BWW Review: 42ND STREET at St. Dunstan's is Big, Beautiful and Amazing! Thru June 17

BWW Review: 42ND STREET at St. Dunstan's is Big, Beautiful and Amazing! Thru June 17

St. Dunstan's Theatre Guild of Cranbrook closes out their season this year with the show-stopping 42ND STREET. Experience "theatre under the stars," as this classic musical is performed in the beautiful outdoor Greek Theatre, located right behind the St. Dunstan's pavilion in Bloomfield Hills.

Unlike most musicals, this show is 75 percent dance performance. That requires tons of energy, but St. Dunstan's never fails to deliver exquisite quality theatre. Roberta Campion should change her last name to champion, because her choreography in this show is winning prize level! She remarked, "Choreographing 42nd Street has been a team effort! When I danced professionally, I knew many of the routines as this Gower Champion show has many iconic selections in it. We are blessed to have several advanced dancers in the show. MariToni Harte is a professional dancer and choreographer and contributed tons of her time, talents, and choreography. Ryan Quinn is an amazing tapper and also helped! And our Peggy Sawyer (Erin Johnson ) is a true triple threat as is Billy, played by Kyle Patrick."

St. Dunstan's drew top talent for this show. It's one of those organizations that everyone wants to be casted in. Their reputation is first class in everything they do. I love any show that Kendall Doman performs in; she's a star among stars.

Director Jennifer Ward said, "Putting up any well-known musical, in the best of facilities and circumstances, comes with some pretty high expectations. The iconic nature of "42nd Street" raises the bar even higher, in part because people that have never seen the show are likely to recognize most of the songs, and of course the dancing needs to be off the hook! But putting it on outdoors? Well that changes everything! I'm not sure if that raised the bar ("if they are crazy enough to do this in the Greek, they must know what they are doing") or lowered it ("they must be crazy, there's no way that will work in an outdoor Greek theatre!"), but I think it's fair to say that this cast and crew has managed to exceed expectations in either case! Community theatre in the Detroit area boasts a ton of talent, and I was so fortunate to have put together such a wonderful group of performers and their amazing support team!"

This quintessential backstage musical comedy is the song and dance fable of Broadway, hard work, and the American Dream. Based on a novel by Bradford Ropes and Busby Berkeley's 1933 movie, 42nd Street tells the story of a starry-eyed young dancer named Peggy Sawyer who leaves her Allentown, Pa. home and comes to New York to audition for a new Broadway musical. When the leading lady breaks her ankle, Peggy takes over and becomes a star. With a book by Michael Stewart and Mark Bramble, music by Harry Warren and lyrics by Al Dubin, you will be singing along and tapping your toes to songs like "We're in the Money, "Lullaby of Broadway," "Shuffle Off to Buffalo" and of course "42nd Street."

This show requires "all hands-on deck" from the St. Dunstan's volunteers. Director, Jennifer Ward (Royal Oak) is no stranger to directing big musicals, but is excited to be making her directing debut in the Greek. "I just love putting on a big musical - and 42nd Street certainly fits the definition! It's big in every way, from the size of the cast and the number of costumes they wear, to the big splashy song and dance numbers. We have some fantastic dancers, some professional level singers and lots of great acting chops. We even like to think we have a few of that rare and beautiful theatrical creature known as 'the triple threat'! My challenge is to make the most of everyone's skills and experience so that the whole show shines...and I'm having a wonderful time in the process."

Playing the lead role of Peggy Sawyer is Erin Johnson (Franklin), who is no stranger to 42nd Street. Johnson received her BFA in Musical Theatre from the University of Michigan. After college, she pursued a career in professional theatre which included Broadway tours of 42nd Street and Thoroughly Modern Millie (each of which was seen at the Fisher Theatre in Detroit).

