Friday, December 30, 2011

Secret Garden Reviews

"Its holiday season production by the company, featuring elegant direction and choreography by Stacey Flaster (one of several women who have emerged in recent years as major musical theater talents in this city), it is being beautifully sung and acted...Flaster’s staging expertly captures the contrasts in Eastern and Western visions of magic and death."
-Chicago Sun Times

"This very well-meaning show surely delivers the most beautiful garden one could expect. There were gasps of pleasure in the audience, especially from the young."
-Chicago Tribune

"The expert staging by Stacey Flaster works  to create just the right tone and atmosphere to create a ghost story."
-Chicago Theatre Critic

Light Opera Works does a stellar job with its large scale musicals using a full orchestra in the marvelous Cahn Auditorium located on the campus of Northwestern University. Roger L. Bingaman brings this hauntingly beautiful music to life as he conducts this orchestra and the voices that Flaster has assembled fill the theater with the richness and tone of the music and lyrics in this sterling piece...The ensemble players are up to the highest of standards:Barbara Clear,Maggie Clennon Reberg,Erin Thomas Lobo,Phil Higgins,Kristin O’Connell,Patrick Byrnes,Rob Riddle,Peter Oyloe,Harmony France,Jon Landvick,Maggie Clennon Reberg,Daniel Spagnuolo,Jennifer T.Grubb,Christen Boulette,Loren J. Connel, Kirsten Lendyke and Amy Orman- great job!
-Around the Town Chicago

There are four chances left to see The Secret Garden at Light Opera Works.  Friday, December 30th at 8pm,  Saturday December 31st at 2pm and 8pm, and closing on January 1st at 2pm.  Purchase your tickets now.

Image from:

Monday, December 26, 2011

Secret Garden Opening

Secret Garden opens tonight!  Come see show for a heartwarming evening filled with gorgeous music (...and find out what the rest of my costume looks like).  Runs through January 1, 2012 at Light Opera Works.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

A Merry Christmas CD

My holiday album of songs for friends and families was a hit last year, and a second one was requested.  So I recorded some more classic Christmas songs and make another cd.  This year I selected songs that reminded me of Christmases at home.  Here are my front and inside cover designs.  And of course, a special thank you to my pianist, Marta Johnson, for taking time out of her crazy December schedule for me.

Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

My Tech Week Essentials

Tech week can be a long process...especially in tech heavy shows with lots of moving parts (like the Secret Garden).  Lots of late nights mean our dressing rooms have to be filled with things that make us feel good.  Here are my tech week essentials that you'll always find in my dressing room.

Alka Seltzer Plus Tablets -for staying healthy, and keeping colds at bay among sick cast mates
Magazines - for reading during offstage time.
Mini Notebook - for jotting down blocking changes and director's notes.
Cheese Its - my current backstage snack.
Super Chill Sparkling Water - Keeps me hydrated backstage when I want a little flavor in costume.
Organic Throat Coat Tea - Soothes my throat after a long day of singing or when I'm feeling tired.
Silk Robe - for covering up during snack breaks or when wandering around in a corset and tights.
Vitamin Water Zero 

That's what's in my backstage bag on any given day.  What's in yours?

Monday, December 19, 2011

The Secret Garden Opens December 26th!

Purchase your tickets for the beautiful, haunting story of the Secret Garden.  "Part Victorian thriller, part enchanting love story."  It has one of the prettiest scores of music around and is sure to leave you feeling full of love...and a little teary eyed.  Secret Garden runs from December 26, 2011 through January 1, 2012 in Evanston, Illinois.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Understudying Mary Lennox

I've been understudying the role of Mary Lennox for my upcoming production of The Secret Garden and it has been fun and challenging to channel my inner ten year old.  Last night's rehearsal was an understudy work through and I had a surprising amount of fun romping about the stage as Mary.

Purchase tickets to the show here, opening night is 12/26/11

The Secret Garden
Music by Lucy Simon
Book & Lyrics by Marsha Norman
Photo credit:

A little preview of the show...Here's a recording of me singing Mary's act two opening song, "The Girl I Mean to Be" at a vocal coaching yesterday morning before rehearsal.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Secret Garden Character Inspiration

My character inspiration board for the dreamers of Secret Garden...ghosts of Victorian people who have died of cholera in British colonized India in the early 1900s.

"They are only a ghost if someone on earth is holding onto them."