Homegrown Productions Annual Christmas show December 6 and 7

Uh Oh castSince 2009, Homegrown Productions has added to the holiday spirit in our community with a musical variety show. This year they are proud to present “Uh Oh, Here Comes Christmas“, a play based on the books by Robert Fulghum. Heartwarming stories and musical interludes look at the struggle to find the spirit of the holidays amid the avalanche of commercialism, stress and chaos that crashes down every December. Delightful stories include hilarious musings about a love/hate relationship with the vibrant poinsettia that arrives in most homes every December and hangs on long after the holidays have ended; and a beautiful, deeply moving tribute to the winter solstice, celebrating nature’s precious annual gift of rebirth.

“Uh, Oh, Here Comes Christmas” is directed by Beth Webb and Susan DeRosa. This year’s cast members are Sara Craft, Susan DeRosa, Jan Ross, Darryl Schmitz, Beth Webb, and Tom Webb. This is a family friendly show. Performances are December 6 and 7 at 7:30 pm at the Wilson Center Auditorium, 101 W. Cass St. Tickets are $10 at the door.

(Photo Front: Beth Webb and Tom Webb; Back: Sara Craft,
Darryl Schmitz, Susan DeRosa; Not pictured Jan Ross)

Mountain Town Brass Holiday Concert Comes to the Wilson Center Auditorium on Sunday, December 8th

Untitled 2The Mountain Town Brass Band, an elite brass band made up of some of the top brass players in the state of Michigan, will be performing a Holiday Concert at the Wilson Center in St. Johns on Sunday, December 8 at 7:00pm.  The concert is FREE to the public, but a good will donation will be accepted.  The band will feature many holiday favorites such as “Deck the Halls“, “Hallelujah Chorus” from Handel’s Messiah, Leroy Anderson’s “A Christmas Festival” and more.  The band will also feature principal euphonium Cassandra Black on “Ave Maria” and principal cornet Matthew Taton  on “Shake My Yoke“.  The band is under the direction of Jacob Bender.  We hope to see you there!

“Uh-Oh, Here Comes Christmas” Comes to the Wilson Center Auditorium


Based on the books by Robert Fulghum. Adapted by Ernest Zulia and David Caldwell. Music and lyrics by David Caldwell. Directed by Hilda Mallory.

Fifteen holiday stories from the international best-selling author of “All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten” have been crafted into an engaging evening of storytelling and song. This charming show takes a funny, heartwarming and often poignant look at the struggle to find the spirit of the holidays amid the avalanche of commercialism, stress and chaos that crashes down every December. The many delightful stories include a small immigrant child who comes trick-or-treating in a cheap Santa mask a few days before Christmas, inadvertently delivering the true meaning of the season to a grown-up with a serious case of “Scroogitis;” hilarious musings about a love/hate relationship with the vibrant poinsettia that arrives in most homes every December and hangs on and on and on, long after the holidays have ended; and a beautiful, deeply moving tribute to the winter solstice, celebrating nature’s precious annual gift of rebirth.


Singers on the Grand “Fifties Favorites”


Singers on the Grand brings their 2019 musical program “Fifties Favorites” to the Wilson Center Auditorium THIS SATURDAY, November 9. The 12 singers and 8 band members will take you on a musical journey through familiar pop and jazz standards, Broadway and spiritual numbers.

Enjoy iconic music from the 1950s like songs from American Bandstand and the Everly Brothers as well as songs “That’s Amore”,  “Climb Ev’ry Mountain”,  “Whatever Lola Wants”  and many other favorites. Includes full ensemble performances, solos and duets and small group numbers. Don’t miss the opening performance of their 2019-2020 season, so order your tickets today!

Saturday, November 9, 7:00 pm show (doors open at 6:30 pm).

General admission seating.

Wilson Center Auditorium, 101 Cass St. St. Johns, MI 48879

Tickets are $12 and available by calling 800-838-3006, online at https://sotg.bpt.me , or at the door.

For more information, visit the event link on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/events/603718343492664/

Neil Simon’s Comedy “God’s Favorite” Coming to the Wilson Center Auditorium


Successful businessman Joe Benjamin has admittedly had a wonderful life. He has a successful business selling boxes while living with his family in their beautiful Long Island mansion. Joe, being a devout religious man, attributes all of his success and happiness to the big “G” himself: God. But when an eccentric messenger from God visits Joe all hell breaks loose! Joe, God’s favorite servant, is being put to the test; he must either renounce his faith in God or suffer severe consequences. The jokes and tests of faith fly fast and furious as Neil Simon spins a contemporary morality tale like no other in this hilarious comedy.


