• Bee Poston


    Bee loves her church, and is so glad FUMC has brought theatre back! She’s enjoying being back on stage with her sister, Mary Wetzell Massey, and for the first time with her niece, Kelly Ray Shelton. She’s grateful to her parents, Charlie and Blanche Wetzell, for giving her a love of theatre. They were active in Little Theater of Gastonia from the beginning and modeled for Bee and her sisters the magic of community theatre. One of Bee’s favorite theatre memories is being in a production of Godspell under the direction of Barbara Westmoreland with Jim Westmoreland in the role of Jesus.

  • Bill Moore


    An attorney by day and a musician by night, Bill is practicing and performing all the time! He’s married to the lovely and brilliant Nancy S. Moore, with whom he has two grown sons, Will and Dave, and two mangy dogs, Mose and Ezra (names are often interchangeable). Some favorite theatre credits include Doody in Grease, directing George Gray in The Man Who Came to Dinner, 1776, The Music Man, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, and Cotton Patch Gospel. “I’m thrilled to be back on the FUMC stage with such a talented and experienced cast and director. Hope you enjoy the show—I assure you we are!”

  • Caroline Brooks

    Production Assistant

    Caroline is thrilled to be coming back to the theater to work with so many folks she’s admired for decades. No stranger to the stage, she’s performed in shows with Gaston School of the Arts, ACT at Gaston Day, and Little Theatre of Gastonia. Some favorite roles include the Narrator (Joseph…Dreamcoat), Eponine (Les Miserables), Rona Lisa Peretti (The 25thAnnual Putnam County Spelling Bee), and Fastrada (Pippin). A direct marketing consultant by day, Caroline’s an avid reader, a (self-proclaimed) fantastic cook, and never one to turn down a road trip. “Thank you, old folks, for welcoming me into your gang with open arms. Love you deeply!”

  • Diane Wood


    Diane loves to bake, exercise at the YMCA, and—believe it or not—clean around the house. She considers her two grown sons and seven grandchildren her greatest accomplishment—who doesn’t love grandchildren?! In addition to Marian Paroo in The Music Man, some of Diane’s other favorite theatre credits include Annie, Guys & Dolls, Carousel, The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, Dracula, Cheaper by the Dozen, and Camelot.

  • Don "DT" Turner

    Stage Manager

    DT has been a part of 82 production since 1990—52 of which he has stage managed. His single on stage credit is as the “Gee Man” in You Can’t Take it With You at Little Theater of Gastonia in 1995. He’s most proud of the productions he’s been a part of taking on the road to Lake Junaluska.


  • Dylan Medlin

    Technical Director/Wig Supervisor

    Dylan is a Gastonia native and has been performing since he was eight years old. He started his professional performing career in 2016 in the North Carolina regional premiere of Heathers: the Musical at Queen City Theatre Company while he was still in high school. Professional performing credits include Carowinds Live Entertainment, NC; Cedar Point Live Entertainment, OH; RWS Entertainment Group, NYC; Busch Gardens, VA; and Holiday World, IN. Other professional credits include Queen City Theatre Company, Central Piedmont Community College, and Three Bone Theatre Company. Dylan used to mutton bust when he was younger, and he is a licensed cosmetologist.

  • Eleanor Wixson

    Old Lady/Ensemble

    Eleanor loves to read (especially with her book club) and to walk. She’s very glad to have started Reader’s Theater in Gastonia. She loves giraffes and cats, and makes specialty greeting cards with computer graphics for family and friends. Some favorite roles include Gladys in The Waverly Gallery, Carrie in A Trip to Bountiful, Annie in Foxfire, Marguerite in Dearly Departed, Sybil in An Inspector Calls, and Travis in Retrieving the Lamb.


