Skip to main content Skip to footer site map

Hell in a Handbag Productions to Present World Premiere of FRANKENSTREISAND by Tyler Anthony Smith

The Greatest Star is back, and she’s determined to clone her perished pooch live on stage.

Hell in a Handbag Productions to Present World Premiere of FRANKENSTREISAND by Tyler Anthony Smith

The music... the mem'ries... the magic... the dog cloning! This Halloween season, Hell in a Handbag Productions kicks off its 2022-23 season with the world premiere of FRANKENSTREISAND by Tyler Anthony Smith* and directed by Stephanie Shaw, playing September 29 - October 31, 2022 at Redline VR, 4702 N. Ravenswood Ave. in Chicago. Tickets are currently available at handbagproductions.org or buytickets.at/hellinahandbagproductions/749389. The press opening is Saturday, October 1 at 9:15 pm.

Take a peek at what's under Barbra's underground mall - Babs' secret laboratory! Witness Dr. Barbra Frankenstreisand's (Tyler Anthony Smith*) first performance in 27 years, having gone into seclusion after her precious dog Samantha suddenly died. All these years later, The Greatest Star is back, and she's determined to clone her perished pooch live on stage. She's brought all of her tools, but because of those fingernails, she's going to need a little help from her loyal assistant, The Hunchback, and a tired but vampy German stage manager. Don't be surprised if Barry Gibb, Judy Garland, and other mega-stars stop by for a visit, along with twisted versions of all the signature Barbra songs you expect to hear in a show of this caliber! Don't sit and putter! Be one of the luckiest people in the world and see... FRANKENSTREISAND!

The production also features ensemble members Elizabeth Lesinski*, Nicky Mendelsohn*, Ryan Oates*, and Robert Williams* with Dakota Hughes and Brian Shaw.

The production team includes Beth Laske-Miller (Costume Design), Keith Ryan* (Wig Design, Dresser), Sydney Genco* (Make-Up Design), Jabberwocky Marionettes (Puppet Design), Dakota Hughes (Music Director) and Jenna Raithel (Stage Manager).

Please note: Handbag will continue to adhere to all city, state and federal COVID safety guidelines in place at the time of performance including, but not limited to, proof of full vaccination and masking at all performances.

*Denotes Handbag Ensemble Member

PERFORMANCE DETAILS:

Title: FRANKENSTREISAND
Playwright: Ensemble member Tyler Anthony Smith*
Director: Stephanie Shaw
Cast (in alphabetical order): Dakota Hughes (The Hunchback), Elizabeth Lesinski* (Judy Garland, Lainie Kazan, James Brolin, Céline Dion) Nicky Mendelsohn* (Barry Gibb), Ryan Oates* (Dog Walker, Chuck, Stefani), Brian Shaw (Frau Fräulein) Tyler Anthony Smith* (Dr. Barbra Frankenstreisand) and Robert Williams* (O).

Location: Red Line VR, 4702 N. Ravenswood Ave., Chicago

Previews: Thursday, September 29 at 7:30 pm and Friday, September 30 at 9:15 pm
Opening/Press performance: Saturday, October 1 at 9:15 pm
Regular run: Thursday, October 6 - Monday, October 31, 2022
Curtain Times: Thursdays at 7:30 pm; Fridays and Saturdays at 9:15 pm. Please note: there will not be a performance on Saturday, October 8 at 9:15 pm; there will be an added performance on Monday, October 31 at 7:30 pm (Halloween).

Tickets: $21 previews, $25 advanced general admission, $30 at the door, $40 VIP/reserved seating with drink ticket. Group rates $21 for 10 or more. Tickets are currently available at handbagproductions.org or buytickets.at/hellinahandbagproductions/749389. Industry Night: Monday, October 10 at 7:30 pm

About the Artists

Tyler Anthony Smith (Playwright) is in show business. He/They is/are a proud Hell in a Handbag ensemble member. To quote Barbra: "I don't like talking about myself and I don't like talking about the work." Instagram: @judithnightlight

Stephanie Shaw (Director) has performed her own work for The Paper Machete, The Encyclopedia Show, Chicago Ideas Week, The Estrogen Fest, 2nd Story, The Poetry Center of Chicago, Fillet of Solo, The Neo-Futurarium, The New York Fringe Fest and the NYC Estrogenius Fest. An alumni member of the Neo-Futurists, she wrote and performed regularly for Too Much Light Makes The Baby Go Blind from 1990-1995, and was a founding member of the Solo Performance Ensemble BoyGirlBoyGirl, with whom she wrote and performed for 10 years. She has directed a number of Solo Shows for Live Bait Theatre, The New York Fringe, and the simple pleasure of Tyler Anthony Smith and his audiences. She has directed for The Neo-Futurists, Oak Park Festival Theatre, and over a dozen plays and musicals for the theatre department of Columbia College Chicago, where she is a Professor of Instruction. Once upon a time, she was a theatre critic for The Chicago Reader.

About Hell in a Handbag Productions

Hell in a Handbag is dedicated to the preservation, exploration, and celebration of works ingrained in the realm of popular culture via theatrical productions through parody, music and homage. Handbag is a 501(c)(3) Not for Profit. For additional information, visit handbagproductions.org.

Regional Awards


More Hot Stories For You


Photos: First Look at Teatro Vista's ENOUGH TO LET THE LIGHT IN at SteppenwolfPhotos: First Look at Teatro Vista's ENOUGH TO LET THE LIGHT IN at Steppenwolf
September 24, 2022

Teatro Vista has released production photos from Enough to Let the Light In, a world premiere drama about love, truth, and the ghosts that won't let us go by Mexican-American actor/playwright/ filmmaker/director Paloma Nozicka.

Next Weekend - Inaugural Oktoberfest Kicks Off In Lakeview East Off Of BelmontNext Weekend - Inaugural Oktoberfest Kicks Off In Lakeview East Off Of Belmont
September 23, 2022

Our Lady of Mount Carmel, in partnership with the Lakeview East Chamber of Commerce, has announced its inaugural Oktoberfest.

VIDEO: First Look at THE NOTEBOOK World Premiere at Chicago Shakespeare TheaterVIDEO: First Look at THE NOTEBOOK World Premiere at Chicago Shakespeare Theater
September 23, 2022

Chicago Shakespeare Theater is presenting the world premiere musical The Notebook, now extended by popular demand through October 30, 2022. Get a first look at footage from the production here!

AstonRep Theatre to Present BURIED CHILD at The Edge Theater in OctoberAstonRep Theatre to Present BURIED CHILD at The Edge Theater in October
September 23, 2022

AstonRep Theatre Company is launching it 15th and final season with a revival of Sam Shepard’s Pulitzer Prize-winning drama Buried Child directed by Ensemble Member Derek Bertelsen*, playing October 21 – November 19, 2022 at The Edge Theater.

Cast and Creative Team Announced for CABARET at Porchlight Music TheatreCast and Creative Team Announced for CABARET at Porchlight Music Theatre
September 23, 2022

Porchlight Music Theatre will present the Tony Award-winning landmark musical Cabaret, at the Ruth Page Center for the Arts January 14 - February 12, 2023. Porchlight’s production is directed by Artistic Director Michael Weber, associate directed and choreographed by Brenda Didier and music directed by Linda Madonia.