The hit show “Wrinkles, the Musical” is returning for an encore performance at the Cape Cod Theatre Company (CCTC) with two new cast members, a new song, and a tweaked script.
“It’s a little different from last year, tighter, stronger,” says CCTC Producing Artistic Director Nina Schuessler, who is directing “Wrinkles.” “The relationships among the characters are drawn a bit deeper and there’s more of a bond as a result.”
“Wrinkles” was co-written by Naomi Turner of Chatham and Wilderness Sarchild of Brewster. Ten years ago, when the two friends were turning 60, they set out to interview over 100 women in their 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s; those interviews formed the basis of “Wrinkles,” which premiered in May 2017.
The story takes place in a large, active senior living community in central Florida called “LivingLegends Elder Alternative Project” (LLEAP). Two new residents place an ad in the “Living Legends Ledger” calling for actors, singers, and dancers interested in creating and performing a musical entertainment for the annual meeting of the LLEAP association.
When the play begins, women ages 60 to 94 are five weeks into rehearsal for their revue “Wrinkles, the Musical.” The group has already become close, and backstage they share their stories, both joyful and sad. As time goes on, their stories are incorporated into the on-stage revue.
New to the cast this year is Carryl Lynn of Los Angeles and Cape Cod. Lynn has an impressive list of film, television and theater credits and she is currently a recurring guest star on season two of “LA Macabre.” She will be soon be seen in two films that are in post-production in Los Angeles. In “Wrinkles” she plays one of two Ancients.
The play is “about women empowerment and support, as we all grow older and life is changing,” Lynn says. “The journey that life takes each of us on, and bonding together with love, and compassion. And music. And dancing. The show is warm, bawdy, energetic, fun-loving, uplifting and compassionate.”
In the 1990s Lynn was involved with the Harwich Junior Theatre (the original name of the CCTC), so her appearance on this stage represents a homecoming.
“I am having a blast working this character with the ‘Wrinkles’ team and performing again in the theater that I’ve loved for so many years,” she says. “I easily get into my role, because I understand and have so much fun with my character, and the other actors are so delightful to work off of. And of course, wonderful script, direction and choreography.”
“Wrinkles” original music is provided by Grammy-Award winning composer Jason Howland, Cape composer and musical director Malcolm Granger, local recording artist Sarah Burrill and Dana McCoy, the second new cast member.
McCoy, who lives in New York, wrote the new musical piece “Lucky Day,” “which I think the audience will love,” Schuessler says. McCoy is a performer, composer, director, playwright, producer and voice teacher. She composed, produced and performed a solo CD called “Taking Shape” which was selected by Billboard as one of the year’s best albums. And in “Wrinkles” she plays the role of Sal, who is a former rock singer.
Returning cast members are Joanne Callum, Celeste Howe, Sue Lindholm, Karen McPherson, Janice Bradbury Richmond, Karen Santos, Sherrie Scudder and Deb Stringham.
McPherson, who lives in Chatham and began performing on the Cape’s stages in 1996, plays the 94-year-old Beulah. Although she is referred to throughout the play, Beulah does not appear until the final 10 minutes.
“Beulah is definitely not a dress-up kind of woman—kind of like me, huh?” McPherson says. “She will keep driving until the doctors prohibit it, despite seeing out of only one eye. She is an out-there kind of person—not afraid of much, taking it all in.”
It is Beulah’s niece, Janie, who is directing the show-within-a-show at LLEAP.
Last spring “Wrinkles” proved to be a huge hit for the CCTC. “We had to turn a lot of people away,” Schuessler says. “The energy in the show is really great. Lots of laughs, poignancy. Many came twice last year. It’s a real night out.” At one hour and 45 minutes, she describes the show as a perfect length.
And by the way, men are enjoying the show, too. One man told Schuessler that “Wrinkles” is his favorite show and is “better than Broadway.”
For Schuessler, the show offers a lesson about “living in the moment and living to your fullest potential at whatever stage of life you’re at,” she says. “Life takes you through many paths—ups and downs. Appreciate the life you have. Strong relationships and friendships—that keeps you young. These women are young and vibrant.”
And ultimately the play says this about women with wrinkles: You are not invisible.
“Wrinkles, the Musical”
At the Cape Cod Theatre Company, 105 Division St., Harwich
May 24 to June 17, Thursdays at 7 p.m.; Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 p.m.; Sundays at 4 p.m.
Information and reservations: 508-432-2002, www.capecodtheatrecompany.org, www.wrinklesthemusical.com.