WESTMINSTER -- For 11 years, Theatre on the Hill has been presenting plays to the Carroll County community.
And producer Ira Domser feels this is its best season yet.
"Our reputation for producing quality theater events is beginning to get out," he said, adding that this year the theater has signed up its largest number of subscribers. "People are starting to trust us to pick a play that they will enjoy."
In addition, the group sponsored its largest talent search to cast the season's three plays. Auditions were at the Eastern Central Theater Conference in February, at Western Maryland College and at the Adult Theater Project in March.
"We wanted to be sure to get the right people," said Domser. "When you have good talent, you are assured of a good result. We now have an excellent, high-quality company with extremely talented people."
The season opens at 8 Friday night with the musical "Fiddler on the Roof." Directed by Julie Herber-Dougherty, the play follows a traditional Jewish family in czarist Russia. As the family's five children grow, they rebel against the traditional ways.
" 'Fiddler on the Roof' is good family entertainment to bring the kids to," Domser said of the play, which won a Tony award for best musical in 1965. "A lot of positive family values are reinforced.
"The theme of wholesome love reaffirms the best of what it is to be human and accounts for its immense popularity with audiences."
The show runs at 8 p.m. June 26 and 27 and July 2, 3, 11, 17 and 18. A performance on July 5 begins at 7 p.m.
Theatre on the Hill's second production, "Lend Me a Tenor," is directed by John Desmone and concerns how a British opera company copes when the star singer passes out before a benefit performance. " 'Lend me a Tenor' is a British sex farce," Domser said, adding that the comedy is more for an adult audience. "There's little or no sex, but it's talked about a lot."
Show times are at 8 p.m. July 9, 10, 15, 16, 29 and 30, and Aug. 5 and 6. Performances at 7 p.m. are on July 12, 19 and 26.
Looking to please the younger crowd, the company will present a modern interpretation of "Alice in Wonderland" at 8 p.m. July 24, 25 and 31, and Aug. 1, 7, and 8. Matinee performances at 2 p.m. will be Aug. 1 and 8.
" 'Alice in Wonderland' appeals to children and adults alike," Domser said, adding that his version has Alice jumping through a large-screen television rather than down the rabbit hole. "It's been popular since 1875, and is the classic fairy tale of our time."
All performances will be in Western Maryland College's Alumni Hall. Tickets are $13 for adults and $8 for children.