At 7 years old, Vineland’s Vincent Crocilla has a leading role as Winthrop in “The Music Man” at Philadelphia’s Walnut Street Theater.

“I like to sing on stage. It makes me happy,” Crocilla said.

His favorite song in the show is “Gary, Indiana,” he said, because he gets to do a lot of dancing to it. He can sing in Italian or English.

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The second-grader at Edgarton Christian Academy in Newfield, Gloucester County, has worked with the Off Broad Street Players in Bridgeton. He learns lines easily and lights up on stage, said his father, also Vincent Crocilla, who owns the Pure Aire duct-cleaning business in Vineland. “He never says he doesn’t want to go to practice,” Crocilla said.

The younger Crocilla and another boy are both cast in the role, and were chosen out of 200 children who auditioned. The play runs through Jan. 6, and Vincent does the shows Tuesdays through Thursdays.

Vincent, who can be seen singing on YouTube, likes to practice his lines late at night.

“It gives him a chance to stay up later,” his father said. “He knows how to work us.”

Vincent has a brother, Gianluca, 4, a preschool student at All Kids First in Vineland who is interested in swimming.

“Neither of us did theater,” said his father, about he and wife Donna. “We have no idea where he got his singing or musical talent.”

Vincent had trouble sleeping as an infant, so they played the radio for him round-the-clock.

“It was the only thing that would soothe him,” Crocilla said.

Hospital honors volunteers

Lee Alverson, of Somers Point; and Carla Heist and Edith Kemble, both of Ocean City, were honored for their volunteer work Oct. 17 at Shore Medical Center’s annual Volunteer Recognition Dinner at Greate Bay Country Club in Somers Point. Heist has volunteered 3,000 hours since 1999; Alverson 6,000 hours since 1979; and Kemble 11,000 hours over 40 years, the hospital said.

Teen aids diabetes research

Casey Butrus, 16, of Linwood, lost one grandfather to diabetes, and both of her grandmothers are living with it, she said. So she decided to raise money for diabetes research for her service project as part of her application to the National Honor Society.

The junior at Mainland Regional High School is running a “Dive in 4 Diabetes” lap swim Dec. 8, with the MRHS swim team participating from 7:30 to 11:30 a.m., and the public swimming from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Participants can arrive early to sign up at the event for donation of $25. She is seeking T-shirt and snack sponsors. For more information, call 609-927-2651.

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