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Soup's on at Warren Arts
Soup du Jour - Rob and Mary.jpg
Mary Wanamaker plays a reporter who goes undercover as a waitress in hopes of finding a secret soup recipe. She has the support of bartender Franklin O’Shea, played by Rob Nunley, who is chatting with Marc Pyburn, who plays restaurant owner Stewart Bailey.
Soup du Jour - Delanie Sullivan.jpg
Delanie Sullivan plays Tiffany Vandervanden in the Warren Arts production of “Soup du Jour” which premieres this Friday night. Tickets are available at warrenartstn.com.

Waiter, what’s this fly doing in my soup?

If that age-old joke were applied to the Warren Arts production of “Soup du Jour,” the fly would be singing, dancing, and cracking one-liners.

“Soup du Jour” makes its debut this Friday night as Warren Arts continues its dinner and a show format. A meal catered by Crisp Springs Market precedes the romantic musical comedy, set for four evening shows and two matinees.

“Soup du Jour” is set in New York City in 1939 at Bailey’s, one of the top dining establishments in the city. When the restaurant owner passes away, it is feared he may have taken the secret recipe to his famous soup to the grave with him.

“They try to buy some time by saying they’re not serving the soup as a way to pay respect to the restaurant owner,” said director Chad McGee, “but it’s really because they can’t find the recipe.”

The New York Herald is eager to find the recipe and publish it so the newspaper sends in ace reporter Katherine Hawks, played by Mary Wanamaker. She knows she won’t get the recipe by asking so she goes in undercover as a waitress.

Thanks to support from bartender Franklin O’Shea, played by Rob Nunley, Hawks gets the waitress job and is imbedded at the restaurant. One joke is that perhaps Hawk can become a Pulitzer Prize-winning waitress.

Chris Cope makes his first appearance in a musical and plays the role of the newspaper editor, J.P.

“The New York Herald is getting beaten by some of the gossip newspapers so I want to get the soup recipe to give a boost to circulation,” said Cope, who says the play is a barrel of fun. “The dialog is fast-paced slapstick so we have to be on our toes with our lines.”

In catering the event, Cope said it would have been a crowd-pleaser to serve the famous Crisp Springs Market burger, but he felt an obligation to stick with the soup theme. The menu will include potato or tomato soup, Caesar salad, and half a sandwich. 

“Soup du Jour” will have performances the next two weekends at Warren Arts, 5482 Manchester Highway. For the Friday and Saturday night shows, April 9-10 and April 16-17, dinner will be served at 6:15 p.m. with the show starting at 7 p.m.

On the Sunday matinee shows, April 11 and April 18, the meal will be served at 1:15 p.m. with the show starting at 2 p.m. 

To purchase tickets, visit warrenartstn.com.

For every ticket purchased, Crisp Springs Market will donate $1 to HOME, the Homeless of McMinnville Effort, which helps local homeless people in this area.