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The Drowsy Chaperone Livens Spring in Boston

Musical offers earful of frothy fun


McCaela Donovan (center) and members of the SpeakEasy Stage Company perform “Toledo Surprise” in a scene from The Drowsy Chaperone, running through June 19 at the Stanford Calderwood Pavilion at the Boston Center for the Arts. Photo by Stratton McCrady

The Drowsy Chaperone opens with a man putting a recording of his favorite show, a 1928 hit of the same name, on his turntable. The show’s cast magically comes to life, and the fan finds himself immersed in a world of glamour, as his drab apartment is transformed into a lavish set.

What ensues is genial mayhem, recalling the madcap films of Preston Sturges and 1920s musicals like No, No, Nanette. Presented by the SpeakEasy Stage Company and featuring a cast of prominent Boston actors, including Karen MacDonald (CFA’72), Will McGarrahan, and Thomas Derrah, Chaperone is light-hearted theatrical fare. The production has been so popular that its run was extended two weeks, to June 19.

Chaperone captured five Tony Awards after it opened on Broadway in 2006 and has since been produced all over the world. Reviewing the SpeakEasy production in the Boston Globe, Don Aucoin noted the “crackerjack cast” and that the musical’s “glorious nonsense is an ingeniously effective antidote to reality, not just for the narrator, but for all the rest of us struggling mortals.”

And there’s a BU connection. The musical is choreographed and directed by David Connolly, who teaches dance in the Physical Education, Recreation, and Dance department. Students can see the show for $14.

The Drowsy Chaperone runs through Sunday, June 19, at the Calderwood Pavilion at the Boston Center for the Arts, 527 Tremont St., Boston. Performances are Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays at 7:30 p.m., Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m., and Sundays at 3 p.m. Ticket prices range from $30 to $57; $25 for those under age 25, and $14 for students with a valid ID one hour before curtain at the box office. Tickets and more information are available here or by calling 617-933-8600. The theater is accessible via public transportation by taking any MBTA Green Line trolley to the Copley stop. Walk one block down Boylston Street and turn right on Clarendon and left on Tremont Street. The theater is on the left.

John O’Rourke can be reached at orourkej@bu.edu.


One Comment on The Drowsy Chaperone Livens Spring in Boston

  • Anonymous on 06.08.2011 at 9:47 pm

    Another BU Connection - Karen MacDonald CFA Alum

    Karen MacDonald graduated from the School of Theatre at CFA.

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