COATESVILLE, PA — Freedom Village at Brandywine is spotlighting two of its residents, Fran and Maggie Doyle, who have produced two shows featuring a cast of residents from the community. In 2021, Fran and Maggie put on their first performance, “Give My Regards to Broadway” at the community with 15 residents, and their second show, “The Big Bad Musical,” with 22 residents was performed this past June.
Fran and Maggie have produced and directed a vast range of musicals throughout their careers. As their lifestyles changed and they moved to Freedom Village at Brandywine in August 2019, they chose to utilize this passion to bring a sense of unity to their home and community.
“Maggie and Fran are able to get residents involved in something new,” said Freedom Village at Brandywine Director of Community Life Services Kim Ranck. “They do not charge for tickets. They accept donations, and they split them up evenly between Freedom Village’s Scholarship Fund and Outreach Committee, both of which they are heavily involved in.”
The two shows at Freedom Village raised $6,600 in donations.
Their love for musical theater began when Fran was a sophomore in high school and a friend dared him to try out for the school musical. Maggie saw him during a performance, and immediately knew she wanted to be involved as well. Years later, that passion never wavered. Fran and Maggie both worked at schools where they began to direct and produce musicals. Together, Fran and Maggie put on close to 40 shows.
After moving to Freedom Village in August of 2019, Fran and Maggie knew they wanted to continue directing musicals. After their first show, “Give My Regards to Broadway,” was a success, they worked on producing “The Big Bad Musical,” which debuted in June.
“Fran and Maggie make a wonderful team,” said Freedom Village at Brandywine Sales and Marketing Coordinator Matteo Wanner. “To decide on their next musical, they read through ‘junior’ versions of Broadway shows and make sure there are roles in the cast for any resident who decides to participate. The duo takes great pride in ensuring their musicals are well loved and cater to all members of the community.”
Fran and Maggie are also dedicated to breaking down barriers to performing. They suggested the community add a handicap lift to the stage, so any resident can be involved and are not limited by disability. They also advocated for a new sound system for the auditorium.
“Perhaps what makes them and their shows so successful is the pure joy that comes from creating shows with each other as well as with members of their community,” said Kim. “These musicals are a unique opportunity for residents to pursue an activity they may have never been involved in before.”
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