Category Archives: 101 Dalmatians

having the time of our lives

Robert Anthony Jones (Jinx) and Michael Thomas Holmes (Jasper) in THE 101 DALMATIANS MUSICAL. Photo by Joan Marcus.

Hello everyone! I’m so thrilled to be reporting on behalf of our wonderful show, The 101 Dalmatians Musical. I play Jinx Baddun, one of the two Baddun brothers, who help Cruella DeVil steal those puppies from the Dearly household. Here’s just a glimpse into the life of what we do on our travel across the country!

Day One: How fantastic is it to wake up in Chicago?! Most of the cast got here last night and we had an all day rehearsal today before our show opened tonight. We’ve just returned from a 2 week hiatus so we definitely needed to revisit our Dalmatian roots, but, more importantly, we put three new major players into our show tonight, including a brand spankin’ new Cruella DeVil, Miss Sara Gettelfinger. It was so hard to say goodbye to our previous cast members in East Lansing, but the newbies fit right in. They handled everything head on; and there is a lot to learn in this show, from the music, to the blocking, to the stilts…did I mention we perform on stilts?? They did an amazing job! We also received a standing ovation, which is icing on the cake. Thank you Chicago!

Robert Anthony Jones

Day Two: Today is another big day. We had rehearsal again from 1-5 and then our show at 7:30. Members of our creative team are in town to make some more cuts and adjustments. That’s the fascinating thing about being part of a new show, there are always changes happening so it definitely keeps us on our toes…or stilts…did I mention we perform on stilts? Some of the changes are more intricate, so we will need at least a few days, if not a week to incorporate those, but some were easily tweaked today at rehearsal and went in tonight, rather flawlessly I might add! (I personally didn’t have any major changes to incorporate this evening, so I can say that with unbiased admiration for my fellow castmates).

We have plenty more performances coming up, so we hope to see you all there, and definitely more rehearsing and tweaking of the show. However, we do have a day or evening off here and there. Anyone have any suggestions? Where can a Baddun Brother go to get the quintessential Chicago experience? Do you think I could walk around Wrigley Field on stilts?

-Robert Anthony Jones (Jinx/THE 101 DALMATIANS MUSICAL)

Leave a comment

Filed under 101 Dalmatians, Cadillac Palace Theatre

i’m just a broadway baby

Broadway In Chicago and Taste of Chicago…Oh, What A Night! 

Janet and Craig get the concert underway

Janet and Craig get things underway.

This was my second Broadway In Chicago Concert in the Park experience.  I love this concert!  It is such a great preview of the shows going on now and the ones that are coming.

Last year, I performed with my company of JERSEY BOYS, but this year I had the extreme pleasure of co-hosting with ABC7’s Janet Davies!  I had such a blast!  Janet was so fun to work with.  We hit it off right away and had so much fun together.  I have to admit I was a little nervous when I got a glimpse of the 10,000+ crowd, but when Janet introduced me and the crowd greeted me with such an enthusiastic and supportive response, the nerves went away and the fun began.

I can’t talk enough about the performances. The concert kicked off with my buddy John Michael Dias (Frankie Valli in JERSEY BOYS) singing “The Star-Spangled Banner” so beautifully. 

MARY POPPINS was the first show to perform.  Ashley Brown, Gavin Lee, Aida Neitenbach, and Justin Hall performed a beautiful medley of songs from the show and the crowd loved it.  I need to talk about Ashley Brown’s voice.  WOW! Forget “Practically Perfect.”  It is just “Perfect.”  From the sound of the crowd, they thought so too.

Olga Merediz with members of the Niles North High School Choral Department at the Broadway In Chicago Concert in the Park

Olga Merediz with members of the Niles North High School Choral Department at the Broadway In Chicago Concert in the Park

Another performance that truly blew me away was the number from IN THE HEIGHTS.  I think that Chicago will completely fall in love with this show.  I saw it in NYC and LOVED it.  Olga Merediz, who was Tony nominated for her IN THE HEIGHTS performance, sang “Paciencia Y Fe.”  I don’t even know where to begin with this one.  Inspiring is the word that comes to mind.  Olga was absolutely outstanding and everyone at Jersey Boys is still talking about her performance.  There was also a special treat with this number.  BIC and Lin-Manuel Miranda, the creator of In The Heights, arranged to have the Niles North High School chorus back up Olga.  It made for a truly spectacular number.

I also thought that Dennis DeYoung’s 101 DALMATIANS was a lot of fun with very catchy music. I am still singing it!  I am really excited to see how this brand new show develops by the time it comes to Chicago in February.

Roger Bart, whose talents I have always admired, and Justin Patterson flew in from NYC to give Chicago audiences a taste of YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN.  They were hysterical.  I saw this HILARIOUS show in New York and I thought it was great how strongly the crowd reacted to “Puttin on the Ritz.”  From that reaction alone I can imagine it will be a hard ticket to get.

The Chicago Company of JERSEY BOYS at the Broadway In Chicago Concert in the Park

The Chicago Company of JERSEY BOYS at the Broadway In Chicago Concert in the Park

 The finale of the concert was…you guessed it…JERSEY BOYS!  My company did a medley of the hit songs from the show.  From the first notes that were played, it was mind boggling how nuts the crowd went!  People were screaming, singing, and dancing in the aisles.  It was absolutely awesome.  I know I speak for my entire company when I say how much that meant to us and how much we loved it!!!

JERSEY BOYS finished off the concert with a Four Seasons-style rendition of “My Kind of Town.”  It was a thank you to Chicago for embracing us for nearly two years now.

It was a fantastic night with phenomenal performances.  Thanks to all who attended.  Go see a show!

