Porchlight Music Theatre to Revisit CHESS as Part of Ongoing Series, 5/3-5
Porchlight Music Theatre and Artistic Director Michael Weber are proud to announce the final production in the third smash season of Chicago's "lost" musicals in staged concert series, Porchlight Revisits Chess, music by Benny Andersson and Björn Ulvaeus, lyrics by Tim Rice and Björn Ulvaeus and book by Tim Rice, with direction by Porchlight Artistic Director Michael Weber, choreography by Porchlight Artistic Associate Brenda Didier and music direction by Jimmy Morehead. Porchlight Revisits Chess is presented for three-nights-only Tuesday, May 3 through Thursday, May 5 at 7:15 p.m. and is performed on the set of Porchlight's Dreamgirls (previews begin April 8) on nights when there are no performances at Stage 773, 1225 W. Belmont Ave. Tickets for Chess are $30 in advance and $35 at the door the night of the performance. All tickets include access to the popular pre-performance event, Behind the Show Backstory, a multi-media presentation, created and hosted by Weber, that discusses that evening's production including the show's creative history, juicy backstage gossip and more. Single tickets to Chess are available at porchlightmusictheatre.org or by calling the Stage 773 box office, 773.327.5252. The 2016 - 2017 season subscriptions to Porchlight Revisits includes The Rink (October 4 - 6), Little Me (February 28 - March 2, 2017) and On a Clear Day You Can See Forever (May 9 - 11, 2017) are also available at porchlightmusictheatre.org.
Never before seen live in Chicago, this Porchlight Revisits production by the creators of Jesus Christ Superstar, Evita and Mamma Mia will be the original stage version of Chess that debuted in London in May 1986 following the hugely successful 1984 concept album. The later 1988 Broadway production was completely reimagined from the top down with considerable differences from this original British version in both plot and music.
One of the best loved "cult" musicals, featuring the hits "One Night in Bangkok," "I Know Him So Well" and "Anthem," Chess is set during the Cold War in the world of 1980s international chess competition where a romantic triangle develops among the defending American champion (Adrian Aguilar), his lover (Danni Smith) and a possible defecting Russian opponent (Justin Adair).
The cast of Porchlight Revisits Chess also includes: John B. Leen (Alexander Molokov), Brandon Moorehead (The Arbiter), Daniel Riley (Walter de Courcey), Britt-Marie Sivertsen (Svetlana Sergievsky), Max DeTogne (Quartet), Sierra Naomi Nibbe (Quartet), Andy Robinson (Quartet) and Genevieve Thiers (Quartet).
For this production, Porchlight is collaborating with the noted vocal music ensemble, VOX 3 Collective to add a group of accomplished classical crossover singers to support the thrilling demands of this complex and varied pop score. VOX 3 is a collective of artists who educate both performers and audience through varied presentations of vocal music. Chicago's voice for a living art music tradition, VOX 3 regularly showcases a mix of art song recitals, rare operatic repertoire, and genre-bending classical cabarets.
The production team includes: Brennan Jones (assistant director/dramaturg), Keegan Bradac (sound design/board operator), Bill Walters (stage manager,) and Aaron Shapiro (production manager).
ABOUT ADRIAN AGUILAR (Frederick Trumper, The American)Adrian Aguilar was recently seen on Broadway in Rocky, made his Porchlight Music Theatre debut in tick, tick...BOOM! (Jeff Award-nomination) followed by the title role in Pal Joey and starred opposite his brother Alexander Aguilar in the Chicago premiere of Double Trouble. Other credits include October Sky at Marriott Theatre, Follies at Chicago Shakespeare and as "Agent Freddie Castillo" on Chicago PD.
ABOUT DANNI SMITH (Florence Vassy)
Danni Smith makes her Porchlight debut with Porchlight Revisits Chess. Recent credits include A Christmas Story at Paramount, City of Angels at Marriott Theatre, The Wild Party at Bailiwick Chicago, Jesus Christ Superstar and Passion with Theo Ubique Cabaret Theatre and Harold and the Purple Crayon at Chicago Children's Theatre. Smith has received two Joseph Jefferson Awards and seven nominations.
JUSTIN ADAIR (Anatoly Sergievsky, The Russian)
Justin Adair makes his Porchlight debut with Porchlight Revisits Chess. Credits include Fugitive Songs at Boho Theatre, South Pacific with Light Opera Works, Titanic (Jeff Nominated) at Griffin Theatre, Juno with TimeLine Theatre, LES MISERABLES at Drury Lane, Cyrano de Bergerac at Chicago Shakespeare and The Light in the Piazza (Jeff Award) at Theo Ubique.
ABOUT PORCHLIGHT REVISITSContinuing to forge its role as "Chicago's Music Theatre," Porchlight launched the exciting new series, Porchlight Revisits in 2013 especially created for the die-hard music theatre aficionado. Each season, Porchlight Music Theatre shares with audiences the rare opportunity to visit three musicals that opened on the Great White Way but have since gone "unsung." The finest music theatre artists in Chicago dust off these neglected treasures and, with script in hand and minimal staging, escort audiences to a world of Broadway long past. Previous Porchlight Revisits productions include: (2015/16) Applause, Babes in Arms, (2014/15) Bells Are Ringing, City of Angels, Mack & Mabel, (2013/14) Anyone Can Whistle, Golden Boy, Fade Out-Fade In.