‘Odd Couple’ to take stage


By Glenn Battishill - gbattishill@aimmediamidwest.com



Bud Kalbaugh, left, and David Hejmanowski, right, rehearse on stage at the Willis Drama Center on Tuesday for the upcoming Arena Fair Theatre’s production of “The Odd Couple.”

Bud Kalbaugh, left, and David Hejmanowski, right, rehearse on stage at the Willis Drama Center on Tuesday for the upcoming Arena Fair Theatre’s production of “The Odd Couple.”


Courtesy photo | Ryan Hoggatt

Tickets are on sale now for Arena Fair Theatre’s performances of Neil Simon’s “The Odd Couple” happening at the Willis Drama Center this weekend.

The show, a comedy that follows two mismatched roommates, will be performed at Willis, located at 74 W. William St. in Delaware. Showtimes are today at 7 p.m.; Friday at 7 p.m.; Saturday at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m.; and Sunday at noon and 7 p.m. Tickets can be purchased at arenafair.com or by calling 740-302-TKTS.

The show stars David Hejmanowski as the laid-back, slovenly Oscar, and Bud Kalbaugh as the uptight and neurotic Felix.

Kalbaugh said he enjoys playing the high-strung character.

“Felix is such a neurotic nut, what’s not to like?” Kalbaugh said. “Once we got the lines down, it was fun working the quirkiness of the character and trying to make it my own even though the character is so familiar and has so many interpretations.”

Hejmanowski said he enjoys playing a character very unlike himself.

“I’m the complete opposite of Oscar, which makes the role both challenging and a ton of fun to play,” Hejmanowski said. “If people who know me can watch the show and look past me and see Oscar, then I’ve done my job.”

Kalbaugh said he’s enjoyed preparing for the show, and he’s looking forward to performing with the entire cast.

“It’s been fun,” Kalbaugh said. “This is a tremendously talented group of which I’m just thrilled to be a part. Rehearsals are great to build the character and find your place. … (I’m excited about) the opportunity to be on stage again with the incredible talent in this show.”

Hejmanowski agreed, adding he’s enjoyed working with the cast, especially having not seen many of them since the start of the pandemic.

“This is a relatively small cast, but almost entirely made up of people who I’ve worked with before, and who I haven’t had the chance to work with for two years because of the pandemic,” Hejmanowski said. “So, while Neil Simon’s script is hilarious, we’re also having a wonderful time getting to work together again.”

Hejmanowski added he’s looking forward to performing in front of an audience again.

“(I’m excited to) just being able to have live theater again and to be able to do it in such a wonderful space as the Willis Drama Center,” Hejmanowski said. “The room seats about 700, and community theater plays usually only draw crowds of 50 or so, which means there will be plenty of room for people to social distance and just enjoy a night out.”

Kalbaugh said the show is still funny in 2021 despite its age, and Hejmanowski added the show is Simon’s best work.

“The characters are iconic because of the success of the movie and television versions, and the play is what created their personalities,” Hejmanowski said. “Even 50 years later, the jokes hold up, the pop culture references are still fresh, and the breakdown of the friendship between Oscar and Felix is still uproariously funny.”

More information about the show can be found at arenafair.com.

Bud Kalbaugh, left, and David Hejmanowski, right, rehearse on stage at the Willis Drama Center on Tuesday for the upcoming Arena Fair Theatre’s production of “The Odd Couple.”
https://www.delgazette.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/40/2021/09/web1_cropped-odd-couple.jpgBud Kalbaugh, left, and David Hejmanowski, right, rehearse on stage at the Willis Drama Center on Tuesday for the upcoming Arena Fair Theatre’s production of “The Odd Couple.” Courtesy photo | Ryan Hoggatt

By Glenn Battishill

gbattishill@aimmediamidwest.com

Glenn Battishill can be reached at 740-413-0903 or on Twitter @BattishillDG.

Glenn Battishill can be reached at 740-413-0903 or on Twitter @BattishillDG.