NightBlue Performing Arts’ MARY POPPINS – Through March 27, 2016 at Stage 773
NightBlue Performing Arts Company is pleased to present the Chicago Non-Equity premiere of Disney and Cameron Mackintosh’s MARY POPPINS, a musical based on the stories of P.L. Travers and the Walt Disney Film, with original music and lyrics by the Academy Award-winning team of Richard M. Sherman and Robert B. Sherman, book by Julian Fellowes, new songs and additional music and lyrics by George Stiles and Anthony Drewe and co-created by Cameron Mackintosh. MARY POPPINS will play February 28 – March 27, 2016 at Stage 773, 1225 W. Belmont Ave. in Chicago. Photos by Emily Schwartz.
This intimate new production of MARY POPPINS is directed by NightBlue’s Jeff-nominated Artistic Director David E. Walters (Spamalot), joined by critically acclaimed music director Austin Cook (Million Dollar Quarter, Sondheim on Sondheim) and by five-time Jeff Award-winning choreographer Kevin Bellie. Tickets are available at www.Stage773.com or by calling (773) 327-5252. For additional information, visit www.nightbluetheater.com.
MARY POPPINS will feature Kyrie Anderson in the title role as Mary Poppins and Ryan Dooley as song and dance Chimney Sweep Bert. The Banks family will be portrayed by Joseph Smith as Mr. Banks, MacKenzie Skye as Mrs. Banks, Sage Harper as Jane Banks and Liam Dahlborn as Michael Banks. Rounding out the cast are Mo Allen, Caron Buinis, Josie Burck, Tim Casey, Eileen Cosgrove Casey, Ryan J. Duncan, Brian Fimoff, Judy Knudtson, Sierra Naomi, Paul E. Packer, Matthew Thomas Provencal, Kara Schoenhofer and Jake Stempel.
MARY POPPINS is the story of the Banks family who live in a big house in London on Cherry Lane. Things are not going well for the family. The children, Jane and Michael, are out of control and are in need of a new nanny. They have their own ideas about what sort of caretaker they should have, while their parents – in particular Mr. Banks – are insistent on someone strict for the job. When a mysterious young woman named Mary Poppins appears at their doorstep, the family finds that she’s the answer to their prayers, but in the most peculiar way. Mary Poppins takes the children on many magical and memorable adventures, but Jane and Michael aren’t the only ones she has a profound effect upon. Even grown-ups can learn a lesson or two from the nanny who advises that “anything can happen if you let it!”
Comments Director David E. Walters, “Many folks think of the magic and magnificence of Mary Poppins on the big stage. At NightBlue, we are excited to tell you an intimate story of a family that discovers what is most important in life with the aid of a determined nanny. Oh, and don’t worry, we’ll sprinkle plenty of fairy-dust over this tale. Appropriate for any age, our Mary Poppins will help families want to make time for dinner together!”
Title: MARY POPPINS
Based on: the stories of P.L. Travers and the Walt Disney Film
Original music and Lyrics: Richard M. Sherman and Robert B. Sherman
Book: Julian Fellowes
New Songs and Additional Music and Lyrics: George Stiles and Anthony Drewe
Director: Artistic Director David E. Walters
Music Director: Austin Cook
Choreographer: Kevin Bellie
Cast: Kyrie Anderson (Mary Poppins), Ryan Dooley (Bert), Joseph Smith (Mr. Banks), MacKenzie Skye (Mrs. Banks), Sage Harper (Jane Banks) and Liam Dahlborn (Michael Banks) with Mo Allen, Caron Buinis, Josie Burck, Tim Casey, Eileen Cosgrove Casey, Ryan J. Duncan, Brian Fimoff, Judy Knudtson, Sierra Naomi, Paul E. Packer, Matthew Thomas Provencal, Kara Schoenhofer and Jake Stempel.
Location: Stage 773, 1225 W. Belmont Ave. in Chicago
Dates: Previews: Sunday, February 28 at 3 pm
Press performance: Wednesday, March 2 at 8 pm
Regular run: Thursday, March 3 – Sunday, March 27, 2016
Curtain Times: Thursdays and Fridays at 8 pm; Saturdays at 2 pm & 8 pm; Sundays at 1 pm. Please note: the performance on Sunday, March 6 will begin at 2 pm; there will not be a performance on Thursday, March 10 or Thursday, March 24; there will be added performances on Saturday, March 12 at 2 pm and Sunday, March 13 at 6 pm.
