Photo Flash: John Billingsly, Audrey Wasilewski and Vicki Lewis Attend SILENCE! THE MUSICAL
Winner of the 2012 Off Broadway Alliance Award for Best Musical, SILENCE! The Musical is the unauthorized parody of The Silence of the Lambs, with book by Hunter Bell, music & lyrics by Jon Kaplan and Al Kaplan, and direction & choreography by Christopher Gattelli. The Los Angeles Company is performing the West Coast Premiere of the Off-Broadway hit. SILENCE! The Musical and is produced by Theater Mogul.
Two of the creators of SILENCE! The Musical won 2012 Tony Awards – director-choreographer Christopher Gattelli for his choreography for Newsies, and lighting designer Jeff Croiter for his work on Peter and the Starcatcher. The costumes are by David Kaley, sound by Carl Casella, set is based on the original design by Scott Pask, video by Richard H. DiBella, and wig design by Byron Batista.
Davis Gaines, one of Los Angeles most popular musical theatre performers, plays Hannibal Lecter. Gaines performed the title role in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s The Phantom of The Opera more than 2,000 times at the Ahmanson Theatre in Los Angeles, in San Francisco, and on Broadway; he recently played the role of King Arthur in Musical Theatre West’s production of Spamalot. He is joined by Christine Lakin, in the role of Clarice Starling. Lakin is known for her role on the series “Step by Step” and as news anchor Joyce Kinney on “Family Guy.” SILENCE! The Musical original cast member Stephen Bienskie is also in the Los Angeles Company, playing the role of Buffalo Bill which he created. Kathy Deitch, Jeff Hiller, Alaine Kashian, John Kassir, La Toya London, Jesse Merlin, Melissa Sandvig, Jeff Skowron, and Karl Warden are also cast.
Created by Jon Kaplan and Al Kaplan in 2002, SILENCE! The Musical began as a collection of songs on the internet which immediately attracted a staggering number of fans. The Kaplans' subsequent screenplay SILENCE! The Musical was adapted by Hunter Bell into a live stage show, which featured newly composed songs by the brothers. Fueled by an enthusiastic cult following, SILENCE! The Musical shattered every box office record at the 2005 FringeNYC Festival, winning the award for Best Musical. SILENCE! The Musical met with further success in London where it garnered ecstatic reviews at the Above The Stag Theatre.
The Off-Broadway production opened on July 9, 2011 to unanimous rave reviews. The show immediately became a sold-out phenomenon and was selected by Time Magazine as one of the year’s Top 10. The show also won four 2012 Tina Awards. The New York Company recently celebrated its first anniversary and it continues performances at the Elektra Theatre.
In the Academy Award-winning film The Silence of the Lambs, rookie FBI agent Clarice Starling matches wits with the brilliant but insane cannibal, Dr. Hannibal Lecter, to catch the serial killer known only as Buffalo Bill. Clarice faces her own demons while racing the clock to unlock Lecter's clues before another innocent girl is killed and skinned by Buffalo Bill.
In the laugh-out-loud parody, SILENCE! The Musical, features a singing chorus of floppy eared lambs narrating the action as Buffalo Bill gleefully dances a hoedown while kidnapping hapless Catherine Martin. Even Dr. Lecter, scary as ever, sings about the life he'd like to lead someday outside the prison walls. There are songs with unprintable titles with cheerful show tunes about the most horrific of subjects that come charging at the audience with gleefully unstoppable bad taste.
A long list of luminaries have turned up in the audience at the hit show over the past year in New York including Jodie Foster, Matt Bomer (twice!), Joan Rivers, Jonathan Demme, Kelly Ripa, James Earl Jones, Josh Groban, T.R. Knight, Jonathan Groff, Julie Brown, Justin Kirk, Neil Simon, Corbin Bleu, Ben Schwartz, Lisa Lampanelli, Willie Garson, Mario Cantone, Erin Cummings, Linus Roache, Stephen Schwartz, Jeremy Jordan, David LaChapelle, Steven Pasquale, James Lapine, John Kander, Chita Rivera, Georgia Engel, Shuler Hensley, Brent Barrett, Danny Burstein, Donna McKechnie, John Rando, Christian Campbell, Reed Birney, Stephen Flaherty, Tovah Feldshuh, Karen Ziemba, Kara Lindsay, Alec Mapa, Chris Barron, Barrett Foa, Cady Huffman, Barbara Feldon, Seth Rudetsky, Eden Espinosa, Telly Leung, Daniel Reichard, John Cunningham, Andrew Keenan-Bolger, Charlotte d’Amboise, Lindsay Nicole Chambers, John McDaniel, JohAnna Day, Carol Woods, and Anthony Heald.
The playing schedule for SILENCE! The Musical is Thursday through Saturday evenings at 8 PM, and Sundays at 3 & 7 PM at the Hayworth Theatre, 2511 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles CA 90057. Tickets are available online at www.silencethemusical.com or 866-811-4111.
Photo credit: Ritchard Druther