Thursday, December 30, 2010

Be A Broadway Star Board Game

I was the lucky recipient of the Be a Broadway Star! board game this holiday season!  My excitement proved to be totally spot on, this game is fantastic!  I can't say enough about it, other than that I spent most of the game saying "this is just like real life!"  I can't wait to play it with all my musical theatre friends.  Check out these photos I took while I was playing for the first time.

Learn more and get one for yourself here.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Hello, Dolly! Hats!

One of the best things about doing Hello, Dolly! is the fabulous hats!  Fake feathers, flowers, leaves, and tulle run rampant onstage and off!  I love it.  As our wig designer said, "Get those hats flat on your head. We don't want to see your face, we want to see your hat!"  These are my awesome hats from the show.  See me and these fabulous hats on stage until January 2, 2011.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Rave Reviews for "Hello, Dolly!"

Hello, Dolly! opened Sunday afternoon to one of the best houses I've had the pleasure of performing for.  Lots of laughter, "bravos," and a standing ovation.  The first reviews came in Monday morning and they are glowing!  

The Chicago Critic said if the show...
It is so refreshing to see the full version sans cuts with the complete cast of dancers to bring home Gower Champion’s original choreography nicely recreated by Hogenmiller." And "What makes this production stand out are two major elements – the fabulous, heartfelt and commanding work from Mary Robin Roth as Dolly. She plays Dolly with guile, charm and humor and loads of heart. Her vocals and comic chops rule the show. Roth is a wonderfully truthful Dolly.  This Dolly is a winner!
The second element that shine here is the expert dancing and the  respectful choreography. Rudy Hogenmiller’s dancers flawlessly nail each movement and each step with precession.  You’d be hard pressed to see finer show-stoppers than Hello, Dolly! provides.
The Around the Town Chicago critic had this to say...
Under the direction and choreography of Rudy Hogenmiller, this is truly an opportunity for an audience member to see a classic done to perfection. The large dance numbers are superb and Hogenmiller never allows the limitations of the smaller stage to handicap his creative flow or the talents of his cast.    
Musical theater, in particular, the old classics rely on the ensemble to make all the loose unds fit and this being a show that might be called a choreographer’s dream, they should be applauded and lauded for their work. The male ensemble members work just a bit harder with thier big dance numbers  of “Hello Dolly” and “The waiter’s Galop” as well as company numbers...Great job guys! Of course, the women ensemble members all did a wonderful job, but this is a male ensemble show with many more numbers geared for the male chorus, so let’s give them the credit for the wonderful work they did.
Dolly runs through January 2nd.  Tickets are selling fast, especially for New Year's Eve!  Purchase yours here.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Holiday Recording

As a special holiday treat, I recorded some of my favorite Christmas and holiday songs for friends and family!  Check out the cover art.  Special thanks to Marta Johnson, my pianist, and Chase Agnello-Dean, my photographer who made time in their busy December schedules to help me make this little cd, "December."

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Hello, Dolly! Opens Sunday, December 26th

Music and Lyrics by Jerry Herman
Book by Michael Stewart
Based on the play "The Matchmaker"
by Thornton Wilder
Original Production Directed and Choreographed
  by Gower Champion
Produced for the Broadway stage
  by David Merrick and Champion-Five, Inc. 

December 26, 2010-January 2, 2011
At Cahn Auditorium - 600 Emerson, Evanston, IL

Dolly Gallagher Levi is back, turning New York City upside down in her pursuit of a wealthy husband -- bringing romance, joy and love to everyone she meets! This 10-time Tony Award winner is America's favorite musical comedy.

Enjoy these razzle-dazzle show-stopping numbers:
• Before the Parade Passes By 
• It Only Takes a Moment 
• Put On Your Sunday Clothes 
• Hello, Dolly!

Ages 8 and older

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Snowy Photo Shoot

Some photos from a fun, snow filled photo shoot for a special project I have in the works.
Photography by Chase Agnello-Dean.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Check out the fabulous photo that's currently on the front page of the Masked Ball page on the Lyric's website.  That's me in the fabulous hat!  There's only one more chance to see the show, this Friday, December 10th at 2pm. 

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Masked Ball Photos

Photos from the dress rehearsal of Masked Ball at the Lyric.  That's me above, in the center (in that fabulous hat) as Colombina.  Below, a close up of that fabulous hat and my fun white wig.  Masked Ball runs through December 10th. 

