Disney's Beauty and the Beast Cast
Jacob Reinhart (Beast)
Jacob is best known for his role of the Phantom in The Phantom of the Opera, Beast in 2017's Beauty and the Beast, and Frollo in The Hunchback of Notre Dame. In 2022 Jacob played detective Hannratty in Catch Me if You Can. He started his career at the age of 6 weeks when his mother walked him on stage in the chorus of The Music Man. When he was 18 months he played the younger brother of Billy in BIG the Musical. He went on to play Chip in Beauty and the Beast, Charlie in Oliver, Tommy in The Music Man and Jud in Oklahoma. He has also played the Baker in Into the Woods, and a brother in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat for RSMT. Jacob isis a 2020 St. Mary of the Woods, Graduate where he got his BS in Voice. At St. Mary's, he was cast as one of the leads in You're Perfect, I Love You Now Change, Almost Maine, and Caleb in The Spitfire Grill, a member of the Woods Ensemble, and was awarded "Best Actor 2018 and 2019, 2020.” Jacob was a recipient of the Jerauld J. Reinhart Scholarship.
Cassidy Koontz (Belle)
Cassidy is not new to the stage where she has performed in everything from Scrooge to Oklahoma to A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Some of her favorite roles include Christmas Past in Scrooge and a featured dancer in Spamalot and Meg in The Phantom of the Opera. Cassidy appeared as a Silly Girl and Enchantress in 2017 and as a Wife in RSMT's Joseph. Most recently, Cassidy was seen in Catch Me if You Can as a featured dancer. But Cassidy’s all time favorite role, which she was born to play, was Ariel in the RSMT 2019, musical “Little Mermaid”. She is so excited to portray another Disney Princess. This stage has been her second home.
Lucas Reinhart (Gaston)
Lucas is by no means a stranger to the stage. At only 4 years old he played the Footstool in Beauty and the Beast. Since that time he has played roles in 88 different productions. Along with the role of Gavroche, Lucas’ favorite roles include Tiny Tim (Scrooge), Edgar (Ragtime) Oliver (Oliver), Colin (Secret Garden), Winthrop (The Music Man), Jack (Into the Woods), Curtis (Sister Act), Jonas (Leap of Faith) and the title role in The Hunchback of Notre Dame. Lucas had a very successful run as Huey Calhoun in MEMPHIS in 2019. Lucas was last seen as the Prince in Little Mermaid in 2019 and in 2021 he played Frank Abignale Jr. in (Catch Me if you Can).
Melinda Reinhart (Mrs. Potts)
Melinda Reinhart is the Merrillville High School choral director and Performing Arts Department Head, beginning her 19th year at Merrillville and 30th in the classroom. Melinda directs the Merrillville HS spring musical and REVUE as well as assists with the fall play and sponsors the Voice of Reason, and serves as an assistant supervisor for Reinhart Auditorium. Melinda graduated from the Indiana University School of Music in Bloomington, Indiana in 1989 with a Bachelor's in Music Education--voice. She performed and toured with the Singing Hoosiers and Varsity Dancers. Melinda has also performed exclusively with Ross Summer Music Theatre since 1986, under the direction of the late Jerauld Reinhart, longtime director of the Merrillville High School choirs. Since 2010, Melinda and her husband Michael produce/direct musical theatre productions for Ross Music Theatre and, since 1989, M&M Productions.
Stephen Elser (Cogsworth)
Steve has been in 100s of shows as actor and crew, favorite roles include: Cogsworth (Beauty and the Beast), Patsy (Spamalot), Matthew (Cotton Patch Gospel), Jacob/Potiphar (Joseph….), & King Herod (Jesus Christ Superstar), all with RSMT/M&M; Benjamin Franklin (1776), Sir (The Dresser), and Col. Pickering (My Fair Lady), with Playmaker’s Community Thtr; and Finian (Finian’s Rainbow) & Luther Billis (South Pacific) at IUN Theatre NW. Thank you to my wife, Debbie, for all your help and encouragement. Thank you to our audiences for supporting the Arts.
Jarius Newman (Lumiere)
Jarius will be a sophomore musical theater major at Ball State this coming fall. He attended merrillville high school and participated in several productions including Little Shop of Horrors, Scrooge, Smokey Joes Cafe and several others. He is excited to be stepping into the role of Lumiere and thanks Mr. and Mrs. Reinhart for all of their guidance throughout the rehearsal process.
