The Drowsy Chaperone returns to the Ahmanson Theatre for two weeks only. This witty love letter to the madcap musicals of the 1920s had its U.S. premiere at the Ahmanson before moving to Broadway, where it received more Tony Awards than any other musical of the 2006 season.
The curtain rises on a present-day theatre fanatic - narrated by Man in the Chair (Jonathon Crombie) - eager to share his favorite musical with the audience. As he begins to play a rare cast recording on his hi-fi. Jonathon is a blast as he narrates the story. All throughout the show, you can’t help but fall in like with his loveable as he shines on stage
The Drowsy Chaperone blooms to life on stage as telling the tale by Jonathon of a pampered Broadway starlet ( Andrea Chamberlain) who wants to give up show business to marry her debonair fiancé ( Mark Ledbetter). Mark is funny and entertaining, and Andrea’s voice is as powerful as her limber, dance moves. She outshined everyone in her solo of "I don't wanna show off anymore." She was my favorite female in this show.
Enter the producer Feldzieg (Cliff Bemis) who tries to sabotage the nuptials. Cliff brings a presence with his suave, eobust, charismatic, comical looks. The starlet’s world-weary and scene-stealing chaperone (Nancy Opel) is another striking character in the production as the stereotypical bored, cynical, drunken socialite who comes to life when accidentally seduced by a Latin lover. Then there is the nervous best man George (Richard Vida) with his impressive, fantastic tap-dancing moves.
You may remember Georgette in the Mary Tyler Moore show. She is the dotty dowager Mrs. Tottendale, (Georgia Engel). Georgia is just too adorable, as usual. I don’t think anyone can bring the presence that she can on stage or in film. She’s delightful and very funny.
Ten there was the Latin lover Aldolpho (James Moye) who was my favorite male on stage. He was like a suave cartoon-like character come to life. In each one of his scenes he had the audience roaring with laughter.
Other characters included: a pair of gangsters posing as pastry chefs and an aviatrix (Peter Riopelle and Paul Riopelle). They bring a touch of The Marx Brothers on stage as they speak and move as one with one another; The sardonic servant (Robert Dorfman), and finally, the dizzy, typical blonde chorine Kitty (Marla Mindele).
Each member of the cast had their share of laughs - some more than others. Each scene was lit well and show-cased the cast nicely. All together they were a perfect group of performers that belted out wonderful songs and charismatic dance moves on a perfect stage. A happy ending for the audience and a standing ovation for the cast.
The Drowsy Chaperone
Directed and Choreographed by Casey Nicholaw
Music and Lyrics by Lisa Lambert and Greg Morrison
Book by Bob Martin and Don McKellar
Opens Wednesday, July 9 at 8 p.m. Through July 20, 2008.
Tuesday through Saturday at 8 p.m.; Saturday at 2 p.m.; Sunday at 1 p.m. and 6:30 p.m.; No performances on Mondays.
Ticket Prices: $30 - $90
Tickets are available by calling Center Theatre Group Audience Services at (213) 628-2772, in person at the Center Theatre Group box office or on-line at www.CenterTheatreGroup.org. Hot Tix: $20 each can be purchased in advance or, subject to availability, on the day of performance at the box office (no checks).
Groups: (213) 972-7231. Deaf community: Information & charge, TDD (213) 680-4017.
Center Theatre Group / Ahmanson Theatre at the Music Center / 135 N. Grand Avenue in Downtown L.A.
For more information about The Drowsy Chaperone click here www.CenterTheatreGroup.org