Highly Recommended Reviewed by: Stacey L. Crawley From the moment the actors step onto stage,…
American Blues Theater presents Little Shop of Horrors April 29 – May 29, 2016
American Blues Theater continues its 30th Anniversary Season – “Seeing is Believing” – with the comedic rock musical Little Shop of Horrors, with book and lyrics by Howard Ashman, music by Alan Menken, directed by Jonathan Berry, and music direction by Ensemble member Austin Cook. Little Shop of Horrors runs April 29 – May 29, 2016 at the Greenhouse Theater Center, 2257 N. Lincoln Ave. in Chicago.
For years, Little Shop of Horrors has made audiences scream with laughter. In this gleefully gruesome musical, Seymour, a poor florist’s assistant, allows his craving for fame and fortune to seduce him into playing nursemaid to a man-eating plant. This celebrated musical, with book and lyrics by Howard Ashman and music by Alan Menken, features the rock and roll, doo-wop and early Motown-inspired songs “Skid Row (Downtown),” “Somewhere That’s Green,” and “Suddenly, Seymour.”
Following the success of 2013’s Hank Williams: Lost Highway, American Blues will again utilize the phenomenal musical talent of its company, allowing them to produce a comedy with great music and a fun story. Little Shop of Horrors features American Blues Ensemble Members Michael Mahler(Seymour), Dara Cameron (Audrey), as well as Mark David Kaplan (Mr. Mushnik), Lorenzo Rush Jr. (Audrey II/Voice), Camille Robinson (Crystal),Jasondra Johnson (Ronnette), Eunice Woods (Chiffon), Darian Tene (Street Derelict), and Yando Lopez (Street Derelict).
The live band includes music director Austin Cook (keyboard), Shaun Whitley (electric guitar), Michael Weatherspoon (drums), Malcolm Ruhl(bass), and Matthew Sitz (auxiliary percussion).
The creative team includes Ensemble Members Grant Sabin (scenic), Izumi Inaba (costumes), Rick Sims (sound), Christopher J. Neville (props), and Sarah E. Ross (Audrey II), as well as Heather Gilbert (lights), Dana Nestrick (stage manager) and Chelsea Warren (puppet consultant).
About American Blues Theater
American Blues Theater is the premier American theater producing visceral theatrical works while engaging its audience in missions of local service agencies. American Blues Theater illuminates the American ideas of freedom, equality, and opportunity in the plays produced and communities served.
The multi-generational and interdisciplined artists have established the second-oldest professional Equity Ensemble theater in Chicago. The 38-member Ensemble has 530 combined years of collaboration on stage. As of 2016, the theater and artists received 172 Joseph Jefferson Awards and nominations that celebrate excellence in Chicago theater and over 28 Black Theatre Alliance Awards. The artists are honored with Pulitzer Prize nominations, Academy Awards, Golden Globe Awards, Emmy Awards and numerous other accolades.
The American Blues Theater Ensemble includes all four Founders Ed Blatchford, Rick Cleveland, James Leaming, and William Payne with Dawn Bach, Matthew Brumlow, Manny Buckley, Kate Buddeke, Sarah Burnham, Dara Cameron, Casey Campbell, Brian Claggett, Dennis Cockrum, Austin Cook, Laura Coover, Lauri Dahl, Kristin DeiTos, Joe Foust, Tom Geraty, Cheryl Graeff, Marty Higginbotham, Jaclyn Holsey, Lindsay Jones, Samantha Jones, Nambi E. Kelley, Kevin R. Kelly, Steve Key, Ed Kross, Warren Levon, Michael Mahler, Kelli Marino, Heather Meyers, John Mohrlein, Suzanne Petri, Carmen Roman, Editha Rosario, Sarah E. Ross and Gwendolyn Whiteside.