Top photo courtesy of the Lyric Opera. See more photos from dress rehearsal on their facebook page.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Monday, November 1, 2010

Un Ballo in Maschera

November 1st brings us that much closer to my next production.  See me as Colombina in The Lyric Opera's production of A Masked Ball or in Italian, Un Ballo in Maschera opening November 15, 2010. 
A love triangle turns deadly in one of Italian opera's greatest hits!
Conspirators want the monarch dead — and suspected adultery plays right into their murderous plans.
The king is in love with his best friend's wife — and she's in love with him. Desperate to extinguish her ardor, she turns to a sorceress for help — but too late! The secret's out and a devastated husband takes his revenge!
You'll thrill to Verdi at the peak of his musical and dramatic genius as he delves deeply into the psyches of three people who love, yet destroy, each other.

Masked Ball is only here for eight performances!  November 15 through December 10, 2010.  For more information and to purchase tickets, visit the Lyric Opera's website.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Opera versus Hockey

Interesting piece talking about the October run of Carmen and comparing opera to hockey.  The first run of Carmen closed today, but will be back with a few changes in the cast for a run in March 2011.  Video courtesy of Fox News Chicago.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Carmen Photos

Carmen opened last night to a full house and a standing ovation.  Here's a photo from Act I courtsey of the Lyric Opera.  That's me on the right watching the children's chorus march onstage.  Check out more photos on their facebook page.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Carmen Dress Rehearsal

Take a sneak peek at some of the fabulous costumes from the Lyric's production of Carmen.  Opening night is October 13, 2010.  Purchase tickets and get more info here.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Carmen Opens October 13th

Make sure you purchase your tickets for the Lyric Opera's production of Carmen.  It's full of great singing and amazing costumes!  Get tickets here, read the Lyric's overview below.

Find out why this is the most popular opera in the world!
What could make a man cheat on his fiancée, drive his mother to tears, and ditch a good job? One woman — Carmen! She's the sex-bomb, gypsy seductress who loves them and leaves them — tossing egos and hearts in the dust.
To the tune of some of the most memorable music ever composed (the Toreador Song, the Habanera, and more!) her story unfolds in the sultry Spanish sun: Corporal Don José arrests Carmen for knifing another cigarette girl — but he's the emotional prisoner! So how can he possibly let her live when she dumps him for a famous matador?
Carmen runs October 13th through October 29th then remounts in March 2011.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Arizona Lady Photos

Photos from Arizona Lady with Chicago Folks Operetta.  Running at Stage 773 (Formally Theatre Building Chicago) until August 1st.  Above, featured dancers Kirsten Lendyke and Eric Casady.  Photography courtsey of 5th Floor Photography, see photographs from the entire show here.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

A Spirited Revival

Arizona Lady was given a thumbs up by The Chicago Tribune's John von Rhein.  "Spirited revival of 'Arizona Lady' packs tunes as well as six-guns."

We're hailed as a "lively and attractive supporting cast" and  "an engaging cast makes it a musical entertainment as refreshing as a lemon sorbet on a hot summer's day."  The review doesn't do justice to the fun and fantastic dancing by the ensemble though.  That you'll just have to see in person.  There are ten chances left to see this US Premiere.  Purchase tickets here.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Company Photo with Ms. Kalaman

Yvonne Kalaman and the cast of Arizona Lady

The cast and crew of "Arizona Lady" were lucky to have the daughter of composer Emmerich Kalaman, Yvonne Kalaman, in the audience for opening night.  Ms. Kalaman was delighted with the show!  It was an honor and a pleasure to have her in the audience.  The run continues Thursdays through Saturdays until August 1, 2010.  Learn more and purchase tickets here.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Arizona Lady Opens Saturday!

The American premeire of Arizona Lady opens this weekend!  Preview show and Industry night on Friday, July 16th.  Opening night with Emmerich Kalman's daughter and pre-performance lecture on Saturday, July 17th.  The show is fun, bubbly, and full of fabulous voices and dancing.  Come see me as Molly and a featured dancer in the first production of Arizona Lady in 50 years! 

