Jenna Balmer to Play Zaneeta in Variety Theatre’s 2020 Production

We are pleased to announce that Jenna Balmer will take on the role of Zaneeta Shinn in this year’s Variety Theatre production of The Music Man.

Jenna, who is a Variety Teen and was part of the inclusive Children’s Ensemble for several Variety Theatre productions, is looking forward to playing a principal role in 2020.

“This is my first time in a principal role in over three years (of performing),” says Jenna. “And it's with Variety Theatre! It’s bound to be one of my best experiences in theatre! It will also be exciting to see how different it will be to play a principal part compared to being in the ensemble.”

When she found out she got the part, Jenna says that she could barely contain her joy.

“I was lying down on my bed when my mother told me the wonderful news,” she exclaims. “I literally flopped around like a fish in excitement. My brother, on the other hand, was horrified when he found out his sister would be saying and practicing ‘Yee Gods’ more than ever now.”

As a teen with a hearing deficit, Jenna hasn’t always felt accepted by everyone. But she shares that it is the Variety Theatre cast and crew that have shown her true acceptance.

“My favorite part of Variety Theatre is how loving, accepting and supporting everyone is to each other,” Jenna says. “It's truly a second family.”

And Variety Theatre has given her the skills and confidence she needs to audition for, and land roles in, other area productions.

“Being in Variety Theatre has helped me in so many different ways,” Jenna explains. “They taught me that love and acceptance can be found anywhere. My performance skills have improved tremendously since my first Variety performance. And I am incredibly grateful and happy to now be performing as Zaneeta Shinn in The Music Man!”

We can’t wait for you to see Jenna and her friends take the stage in The Music Man, coming this October 16 – 18 and 23 – 25! Tickets will go on sale on September 4, 2020. Learn more about Variety Theatre here.  

Stay tuned for more cast announcements coming soon, including one more Variety Kid who will be taking on a principal role! Click here to see who will take the stage as part of the inclusive Children’s Ensemble, and here to learn more about Variety Kid IV Diel, who will play Winthrop Paroo.