‘Drowsy Chaperone,’ Farmington Players production, opens Friday

Greater Farmington Founders Festival

Farmington Players promises a farcical romp through the madcap world of musical theatre – a musical comedy show within a show – in their production of the Tony Award-winning Broadway musical “The Drowsy Chaperone”, running April 26-May 18.

Farmington Players Drowsy Chaperone
“Drowsy Chaperone” cast members include (from left) Julia Turner of Royal Oak, Tim Timmer of Wayne, Barb Bruno of Oxford, Jason Wilhoite of Farmington. Keith Firstenberg of Livonia, Lark Haunert of Canton Twp., and Bob Hotchkiss of Bloomfield Hills. (Jan Cartwright)

A Powerful Parody

Director Cynthia Tupper of Farmington Hills in a press release calls the show an “old fashioned musical with a new twist.” An unnamed man in a chair breaks “the fourth wall”, taking the audience back in time as he recalls his favorite 1920s musical, “The Drowsy Chaperone”.

Jon Aldred for Farmington Hills City Council

While reminiscing in his apartment, “the man in the chair” plays a cast recording of the show for the audience. The characters then come to life to complete a loving tribute to and a spoof of musical theatre in a powerful parody of the art form.

The show, with a book written by Bob Martin and Don McKellar and music and lyrics by Lisa Lambert and Greg Morrison, opened on Broadway in 2006 and starred Detroit’s own Sutton Foster along with Danny Burstein and others.

The plot for the “show within a show” focuses on a coddled Broadway starlet Janet Van De Graff (Lark Haunert of Canton) who wants to give up show business to marry the handsome toothpaste model Robert Martin (played by barn regular Jason Wilhoite of Farmington), who can tap dance like there’s no tomorrow and roller skate blind. Janet’s goofy producer Feldzieg (Tim Timmer of Wayne) hatches a plot to sabotage the wedding plans.

Farmington Players The Drowsy Chaperson
Pictured in a scene from “Drowsy Chaperone” are: Front – Lark Haunert of Canton Twp.; Back (l-r) – Madeline Bien of Southfield, Beth Egan deGuise of Bloomfield Twp.,
Renee Valant of Livonia, and Melissa Palka of Westland (Jan Cartwright)

“The show is filled with theatrical surprises, lavish costumes, high energy dancing and catchy songs performed by one of the best ensemble casts I have worked with,” said Tupper. “This funny and clever show will have you laughing and smiling for an hour and a half.”

Tickets for “The Drowsy Chaperone”, sponsored by Tru-Vista Wealth Advisors, are available at farmingtonplayers.org, by writing to  boxoffice@farmingtonplayers.org, or calling the Barn box office at 248-553-2955.

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