Shows D

THE DROWSY CHAPERONE Music and Lyrics by Lisa Lambert and Greg Morrison: Book by Bob Martin and Don McKellar Directed by Casey Nicholaw Ahmanson Theatre, Los Angeles - 10 November, 2005 - 24 December, 2005 Marquis Theatre, New York - 1 May, 2006 SYNOPSIS: The curtain rises on a present-day musical theatre fanatic eager to tell you about his favorite Broadway musical -- “The Drowsy Chaperone.” He’s the ultimate Everyfan and “Drowsy” is his guilty pleasure. As he begins listening to the rare cast recording, the show cleverly and magically blooms to life, telling the hilarious tale of a pampered Broadway starlet and her debonair fiance, an overzealous producer, a dizzy chorine, the Latin lover and a couple of bumbling gangsters. Ruses are played. Hi-jinks occur. And the plot spins everyone into musical comedy euphoria. "To chase his blues away, a modern day musical theatre addict known simply as 'Man in Chair' drops the needle on his favourite LP — the 1928 musical comedy The Drowsy Chaperone. From the crackle of his hifi, the uproariously funny musical magically bursts to life on stage, telling the tale of a pampered Broadway starlet who wants to give up show business to get married, her producer who sets out to sabotage the nuptials, her chaperone, the debonair groom, the dizzy chorine, the Latin lover and a pair of gangsters who double as pastry chefs. Man in Chair's infectious love of The Drowsy Chaperone speaks to anyone who has ever been transported by the theatre." STORY In the darkness, we hear a theatregoer's lament, and a prayer for the current state of the theatrical art. The lights come up; we see a rather ordinary man, sitting in a chair in his rather ordinary New York apartment. Admitting to a state of "non-specific sadness," he asks us to escape with him as he plays the LP of his favourite musical: Gable & Stein's The Drowsy Chaperone. Dropping the needle on his hi-fi, Man In Chair's imagination takes flight with the sound of a full orchestra. Soon, into his apartment parades the entire cast of the original 1928 production. With caveats of its "two-dimensional characters" and "well-worn plot," Man In Chair now guides us into the story... On the grounds of her estate, the dotty dowager Mrs Tottendale is to hostess a wedding. She confers with her butler, Underling. The groom, dashing oil-magnate-heir Roobert Martin, toasts his bride, Broadway starlet Janet Van de Graaff. Best Man George, the weight of the wedding on his harried shoulders, protests; the bride mustn't see the groom on her wedding day George fobs Janet off to the already half-in-the-bag (i.e. "Drowsy") Chaperone. Broadway Impresario Mr. Feldzeig bemoans his fate to dizzy chorine Kitty: Janet's getting married is a catastrophic development. Two Gangsters, posing as Damon Runyonesque, Pastry Chefs, put the screws to Feldzieg to keep Janet in "Feldzieg's Follies," at the behest of its primary investor — their underworldly Boss. As Robert attempts to calm his wedding-day jitters, George recommends that the love-struck groom go roller skating: "That's what I do when I wanna blow off steam!" George then blindfolds Robert before sending him off, lest Robert accidentally set eyes on his fiancée. The scene is interrupted by Man In Chair's telephone ringing — which he pointedly declines to answer. The scene shifts Poolside, where the glamorous Janet lounges before a ravenous press, who pepper her with