Tyrese Cooper (Lafou)
Tyrese made his MHS debut in the 2018 SCROOGE and the area premiere of MEMPHIS in spring of 2018 with the roles of Black DJ, Reverend and Saturday Night Trio. In 2019 he performed in RSMT's THE LITTLE MERMAID (Pilot, chef, dancer) and in SCROOGE 2019. Tyrese was the Voice of the Plant in Little Shop of Horrors, and was a featured actor in Smokey Joes Cafe. Both performed live during the pandemic. Tyrese was last seen as the adorable Snoopy in You’re a Goodman Charlie Brown. Tyrese is just happy to be doing another RSMT show.
Laura Powell (Madame De La Grande Bouche)
Laura is excited to make her debut with the Ross Summer Music Theatre as Madame Grande De La Bouche. Most recently you may have caught her as the Mystery Women in Night Tide at the Towle Theater or in a show with her children at the Highland Gazebo as Melissa Frake in State Fair, Wysteria in Sleeping Beauty, and Mrs. Gloop in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Laura has enjoyed a lifelong involvement with theatre and is thrilled to be a part of this production!
Kennedy Halliburton (Babette)
Kennedy, a 2021 graduate was an Honor Student at MHS. She was a member of the Advance Choir , Coralteens, and Vocalteens. Kennedy started her performing in musicals in 2019 as a member of the Ensemble in “Hunchback of Notre Dame”, She received her first solo in a musical as member of the cast of Scrooge. She was also Felicia’s understudy and featured soloist in MEMPHIS. In 2019 Kennedy was one of King Tritons daughters in The Little Mermaid and was last seen as a featured dancer in, Catch Me if You Can.
Grace Reynolds (Chip)
Grace would like to thank Mike and Melinda for this opportunity. This is her first production with RSMT! Previously, Grace has played Piglet in Winnie the Pooh, Olaf and Middle Anna in Frozen Jr, and most recently Colin in Secret Garden! She’s enjoyed playing Chip because “He’s cute just like me!”
Eric Fischer (Maurice)
This is Eric's debut with RSMT. He is a Design Master for Great Clips and has done guest segments on ABC and NBC morning news. He hasn’t been on stage since high school and is looking forward to new challenges.
Elise Bereolos (Les Filles De La Ville)
Elise Bereolos (Silly Girl): Elise is thrilled to be back on stage in an RSMT show reprising her roleas a Silly Girl in Beauty and the Beast. She was last seen on stage and in the same role in RSMT’s2017 production. Other RSMT credits include Les Misérables (2013), The Music Man (2012), LesMisérables (2011) and Scrooge! (2011). She would like to thank the Reinhart family for keepingextravagant live theatre alive in NWI and for welcoming her back to Reinhart Auditorium.
Mia Godfrey (Les Filles De La Ville)
Jasmine Jaramillo (Les Filles De La Ville)
Alyssa Maldonado (Les Filles De La Ville)
After a very successful theatrical experience at Andrean High School Alyssa made her RSMT debut in Little Mermaid as Flotsam and a tapping gull. I am very excited for this show because I can show everyone just how silly and over-the-top I really am
Adam Clough (Monsieur D'Arque)
Adam, is thrilled to step back into the role of D’Arque on the Reinhart stage in Beauty and the Beast. Past shows include Les Miserable, Joseph, Music Man, and many more! So proud to join my husband on stage this summer in his RSMT debut. Love to all my family and friends for their support for my love of theatre.
Josh Roberts (Baker)
Josh first hit the stage in July of 2019 for The Little Mermaid, playing such roles as sailor and chef. He is also a former member of Merrillville High School’s advanced choir and Thespian Troupe and went on to perform in Scrooge the musical December 2019. Joshua also performed in the special Covid edition of Little shop of horrors where he went on to portray four roles.Joshua last performed in Scrooge the musical 2021 and is exited to join the cast of Beauty and the Beast as Baker.
Eliza Ludenberg (LaFou Understudy)
Eliza Ludenberg started their musical debut in 6th grade in West Side Theatre Guild’s production of “High School Musical Jr.” Eliza was seen in “She Kills Monsters” at Hammond Arts & Performance Academy Eliza, appeared in “The Wizard of Oz”,and the first in person live audience production of “And the World Goes ‘Round.” Eliza is very honored and excited to perform in their very first Ross Summer Music Theatre production as LeFou (Understudy)/ Wolf/Ensemble.