AUDITIONS for HUNDRED DAYS on November 20th

Posted on November 3, 2023

MusicalFare is seeking performers for their 2024 Summer production of HUNDRED DAYS by The Bengsons, directed by Susan Drozd.  Auditions will be held at MusicalFare, by appointment only, on Monday, Nov. 20th, beginning at 6:30 pm.
(Please note - in the graphic at the top of the page (underneath the headline) it says "November 3, 2023;" that is the date this notice was posted.  The auditions are, in fact, being held on November 20th)

HUNDRED DAYS is an uncensored, exhilarating and heartrending true story about embracing uncertainty, taking a leap, and loving as if you only had 100 days to live. With magnetic chemistry and anthemic folk-punk music, creators Abigail and Shaun Bengson explore a fundamental question: how do we make the most of the time that we have? Described as a folk-punk docu-musical, Hundred Days utilizes 6-7 performer/musicians who sing and play a range of instruments--including accordion, bass, drums, guitar, keyboard, and cello.

Rehearsals begin June 3, 2024. Tech begins at the beginning of July, with previews on July 7th and 9th.
The show will open on Wednesday, July 10th, and run through Sun, August 11th. (Wed-Sun, 6 shows per week)

Material To Prepare/How to Register:

We’re looking for vibrant and distinct voices to tell this amazing story.

Please sing a song that showcases your vocal range. We are looking for you to also choose a song that speaks to an extreme emotional release - be that grief or joy. The hope is that you choose something that will allow you to share with reckless abandon.

The song should be self-accompanied by your strongest instrument. There will be a keyboard in the room for audition use.

If you play bass or drums, you may also bring sheet music for a pianist to accompany you while you play your instrument.

Email Doug Weyand BY MONDAY, NOVEMBER 13TH at to register for an appointment.  In your email, please specify which instrument you will be playing while you sing.  

MusicalFare's Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Outreach (DEIO) and Land Acknowledgement Statements

Posted on July 10, 2023

MusicalFare Theatre Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, Outreach (DEIO) Statement
Updated July 2023

MusicalFare Theatre is driven by the transformative power of music and arts, and we understand that inclusive, equitable and diverse stories and storytellers are instrumental in helping our Western New York theater community thrive. At MusicalFare Theatre, all are welcome and celebrated regardless of gender, age, race, ethnicity, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity, education, or ability.

We are not neutral. Hate is not welcome here. We believe Black Lives Matter. We believe LGBTQIA+ lives matter. We reject anti-Semitism and anti-Asian hate. We reject white supremacy and any forms of racial, cultural, societal, and political oppression, and we support the ongoing fight for equity.

We also recognize the systemic inequalities in the arts and know that our words are only as valuable as their accompanying actions. We pledge to be constant learners and will strive to create a culture of listening and self-challenge.

We as an organization cannot fulfill our mission and truly commit to our core values unless all voices are protected and elevated equally. We are committed to standing together with, listening to, and elevating the diverse experiences, viewpoints, and voices of our community – onstage, on our creative and administrative staff, and on our board – now and always.

MusicalFare Theatre’s DEIO Efforts:

2021: MusicalFare launched a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion committee as part of our capacity planning, which is dedicated to developing and sustaining concrete DEI policies and actions to help move us all forward.

2022: MusicalFare hired Davida Tolbert as the organization's DEIO Coordinator and MusicalFare implemented DEI selection framework for the upcoming 2023 season.

2023: Relationship started with Resource Council of WNY. Financial support was given through MusicalFare audiences to the Red Ribbon campaign, multiple meetings were held and plans are being formulated for MusicalFare to work with after school students and possibly seniors.

Currently, MusicalFare has already begun to establish new relationships and partnerships within the WNY community to build upon our desire to present opportunities for growth, inclusivity, advocacy for members of our community who have been excluded and/or underserved, togetherness and equality.


Our Land Acknowledgement Statement:

It is with gratitude and humility that we acknowledge that we are working, performing, and gathering on the ancestral homelands of the Haudenosaunee people, who are the indigenous peoples of this land. We acknowledge the Haudenosaunee as the original caretakers of this land, and honor the sovereignty of the 6 Nations—Mohawk, Cayuga, Onondaga, Oneida, Seneca and Tuscarora, and their elders both past and present, as well as future generations. We show our respect for treaties made on this land and deep regret for the mistakes both past, and present.

