The History of Cumberland Players


Cumberland Players, formerly the Little Theatre of Vineland, originated in February 1946 as an offshoot of the Vineland Community Arts Group. Of the six sub-divisions, only the theatre group flourished. In June 1946, the group presented a program of three one-act plays to an invited audience as the Reber School. Their efforts were so well received that the thespians immediately set about establishing a full-fledged community theater in South Vineland.

In October 1946, The Little Theatre of Vineland was chartered with a dedicated membership of fourteen people. The first major production, a domestic comedy entitled Ring Around Elizabeth, was presented at the Vineland Methodist Church, and began the painstaking process of converting the small church into a much larger building every weekend for two years. Finally, in November 1953, the theatre was formally opened with one of The Little Theatre’s most acclaimed productions, Come Back Little Sheba.

Over the next three decades, The Little Theatre continued to produced comedies and dramas at the Sherman Avenue site – usually three major productions per season. The group also sponsored children’s plays and teenage workshops. In 1977, the group’s name was officially changed Cumberland Players in an attempt to draw members from beyond the Vineland area. In 1982, a new tradition was born when Cumberland Players presented its first annual summer musical, The Music Man. Subsequent, musical hits such as Fiddler on the Roof, My Fair Lady, The King and I, and Camelot won popular and critical acclaim and brought the theatre a wider audience in the 1980s and 1990s.

True to our roots, we remain a group made up entirely of volunteers who are amateurs in the true sense of the word. We produce shows only for the love of theatre and the desire to share our talents with the community. And we continue to offer opportunities for grassroots participation among young and old theatre lovers; dedication, proven over half a century, to enriching the cultural life in our area; and the spirit of volunteerism and the love for theatre and community service.

Cumberland Players Main Stage and Kids at CP Production History:

Get a sneak peek at the new version of this; Past Show Database (Still under active development)