Bob Murrell as Joe Benjamin
Michael Nelson as Sidney Lipton
Patrick Monroe as David Benjamin
Marsha Brook as Rose Benjamin
Monica Holland as Sarah Benjamin
Tyler Frease as Ben Benjamin
Sara Craft as Mady (the maid)
Darryl Schmitz as Morris (the butler)

This play will feature the first use of the Wilson Center Auditorium’s NEW house and stage lights!

Friday and Saturday, September 27th and 28th at 7:30pm
Sunday, September 29th at 2:00pm
Friday and Saturday, October 4th and 5th at 7:30pm

General admission at the door is $15.  Students and 55+ are $10.


The FINAL PHASE of the Wilson Center Auditorium Renovation Project – the installation of modern house and stage lighting – has begun!

A major matching grant application approved by the Capital Region Community Foundation gives us the opportunity to fully fund the remaining costs to purchase and install updated wiring and lights. Removal of the old wiring, transformer-based power switches and faders has begun with funds already raised to date, but we need to appeal to you one last time to make the lighting at the Wilson Center Auditorium state-of-the-art:



New Stage and House Lighting Improvement Work to Begin Soon!


We are getting closer to the long-anticipated and much-needed upgrade of the Wilson Center Auditorium stage and house lighting system!!
Our renovation committee, led by Bill Tennant, our lighting consultant Jim Lorenz and lead electrician Doug Haviland have targeted mid-August for beginning the removal of the decades-old backstage high voltage transformer-driven equipment and the installation of an energy-efficient, computer-controlled LED system. The project is expected to take 4 to 5 weeks.
In the meantime, a $52,000 matching grant was approved!! We have already raised over half of the money that can be matched, and we’ll be appealing to the community to help us raise the remainder of what is needed to complete the entire scope of what has been planned.
Watch this page for more details soon!

Band, Jazz & Rock at Wilson Center Auditorium on May 28

“Music for Everyone” is the title of this wonderful program, which will take place on Tuesday, May 28 starting at 7:00 p.m. in the beautiful historic Wilson Center Auditorium. This special concert will feature our St. Johns Community Band, the St. Johns High School Jazz Band, both under the direction of Roy Davis, along with two rock bands, “Nobody But Us” and “Synergy” made up of high school seniors.
A free will offering will be taken with all of the proceeds going to the Wilson Center Auditorium lighting project!
The Wilson Center Auditorium is located at 101 W. Cass St. in downtown St. Johns, just south of the courthouse.

“Red Carpet Melodies” Coming to the Wilson Center Auditorium on May 11th!

Coming soon to Wilson Center Auditorium in St Johns,“Red Carpet Melodies: Movie Music for the Young at Heart” – a Starlight Dinner Theatre encore presentation…

Experience the magic of favorite movie music throughout the decades as Starlight Theatre presents a special encore of their Red Carpet Melodies revue, May 11 at Wilson Center Auditorium. (The revue originally ran February 8-10 at Starlight’s home venue in Lansing and is directed by Dan Templin and Kelly Sandula-Gruner). The cast of vocalists will salute Hollywood with award-winning songs from the American Film Institute’s Top 100: Moon River, Over the Rainbow, As Time Goes By, 42nd Street, Singin’ In the Rain, Luck Be a Lady, All That Jazz and many more! Classic movie snippets are shown before many of the numbers, sure to stir nostalgia and smiles. Featured singers: Colleen Runyan Bethea, Chris Bethea, Kelly Skehan Bitz, Bill Henson, Ellen Marco Hoard, Alaina Humphrey, Elizabeth Welch Johnson, Charlie Russel Martin, Kelly Sandula-Gruner, David Sincox, Dan Templin and Martin Underhill. Choreographer Fran Norton Ludington shows off her dancing skills on several numbers, along with Michael Chan – affectionately dubbed “Lansing’s Gene Kelly”. Pianist James Geer leads a talented group of instrumentalists: Tess Miller, flute; Jack Mumma, upright bass; and James Flanagan, drums. Don’t miss this special night of fun and movie memories! The show begins at 7:00p and follows the Eat Healthy–Eat Local festival in downtown St Johns.

Admission is $10, at the door.