We acknowledge that an overwhelming number of us are using technologies not available or accessible in present day indigenous communities.

We will strive to do the necessary work to ensure that MusicalFare becomes a more inclusive space for all, and to never cease our ongoing learning in the spirit of collaboration and reconciliation. Nya: Weh. Thank you.

MusicalFare's Annual TWO DAY TICKET SALE

Posted on June 12, 2023

On Tuesday, June 13th and Wednesday, June 14th, MusicalFare will be holding its annual TWO-DAY TICKET SALE!*

On these dates ONLY, patrons can purchase General tickets to Friday or Saturday 7:30pm performances for any of the 23-24 Mainstage Season shows at the discounted rate of $40 (including fees) by entering the code TWODAY.

That's a $15 savings, per-ticket, off of our normal ticket price!

Discounted tickets can ONLY be purchased on June 13th and June 14th by phone (716-839-8540) during box office hours (12pm-6pm) or online AT ANY TIME on those dates.

And there's NO LIMIT to the number of tickets you can buy!

On June 13th or June 14th, pick a show (or shows!) that you're interested in and click the "Order Tickets" button. Once you pick a date from the calendar, you'll be shown the option to enter the TWODAY code.

*Offer only valid for Fri/Sat 7:30pm performances in the 23-24 Mainstage Season. Prior sales excluded. You must enter the code to receive the discount. If purchasing by phone, simply tell the box office representative the code.

ALL SALES ARE FINAL - No refunds or exchanges. Ticket prices revert to our usual $55 price (including fees) on June 15th.

Buffalo News Review of DISASTER

Posted on April 18, 2023

From The Buffalo News - 4/16/23
By Melinda Miller

MusicalFare's 'Disaster!' is an homage to the '70s

“Disaster!,” the musical happily destroying the MusicalFare stage now through May 14, is an irreverent homage (both figurative and literal) to the music and movies of the 1970s. Remember the 1970s? When disco was king and disaster films ruled at the box office?

Yes, those ’70s – the decade owned by Donna Summer and Irwin Allen, full of music made for dancing and celebrity-filled casts collected for chaos. Hard to believe it has been half a century since the Poseidon flipped on Shelley Winters and Newman and McQueen battled that Towering Inferno, but here we are.

Now “Disaster!” brings it all back, smartly muting the flames and flooding in favor of a rollicking dance mix and melodramatically riotous mayhem and romance. The action is set on a cruise ship-turned-casino whose cash-strapped owner has cut corners everywhere – except on the aquarium full of piranhas. What could go wrong?

One place director Randy Kramer went very right was in putting together the large cast of triple-threat performers who deliver nearly three dozen hits from way-back-when in ways we’ve never seen before. Playwrights Seth Rudetsky and Jack Plotnick have a blast using songs like “Never Can Say Goodbye,” “Knock Three Times,” “Don’t Cry Out Loud,” “25 or 6 to 4” and many more as unexpectedly campy dialogue, and these actors are relentless in making it work.

While there isn’t a sour note in the bunch, there are some standouts: Ricky Needham, as a toned-down version of his early season character in Kavinoky’s “Rock of Ages,” is just getting better and better, especially in a hysterically heart-wrenching version of Nilsson’s “Without You.” Gabriella Jean McKinley, so powerful in Ujima’s “Toni Stone,” swings for the fences again as Levora, a Tina Turner-Donna Summer combo with a voice to match.

It's also clear we don’t see enough these days of Kelly Copps and Jennifer Mysilwy, whose song, dance and comedic chops all earn the spotlight, and, frankly, I will go to anything that features Arin Lee Dandes, who gets special props in this show for playing a pair of twins.

Rounding out the cast: Kyle Bassett-Baran as “the bad guy,” Kevin Craig (fresh from his great one-man show at Second Generation), the versatile Alex Anthony Garcia, sometime “Golden Girl” Michael Gilbert-Wachowiak, Stevie Jackson and Kristen-Marie Lopez, both seen this season in “Beehive,” and MusicalFare regular Jon May.

