The Golden Girls Show Review - A Puppet Parody...or is it???



Created by Jonathan Rockefeller -  playing at Union Square’s DR2 Theatre


New York: Drama Desk nominee Jonathan Rockefeller debuts a brand new tribute show entitled That Golden Girls Show! - A Puppet Parody with its world premiere in NYC. This limited run begins performances on September 19; opening on Monday, October 3, and runs through December 11, 2016 at DR2 Theatre (103 East 15th Street).

When I got to the theater, I truly expected an old crowd, seniors who were devoted fans who were coming back to relive the 'olden days' of the great Golden Girls.  What I saw was the most age-diverse crowd filling this beautiful intimate theater.  Not only were many of them younger than my kids, as soon as the music played, everyone chimed in with the words, with enthusiasm I've rarely seen.  What a hoot!


Photo Credit: Russ Rowland


i've seen my share of 'puppet shows' on/off Broadway, including Hand to God and Avenue Q.  These were almost life-sized puppets being handled equisitely by four handlers, all dressed in black.  What made this so incredibly delicious to me (the cheesecake didn't hurt), was that each actress not only handled the puppets but played the actual character, voice, body movements, expressions, all to perfection.  I must say that there was uproarious laughter when the puppets appeared one-by-one and when 'Dorothy' came in, we were all treated to a male handler.  Have to say, his voice WAS Dorothy.  After a few moments I wasn't sure if I was watching the puppets or their handlers as everyone was in perfect sync.


Photo Credit: Russ Rowland


Since much of the audience were little tykes in 1985 when the show took place, the props and the perfectly decorated 'apartment' that was created onstage, brought laughs throughout the audience.  The 'big screen' television with it's appropriate antenna, was one of the best 'throwbacks' I've seen.  For me, it brought back a lot of wonderful memories and now that I've aged 31 years since the show, I'm old enough to say that the creator of this show, Jonathan Rockefeller,  'hit the jackpot.'  He accomplished what he set out to do.  And, although three of those lovely Golden Girls have passed on, I felt, for that hour and a half, that I was seeing the Golden Girls in person, and just loving it!


Photo Credit: Russ Rowland


By the way, just to mention, Stan did not need a handler.  Go see the show and you will 'get it'

Thanks, Stan.


Set in that sassy Miami house in 1985, 'That Golden Girls Show!' is a brand new show that parodies classic Golden Girls moments - with puppets! Get set for an evening of cheesecake, laughter, jazzercise, shoulder pads, sex, and the elegant art of the quick-witted put down. 

From Sophia's get-rich-quick schemes, to Rose's tales from St Olaf, Blanche's insatiable hunt for men and the Fountain of Youth, to Dorothy's daily struggle to make sense of her life, manage her roommates all the while fending off a certain, pesky ex-husband, once and for all. Devoted fans will fondly remember our four girls from Miami, and for the first-timers, this will be a joyful introduction to the brilliance of that television series.


Photo Credit: Russ Rowland


The cast includes Arlee Chadwick as Rose, Cat Greenfield as Blanche, Michael LaMasa as Dorothy Emmanuelle Zeesman as Sophia and Zach Kononov as Stanley.  Creative team includes: Puppets created by Joel Gennari,  David Goldstein (Set & Lighting Design), Nate Edmondson (Composer & Sound Design), Stephanie Klapper (Casting), Shae Candelaria (Production Stage Manager), General Management by Perry Street Theatricals.

His earlier Golden Girls themed parody show entitled ‘Thank You For Being a Friend’ sold out in Australia and Canada where it was called ‘Akin to Genius’ Gay Toronto; ‘A unique tribute show that is as funny as, if not more, than the original’ - The Daily Telegraph; ‘The entire audience laughed out loud throughout the show’ - Daily Sydney; ‘Belly-achingly funny’ - Sydney Arts Guide; ‘A must for diehards’ - The Age, Melbourne; 'Truly sensational… headed for Broadway’ - Stage Whispers; ‘Five out of five Stars’ - Same Same; ‘Delight from start to finish. I would happily sit through re-runs’ - Media Culture; ‘A lovingly hilarious tribute show!’ - Byte Media; ‘The show is a treat’ - The Australian. The show is currently being presented at Canada’s Al Green Theatre.


Performance Schedule: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday at 7:30pm; Friday at 7:30pm & 10pm;

Saturday at 3pm & 8pm; Sunday at 3pm  - DARK on Wednesdays

DR2 Theatre is located at 103 East 15th Street - Running time 90 minutes, no intermission


Tickets are: Tickets are: $99 (Golden VIP Ticket), $69 16(Regular)

and can be purchased by visiting: or by calling 1-800 982- 2787


Performances through December 11, 2016

That Golden Girls Show



JONATHAN ROCKEFELLER (Creator)is the co-founder of Rockefeller Productions, a company that combines film, theatre, animation, puppetry and television. He also devotes time to philanthropic work furthering childhood literacy and appreciation of the arts. Last year, Jonathan was selected as a 'Men of Influence' by Men’s Style Australia for his work in children’s theater and literacy.


The U.S. production of ‘The Very Hungry Caterpillar Show’, based on the much beloved children’s book by Eric Carle, garnered a Drama Desk and an Off Broadway Alliance nomination and still plays to sold-out houses in NYC. The original production of ‘The Very Hungry Caterpillar Show’ debuted to a sell-out season at the Sydney Festival January 2015, and will continue to tour Australia and New Zealand through 2017.


Beyond the stage, Jonathan and Eric Carle Studios teamed up to produce and direct an animated version of ’10 Little Rubber Ducks’ based on Mr. Carle’s book of the same name and narrated by Bernadette Peters, that debuted at the UK’s Bath Film Festival in December.


Prior to his work with Eric Carle, Jonathan co-wrote and produced the puppet-parody 'Thank You for Being a Friend' which has been licensed for further productions worldwide. Other projects include the documentary 'Road to Pride Rock: The Making of the Lion King' and the screenplay 'Coming of Age' developed with Screen New South Wales and the Dungog Film Festival’s In the Raw program.


Accolades include a Cannes Lion nomination, multiple Clio and Media Awards, High Commendations at Australian Cinematographer’s Guild [ASC], Best Television Current Affairs at the National Media Awards for an unvarnished documentary about life on the street in 'Boy from the Blue Room', and 'Best Unproduced Screenplay' at the Aus MTV Awards for 'Satisfaction', a satirical tale of becoming an assistant on the ‘world’s most expensive perfume commercial’.


By complete coincidence, Jonathan was a protégé of Baz Luhrmann, with a career that began during film school. At age 17, he convinced his formidable mentor to take him on as an apprentice by literally sitting in a gutter outside Baz’s house with an ambitious cardboard sign declaring ‘Bazmark or Bust’. Jonathan worked with Baz on the US production of La Boheme and the Chanel No 5 commercial featuring Nicole Kidman.


A book inspired by his time working under Baz Luhmrann is currently being competed.






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