Visit the Chicago Folks Operetta website for more information and to purchase tickets.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Character Inspiration

I love vintage pin up posters!  So finding one that relates to a show I'm doing always inspires me.  Arizona Lady is set in 1920s Arizona....something that requires a delicate balance of femininity mixed with the "down to earth farm hand" girl.  Based on the amount of pas de duex in the show, I'm going a little heavier on the former.

Arizona Lady opens this month on July 17, 2010.  Special pre-performance lectures and a visit by the composer's daughter are all part of the opening weekend fun.  Purchase tickets here.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Arizona Lady

Tonight was our first rehearsal of Arizona Lady!  It's going to be a great show.  A fun plot, catchy music, and dancing cow girls!
Chicago Folks Operetta is proud to present the American premiere of Emmerich Kálmán’s western operetta, Arizona Lady. Directed by Bill Walters and choreographed by August Tye, this romantic operetta will carry you back to the rough-and-tumble, happy-go-lucky wild west of singing cowboys Gene Autry and Roy Rogers. This was Kálmán’s last operetta, published posthumously in 1953. Featuring a new English translation by Hersh Glagov and Gerald Frantzen, this will not only be the American premiere but the first performance of the show worldwide in over 50 years.

Can't wait for our first staging rehearsals.  It's great to be back with such a fabulous company, Arizona Lady marks my thrid show with the Chicago Folks Operetta.  The show will be preformed at The Theatre Building Chicago July 17th - August 1st.  Purchase tickets here.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Kassi Fest III

Photos from my latest show, The Size of Furniture by Benjamin Adair Murphy.  The piece had its Chicago debut among other ten minute plays at Kassi Fest III.  Photos courtesy of the Rubicon Theatre Project. See the photos from the other plays here.


Thursday, May 6, 2010

Kassi Fest

The Kassi Festival is quickly approaching!  My one act, "The Size of Furniture," is a short piece about a husband and wife shopping for that last piece to complete their home with a nod to absurdism.  Two shows only, May 16th & 17th at Studio BE.  See the side bar for a link to ticket information.  Here are the promotional book mark postcards.  Super cute. 

Monday, March 8, 2010

Closing Night & Compliments

After Pride & Prejudice closed to a solid run of almost sold out houses, I received the greatest compliment from one of the writers.  She said they loved my interpertation of Anne de Bourgh so much that they were going to incorporate it into future productions.  I was so flattered and humbled that my small character choice could impress someone who had written the scene!  Playing Anne reminded me that it's not about the amount of time you spend on stage, but what you do with it that counts.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Pride & Prejudice's Opening Review

Here's a bit from a lovely review of Pride & Prejudice from Steadstyle Chicago.

"Steven Daigle's energetic production mostly plays the piece for laughs, but there is no lack of drama in the work itself."

"One of the virtues of the show is that this is a real ensemble piece. True, the relationship between Elizabeth and Darcy remains central, but almost every character has a moment or an entire number to shine."

"The first weekend's performances were packed at the Athenaeum Theatre, but tickets are still available for the second weekend. Austen lovers will find this is an exciting opportunity to experience the work anew."

Want to read the whole review, click here.  Want to see the show?  There are two performances left, Saturday, March 6 at 7:30 and Sunday, March 7 at 3:00 at Athenaeum Theatre.  Purchase tickets here.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Pride & Prejudice Character Research

I always find it fascinating to play characters based on literature, especially the lesser known ones.  Here is a little inspiration board I created to help me with playing Anne de Bourgh. 

I found this blog, Mending My Own Pen, to be particularly interesting.  A great character comparision of Anne and Georgiana Darcy, and proof that just because one character is telling the story doesn't mean they are always right.

Pride & Prejudice opens this Saturday. 
Find out more at the Chamber Opera Chicago Website.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Bridal Modeling

In January I had the pleasure of modeling for Aniko Salon & Spa at a local bridal event.  Here's my favorite photo of the gorgeous look they gave me.   

The ingredients that made me so beautiful...
Hair styling by Patrick Daniels
Makeup by Billie Luckett
Jewelry courtesy of The Left Bank Jewelry
Photo by Kasia Bogucka

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Operetta Photo Love

I'm on the blog at 5th Floor Photography!  They shot the dress rehearsal for Cloclo and one of their images was in this month's issue of The Chicago Magazine.  Check out the post here.