Production Date Director
1. Ring Around Elizabeth 3/47 Mary Meyers
2. Blithe Spirit 5/47 Mary Meyers
3. George Washington Slept Here 12/47 Mary Meyers
4. Night Must Fall 3/48 Curtis Meottel
5. Petticoat Fever 11/48 Curtis Meottel
6. Another Language 3/49 Curtis Meottel
7. The Man Who Came to Dinner 5/49 Florence Horowitz
8. My Sister Eileen 12/49 John Crowley
9. Arsenic and Old Lace 11/50 John Crowley
10. Light Up the Sky 4/51 John Crowley
11. Claudia 11/51 John Crowley
12. State of the Union 4/52 John Crowley
13. Detective Story 11/52 John Crowley
14. The Women 4/53 John Crowley
15. Come Back Little Sheba 11/53 John Crowley
16. The Heiress 2/54 John Crowley
17. Harvey 4/54 John Crowley
18. Guest in the House 11/54 Larry Carra
19. Mr. Roberts 2/55 John Crowley
20. Our Town 5/55 John Crowley
21. You Can’t Take it with You 11/55 Larry Carra
22. The Caine Mutiny Court Martial 2/56 John Crowley
23. Ladies in Retirement 5/56 Bayard Leary
24. Annie Get Your Gun* 12/56 Fred & Dora Merritt
25. Death of a Salesman 2/57 Bob Wickersham
26. Born Yesterday 5/57 John Crowley
27. Witness for the Prosecution 11/57 Walt Pillsbury
28. Picnic 1/58 Walt Pillsbury
29. Stalag 17 5/58 Bayard Leary
30. A View from the Bridge 11/58 Bayard Leary
31. Anniversary Waltz 2/59 Bayard Leary
32. Gentlemen Prefer Blondes* 5/59 Bob Wickersham
33. The Hasty Heart 11/59 Bayard Leary
34. The Curious Savage 2/60 Bayard Leary
35. The Crucible 5/60 Bayard Leary
36. See How They Run 11/60 Bill Hughes
37. Tea and Sympathy 2/61 Patrick Cafferty
38. Outward Bound 5/61 Dick Gillespie
39. Horoscope 11/61 Lee Grimes
40. The Tender Trap 2/62 Bill Hughes
41. Twelve Angry Men 5/62 Bayard Leary
42. A Very Special Baby 11/62 Lee Grimes
43. The Man Who Came to Dinner 2/63 Clay Franklin
44. The Gazebo 5/63 Clay Franklin
45. Under the Yum Yum Tree 11/63 Sidney A. Chivian
46. A Far Country 2/64 Lee Grimes
47. My Three Angels 5/64 Joan Keller
48. Everybody Loves Opal 11/64 Lee Grimes
49. A Streetcar Named Desire 2/65 Len Bernstein
50. Sunday in New York 5/65 Guy LeValley
51. The Glass Menagerie 11/65 Len Bernstein
52. Rashomon 2/66 Ed Jones
53. Lo and Behold 5/66 Aggie G. Nott
54. The Spiral Staircase,The Purple Doorknob 11/66 Lee Grimes
55. Oh Mama, No Papa 3/67 Marty Vale
56. Guys and Dolls* 5/67 Joan Betty & Miriam Childs
57. A Clearing in the Woods 11/67 Ed Jones
58. Come Blow Your Horn 2/68 Ed Jones
59. Little Mary Sunshine* 5/68 Lee Grimes
60. The Odd Couple 11/68 Lee Grimes
61. The Country Girl 2/69 Lee Grimes
62. Never Too Late 5/69 Ed Jones
63. Wake Up Darling 11/69 Jerry Rae King
64. The Bad Seed 2/70 Lee Grimes
65. Goodbye Charlie 5/70 Ed Jones
66. Cactus Flower 11/70 Lee Grimes
67. A Lion in Winter 1/71 Ed Jones
68. Spoon River Anthology 3/71 Frank Alimia
69. Mame* 6/71 Lee Grimes
70. Harvey 11/71 Frank Alimia
71. The Rainmaker 1/72 John Tyros
72. You Know I Can’t Hear You When the Water’s Running 3/72 Blair Bowen
73. State of the Union 6/72 Walt Johnson
74. Barefoot in the Park 11/72 Joe Robinette
75. A Hatful of Rain 3/73 John Bailey
76. Don’t Drink the Water 5/73 Walt Johnson
77. Wait Until Dark 11/73 Wayne See
78. Plaza Suite 3/74 Walt Johnson
79. Butterflies Are Free 5/74 Wayne See
80. Last of the Red Hot Lovers 11/74 Walt Johnson
81. The Mousetrap 3/75 Larry Wood
82. And Miss Reardon Drinks a Little 5/75 Steve Litwack
83. The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie 11/75 Richard Merrill
84. Death of a Salesman 2/76 Howard Zogott
85. Prisoner of 2nd Avenue 5/76 Paul Mathis
86. Play It Again, Sam 11/76 Walt Johnson
87. Nightwatch 2/77 Steve Litwack
88. The Apple Tree* 5/77 Howard Zogott
89. Bell, Book, and Candle 11/77 Bee George
90. 6 Rms Riv Vu 2/78 Marty Lafferty
91. Little Murders 5/78 Walt Johnson
92. The Gingerbread Lady 11/78 Bee George
93. Twelve Angry Men 3/79 Steve Litwack
94. The Indoor Sport 6/79 Sue Griffith
95. The Chalk Garden 11/79 Helen Pittard
96. The Nearlyweds 4/80 Bee George
97. Gramercy Ghost 6/80 Sue Griffith
98. Dracula 10/80 Larry Wood
99. Same Time, Next Year 3/81 Bee George
100. Scapino 6/81 Sue Griffith
101. California Suite 10/81 Bee George & Carole Litt
102. A Christmas Carol 12/81 Shirley Burke
103. You Can’t Take it with You 6/82 Sue Griffith
104. The Music Man* 8/82 Walter A. Webster
105. Towards Zero 10/82 Bee George
106. Come Blow Your Horn 5/83 Mark Melamed
107. The Sound of Music* 8/83 Walter A. Webster
108. Blithe Spirit 10/83 Ray Burke
109. You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown* 12/83 Walter A. Webster
110. On Golden Pond 5/84 Kathe Johnson
111. Fiddler on the Roof* 7/84 Walter A. Webster
112. A Murder is Announced 10/84 Bee George
113. A Christmas Carol 12/84 Shirley Burke
114. Play It Again, Sam 3/85 Kathe Johnson
115. Oklahoma! * 6/85 Walter A. Webster
116. Bus Stop 9/85 Bee George
