101 Stories: The O’Connell Family

By The Children's Theatre

Celebrate TCT’s 101st season as it comes to a close as we applaud and appreciate those who contributed to the organization’s magic throughout our century-long journey.  During 10 weeks of recognition, we honor individuals who have been instrumental in the success of TCT, and who have not only helped TCT grow in mission, but also thrive, thanks to their passion.  It is these people and their moments in our history that shaped TCT to become what it is today. We encourage you to consider giving a gift in their honor to ensure the sustainability of TCT’s mission for the next 100+ years. 

Kim, Maddi, and Dan O’Connell

The O’Connell Family attended their first Children’s Theatre of Cincinnati production when Maddi was only four years old – and the theater bug bit! Maddi later became a part of MainStage productions, participated in TCT’s STAR Program — as a student and as a counselor, and the O’Connell Family has volunteered on an ongoing basis throughout the last ten years.  

The O’Connell Family first became involved with TCT when they had front row seats to TCT’s production of AESOP’S FABLES in 2005.  The family became long-standing ticket holders and has seen nearly every single show TCT has produced.  The O’Connell Family (Maddi, Kim, and Dan) has volunteered regularly for the last decade at public and school shows and at several Gala and Breakfast with Santa events.  

Currently, Maddi is a sophomore BFA Acting major at Baldwin Wallace University. She is very thankful to The Children’s Theatre of Cincinnati for casting her as an Elf in HOLIDAY FOLLIES 2 at age 9! That incredible opportunity was the start of the wonderful relationship Maddi continues to have with TCT today! After nine consecutive seasons on stage at The Taft Theatre, eight summers training at STAR NKU, five seasons training and performing with STAR Cabaret, and two summers working at TCT as a Camp Counselor…Maddi is forever grateful to TCT for the extensive training she has received, the many performance opportunities she has been given, and all of the truly amazing people she has met and worked with along the way!  

Some of Maddi’s favorite roles with TCT include: Peter in PINKALICIOUS THE MUSICAL, Perla in DISNEY’S CINDERELLA KIDS, July in ANNIE JR, Lois Lane in STAR Cabaret’s SUPERMAN (NYC), Swing in MADAGASCAR: A MUSICAL ADVENTURE, and Mrs. Claus U/S and Elf in SANTA CLAUS THE MUSICAL.  

For 25+ years, Kim and Dan have both been serving in the role of Vice President at The Kreller Consulting Group. Their leadership in Sales and Consulting continues to provide large companies with substantial cost savings on their data service purchases year after year.   

We had a chance to talk with Kim, Maddi, and Dan about their TCT experience:  

Maddi O’Connell: 

“I have been involved in theatre productions with The Children’s Theatre since I was nine years old. Even when I was the age of the children in the audience, I remember looking out and seeing them smile and react to the show. That was when I knew that theatre is what I am supposed to do.”  

She continues: “Once I graduated from high school and I was hired as a STAR camp counselor, I dove right in! I loved working at STAR Red Bank. I was able to really get to know the kids and watch them grow in their talents and passions for theatre. I love everything about all of my work with The Children’s Theatre of Cincinnati. They are the foundation of my training and professionalism and they have greatly impacted the actor I am today.  I thank TCT for my love of theatre.”  

Maddi O’Connell as a Clam on stage in The Little Mermaid

Kim O’Connell 

Kim says: “I have volunteered and ushered for both the school and public shows at The Children’s Theatre. I have noticed that the children’s reactions are larger than life when they are surrounded by their classmates and friends experiencing live theatre together!”   

She continues: “For many of these students, it is their first time seeing a live show. Following TCT school shows, they are encouraged to ask questions about the actors, the characters, and the production. The Children’s Theatre successfully fosters the love for theatre because they allow children access to the actors and information about behind the scenes moments.”   

Would you honor The O’Connell Family with a gift to recognize the impact made on TCT?