  • George Gray


    After his accidental debut as the juvenile lead (Willie Baxter) in his dad’s LTG (then GLT) production of Seventeen, in 1959, George studied, acted and directed, taught, produced, and wrote plays for professional, college, and community theatres nationwide (and overseas) until 1983, when—married with children—he settled down in Charlotte before retiring to Gastonia with his wife, Sandra, three years ago. Older LTG playgoers may remember George as Don Quixote (1973) or King Arthur (1979), or his production of A Streetcar Named Desire (1974), with Sandra as Blanche DuBois. Other favorite roles include Beverly in August: Osage County (2011) and Robert in Proof (2013), both for the sadly defunct C.A.S.T. George is most proud of Stage One, Inc., the “Non-Profit Umbrella for Independent Theatre” he founded in 1994, under which independent producers (actors, playwrights, directors) staged more than thirty theatrical events over the next few years, including several of his own. These days his favorite pastime is reading plays—online for now—via his Cold Reads/Online Facebook group. Anyone who’d like to join is welcome.

  • Gretchen FarrelL

    Old Lady/Ensemble

    Gretchen finds joy and laughter in her children—her own and her students—maybe because her hidden talent is listening. When Gretchen’s not on stage, she enjoys spending time on the beach, in the mountains, and in the desert. Her favorite role in her many years in the theatre has been Mrs. van Daan in The Diary of Anne Frank. It gave her chills every night.

  • Harry Petrey


     Harry is always delighted by his four children, his two sons-in-law and two daughters-in-law, and his ten grandchildren. He’s staying busy in retirement—singing, cooking, always looking for ways to help others, and rarely finding enough time to do everything he has plans for. He’s never sought large roles, some of his favorite memories include Andrew Carnes in Oklahoma! at BCT, and Bob Ewell in To Kill a Mockingbird and a member of the Barbershop Quartet in The Music Man at FUMC

  • Jake Nicks


    Jake loves leading worship at his church, spending time with friends, hammocking, working with all of his “kids” at ETC Youth Guild, cuddling with Lily and Zero, and trying all kinds of new food! Some of his favorite roles include Nostradamus (Something Rotten!), Bill (Mamma Mia), Old Man Jenkins (SpongeBob the Musical), Daddy Murphy (Bright Star), and Horton (Seussical). He’s so thankful to his friends and chosen family who always support and love him no matter what. “I wouldn’t be where I am without all of you. I love you and appreciate you more than you’ll ever know!”

  • Jane SMith


     Jane has been a member of FUMC for 61 years, and she’s spent 56 of those in the choir. She met her husband of nearly 53 years, James, at church, and together they raised their two sons here. She’s incredibly proud of her four grandchildren. Some of her favorite theatre credits include Annie Get Your Gun, Meet Me in St. Louis, Carousel, Smoke on the Mountain, The Miracle Worker, Quilters, Something's Afoot, and playing Maria in The Sound of Music.

  • Jeff Manus


    Jeff is a theatre veteran of over 40 years. As a long-time director, Jeff has mastered every aspect of production. Most recently, Jeff has been working with Stuart Cramer High School and their Blumey Award-winning productions. He loves directing shows and building sets on that challenging, state of the art stage! He has designed sets for Encore Theatre Company Youth Guild since 2015, in addition to designing for Little Theater of Gastonia and Gaston School of the Arts. Jeff has directed over 50 shows and performed in even ore. His favorite directing credits are Titanic, Follies, and The Producers, and some of his favorite acting credits are Lady Bracknell (The Importance of Being Earnest), George (Chapter Two), and the Bishop (Les Miserables). Away from the theater, Jeff enjoys old cars, Westies, and coffee.

  • Jim Ware


    Jim, like many others in the company, enjoys spending time with his grandchildren. He also loves woodworking and a good steak. Some of his favorite theatre credits include 1776, South Pacific, 12 Angry Men, Titanic, Life Goes On, and A Few Good Men, all at Little Theater of Gastonia. 

  • KeLly Ray Shelton

    Sadie/Woman in Bloomingdale’s/Grandmother

     Kelly is a graduate of The American Musical and Dramatic Academy (AMDA) in NYC, a certified fitness instructor of 16 years, and holds a degree in Badassery. She has run the gamut as far as performing is concerned. Kelly is an accomplished voice-over artist and independent horror film actress and is no stranger to the underground scene. Kelly has also proudly performed in various LGBTQIA+ Pride Celebrations in both Carolinas and has frequently been mistaken for the current Miss Gay New York America drag queen. Some favorite theatre credits: Velma Kelly (Chicago), Audrey (Little Shop of Horrors), Kate Keller (The Miracle Worker), and Sonia (Godspell). 


