Simon Weaver (left), a senior from Madison, Wisconsin, plays the Major General Stanley, with Jacob Zehr (center), a senior from Carthage, New York, as the Frederic and Lukas Thompson (right), a junior from Goshen, as the pirate king. (Photo by Dillon Hershey)

GC’s ‘Swords into Plowshares’ theater season continues with ‘The Pirates of Penzance’

Performance: Spring Mainstage: “The Pirates of Penzance”
Dates & Times: March 16, 17, 23 at 7:30 p.m., March 18 and 25 (ASL interpreted) at 2 p.m.
Location: Umble Center
Tickets: $12 adult, $7 student/senior/GC staff | Purchase online, at the Goshen College Box Office (, 574-535-7566) or at the performance one hour before the show.

Pirates Caleb Liechty (left), a senior from Archbold, Ohio, and Joshua Liechty, a junior from Archbold, Ohio, lift Pirate King Lukas Thompson (right), a junior from Goshen, to their shoulders during Goshen College’s performance of The Pirates of Penzance. (Photo by Dillon Hershey)

The Goshen College Theater Department’s 2017-18 “Swords into Plowshares” theater season continues this month with Gilbert and Sullivan’s comedic opera “The Pirates of Penzance” on March 16, 17, 23 at 7:30 p.m. and March 18 and 25 at 2 p.m. in the Umble Center. The March 25 performance will be ASL interpreted.

As a young lad, Frederic’s father wished for him to be apprenticed to a maritime pilot; his nurse, mishearing these instructions, apprenticed him to a band of pirates. Released from his apprenticeship and ready to lead an honest life, Frederic hopes to make up for his disreputable youth. However, with the interference of a band of tender-hearted pirates, a chorus of damsels in distress and the original model of a modern major general, starting a proper life with his soon to be wife may not be as easy as he thinks.

“Pirates takes a lighter, historical, comical, musical and playful approach to the question: What does it take to transform swords-tools of war leading to violence and death - into plowshares - tools of sustenance leading to life and love?” said Doug Liechty Caskey, professor of theater and the show’s producer. “The Pirates of Penzance offers answers to this multiple choice question with the response ‘all of the above.’”

Kailey Rice, a sophomore from Frisco, Texas, plays Mabel alongside Jacob Zehr, a senior from Carthage, New York, as Frederic.

This musical, presented in its original form, will be the first musical produced at GC since launching the new musical theater minor.

“Pirates and other works by Gilbert and Sullivan are the front runners of the modern musical comedy; yet even with newer, more contemporary pieces, there is something about Pirates that can’t be replaced by its successors,” said Director Anna Kurtz Kuk, assistant professor of theater. “Its farcical, even slapstick quality fully embodies what is for me one of the most fundamental purposes of theater - to entertain.”

Tickets are $12 for adult, $7 for students/seniors/GC staff, and can be purchased online at, at the Goshen College Box Office (, 574-535-7566) or at the performance one hour before the show. The show’s runtime is a little more than two hours, including intermission.

The Pirates of Penzance is directed by Anna Kurtz Kuk, assistant professor of theater. The music director is Scott Hochstetler, professor of music, and the technical director is Andrew Moeggenborg. The show is produced by Doug Liechty Caskey, professor of theater.


The cast includes:

Major General Stanley: Simon Weaver
The Pirate King: Lukas Thompson
Samuel: Nathan Pauls
Frederic: Jacob Zehr
Sergeant of Police: Ben Meyer Reimer
Mabel: Kailey Rice
Edith: Lisa Rosado Rivera
Kate: Katie Shank
Isabel: Cara Wilson
Ruth: Lauren Myers
Pirate Soloist: Isaac Godshalk
Pirates: Hugh Birky, Caleb Liechty, Joshua Liechty, Stephen Lowe, Ian Martin, Daniel Robles, Xan Seymour, Jonah Yoder and Bekah Zehr
Wards: Clara Beck, Rebecca Choi, Abigail Greaser, Kate Grimme, Emmy Rupp, Sharada Weaver and Haley Willis
Police: Tobias Garcia, Harrison Gingrich, Caleb Liechty, Claude Lilford, Xan Seymour and Matthew Smucker

The production team includes Jonathan Bontrager-Waite (light designer, master electrician), Rachel Buckley (stage manager), Jessi Carpenter (assistant costume designer), Genevieve Cowardin (assistant stage manager), Levi Glick (master carpenter), Simon Hurst (light designer, master electrician), Shianne Harrison (hair and make-up designer), Katie Hendrickson (dramaturg), Brianna Herndon (props designer), Madeline Kauffman (assistant stage manager), Siwon Kim (rehearsal accompanist), Lucia Martinez (Hair and Make-Up designer), Ben Meyer Reimer (assistant technical director), Andrew Moeggenborg (scenic designer), Mary Seeck (costume designer, costume shop manager), Samantha Shank (assistant stage manager) and Violet Smucker (assistant props designer).