Monthly Archives: March 2020

The Ghost Light: An Update from Western Reserve Playhouse

A ghost light is a theatre tradition that means “the show will always happen.” It’s often turned on after one production closes and the next is ready to begin, but for many theatres around the world, this light has been turned on in hopes that postponed or cancelled shows will see a “light” at the end of this road.

This epidemic is a big scare for everyone. As companies shift their workers to their homes and students are given extended breaks, the arts community, especially theatre, does not have that ability. Our craft is people in every sense, and without patrons, we can’t make our art. We ask you, from the bottom of our hearts, to please consider donating to our theatre in any capacity. Any amount would be deeply appreciated.

Here are a few ways that you can help:

– If you’ve purchased tickets for any of our upcoming shows that have been postponed (“I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change,” “The Thanksgiving Play,” or “Guide to Dating: Relationship Advice Said in Song”), consider donating the cost of your ticket back to our theatre.

– Consider purchasing a gift card for an upcoming show (they make great gifts!)

– A donation here on Facebook (any little bit counts!) Or you can become a sponsor to WRP – now’s a perfect time!

– Consider having your student join one of our summer camps! All of our camps will begin in June and will be the perfect way to spend some days off.

– Support other theatres and small businesses – we’re all in this together!

WRP wants to thank everyone so much for their generosity and kindness in this harsh time. To be blunt, we are scared, but confident. More information about the rest of our 2020 Season will be announced soon, and how it may affect our patrons.

We are the “little barn that could,” and that has never been more true than in this epidemic!

A note from Western Reserve Playhouse

A Message from Western Reserve Playhouse and our Executive Artistic Director, 

Valued patrons, students, parents, production teams and members of the community:

As you are all aware, over the last several weeks, the Coronavirus and its spread in the US as well as the State of Ohio has created a great deal of concern amongst our community and have required unprecedented actions. Yesterday, Governor Mike DeWine issued an order to postpone or cancel mass gatherings of a 100 or more until further notice.  Although “the barn” is only 95 seats, we are aware that we are an intimate space with seating that is extremely close and therefore a risk, even with all of the precautions we have taken. The Western Reserve Playhouse takes the health and safety of our patrons, students, production teams, volunteers and employees very seriously and are immediately following this order. 

We greatly appreciate the leadership that our federal, state and local agencies have provided to ensure transparency and awareness as well as the guidance we have received from local community agencies. 

The following changes are in effect immediately:


  • The current production of “I Love You, You’re Perfect Now Change!” that opens this evening March, 13, 2020 and runs till March 28, 2020 has been postponed until later this spring.  We are working on new dates.
  • Our $5 Bucks Series – “The Thanksgiving Play” that was to go on March 15, 2020 has been postponed to a later date, which has yet to be determined.
  • Our CaBARet Series production, “A Guide to Dating Cabaret” that was going to be performed on March 19, 2020 had been postponed to a later date, which has yet to be determined.
  • All theater workshops and classes have been postponed and e-mails will be going out to students soon with schedule revisions.


As we are working on rescheduling all of these performances, future events and classes, we ask for your patience and understanding, as this will take some time.

All ticket holders for these events will be contacted directly by email regarding the status of their event.  

For performances that cannot be rescheduled, patrons will be contacted regarding their preferred refund method. Refunds can be issued to the original payment method or a Western Reserve Playhouse gift card.

We apologize in advance for any inconvenience this has caused. Please know that this was not an easy decision and that we value your patronage and appreciates your support as we continue to navigate through this unprecedented time.

Please check out our website at, and follow us on Facebook and Instagram for updates.


Dawn Sniadak- Yamokoski

Executive Artistic Director 

Western Reserve Playhouse 

WRP Update Concerning Coronavirus and COVID19

Here at Western Reserve Playhouse, we are continuing to monitor developments regarding the Coronavirus, the health and safety of patrons, students and their families, faculty, staff, and volunteers. Visitors at WRP will always be our top priority. It is important to note, there are NO known cases of Coronavirus 19 or the flu at The Barn currently.

We want our WRP Patrons to know that all performances of “I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change,” as well as all scheduled special events and theater classes/workshops will continue as planned

However, following Governor DeWine’s recommendations, given the proximity of confirmed cases in Cuyahoga County, and in an abundance of care for everyone who works here or visits our location, we have begun implementing enhanced environmental cleaning throughout our facility, which include:

Additional cleaning of all frequently touched countertops, handrails, doorknobs, bathrooms, theater seats will occur throughout the day and before each performance, class, and rehearsal.
Use of cleaning agents which have appropriate disinfecting quantities will be used at all touch point (All cleaning agents are used according to directions provided by the manufacturer).
Adding hand sanitizer, touchless soap dispensers, touchless paper towel containers, disinfectant wipes and an air purifier in our main performance space. 
Adding disposable gloves for all concession volunteers and box office representatives. 
We will open our doors earlier so that we can try to lessen the amount of wait time in the box office.

