The UW–Platteville Department of Performing and Visual Arts–Theatre and Pioneer Players will present their spring musical, “The Drowsy Chaperone,” in the Richard and Helen Brodbeck Concert Hall in the Center for the Arts. Performances will be Wednesday, April 6 at 11 a.m.; Wednesday through Saturday, April 6–9, at 7:30 p.m.; and Sunday, April 10 at 2 p.m.
Tickets are $11 for general admission; $10 faculty, staff and seniors; and $6 for students. The production is recommended for all audiences.
“The Drowsy Chaperone” begins when a man in a chair appears on stage and puts on his favorite record: the cast recording of a fictitious 1928 musical. Suddenly, the recording comes to life as the man in the chair looks on. Mix in two lovers on the eve of their wedding, a bumbling best man, a desperate theatre producer, a not-so-bright hostess, two gangsters posing as pastry chefs, a misguided Don Juan and an intoxicated chaperone, and those are the ingredients for what the Man in the Chair calls an evening of “mix-ups, mayhem and a gay wedding.”
With a Tony Award-winning musical score by Lisa Lambert and Greg Morrison, “The Drowsy Chaperone” features a wealth of hummable song-and-dance tunes including “Fancy Dress,” “Cold Feets,” “Show Off,” “Toledo Surprise,” “Bride’s Lament” and “I Do, I Do in the Sky.”
The cast includes UW–Platteville students Zach Thomas as the Man in the Chair, Emma Wilson as Janet, Ross Spadaro as Robert, Sara Mueller as the Drowsy Chaperone, Noah Thomas as Aldolpho, Cody Wisman as George, Kyle James as Feldzieg, Sandie Polakowski as Kitty, Savannah Bettin as Mrs. Tottendale, Aaron Pliska as Underling, Mitchell Losey and Tristan Hirsch as the Gangsters, McKenna Farmer as Trix, Paul Krombos as the Superintendent, and ensemble members Ian Duff, Amy Holtschult, Josh Rudesill, and Blair Schuler. Theatre major Abbie Wagner is the stage manager, and recent theatre grad Danny McMullen returns as the lighting designer.
Jeffrey Strange, assistant professor of theatre and the program’s technical director/designer, is the scenic designer for the production, and Resident Designer Sarah Strange created the costumes. Musical direction is by Susan Savage Day and choreography is by Connie SaLoutos Furlan.
“Winner of four additional Tony Awards including Best Book of a Musical, the premise, perspective and structure of the musical is quite clever,” said Dr. David Schuler, associate professor of theatre at UW–Platteville. “That’s what makes it fresh and new. It’s theatre about theatre. There are so many cultural theatre references in the show, and in many ways the Man in the Chair represents the musical theatre lover in all of us. He immediately bonds with the audience, earns our trust, and then proceeds to hilariously critique modern musical theatre by sharing his love of and insights into his favorite 1920s musical, ‘The Drowsy Chaperone.’”
“The cast has had fun and been challenged with the show’s high-energy choreography and comic style. New York Magazine called ‘The Drowsy Chaperone’ ‘the perfect Broadway musical,’ and this musical within a comedy is a loving homage to the Jazz Age and an entertaining evening of dancing, singing and zany comedy.”
For tickets and information, call the University Box Office, 342-1298 or 1-877-727-1CFA, or visit tickets.uwplatt.edu.