Also: Maria Pedro and Emily Yancey, as two very different women who are “torn between two lovers,” and Bob Mazierski and Jenny McCabe in about half-a-dozen roles each.

If ever there was a decade worth spoofing, it was the 1970s, and it’s “Still the One.” “Disaster!” leaves you laughing and may even make you feel like dancing (one song that somehow didn’t make it into the show!).

Now Hiring: House Manager/Box Office Representative (part-time)

Posted on August 26, 2022

MusicalFare Theatre is seeking a part-time House Manager/Box Office Representative for its 2022-2023 season. Our season opens with NICE WORK IF YOU CAN GET IT which runs from September 7th-October 9th. Performances are Wednesdays and Thursdays at 7pm, Fridays at 7:30pm, Saturdays at 3:30pm and 7:30pm and Sundays at 2pm. We are looking for someone to cover 2-4 shows per week.

House Manager:

*Prepare the space—Making sure the house, lobby and restrooms are presentable for our audience before, during and after each performance.

*Manage the Ushers- meet and greet with them, assign them their jobs.

*Check patrons into the theatre.

*Work with our box office staff if there are any ticketing issues

*Work with our production stage manager to start the show on time.

*Seat all late comers.

*Responsible for the safety of the audience, in case of an emergency.

Box Office Representative:

*Sell tickets/subscriptions before the show and during intermission.

*Work with the house manager to solve any ticketing issues.

*Answer/return phone calls that come in during the performance.

*Looking for someone with great people skills, computer/Ipad skills, and must work well with others.

To apply, please email Kristy Cavanagh at by Monday 8/29/22.

Buffalo News Article - MusicalFare Theatre: Postponed Shows Get New Life

Posted on September 7, 2021

By Janelle Harb - The Buffalo News - 9/3/21

After a year of virtual cabarets, MusicalFare Theatre opens its 2021-2022 season with four previously postponed shows and a new musical.
“Camelot,” the new addition and first show of the season, was chosen because of its inherent protocol friendliness. “The composers and main authors of the show rewrote the show to a smaller cast so it can be done with eight people,” said MusicalFare's Marketing Director Doug Weyand.

“We wanted to go and make it a production that’s relevant to our time, so we have very diverse casting,” Weyand said. “[We’re] staying true to our mission statement at the same time as providing high quality musical theater entertainment.”
The other musicals include the astounding true story “All Is Calm,” the topical “American Rhapsody,” the comedy “The Other Josh Cohen” and 2014 Tony award-winner for best musical, “A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder.”

“All the shows in the season, none of them have large casts,” Weyand said, citing that the maximum number of cast members in a show is 10. “Sometimes we would normally do shows that have like 25 people in them, but we’re taking it slow with people coming back to the theater.”

Weyand recounted how the audition process induced emotions among returning players. “Everyone was just like ‘oh my God, I’m so happy to be here, I’m so happy to be auditioning’ and actors hate auditioning,” Weyand laughed. “People were like tearing up at auditions, it just felt so good to sing in front of people again.”

During the pandemic, MusicalFare pivoted to a digital format through use of the cabaret space in its lobby for more than 30 livestreamed performances. “We used to do little cabaret performances on weekends where there wasn’t a mainstage show,” Weyand said. “Because of [the shutdown], we did them as livestreams and we basically turned our entire cabaret space into a television studio.”
The space went from having a one-camera livestream setup to now six, including overhead and moving cameras. “Our upcoming cabarets now will be in-person and livestreamed so we’ll be combining those two things,” Weyand said, which audiences can once again expect to see between mainstage musicals.
Weyand emphasized the unspoken bond that live theater creates and society is currently missing. “It’s one of the very few things where you can communally get together with people who you don’t know necessarily and you can laugh or cry and have an emotional response,” Weyand said. “It’s something that everyone needs in their lives, it’s enriching, and it’s communal, and it’s just flat-out fun.”