Please note that the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) stated this weekend that the “current risk to the American public is low.” As such, we intend to stay the course with our programming schedule. This is a community-wide issue, but each of us can take action to protect not only ourselves, but those we encounter as well. We encourage everyone to follow these simple steps that not only help prevent the spread of the flu and the common cold, but also Coronavirus. 

Wash your hands often with soap and water or use alcohol-based sanitizer when you are unable to wash.
Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
Avoid contact with sick people and stay home if you are sick.
Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue (discarded in the trash after use) or sleeve when coughing or sneezing.

We are seriously monitoring the global situation, and are receiving updates from Summit County Public Health ( and the Centers for Disease Control. 

The latest news from the CDC can be found at:  

The State of Ohio update:

Should an outbreak occur, we will prioritize the health of our community by implementing and communicating appropriate changes as recommended by Summit County Public Health and the CDC to ensure a safe environment.

In the event of a performance cancellation due to the Coronavirus situation, we’ll notify all ticket buyers at least 2–3 hours before the event via email, social media and our website ( However, if you are not feeling well and are unable to attend a performance, please contact Hannah or Dawn at 330-620-7314 or email us at or  to talk about exchanging your tickets for future performances.

We encourage you to do everything you can to stay healthy, including washing your hands frequently, getting enough sleep, and using appropriate sanitation procedures when you sneeze or cough.

We will remain vigilant and are prepared to make decisions based on current needs, as well as in response to changing conditions. We will base our decisions on sources such as the CDC and our state and local public health authorities. If we cancel any programs, you’ll be the first to know. You can also stay in touch with us on social media, linked below.

We hope you know how much we care about you all!

Love from WRP,

Dawn Sniadak-Yamokoski 

Executive Artistic Director

Western Reserve Playhouse 


The Wide World of Accents: Irish Edition!

Want to Learn Irish?

“The Wide World of Accents: Irish Edition!”

Back by popular demand and ONE DAY ONLY!

Instructor: Shley Snider

Date and Time: Tuesday, March 17th from 6:30pm to 8:30pm at Western Reserve Playhouse

Cost: $35.00  Limit to 15

For our favorite March holiday, WRP thought it only fitting to teach you the coolest St. Paddy’s party trick! Everyone has an accent, and using different ones from all over the world can be a big part of our theatrical endeavors. Come and learn how to discover your own accent as well as how to successfully deliver an Irish brogue! This workshop includes placement, vowel, and consonant changes, and the signature sing-song lilt!

All students are encouraged to wear green!

Our instructor, Shley Snider, has a Master of Fine Arts in Performance from the University of Southern Mississippi (summa cum laude), a Master of Liberal Studies in Museum Theatre from Fort Hays State University (cum laude), and a Bachelor of Arts in Communications and Theatre, also from Fort Hays (magna cum laude). She is an Adjunct Instructor in Theatre Arts at Ashland University. A part of the Ohio theatre scene for just over a year, Shley has already been spotted in productions with Ensemble Theatre, Ohio Shakespeare Festival, Cleveland Shakespeare Festival, French Creek Theatre, Akron Symphony Orchestra, The Illusion Factory, and Players Guild, as well as various professional mystery theatres. (But she can’t tell us which ones- it’s a mystery!) A specialist in all things “voice,” Shley holds Practitioner Status with The Lessac Kinesensic Training and Research Institute, works as a dialect and voiceover coach, and even does some voice over herself. Her real claim to vocal fame, though, has been as a comedy rapper, performing in such venues as the PIT NYC, Lyric Theatre Miami, and the Impractical Jokers Cruise.

Calling All Young Playwrights to This Brand-New Event!


Western Reserve Playhouse is so excited to announce our Young Artist’s Playwright Festival of 2020! This is a brand-new event that we’re holding at The Barn, and we hope to have it be a smash-hit!

This festival targets young playwrights of all ages (age limit: 19) to write up a short play for a competition. A board of theatre connoisseurs will then pick the best play in each age group, and that play will be performed on our stage!

However, there’s a catch: not only will students and children be writing these plays, but they’ll also be directing them! It’ll be a blast to have our adult WRP actors learn from our young directors and production staff!

All of the information about the festival and how to sign up can be found here:

Questions? Email Dawn at or Hannah at

Tell everyone you know, and get writing!