In an effort that’s been in the works for more than a year, St. Ambrose University faculty and alumni are combining forces with the Curtainbox Theatre Company to present the classic comedy “You Can’t Take it With You” this weekend at the Galvin Fine Arts Center on the Davenport campus.
Like “Death of a Salesman,” the most recent faculty-alumni show in 2004, proceeds from admissions will go to the Michael Kennedy Theatre Scholarship. Kennedy, a longtime theater faculty member and department head, retired from St. Ambrose in 2009 after 41 years and remains an adjunct faculty member.
Kennedy also plays the patriarch, Grandpa Vanderhof, in “You Can’t Take it With You,” the 1936 Moss Hart-George Kaufman comedy about an eccentric multigenerational family.
“It’s just touching and warm. It’s a classic,” said Kimberly Furness, the Curtainbox director and a St. Ambrose alum.
Ambrose faculty members Corinne Johnson and Daniel Rairdan-Hale are also in the cast, in addition to many theater department alumni pitching in onstage and behind the scenes, including Emmy-winner Brian Hemesath being in charge of costumes.
A portion of the proceeds will go to Curtainbox for its work with autistic students.
Furness said the two weeks of rehearsals have been extremely enjoyable.
“It’s such a tremendous gift. No one is being paid, it’s all volunteer,” she said. “Everybody is giving up their time and their energy for two weeks, which is really pretty tremendous. I can’t tell you how much fun it is. We’re all having a great time.”