Cheshire Community Theater

Curtain Up, Light the Lights!

Room Service

January 15, 16, 17  2010

           Directors: Dawn Reiss-Melillo & Gregory Rubino


                          Gordon Miller……………………Eddie Schaefer                        Joseph Gribble……………Al Mulvey

                          Gregory Wagner………………Robert Olson                             Harry Binion………………Adam V.S. Abbate

                          Sasha, Senator Blake………Raymond Zalenski                     Leo Davis……………………Daniel Schmidt

                          Christine Marlowe……………Dorri Bova-Mendes                    Faker Englund……………Samuel Winston

                          Dr. Glass…………………………Debra O’Connell                       Timothy Hogarth…………Michael Cassidy

                          Simon Jenkins, Messenger, Voices……………Christopher Jones

                          Stage Manager………………Karen Burns


Scenes from Room Service


Adam V.S. Abbate (Harry Binion) is pleased to be returning to the CCT stage in Room Service.  He previously appeared in CCT’s productions of The Man Who Came to Dinner (Jefferson), Father of the Bride (Massoula), and Guys and Dolls (gambler/ensemble), and also directed Black Coffee and assistant directed Guys and Dolls for the organization.  In addition to his return to the stage, the other accomplishments Adam is looking forward to in 2010 are his final climbs of the 46 Adirondack High Peaks, of which he has four remaining.  He dedicates his performance to his extremely capable and supportive wife, Rebecca, and his wonderful children Henry and Juliette.


Michael Cassidy (Timothy Hogarth) most recently created the role of Hubert Barnes in the Pulitzer Prize nominated World Premier run of Malice and Contempt, by Harold J. Pantely at the Clockwork Repertory Theatre in Oakville.  He appeared as Bardolpf and John in Newtown’s Town Players’ production of The Merry Wives of Windsor and as Lindstrom in CCT’s recent production of Mr. Roberts.  A member of the board of directors of Town Players, Michael is also a member of CCT and Westport Community Theatre.





CCT audiences may have seen Christopher Jones ( Simon Jenkins/ Messenger) on stage before in A View From The Bridge, Stalag 17 or Mr. Roberts.  He works for the town of Hamden as a 911/ Police/ Fire/ EMS Dispatcher. He would like to dedicate his performance to Officer James “Jimmy” Mills, “a man with a great heart and a ton of compassion,” who passed away on November 6th, 2009.





Dorri Rosalyn Bova Mendes (Christine Marlowe) is happy to be a part of Room Service, her first non-musical since high school!  Most recently Dorri appeared as Jo March in CCT’s production of Little Women. She music directed Cheshire’s Comedy l0l production of Zombie Prom, in her fifth musical with the group. She also music directed Return to the Forbidden Planet, Dracula: The Musical?, Little Shop of Horrors, and Clue: The Musical. Her other music directing credits include Seussical the Musical with North Branford High School, The Rocky Horror Show with the Phoenix Theater Company, and Guys and Dolls with CCT.  Some of Dorri’s other on-stage experiences have included Sister Mary Hubert in Nunsense, Mrs. E. Housen in Sullivan and Gilbert a la Carte, Anna Maurrant in Street Scene, Mother in Amahl and the Night Visitors, u/s Josephine in H.M.S. Pinafore, Philia in Forum, and Sarah Brown in Guys and  Dolls.  Thanks to family and friends for your ongoing support, and congrats to the cast and crew, especially her fellow troublemakers TDS, TP, and AA.


Al Mulvey (Joseph Gribble) is thrilled to be making his CCT debut in Room Service. Past theater credits include Murray the Cop in The Odd Couple at Ivoryton playhouse, Portions Unpaved, Passing Trains and Kamasutra at Playmakers Theater and Friendship & Fastfood at the Intentional Theater. Film credits include Officer Noonan in On the Lam a Wesleyan University production. Al has studied acting under Mariah Sage at Hartford Stage and Reno Venturi at the Actors Gym. Al thanks his wife for her support. ENJOY THE SHOW.




This is Debbie O’Connell’s (Dr. Glass) third outing with Cheshire Community Theater. Her two previous roles with the company  were Eleanor Hunter in No Sex, Please, We're British and E.K. Hornbeck in Inherit the Wind.  Other favorite roles include Cookie in Rumors and Rebecca Nurse in The Crucible, both done at UNH.  She studied acting with Michael Moriarty and voice with the late Dan Merriman.  She is currently continuing voice study with Mara Merriman.  She will be dedicating her performance to Dr. Morris Fishbein.





Bob Olson (Gregory Wagner) graduated in theatre and psychology from Claremont College at the end of the Nixon years, and was actor, director and member of the college’s “Karma Pie” improvisational group (which boasts Robin Williams as an alumnus). He has been involved with acting companies in Missoula, Walla Walla, Portland, Beaverton, and Lake Oswego (did someone say Oswego?) He recently returned to theatre in the role of Doc in CCT’s production of Mr. Roberts.  He is currently filling the play reading position on the CCT board and is a member of the New Haven Ward 10 Democratic committee.  Bob says he likes reading plays almost as much as democracy




Theresa Pennachio (Hilda Manney) is thrilled to be back again for her second CCT performance. This is her first non-musical, having performed with Comedy l0l in Little Shop of Horrors as Chiffon,and in Zombie Prom as the meanie Miss Delilah Strict, along with others.  Her role as the Hag in Little Women has been by far not only her best, but her ugliest role to date. She is excited to finally do some serious acting in a great comedic show and to work with some of the greatest people in the whole wide world. She especially wants to thank her director, the entire cast, and the backer...backer...backer. Godspeed! And enjoy the show!



