'The Showtune Mosh Pit' for December 4, 2013
THE LATEST IN UNAUTHORIZED GOSSIP AND BUZZ
FROM THE HEART OF CHICAGO'S SHOWTUNE VIDEO BARS,
AND MUSICAL THEATER NEWS FROM CHICAGO TO BROADWAY
Overheard last weekend under the showtune
video screens at Sidetrack and The Call:
Welcome to your all-non-holiday Mosh Pit! In the wake of Kim Zimmer and company wowing the Showtune crowd as Sidetrack on Monday night (a fundraiser for Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS), we've realized that there are a lot of shows that have nothing at all to do with tinsel, Wise Men or jolly red elves. Especially those shows opening early next year. So let's put the eggnog and wassail on hold, and dive into what's going on in locally-based productions that have year-round appeal.
The much-lauded production of "The Mikado" directed by Sean Graney for The Hypocrites has returned for a second year. At the Chopin Theatre last December, it is now in the Steppenwolf Garage through December 29. Choreographer Katie Spelman and music director Andra Velis Simon lead a cast of 11 through their paces in this non-traditional staging of a beloved masterpiece of English music theatre. Last year's production is nominated for a BroadwayWorld Chicago Award. Better catch this year's version to figure out what you missed!
The little-seen Broadway musical "Triumph Of Love" is making what may be its Chicago area debut this weekend and next, in a concert production by the Music Theatre Company in Highland Park (December 6-15). Directed by James Beaudry and music directed by Kory Danielson, Jeffrey Stock and Susan Birkenhead's musical stars Elizabeth Telford and Nathan Gardner, with Sawyer Smith, Meghan Murphy, Bill Chamberlain, Garret Lutz and Katherine L. Condit in Betty Buckley's role of Hesione. Rare, indeed!
Kokandy Productions' "Sweet Smell Of Success" will trod the boards at Theater Wit in Lakeview from January 10-February 2, 2014, directed by John D. Glover and music directed by Aaron Benham, with choreography by Steven Spanopoulos. Brian Rooney leads the cast of the Marvin Hamlisch tuner as J.J. Hunsecker, with David Schlumpf as Sidney and Victoria Blade as Susan. Nathan Gardner (name sound familiar?) will co-star as Dallas, with Christina Hall as Rita and a talented ensemble of thirteen.
The huge Marriott Theatre in Lincolnshire will be mounting the legendary musical "Cabaret" after the holidays, for a run from January 15-March 16. David H. Bell is directing, with choreography by Matt Raftery and music direction by Ryan T. Nelson. Starring as Sally Bowles will be Broadway performer Megan Sikora, with Broadway and Marriott veteran Patrick Sarb as Clifford Bradshaw and Stephen Schellhardt as the Emcee. Others in the cast include but are not limited to Annabel Armour, Craig Spidle, Christine Sherrill and Jameson Cooper. Hot time!