Where you can see hit play about one of Dayton’s most famous faces on local stage

The story of one of Dayton’s most famous (and funniest) personalities is coming to a local stage.

The Human Race Theatre Company will present Allison Engel and Margaret Engel's Erma Bombeck: At Wit's End in the intimate space at its Caryl D. Philips Creativity Center.

Bombeck — the author of 12 books and a popular column, “At Wit’s End,” which appeared in more than 900 newspapers — grew up in Dayton.

The one-woman comedy is named after Bombeck’s long-running newspaper column. The production will be directed by Heather N. Powell.

Human Race Resident Artist Jennifer Joplin will stars as the literary icon and newspaper columnist whose candid commentary on life as a woman, spouse and mother made her the champion of suburban housewives everywhere and her newspaper columns a mainstay on kitchen refrigerators for over 30 years.

>>  5 things to know about beloved humorist Erma Bombeck


The play will begin its run in April 2018.

“I’m thrilled this funny and poignant play is coming to Dayton, Erma’s hometown,” said Teri Rizvi, founder and director of the Erma Bombeck Writers’ Workshop at the University of Dayton. “Her wit and wisdom have stood the test of time — and remind us that the foibles of family life will always make us laugh.”

Special preview performances of Erma Bombeck: At Wit’s End for the Bombeck Writers’ Workshop are Thursday, April 19 – Sunday, April 22. The public preview performance is Thursday, April 26. Opening night is Friday, April 27.

Both Powell and Joplin are familiar faces to Dayton.

Powell worked on “Steel Magnolias” at the Loft Theatre, as well as the company’s touring productions of “Change” and “A Dickens of a Time.”

Joplin is a Wright State University graduate who has appeared in dozens of productions at HRTC and throughout Cincinnati.

The show will be 60 minutes, with no intermission.

>> PHOTOS: Erma Bombeck: The author’s life in photos

Credit: C. Stanley Photography

Credit: C. Stanley Photography

The play was written by identical twins Allison Engel and Margaret Engel and premiered in 2015 in Washington, D.C., and most recently was on stage in Cincinnati. Actress Barbara Chisholm originated the role of Bombeck in this production.

 >> Erma Bombeck play a hot ticket in Cincinnati


Tickets are currently only available to 2017-2018 season subscribers and will go on sale to the general public for $25 starting Nov. 21. Seating is general admission.

All performances are in The Human Race’s Caryl D. Philips Creativity Center, located at 116 North Jefferson Street, 2nd floor, in downtown Dayton, Ohio. Show times for Erma Bombeck: At Wit’s End are 8:00 p.m. on Thursday, Friday and Saturday evenings and at 2:00 p.m. on Sunday afternoons.

Performance schedule: 

Preview performances as part of the Erma Bombeck Writers Workshop 2018 on April 19-22.

Thursday, April 26 — 8 p.m. Preview Performance

Friday, April 27 — 8 p.m. Opening Night

Saturday, April 28 — 8 p.m.

Sunday, April 29 — 2 p.m.

Thursday, May 3 — 8 p.m.

Friday, May 4 — 8 p.m.

Saturday, May 5 — 8 p.m.

Sunday, May 6 — 2 p.m. Audio Described/Interpreted Performance

Thursday, May 10 — 8 p.m.

Friday, May 11 — 8 p.m.

Saturday, May 12 — 8 p.m.

Sunday, May 13 — 2 p.m.

More information: www.humanracetheatre.org

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