Posted on June 29, 2021

MusicalFare's 'Mrs. Cole Porter' showcases the talent, charisma of Debbie Pappas - by Anthony Chase - Buffalo News digital (6/29/21)

ow starring in the one-person show, “Love, Linda: The Life of Mrs. Cole Porter” at MusicalFare Theatre, let us sing the praises of Debbie Pappas, a charismatic performer with a lush singing voice and irresistible stage presence. Pappas has been a fixture on Buffalo’s musical theater stages for … let me be a gentleman and just say “years.”

I first saw Pappas in the 1980s, playing Joan in “Dames at Sea” at Ruben’s Backstage. Since then, she’s played a litany of musical theater roles and has won three Artie Awards. Not all musical theater performers make smooth transitions from ingenue to their later careers, especially not singers. Pappas has accomplished this with finesse and retains the supple and expressive voice that has always been the hallmark of her stage performances.

A few years ago, I spoke to Pappas after she had done yet another audition for yet another production of “Fiddler on the Roof.” Tzeitel, the eldest daughter had been a go-to role for her, and a new production of “Fiddler” meant almost guaranteed employment. This time, however, Pappas was not hired. She peeked at her audition card, and was horrified to read “Too old,” scribbled beside her name.

Well, for an actress, the teen years rarely endure past the age of 35, and while Pappas might have become too old to play the Tzeitel, the daughter, she would not be too old to play Golde, the mother; or Princess Puffer in “The Mystery of Edwin Drood”; or Margaret Johnson in “Light in the Piazza”; or Trina in “Falsettos”; or the Stepmother in “Cinderella”; or Greta in “James Joyce’s ‘The Dead.’” She began to land and conquer these roles, one by one.

Indeed, Pappas now reveals in her credits that her most thrilling role to date is the real-life role of grandmother. (I suspect this admission is motivated by a combination of pride and an awareness that audience members will read the word “grandmother” and exclaim, “Impossible!”)

With “Love, Linda: The Life of Mrs. Cole Porter,” MusicalFare has provided a showcase for her magnetic allure and remarkable talent. As the lights come up, Pappas is revealed in a stylish Art Deco living room, wearing a sleek evening gown of cornflower blue and midnight blue that compliments the decor. The gown is punctuated with a generous three-strand pearl necklace and large pearl bracelet. Her hair, deep brunette, is done in a classic Gatsby era style.

Pappas has been called upon to portray one of the most beautiful and fashionable women of the early 20th century.

Linda Lee Thomas had divorced her abusive first husband by the time she met Cole Porter in 1918. The couple would marry the next year, even though Porter was ten years her junior and as openly gay as it was possible to be in those days. The two would come to define jazz era glamor and sophistication, first in Paris, then in New York. At the same time, Porter’s reputation and popularity as a song writer would soar.

In the show, Pappas, as Linda Porter, narrates the story of her famed marriage with charm and humor, while highlighting its major events by singing 18 Porter songs. Sometimes the song selections are expected, as when she opens with “When a Woman’s in Love.” Sometimes the choices are surprising, or take on heavy irony, as when Linda describes how she coped with her husband’s most ardent male lovers by singing his seemingly innocent, “Let’s Be Buddies.”

Pappas demonstrates the value of experience with a performance that is well-paced and builds to a rewarding crescendo. She saves the full power and fluidity of her voice for the most unlikely vocal highlight of the evening, Porter’s “Wunderbar,” from his late-career masterpiece, “Kiss Me Kate.”

I’m not sure, but it’s possible that Pappas forgot some lyrics on the opening night. It was during Porter’s playfully risqué “Let’s Do It,” with its famously endless list of double entendres. The complex lyrics she starts to sing are not by Porter at all, but by Noël Coward, written for his Las Vegas act. At one point, she turned to the audience and entreated us to provide the next rhyme. It was an amusing bit, but then I thought, “Has she actually forgotten the words?” Then I thought, “Who cares? She’s fabulous! This is divine!”

The production has been directed by Norm Sham, who is married to Pappas. Music direction is by Theresa Quinn. The smart set and lights are by Chris Cavanagh, who has also provided expert sound. Kari Drozd designed the costume. Susan Drozd designed the wig and make-up. The total effect is wunderbar.