About The Creative Team
David E. Walters (Director) is the founding Artistic Director of NightBlue Performing Arts Company. He was trained at Circle in the Square Theatre School in New York and at the University of Notre Dame. Over the last 10 years, David has directed dozens of shows in the Chicago metropolitan area and Michigan, and his work has been recognized in many places, including being nominated for Best Director in the non-equity wing by the Jeff Committee. His work has been acclaimed for innovation, depth and connection to characters, and for new approaches to contemporary musical style. David’s leadership at NightBlue has taken a small start-up company to a reputation of effectively doing large musicals in a small intimate setting that impacts audiences emotions.
Austin Cook (Music Director) is an award-winning music director, musician, actor and producer currently residing in Chicago. Recent credits: 1st/4th National Tour Million Dollar Quartet (Music Director/Music Supervisor), Sondheim on Sondheim (Music Director/Pianist), Ring of Fire (Piano, Guitar, Dobro, Bass), Ain’t Misbehavin’ (Pianist – Jeff Award Winner), Hank Williams: Lost Highway (Hoss), Putting It Together (MD/Pianist – Jeff Award Nominee), Some Enchanted Evening (Music Director/Pianist – Jeff Award Music Direction). Chicago theater credits include: Writers Theater, Mercury Theater, Emerald City, Theater at the Center, Porchlight Theatre, American Blues Theater, American Theater Company, Second City. Music Producer credits: Billy Woodward, John Michael Presney, Billy Woodward & The Senders, Yuleberrys & Friends, Cody Slaughter. Austin’s work has been heard across the country as a performer, producer, composer, musician and music director. Austin’s most recently produced album “The Beast in Me” won the Independent Music Award for Best Roots EP and is featured on PBS nationally in Sun Studio Sessions. Austin is a proud ensemble member of American Blues Theater in Chicago and Artistic Associate of Porchlight Music Theater. www.austinryancook.com.
Kevin Bellie’s (Choreographer) recent credits include Director/Choreographer of Damn Yankees (Light Opera Works), Choreographer of Avenue Q (Jeff Recommended), Director/Choreographer of Grand Night for Singing (The Mercury Theatre – Jeff nominated Best Direction/Best Revue) and Direction/ Choreography of Urinetown (Circle Theatre – Jeff Award Outstanding Choreography). Other credits include The Baker’s Wife (Jeff Recommended), Best Little Whorehouse in Texas (Jeff Nominated), Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (Jeff Nominated), Can-Can (Jeff Nominated), Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (Jeff Nominated), Mack & Mabel (Jeff Nominated), Sweet Smell of Success (Jeff Nominated), The Mystery of Edwin Drood (Jeff Nominated), Nine (Jeff Award), The Life (Jeff Award) and Grand Hotel (Jeff Award.) Kevin has also directed/choreographed A Chorus Line (McLeod Summer Playhouse), Let’s Fall in Love, Breaking Up is Hard to Do, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, The Tafettas, Roasting Chestnuts and Drood (Fox Valley Rep), choreographed The Music Man (Light Opera Works), choreographed Anyone Can Whistle (Pegasus Players), A New Brain (Porchlight, Jeff Nominated), Closer Than Ever, Gypsy (Porchlight Music Theatre (Jeff) Recommended and After Dark Award Recipient).
About the Company
NightBlue Performing Arts Company is a Jeff-award winning Illinois 501(c)(3) not-for-profit company servicing the Chicago metropolitan area. Since bursting on the scene in 2007 with the Chicago Non-Equity premiere of Miss Saigon, NightBlue has proven to be an electric addition to Chicago’s off-Loop theater landscape, producing over 30 shows in nine seasons, including Best Musical Jeff Award nominations for Avenue Q and Spamalot in two of the last three seasons. Last season, NightBlue partnered with a NYC and Puerto Rican Company to tour an original Equity production about the life of Roberto Clemente. Led by an engaging and diverse Board of Directors, with corporate members from organizations like PWC, KPMG LLP, Abbott Laboratories,and Shephard Mullin LLP, NightBlue makes its mainstage home at Stage 773 in Chicago’s Lakeview neighborhood. NightBlue has roots on the southside of Chicago with administrative offices in Lemont, IL and focuses part of its mission on working with children, annually conducting a children’s theater immersion at Everest Academy in Lemont and a Summer Theatre Festival in New Buffalo, Michigan, which includes a ten-day youth theatre immersion for children of all ages. NightBlue encourages innovation and creativity in a safe and educational environment. It seeks truth and honesty in performance through self-exploration. No masks, no walls, all honesty. For additional information, visit www.nightbluetheater.com.