Hickory – THE CAKE, a dramatic comedy with modern, is coming to the Hickory Community Theatre, April 22 through May 7 in the Firemen’s Kitchen.

Della’s North Carolina bakery is legendary! She is overjoyed when Jen, her best friend’s daughter returns from New York to get married and asks Della to make her wedding cake. Della, a sweet-natured Christian, is forced to re-examine her deeply-held beliefs and her own marriage when she realizes there is not one bride, but two. Faith, family, and frosting collide in this timely new play by Bekah Brunstetter, writer for the NBC hit “This is Us.”

The Hickory production has a talented ensemble with Cara Vander Wiel as Della, Katie Stone as Jen, Dior Scott as Jen’s fiancée Macy, and William Parrish as Della’s husband Tim.

Vander Wiel was last seen on the HCT stage 10 years ago as Becky in BECKY’S NEW CAR. “I chose to return to HCT for THE CAKE,” she says, “because I was very interested in the timeliness of the subject matter and the humor. My character, Della, grows and becomes her own person.”

Parrish, who has numerous productions to his credit, is making his HCT debut. He says he chose to audition for the role “because I love the multi-level personal growth messages of understanding, acceptance, and independence.”

Scott made her stage debut at HCT four years ago in DREAMGIRLS. “The opportunities HCT presents to the passionate performer,” she said. “This role was something out of my comfort zone and I wanted to challenge myself.”

A relative newcomer to HCT, Stone was in PUFFS last fall. “I love the complexity of this story,” she says, “It’s a roller coaster that leaves you feeling a little bit of everything. I love how authentic a character Jen is.”Performances of THE CAKE are Fridays and Saturdays, April 22 through May 7 at 7:30 pm; Sunday, May 1 at 2:30 pm and Thursday, May 5 at 7:30 pm in the Firemen’s Kitchen. Opening night, April 22, features reduced-price tickets: $12 for adults and $10 for youth & students. Tickets for all other performances are $16 for adults and $10 for youth and students.

Tickets are available online at hickorytheatre.org, or by phone at 828-328-2283. Weekday box office hours are 12-5, Wednesday through Friday, or one half-hour before any performance.

Due to the continued risk of Covid-19 in Catawba County, and in accordance with the latest guidance from the CDC, the Hickory Community encourages patrons to wear a mask or other face covering while inside the building. THE CAKE is rated R for strong adult language.

The Hickory Community’s 73rd season is sponsored by Paramount Automotive and Sunbelt Xpress. HCT is a funded affiliate of the United Arts Council of Catawba County. THE CAKE is produced by Ken Wilkinson and Allen Wood, III.

PHOTO: (clockwise from top left) Dior Scott is Macy, Katie Stone is Jen, Bill Parris is Tim and Cara Vander Wiel is Della in THE CAKE, opening Friday, April 22 in the Firemen’s Kitchen at the Hickory Community Theatre. Photo by John Koval.