This is Eddie Schaefer’s (Gordon Miller) first time on stage since the birth of his daughter, over 10 years ago, when he appeared in Man of La Mancha at Amarante’s Dinner Theatre in New Haven. His one other appearance on the CCT stage was in 1995 in Return Engagements. Between 1987 & 1998, Eddie appeared in numerous productions in Southington and New Haven & Branford’s Stony Creek Puppet House including Brighton Beach Memoirs, The Bad Seed, The Boys Next Door, The Fantasticks, Hello Dolly, The Unsinkable Molly Brown, Fiddler on the Roof, Brigadoon and Our Town. Eddie resides right here in Cheshire with his wife Samantha, his daughter, Amanda, a Chapman School 5th grader, plus 4 cats , 1 dog and a hamster! Eddie has spent the last 25 years in the broadcasting business. He is currently employed in advertising/ promotions/ marketing for Radio and TV at CRN International and the Connecticut Radio Network based in Hamden. For the last 12 years, Eddie has been the Saturday morning voice of 99.1 WPLR, Connecticut’s #1 Rock Station.


Samuel Winston (Faker Englund) recently appeared with the Crescent Players  in the stage production of Othello (2009) as Montano -King of Cypress and as the understudy for Othello. Samuel has a B.F.A. from Central Conn. State University and has appeared in over 35 stage plays.  He performed in Steve Martin’s Picasso at the Lapine Agile as Sargot a canny art dealer in an Off- Off- Broadway production in 2007. Some other credits include the dual roles of Sir Lord Brackenbury and Catesby in Richard III (2006) with Theatre in the Park and the dual roles as a Slave Capture and Lawyer in Amistad (2006) with the North Carolina African American Outdoor Drama at Turner's Museum  in Raleigh, N.C. Sam also acted with the Garner Arts Association  of Garner, North Carolina as Luke in Amen Corner (2004) and as Walter Shepard in the comedy,  Saving Grace (2004).    Sam is also looking for a man to buy a horse…


Daniel Schmidt (Leo Davis) hails from East Haven. He is employed by the Paier College of Art in Hamden, where he earned his BFA in Illustration, as the College Recruiter/ Director of Job Placement/ Housing Coordinator. His acting resume ranges from the Tin Man in The Wizard of . Oz, and Uncle Max in The Sound of Music in the late 90’s at East Haven Academy, to the Wolf/Steward in Into the Woods and a reprise of the Tin Man role in The Wizard of Oz at East Haven High School. His Cheshire connection began as Professor Plum with Comedy 101’s 2008 production of Clue: The Musical and continued with this past summer’s role as Josh in Zombie Prom. His first CCT performance was as Laurie in last September’s Little Women. Besides creating various forms of art and performing, he enjoys theatrical set /costume / prop design and construction, as well as attending the theater.  He also enjoys cooking, going to dinner and a movie and having a good laugh.  Dan would like to thank his parents, girlfriend, friends, cast, crew, and EVERYONE who has been a positive influence throughout this production of Room Service


Ray Zalenski (Sasha Miller/ Senator Blake) has had an interest in acting and singing since he was ten years old.  As a child, he often entertained friends and family by singing and doing voice impersonations of TV characters.  He religiously watched the hit TV show of the 1960’s, Soupy Sales.  Ray also created and sent in his own jokes that were later used on the program. He does stand-up comedy and has been invited to sing the National Anthem on a regular basis at the New Haven Cutters baseball games. Ray is currently a member of The Turnpike Players, located in Hamden, Connecticut.  He played the role of the Reverend Brown in Inherit The Wind in 2006.   In 2008, he  performed multiple roles,  both singing and acting, in their production of The Music Man.  In addition, he played the role of Constable Warren in Our Town in 2009.   He is delighted to have the opportunity to play dual roles in CCT’s production of Room Service.



Karen E. Burns (Stage Manager) started acting late in life and has been having a wonderful time ever since.  Theatre people are such fun people and she has made many wonderful friends over the years.  This time Karen wanted to work a play from behind the scenes, and Room Service is the perfect piece to do. “ Thanks to Greg, Dawn and Wade for helping me along.  Thanks, also, to my wonderful husband Larry, always supportive and there for me.”





Dawn E. Reiss-Melillo (Director) joined CCT in 1986. Over the past two decades, she has been backstage, onstage, and served on the board of directors. After becoming a chef, she turned to directing and met Greg [her co-director]. They became friends, formed an alliance and now it’s eight shows later [could there be a ninth?].  Some of the favorite shows she has directed include: One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, Requiem for a Heavyweight, Stalag 17 and The Real Inspector Hound.  Onstage favorites include the role of Bloody Mary in South Pacific, Sister Robert Ann in Nunsense, Ida in Cemetery Club, and last but not least being directed by Greg in Love Letters.  Special thanks to her hubby Andre for putting up with her time away from home.




Greg Rubino (Co-Director) continues to prefer to work back stage rather than under the lights.  He has produced, stage managed and assistant directed numerous productions with CCT.  The most unforgettable tend to be the ones he’s done with Dawn, One Flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest, A View from the Bridge,  Stalag 17, The Boys Next Door and A Few Good Men. A graduate of Quinnipiac College, he spends his days managing the Health Information Data Analysis Unit at Yale-New Haven Hospital.  “I call Dawn my best friend that I see every day for three months and then don’t speak to for two years, so any excuse to work together is a good one.”