MusicalFare Re-Opening Article from Amherst Bee

Posted on June 28, 2021

By Samantha Flavell - Amherst Bee - 6/23/21

Live performances by MusicalFare return June 23 with the production of “Love, Linda: The Life of Mrs. Cole Porter,” a one-woman musical that recounts through song and story the life of Linda Lee Thomas and her life with Cole Porter.

After a hiatus from live shows due to COVID-19, the theater community is eager and excited to get back on stage and veer away from virtual performances in favor of once again performing in front of a live audience.

“Being back is something that obviously everyone has been looking forward to. Not just the company; everybody in the theater community is happy to be getting back on stage and getting to do what they haven’t been able to do,” said Doug Weyand the marketing and production coordinator for MusicalFare. “I mean literally every artistic person has been sitting at home, unless they did a livestream somewhere along the line. But they haven’t performed in front of a live audience.”

With COVID restrictions easing and the number of vaccinated individuals increasing, MusicalFare is excited to welcome audience members back and ease back into live performances starting with this one-act, one-woman wonder.

“The cast for this, it’s a one-woman show. We purposely did that just to get people more comfortable because you don’t want to throw 20 performers at them. So, we’re doing a small show; it’s only an hour and five minutes long,” Weyand said. “There’s no intermission so it’s not like you’re going and sitting through the first act and then you have a 15-minute wait and then you have another act. So, you don’t feel like you’re there for a long time either. So, it’s giving people the entertainment that they want but keeping it restricted to a certain extent.”

Linda Lee Thomas, or Mrs. Cole Porter, is played by Debbie Pappas. Throughout the one-act musical Pappas enlivens her character to recount the life of Thomas and Cole Porter celebrating their love that blossomed through the unconventional relationship.

The musical showcases the fact that even though Porter was gay, the companion- ship and love between him and Thomas lasted through 35 years of marriage and a glamour-filled life. The musical scores are all music and lyrics of Cole Porter and include titles like “Love for Sale,” “Night and Day,” “Let’s Do It” and “Let’s Misbehave.”

“It’s a quick, nice, lovely little piece that is just going to enchant people and give them an hour’s worth of entertainment where they won’t have to watch TV,” Weyand said. “Obviously go at your own comfort level but all the theaters in town, including us, are taking all the precautions and are eagerly and enthusiastically awaiting their return. There is nothing like being in a room and experiencing something communally. It’s your first chance to get back out there, give it a try and see how you feel.”

Performances will be held at 7 p.m. today, June 23, and tomorrow, Thursday, June 24, as well as at 3:30 p.m. Saturday, June 26, and 2 p.m. Sunday, June 27. There is no 7:30 p.m. Saturday performance for this production.

There will be one non-vaccinated performance held on Thursday, July 1. No proof of vaccination will be required but all patrons are required to wear face masks at all times and observe social distancing. Seating will not be assigned but will be limited to approximately 33% of capacity with social distancing between seats. Vaccinated individuals are able to attend this showing as well.

All other performances of “Love, Linda” will be for vaccinated individuals and proof of vaccination such as a New York State Excelsior Pass or vaccination card with a photo ID will be required to enter. Seating for vaccinated-only performances will be at 76% capacity.

“We did a survey of our subscribers before we even announced the show coming in and like 97% of them wanted to come back immediately; 97% of them only wanted to come back if everyone was vaccinated in the audience. So basically that’s why we’re doing the vaccinated-only production. At least for this production, it will probably adjust as things move along into September for the beginning of the season,” Weyand said. “We’re only selling the vaccinated performance to 76% [capacity] of our seating. We’re allowed to sell it all the way but we’re choosing to do it to 76%. Because that way there is still some distancing between people. Because you don’t know how you’re going to feel the first time you’re back in the audience.”

Tickets are $49 and the performance is sponsored by Beechwood Continuing Care.

“I’m really, really hoping that people will take the chance and will enjoy the lovely performance that we’re putting on,” Weyand said.

About the Future of MusicalFare Theatre

Posted on September 26, 2018

The complete text of various news articles from various sources about the Future of MusicalFare Theatre.

Reviews for PUMP BOYS & DINETTES are in!

Posted on September 7, 2018

Read the full text of the PUMP BOYS & DINETTES review in Buffalo Theatre Guide!