This fast-paced and very funny musical tells the story of six kids vying for a spelling championship while disclosing hilarious and touching stories from their home lives.  You’ll meet Leaf Coneybear, a home-schooler who doesn’t think he’s smart enough, Marcy Parks, an over achiever who is tired of winning at everything, the politically aware young feminist Logainne Scwartzandgrubenniere, and William Barfee (pronounced with “an accent aigu”) and his Magic Foot that helps him spell. The original Broadway production was nominated for 6 Tony awards and won for Best Book of a Musical and Best Featured Actor, Dan Fogler.

The cast of “Spelling Bee”

Jay Briggs, MMT’s Director of Education and Community Engagement, directs Spelling Bee, with the help of Resident Musical Director Seth Davis. “This cast has great energy and they are going to crack up the audiences,” says Briggs.  Spelling Bee will feature MMT’s Summer Apprentice Company alongside other professionals- with guest appearances by you, the audience!  A few audience members at every performance will be asked to join the bee and spell their way to fame – or loss and a juice box and hug from Comfort Counselor Mitch Mahoney, an ex-con working off his community service.

Although filled with the exuberance of youth, this musical is rated: PG 13 for content and language. Performances are June 22 – July 1 Thursdays through Saturdays at 7:00 p.m., with matinees on both Saturdays at 2:00p.m. Tickets are available on The Mill Mountain Theatre website ( and the Center in the Square Box Office in downtown Roanoke (540-342-5740).  Tickets are $15 and the MMT bar will be opened before the show and during intermission.

Mill Mountain Theatre is supported in part by Center in the Square, Actors’ Equity Association, National Endowment for the Arts and Virginia Commission for the Arts.

The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee

Conceived by Rebecca Feldman, Music & Lyrics by William Finn, Book by Rachel Sheinkin, Additional Material by Jay Reiss.

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