‘The Drowsy Chaperone’ at Palace Playhouse

April 14, 2019

This last weekend was the opening of the “Drowsy Chaperone” by Bob Martin and Don McKellar with music by Lisa Lambert and Greg Morrison. The Palace Playhouse has chosen a musical that has zany music with a lot of fun comedic moments. This musical comedy is a lot of fun to watch because of the way it is structured.

The musical revolves around our “Man in Chair” who is a lover of musicals. He regales the audience of his favorites and we learn he is lonely and misses the time when musicals were about the production and getting dressed up. As he is playing his favorite, “The Drowsy Chaperone,” on vinyl, his entire apartment comes alive with the music and dance numbers.

Throughout the production he informs the audience about the characters themselves, tired motifs, or even his dislike of certain numbers. The Drowsy Chaperone is supposed to keep her friend Janet Van De Graaff away from her fiancé or the entire wedding will be ruined.

The chaperone, who enjoys her liquor a little too much, does not do her job as well as she should, and De Graff discovers something shocking about her affianced. The entire production is a lot of fun with the changes between our man in chair and the action happening on stage.

The Palace Playhouse has gone above and beyond for this production and it is due to its brilliant cast and crew. Jenna Davies was the director, as well as leading lady Ms. Janet Van De Graff.

This must have been quite difficult to do both, but the seamlessness in which the musical was performed, shows how well she did both. The Man in Chair was played by John Bidwell.His facial expressions added so much to his character and made the audience laugh out loud.

The Drowsy Chaperone was played by Elissa Jones. I loved her sassy, boozy nature and she looked like she was having a blast. Adolpho was played by Justin DaBell. I couldn’t stop laughing at his over the top ladies’ man character. He was a lot of fun to watch.

Mrs. Tottendale was played by Andrea Evans, the charm of her character was great because as a host…she had no idea what was going on, and it didn’t matter because she was having fun! She was hilarious while doing spit-takes with Underling, who was played by Cody Evans. Their chemistry was great.

Robert Martin was played by Levi Bruner. He is the savvy groom who is an accident waiting to happen and couldn’t be happier he is getting married. The man of honor, George, was played by Jack Johnson. His character must go through a lot, and he does it like a pro.

Feldzieg, played by John Grayson, is the producer who is losing his star, De Graff, and will stop at nothing to stop the wedding.

Kitty, played by Emmeline Swink, just wants a chance to prove herself as a star, but she is just dim-witted, which added to the comedy of the show. The two gangsters Porter Williams, and Bryant Parrish (Burke Knapp will play gangster one for the rest of the run) were fun to watch.

Trix was played by Beth Crossley. The superintendent was played by a surprise community member, and the ensemble was Camryn Smellie, Tahni Gentry, Destini McKee, Vanessa Grow, and JR Sellers. If I missed anyone in the cast, I apologize.

The cast and crew did a great job working together to make this production a success. Even through there were a few issues with microphone malfunctions, the characters didn’t let it bother them, and an errant script (which I could assume was part of the character, was a tad distracting) the whole night went very well! The costumes for this production were amazing! The bright colors popped from the scenery which was lighter than the rest. It gave an almost dreamlike quality to the entire production.

I highly recommend going to see this production. It has some amazing music and laughs for everyone. The Palace Playhouse has continued to put together amazing shows for the people of Pocatello and the surrounding areas. This talented cast and crew deserves to have a their audience filled every night. Bravo everyone!

Emily Thornton is currently working on her Masters in Communication at ISU. She enjoys writing, racing after her son and playing games with her husband.

If you go:

Palace Playhouse

April 9-May 13

Prices are $20-$41.50 (Depending on Dinner and/or Show only prices)

Call 208-238-8001 or go online at www.palaceplayhouse.com to purchase tickets