117. Annie* 12/85 Walter A. Webster
118. Barefoot in the Park 4/86 Kathe Johnson
119. My Fair Lady* 7/86 Walter A. Webster
120. Ordinary People 9/86 Bee George
121. Godspell* 12/86 Walter A. Webster
122. The Mousetrap 3/87 Daryl L. Halter
123. Guys and Dolls* 7/87 Kathe Johnson
124. The Diary of Anne Frank 10/87 Bee George
125. The Odd Couple 3/88 Carol Ann Polaha
126. Man of La Mancha* 7/88 Walter A. Webster
127. Close Ties 10/88 Kathe Johnson
128. California Suite 3/89 Daryl L. Halter
129. The King and I * 7/89 Walter A. Webster
130. The Foreigner 10/89 Les Guglielmi
131. Social Security 3/90 Harry H. Chandless
132. Camelot* 7/90 Walter A. Webster
133. Picnic 10/90 Richard Curcio
134. Crimes of the Heart 3/91 Bee George
135. Kiss Me, Kate* 8/91 Walter A. Webster
136. Arsenic and Old Lace 11/91 Les Guglielmi
137. Steel Magnolias 3/92 Kathe Johnson
138. Brigadoon* 7/92 Walter A. Webster
139. All My Sons 10/92 Shirley Burke
140. Deathtrap 3/93 Les Guglielmi
141. Gypsy* 7/93 Walter A. Webster
142. Brighton Beach Memoirs 10/93 Harry H. Chandless
143. Prisoner of 2nd Avenue 3/94 Kathe Johnson
144. Oliver! * 7/94 Walter A. Webster
145. Lend Me a Tenor 10/94 Richard Curcio
146. The Nerd 3/95 Lois-Anne Weiner
147. Hello, Dolly! * 7/95 Walter A. Webster
148. Cat on a Hot Tin Roof 10/95 Kathe Johnson
149. The Good Doctor 2/96 Les Guglielmi
150. Into the Woods* 8/96 Walter A. Webster
151. Crossing Delancey 9/96 Pat Simione-Frie
152. The Curious Savage 11/96 Mary Wijsmuller
153. Play On 3/97 Kathe Johnson
154. Annie Get Your Gun* 7/97 Walter A. Webster
155. Angel Street 10/97 Brett Fauver
156. Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat* 12/97 Walter A. Webster
157. You Can’t Take it with You 3/98 Les Guglielmi
158. Me and My Girl* 7/98 Lisa Chappius
159. The Chalk Garden 10/98 Brett Fauver
160. Don’t Dress for Dinner 3/99 Brett Fauver
161. Damn Yankees* 8/99 Richard Curcio
162. The Rainmaker 10/99 Mary Wijsmuller
163. Twelfth Night 1/00 Brett Fauver
164. Moon Over Buffalo 3/00 Kathe Johnson
165. Pippin* 7/00 Russell Chappius
166. The Miracle Worker 10/00 Lisa Chappius
167. The Taming of the Shrew 1/01 Pab Sungenis
168. I Hate Hamlet 3/01 Les Guglielmi
169. The Sound of Music* 7/01 Dennis Lupchinsky
170. Dial M for Murder 9/01 Mary Wijsmuller
171. Annie Jr. 12/01 Lisa Chappius
172. A View from the Bridge 3/02 Lisa Chappius
173. Carousel* 7/02 Richard Curcio
174. The Murder Room 10/02 Pab Sungenis
175. Guys & Dolls, Jr. 12/02 Lisa Chappius
176. It's Murder in the Wings 4/03 Les Guglielmi
177. Crazy for You* 7/03 Collin Maier
178. Dracula 10/03 Brian Garrison
179. Bah Humbug 12/03 Lisa Chappius
180. Cinderella Waltz 2/04 Todd Kinder
181. Cabaret* 7/04 Todd Kinder
182. Much Ado About Nothing 10/04 Thomas Suthard
183. Little Women 11/04 Russell Chappius
184. Into the Woods, Jr. 12/04 Lisa Chappius
185. One Flew Over The Cuckoos Nest 03/05 Lisa Chappius
186. The Who's Tommy* 07/05 Russell Chappius
187. No Sex Please, We're British 12/05 Todd Kinder
188. Les Miserables Student Edition 9/05 Lisa Chappius
189. Noises Off 03/06 Michael Blandino
190. Once Upon A Mattress* 07/06 Todd Kinder
191. G2K Oklahoma 9/06 Lisa Chappius
192. The Diviners 10/06 Lisa Chappius
193. Godspell 12/06 Michael Blandino
194. Kids at CP Retrospective 12/06 Lisa Chappius
195. Beyond Therapy 03/07 Russell Chappius
196. Beauty and the Beast* 7/07 Betsy Harrison
197. Peter Pan 9/07 Lisa Piccioni-Chappius
198. A Christmas Story 12/07 Todd Kinder
199. Proof 1/08 Russell Chappius
200. Agnes of God 4/08 Lisa Piccioni-Chappius
201. Into the Woods* 7/08 Todd Kinder
202. Willy Wonka, Jr. 9/08 Lisa Piccioni
203. The Secret Affairs of Mildred Wild 10/08 Kathe Johnson
204. Barefoot in the Park 3/09 Carol Heney
205. Nunsense* 7/09 Kristen Lazos
206. Disney's Aladdin, Jr. 9/09 Lisa Piccioni
207. The Mousetrap 10/09 John Weiner
208. Steel Magnolias 3/10 Kathe Johnson
209. Annie 7/10 Richard Curcio
210. Disney's Alice in Wonderland, Jr. 9/10 Lisa Piccioni
211. The Lion In Winter 11/10 Pab Sungenis
212. Bearding the Lyons 1/11 Andrew Paulsen
213. Alone Together 4/11 Michael Blandino
214. The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee 7/11 Philip Hopf
215. Fiddler on the Roof, Jr. 9/11 Lisa Piccioni
216. Death of a Salesman 11/11 Hank Chandless
217. The Diary of Anne Frank 3/12 Michael Blandino
218. Little Shop of Horrors 7/12 John Weiner
219. Disney's The Little Mermaid, Jr. 9/012 Lisa Piccioni
220. The Importance of Being Earnest 11/12 Pab Sungenis
221. It's a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play 12/12 Pab Sungenis
222. Romeo and Juliet 3/13 Caitlin Du Bois
223. Les Miserables 9/13 Michael Blandino
224. Scapin 10/13 Pab Sungenis
225. Fabulous Fable Factory 12/13 D. Michael and Laura Farley
226. Rumors 3/14 Michael Blandino
227. Spamalot 7/14 Michael Blandino