a workshop or for more information, contact the box office at  815-244-2035 or visit to download registration forms.


5th Annual Gala Event

Saturday, July 21st, First State Bank of Shannon-Polo-Lake Carroll will be sponsoring TLP’s Annual Gala Fundraiser, Some Enchanted Evening, at the Lake Carroll Clubhouse. There will be a silent and live auction, an array of elegant hors d’oeuvres, special performances by company members and the announcement of the exciting 2013 season. Tickets are $50 each for regular tickets or $100 for a Special Starlight Table ticket that includes table seating beside a TLP actor. Tickets must be purchased by July 9 and are available at the Timber Lake Playhouse box office, at any First State Bank locations or online by CLICKING HERE, where you can also view the list of live auction items.


This program is partially supported by a grant for the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency.

Production Sponsors are Kunes Country Auto Group and Compliance Signs.


Jan 10, 11

TLP Hosts Theatre Workshops

Normally, Timber Lake Playhouse (TLP) in Mount Carroll, Illinois sits dormant in the winter. The lively summer theatre often gets questions such as “What goes on at Timber Lake Playhouse during the winter?” This year, however, TLP administrative staff and Board of Directors, in celebration of the 50th Anniversary and a way to begin the expansion of its Magic Owl Educational Programming, decided to go into the community and teach theatre workshops at two local non-profit special needs organizations.

“Before becoming Managing Director at Timber Lake Playhouse, I worked with organizations that supported individuals with special needs and had taught theatre workshops at The Centers for Habilitation (TCH) in Tempe, AZ,” said Melissa Mattingly Parsons. Parsons met with Jon Murray from Rolling Hills Progress Center in Lanark and Karla Belzer at Exceptional Care & Training Center in Sterling to do theatre workshops for the holiday season.  The workshops consisted of going into each facility, getting to know the individuals in each facility and writing a play based on their likes and abilities. Each organization gave its input on the script, performed on December 23 at Rolling Hills Progress Center and January 26 at Exceptional Care & Training Center.

“What is important about working with these types of organizations is that each individual can take many things from the workshops. They use the theatrical arts to work on skills such as vocal exercises, range of motion, reading, working together with peers and arts and crafts. Individuals who were not performing were able to work on costumes, props and decorations for the play. A project like this enables an organization’s individuals, staff and administrators to work to together and feel good about what they present, “ Parsons said. “We took that idea a step further by also bridging three organizations within the community.” Rolling Hills employees who had performed the play in December were able to participate in the performance at Exceptional Care & Training Center.

The play that was presented at both organizations, titled Everyday Holidays, included songs with lyrics such as “The holidays the time we share in winter or in spring…the holidays are everyday with all the joy you bring.” Justin Harris, Program Coordinator at TCH, wrote the music to the lyrics of the songs from the play. Parsons said that it is important when writing a play for these organizations to have the theme that while we all have differences, we all are human beings. Rolling Hills Progress Center’s Executive Director Peter Hermes stated, “People with developmental disabilities want what everyone else wants, the chance to contribute to their family, their society and to enrich their own life.”

Parents and guardians were invited to the performances and in some cases drove several states away to attend. “It was a great program and we appreciated all the work that went into it,” stated one of the parents of an individual at Exceptional Care & Training Center. Karla Belzer, Program Director at Exceptional Care & Training Center said, “Our residents have never had an opportunity in their life to ‘perform.’  This workshop gave them their first chance to be part of a production – to experience applause.  We had over 50 parents and guardians attend the performance, which provided them a first opportunity as well – a chance to see their child perform.  It was truly and amazing experience that has our residents smiling to this day.”

All three organizations feel these types of partnerships are important for the community. Building relationships like these educates the public about programs for individuals with special needs as well as the arts; both necessary to the community and typically among the first programs cut in federal and state budgets.

To support these local non-profit organizations so they may continue these types of partnerships, visit their websites: Rolling Hills Progress Center at, Exceptional Care & Training Center at and Timber Lake Playhouse at

If your community organization would like to participate in a theatre workshop with Timber Lake Playhouse, visit the Education page on the website, call 815-244-2048 or email

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