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Cousins Get Roles in All-Star 'Romeo and Harriet' Play

The Plainfield child actors, who got their start with the Plainfield Park District, play in Lord and Lady Montague in the Aug. 20 StagePlay production in Oak Lawn.

A pair of Plainfield cousins are getting a heavy dose of drama this summer with primary roles in an all-star production of “Romeo and Harriet.”

Zoe O'Lena, 11, and Kyle Reed, 12, play Lord and Lady Montague in the upcoming staging of “Romeo and Harriet” by StagePlay: Musical Theater for Kids on Aug. 20.

“It feels weird to be married to my cousin,” Zoe said about her part.

Kyle played the leading role of Romeo in StagePlay’s spring production of “Romeo and Harriet” at the . The two were chosen for the all-star production among young actors who played in park district productions in nine Chicago suburbs.

Based loosely on the Bard's “Romeo and Juliet,” this musical production has a happier ending than the Shakespeare classic, director Monica Minogue said.

Kyle, the son of Don and Kim Reed, is a homeschooled seventh-grader. Zoe is in sixth grade at in Plainfield. She is the daughter of Marty O'Lena and Chris Solick.

Both cousins launched their acting careers with parts in the Plainfield Park District’s “Fee Fi Fo Fum,” two years ago. The first time Kyle answered a casting call, he landed the starring role of Jack (of the famous beanstalk, of course).

“I could not believe the first time I tried out I got the lead,” he said.

Because the cast is already familiar with the play, they’re raising the curtain after only eight rehearsals. The two cousins have been practicing together at home to hone their roles, memorize their lines and fine-tune the songs.

“We’ve been going over and over our lines,” Zoe said. “You get so nervous, you think you’re going to mess up – but once I get out there, I never do.”

StagePlay: Musical Theater for Kids! began in 2002 under the direction of Minogue and has expanded to 10 park districts. It now offers drama experiences for ages 3 to18 as well as a pre-k and teen academy.

Kids take away life lessons in teamwork, commitment, conquering fear, being prepared, confidence, and theater etiquette.

StagePlay’s All-Star performance of “Romeo and Harriet” is at 7 pm Aug. 20 at Oak View Community Center Theater, 4625 W. 110th St., Oak Lawn. Admission is $10 in advance or $15 at the door. Advance tickets can be purchased by contacting Minogue at monica@stageplaykids.com or 815-954-3228.

FRIDAY ARGOUDELIS WATCH: 283 days, nine months and 10 days since Election Day 2010, and still no statement from John Argoudelis on whether he intends to be both supervisor and a Will County Board member.

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