The Froelich Young Actors Guild will debut on June 21 & 22 with two productions: “We Are Monsters” performed by children in grades 2nd – 6th, and “A Lonely Boy’s Guide to Survival (and Werewolves)” performed by children in grades 7th-12th. The Friday and Saturday performances are at 7:00 p.m. with a special double feature performance of both shows on Sunday, June 23 at 2:00 pm.

We Are Monsters/A Lonely Boy’s Guide to Survival (and Werewolves) 
June 21 -22 @ 7:00 p.m.
June 23 @ 2:00 p.m.

Children’s Theater is opening a new chapter in 2019

For ten years — 2008-2018 — The Matthews had a summer children’s theater camp called the Peanut Butter & Jelly Players (PBJ). Traditionally, the group provided a summer theater camp to children of the area for a month, culminating in a 3-day production of a play. Children learned the art of performing, backstage tasks, blocking, set building…the whole package! Due to a very generous anonymous donor, this month-long summer program was FREE to all the children. 

Welcome to the Froelich Young Actors Guild – 2019

Starting this year, 2019, we are honoring the director of our PBJ theater camp for ALL OF  those 10 years, Ann Froelich. This summer’s program will consist of two separate performances based on age group. The name of this wonderful program is the Froelich Young Actors Guild.


This group is for students entering 2nd-6th grades this fall. They are performing “We are Monsters.”
Workshops: Starting Fri., May 31 through Thur., June 20. They are held every week day from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. (Mon-Fri). There is no rehearsal for Group A on Friday, June 21. 
Performances: “We are Monsters” Friday, June 21 at 7 p.m. AND Sunday, June 23 at 2 p.m.


This group is for students entering 7th-12th grades this fall. They are performing “A Lonely Boy’s Guide to Survival (and Werewolves).”
Workshops: Starting Fri., May 31 through Fri., June 21. They are held every week day from 1-4 p.m. (Mon-Fri).
Performances: “A Lonely Boy’s Guide to Survival (and Werewolves)” Saturday, June 22 at 7 p.m. AND Sunday, June 23 at 2 p.m.

Play Descriptions

“We Are Monsters” | Group A | Actors in grades 2-6 (entering these grades in Fall 2019)

We Are Monsters is a hilarious new musical that follows human kids into a monster cabaret filled with quirky monster characters. The adventurous humans uncover vegetarian vampires and rock n’ roll werewolves, gradually realizing there may be more to these monsters than meets the eye! Most importantly these monsters and kids discover the importance of friendship and celebrating in the attributes that make each of us different and unique.

WE ARE MONSTERS is presented through special arrangement with Beat by Beat Press (

“A Lonely Boy’s Guide to Survival (and Werewolves)” | Group B | Actors in grades 7-12 (entering these grades in Fall 2019)

It’s 1956, and even though he has just become a Badger Scout, young Skipper’s life is a big mess. His next-door neighbor yells all the time, his friend Sally Ann has become obsessed with detective stories and his dog, Lucky, has gone missing. To top it all off, his mother is forcing Skipper to befriend the new kid, Jonathan, an awkward boy with outlandish tales of his monster-hunting father. With his scout guidebook in hand, Skipper sets off with Jonathan and Sally Ann to solve the mystery of Lucky’s disappearance. Is it possible there is a werewolf on the loose or are Jonathan’s monster-filled tales too incredible to be believed? Exploring the topics of friendship, self-reliance, loss and grief, Skipper begins to wonder if the answers to life’s uncertainties may be found in his guidebook or if anything — or anyone — is truly what they seem.

Produced by special arrangement with THE DRAMATIC PUBLISHING COMPANY of Woodstock, Illinois

Cast List for “We Are Monsters”

Jade – Braxton Stephens
KC – Rylund Weber
Westerly – Josiah Redd
Sunny – Ava Kinney
Targoyle – Elisabeth Jackson
Fargoyle – AndiLee Walters
Ozzy Lumpa – Savannah Miles
Tooth – Oliver Pederson
Moonface – Connor Johnson
Furr-ball – Zoey Thurmes
Snarly – Abby McClure
Puffy – Layla Thompson
Growly – Leela Bosworth
Grizzly – Honey Donnell
Victoria – Arleigh Cain
Vazel – Bloom Brown
Valexa  – Jocelyn Brown
Vank – Kadin Gonzales
Vreddy – Rosie Koll
Varah  – Anjali Brown
Valissa – Piper Jacobs
Vanny – Harper Bruner
Stage Manager – Hugh Roles

Cast List for “A Lonely Boy’s Guide to Survival (and Werewolves)”

Jonathan Van – Elizabeth Ackerman
Hellen – Reyna Binegar
Mary Margaret – Danika Brown
Betty Sue – Lillian Dowdy
Monica Jo – Kate Fjelland
Skipper McCready – AJ Kinney
Old Man Culliford  – Lars Knudson
Mrs. Mother Little Companion Magazine – Brooklyn Mischke
Werewolf / Krampus – Tanner Mischke
Vivian McCready – Melody Rages
Mr. Adventure Survival Guide / Abraham Von – Evan Roles
Lauretta – Sevana Thompson
Nelly Darwin – Danielle Valentine
Becky McCready – Hollie Wise
Sally Ann Johnson – Tayler Yahne

Some PB&J History

Gathering kids into the circle!

Gathering kids into the circle!

The Matthews has been home to our children’s theater since 2008 with the production of “101 Dalmatians.”

The plays throughout the years have been:
2008: 101 Dalmatians
2009: Sleeping Beauty
2010: Jungle Book
2011: Willa Wonka
2012: Aladdin, Jr.
2013: Little Mermaid, Jr.
2014: Beauty and the Beast, Jr.
2015: My Son Pinocchio, Jr.
2016: Alice in Wonderland, Jr.
2017: High School Musical, Jr. 
2018: Little Mermaid, Jr.

All of the shows have been KIDS versions except Willy Wonka. “The Little Mermaid,” “Beauty and the Beast,” and “My Son Pinocchio, Jr., and High School Musical, Jr.” are Broadway Junior versions of these shows.

Play materials are ordered from Music Theatre in New York. These materials include a script which has the lyrics and the score of every song as they appear in the musical. The cast and crew get to keep these scripts, along with the rehearsal CD of all the music in the show.

The casts and crews of each production are also children. They design and create everything from costumes to set and props and lighting. Also, this program has had many dedicated, talented adults who use the power tools and all kinds of equipment and expertise that is needed to perform a fabulous show.