I was supposed to post this yesterday.
I had intended to post this yesterday, but it just didn’t happen.
It didn’t happen because we had so much fun seeing the dress rehearsal on Monday that we bought tickets and saw the show again on Wednesday night.
“The Drowsy Chaperone” at Sacramento’s Broadway at Music Circus is a hoot. I knew nothing about it going in, and I wasn’t intrigued by the title, but the show delivered by writer/actor/comedian Bruce Vilanch and cast was fabulous and non-stop funny.
Within, you will find tropes, in-jokes, spit-takes, blindfolded rollerskating, gangsters peddling petit-fours, and a bedazzled aviatrix.
Listen… anything as convoluted as that has to be funny. Just follow along.
“The Drowsy Chaperone” is a story within a story. When the lights go down we meet the “Man in Chair” (Vilanch) who is a reclusive, middle aged Broadway theater fan who likes to play his well loved and worn vinyl Broadway cast recordings when he’s puttering around the house. The album he selects for us today is “The Drowsy Chaperone”
The production centers around a glamorous 1920’s society wedding between oil baron Robert Martin (played by Matt Loehr) and Broadway “It-Girl” Janet Van De Graaff (played by Kaleigh Cronin). A huge cast of characters include a couple of 20’s gangsters dressed as bakers, an “Aviatrix”, a harried best man, a Broadway Producer, and an Italian Lothario, among others. It doesn’t take long for the wedding to go WAY off the rails, and a deluge of hilarity follows.
The caped Italian Lothario, Aldolpho, is played in this production by Evan Hansen who absolutely steals the show. I commented during the show that Hansen’s Aldolpho reminds me of a bizarre cross between The Birdcage’s Agador Spartacus and Ricky Ricardo.
I won’t spoil the surprise, but the interlude between acts one and two is unexpected and caused me to question what exactly was going on. The interplay between the show within a show resolves this scene hilariously.
As usual, Broadway at Music Circus does a spectacular job on the production and to see this show presented in the round is a real treat.
We’ve recently seen Mamma Mia! and Little Shop of Horrors at Music Circus, and as spectacular and amazing as those shows were, this production takes the cake. Run to the Wells Fargo Theater now, before they leave town on Saturday. You will not regret it.
Tickets for The Drowsy Chaperone start at $45, and are available by phone at (916) 557-1999, online at BroadwaySacramento.com, or in person at the Wells Fargo Pavilion Box Office, 1419 H Street in Sacramento. Evening performances are Tuesday through Saturday, July 9 – 13, at 7:30 p.m.; matinee performances are Thursday, July 11 and Saturday, July 13 at 2:00 p.m., and Sunday, July 14 at 3:00 p.m. For more information, visit BroadwaySacramento.com.