  • KimM Santa


    Kimm is a familiar face in and around Gaston County and Charlotte theatre. Her latest performance was Charlotte Cardoza in Titanic with QC Concerts. Her first show at FUMC was Dracula: The Musical in 1991. Favorite roles include Aunt March in Little Women, The Musical, Sally Durant Plummer in Follies, Dotty/Mrs. Clacket in Noises Off, and Sarah Jane Moore in Assassins. Her current passion is singing bass with Epiphony A Cappella, a six person vocal band. Big thanks to husband, Brian Cripe, for encouraging her to pursue her love of theatre and music!

  • Leslie Hodnett


     Leslie believes that theatre is the place where all the art forms come together and life is learned. She directed her first play over 40 years ago, when she was 15. She was the youngest director of musicals at the Little Theater of Gastonia in 1978 and served there until 2015 as a past President of the Board of Directors, Artistic Director, Costume Designer, Set Designer, and Director of the Summer Workshops and LTG Youth Guild (her proudest achievement there). Her favorite regular season shows were Children of Eden, Godspell, The Secret Garden, and Narnia. She has directed at FUMC Theatre and Gaston School of the Arts and costumed for area high schools for the last 30 years. Leslie is the Artistic Director of the nonprofit theatre, Encore Theatre Company Youth Guild, which exists to provide a challenging, rigorous theatre experience for some of the most talented high school and college students in and around Gaston County. Leslie’s most recent directing credit is Two by Two at FUMC in 2022.

  • Marc Hyde


    Since Marc retired in 2017 from his computer repair business (The Computer Guy) he has been working with his wife, Liz's business, Pet Charmers, as a Certified Professional Pet Sitter, and doing a good bit of the scheduling and bookkeeping, a job which keeps him busy seven days a week! (So much for retirement, huh?) In his spare time (of which there is very little) he enjoys Role Playing Games with his son Garin and friends, and the fun provided by his three dogs and five cats, as well as watching Jeopardy! with Liz whenever they have time! Favorite credits include The Foreigner, The Nerd, Assassins, and 1776.

  • Mary Massey


    Mary loves to read, sing in the FUMC choir, and spend time with her family and friends, especially her favorite granddaughter, Charley Ray Shelton. She’s thrilled to be sharing the stage with her favorite actress and favorite child, Kelly Ray Shelton, and her wonderful sister, Bee Poston. Some of Mary’s favorite credits include Dracula: the Musical, Quilters, and Something’s Afoot.


  • Penny Cathey


    When she’s not on stage, Penny loves going to the theatre, being with the Breakfast Club on Sundays, and with the Hickory Dinner Group on Thursdays. These friends and Penny’s family keep her laughing and feeling much younger than perhaps she should. Some of Penny’s favorite theatre credits include Guinevere in Camelot, Phyllis in Follies, and the Old Lady in The Producers at LTG, and Sadie in Funny Girl at Florence Little Theater in Florence, SC. 

  • Susan Lisle

    Music Director/Lorraine/Piano

    Susan is currently the Music Associate at FUMC.  She leads the older-elementary choir, the youth choir, the elementary handbell choir, and the adult Chancel handbell choir. She is also the leader of the drama ministry.  She is the staff representative on the worship committee. She has been involved as music director in local community theaters in Gastonia, Belmont, and Charlotte for more than 40 years. Her favorite role ON stage was “Vera” in Smoke on the Mountain in 2003 here at the FUMC Theatre. She started her theatre career as a freshman in high school accompanying the production of Pajama Game. Susan also plays weekly for the Downtown Rotary Club. In her spare time Susan enjoys reading, traveling, and going to the movies. She is married to Ted, and they have one daughter, Meredith, who lives in Cincinnati with her husband and two children.  

  • Synthia Kearney


    Synthia loves to read, play pickleball, and spend time with her two grandchildren and three step-grandchildren. While being a mom is her biggest accomplishment, Synthia is also the first female Captain and first female Battalion Chief of the Gastonia Fire Department. Some of her favorite roles include Sedalia in Always a Bridesmaid, the Minstrel in Something Rotten!, and the Ensemble in Midlife.