This production is rounded out by a stellar cast including: Kendall Doman (Bloomfield Hills) as Dorothy Brock, Katherine DiBiase (Oak Park) as Maggie Jones, Mitch Master (Bloomfield Hills) as Julian Marsh, Kyle Patrick (Ferndale) as Billy Lawlor, Jeff Foust (West Bloomfield) as Bert Barry, Brynn Ward (Royal Oak) as Ann Reilly, Sarah Kwas (Berkley) as Phyllis Dale, Angela VanKempen (Ypsilanti) as Lorraine Flemming, Elaine Parenteau (Ferndale) as Gladys, Stephanie Peltier (Royal Oak) as Diane Lorimer, Ryan Quinn (Clawson) as Andy Lee, Jay Jolliffe (Bloomfield Hills) as Pat Denning, Hoggie Amare (Troy) as Mac, Jake Zinke (West Bloomfield) as Oscar, and Alan Binkow (Troy) as Abner Dillon. The incredible tapping and singing chorus includes Adam Bernard (Royal Oak), Andrea Sevonty (Detroit), Andela Nepa (Beverly Hills), Ann Vermeersch (New Baltimore), Craig VanKempen (Ypsilanti), Emma Lockwood (Ferndale), Erin Quetell (Pleasant Ridge), MariToni Harte (Bloomfield Hills), Victoria Costantini (Bloomfield Hills), and Josh Kimball (Royal Oak). The ensemble is rounded out by Beth Egan DeGuise (Bloomfield Twp.), Heather Clement (Royal Oak), and Zoe Hecker (Royal Oak).

St. Dunstan's present 42nd Street through June 17. All shows begin at 8:00 p.m, Tickets are $20 each for adults and $18 each for students and seniors. St. Dunstan's is located at 400 Lone Pine Road in Bloomfield Hills.

The Greek Theatre is located behind St. Dunstan's Playhouse at 400 Lone Pine Road, between Woodward and Lahser in Bloomfield Hills. Enter the St. Dunstan's lobby to get to the Greek Theatre. Please allow time for walking.

To order tickets, or for more information - including details on parking, and seating - visit www.StDunstansTheatre.com or call 1-844- DUNSTAN (1-844- 386-7826).

The Production Team

Director: Jennifer Ward

Music Director: Dianne Cragg

Choreographer: Roberta Campion

Asst. Choreographer: MariToni Harte

Dance Captain: Ryan Quinn

Producer: Mairo Towle, Nat Towle

Set Design: Tom Edson

Set Build: Michael Campion

Costume Design: Kathy Shapero

Costume Design: Linda Watson

Stage Manager: Bill Graham

Stage Manager: Michael Butler

Sound Design: Chuck Goddeeris

Lighting Design: Marcus Laban

Props: Nat Towle

Program: Laurane Lake

Tickets: Ruth Bennett

Publicity: Molly Dorset

Prompter: Connie McEwan

Photographer: Ian McEwan

high res photosBWW Review: 42ND STREET at St. Dunstan's is Big, Beautiful and Amazing! Thru June 17
42nd Street. Photo courtesy Molly Dorset BWW Review: 42ND STREET at St. Dunstan's is Big, Beautiful and Amazing! Thru June 17
42nd Street. Photo courtesy Molly Dorset BWW Review: 42ND STREET at St. Dunstan's is Big, Beautiful and Amazing! Thru June 17
42nd Street. Photo courtesy Molly Dorset BWW Review: 42ND STREET at St. Dunstan's is Big, Beautiful and Amazing! Thru June 17
42nd Street. Photo courtesy Molly Dorset BWW Review: 42ND STREET at St. Dunstan's is Big, Beautiful and Amazing! Thru June 17
42nd Street. Photo courtesy Molly Dorset BWW Review: 42ND STREET at St. Dunstan's is Big, Beautiful and Amazing! Thru June 17
42nd Street. Photo courtesy Molly Dorset BWW Review: 42ND STREET at St. Dunstan's is Big, Beautiful and Amazing! Thru June 17
42nd Street. Photo courtesy Molly Dorset BWW Review: 42ND STREET at St. Dunstan's is Big, Beautiful and Amazing! Thru June 17
42nd Street. Photo courtesy Molly Dorset BWW Review: 42ND STREET at St. Dunstan's is Big, Beautiful and Amazing! Thru June 17
42nd Street. Photo courtesy Molly Dorset

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