-Craig Laurie (Bob Crewe/JERSEY BOYS)

Leave a comment

Filed under 101 Dalmatians, Broadway In Chicago, In the Heights, Jersey Boys, Mary Poppins, Young Frankenstein

oh, those summer nights…

Yes…you probably heard.  This weekend was tough – we lost a performance due to technical difficulties at MARY POPPINS.  It was sad but we are doing everything we can to get those that missed the performance into another performance before MARY POPPINS closes on July 12.   There is the joy and heartbreak of live theatre and Saturday Night June 27 at 8:00 p.m. was heartbreaking.

 

However, today is a great day – there are so many things to do!

 

You can buy ½ price tickets through Hot Tix and attend either MARY POPPINS or JERSEY BOYS or both through the 4th of July Weekend – don’t wait the 1776 tickets were made available today through Hot Tix on-line and they are going fast.

 

And/Or, you can attend the Broadway In Chicago Concert in the park for FREE.   See Roger Bart from YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN, the entire cast of JERSEY BOYS, the stars of MARY POPPINS, selections from 101 DALMATIONS with an introduction by Dennis DeYoung from STYX and more.

 

It is a perfect day to visit the TASTE and enjoy this great concert.

 

This is the one day of the year that I get to go out enjoy summer and the Taste and it is part of my job!  – The one performance of the year that is not in a dark room!

 

Don’t waste the day …. come and join us.  If you do all three things above you will be building quite the theatrical summer!

Eileen

2 Comments

Filed under 101 Dalmatians, American Musical Theatre Project, Broadway In Chicago, In the Heights, Jersey Boys, League of Chicago Theaters, Mary Poppins, Northwestern University, Young Frankenstein

these are a few of my favorite things…

This is what the marketing office looks like today:

 

Marketing Office 001 Marketing Office 002 

You may be asking yourself if a bomb went off, or perhaps you think we are building a box fort… the answer is far more exciting than that. (at least for all of you!)

 

The reason for this mayhem is that we have an action-packed weekend planned! As you have probably heard, Monday is the Broadway In Chicago Concert in the Park, but we will also be participating in the annual Chicago Pride Parade on Sunday. Needless to say, we have been as busy as can be trying to make this an absolutely spectacular, albeit slightly hectic, pair of events.

 

On Sunday morning at the obscenely early hour of 9am, Andrew, Basia and myself will meet here at the Broadway In Chicago office to transport all of our materials to the parade route. I will have to work on my Tetris skills for the next couple days, because we somehow have to fit over 15,000 pieces of promo merchandise and three people into a Honda Accord. Seriously.

 

The parade itself will kick off around noon—keep an eye out for float #102 if you are at the parade because we will have tons of fun goodies to give away. There will be 14 BIC staffers and perhaps a cast member or two out supporting the GLBT community…and having a great time in the process! If you haven’t been to the Parade before, you should definitely try to join us—it is truly an unforgettable experience.

 

Then it’s time to run home for a good night’s sleep before the Concert in the Park! This is probably my favorite event of the year. What could be better than sitting outside listening to some amazing performers sing songs from my favorite shows? This year’s concert will include performances from Mary Poppins, Jersey Boys, Young Frankenstein, In the Heights, 101 Dalmatians and Boys v. Girls. Not only that, but Roger Bart, Dennis DeYoung, Ashley Brown, Gavin Lee and the whole cast of Jersey Boys will be there along with an Olympic athlete!

 

 I have been attending these concerts for far longer than I have worked at Broadway In Chicago, so it is a lot of fun to be in on the planning process this time around. Sure, there is a lot of work involved—have you ever tried to transport dollies laden with fun merchandise through the packed streets of the Taste of Chicago – but there is nothing more rewarding than seeing the smiles on everyone’s faces as they leave the concert.

 

I truly hope that everyone joins us for at least one of these wonderful events this weekend. We put a lot of effort into making these experiences fantastic for all who attend, and love to share our passion for theatre with everyone that we can. See you this weekend!

 
-Mary Brennan (Marketing Coordinator)

Leave a comment

Filed under 101 Dalmatians, American Musical Theatre Project, Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University, Bank of America Theatre, Broadway In Chicago, Cadillac Palace Theatre, Drury Lane Theatre Water Tower Place, Feature Story, Ford Center for the Performing Arts, Oriental Theatre, In the Heights, Jersey Boys, League of Chicago Theaters, Mary Poppins, Northwestern University, Young Frankenstein

on the run

I looked out my door at the Sales Office just now and everyone was putting sneakers. My first thought was that they were all participating in some kind of WALKATHON after work. But then I remembered that tonight is the first night of FIDDLER ON THE ROOF and they are on the way over to put notes on the seats of any subscriber who has not renewed yet for next season.

Oriental Theatre

Oriental Theatre

Bethany, David, Nick, Michael and Rachel will run up and down the Balcony, around the Dress Circle and across the Orchestra sticking the notes on seats. They have a very small window (15 Minutes) between the time the sound check is finished and the House opens. Run, run, run!

The Season Sales Staff will be doing this every performance of FIDDLER. We used to put a flower on each seat but sometimes they would wilt, fall on the floor and be stepped on so now it is just the note reminding them about their subscription.

If you haven’t checked out being a Season Ticket Holder (all four shows for as low at $68), visit the website or call 312-977-1717 and talk to Bethany, David, Nick, Michael or Rachel. If they sound a little out of breath you will know why.

-Gemma

Leave a comment

Filed under 101 Dalmatians, Dreamgirls, Fiddler on the Roof, Ford Center for the Performing Arts, Oriental Theatre, In the Heights, Young Frankenstein

“count” your blessings

The Addams Family• We are 30 minutes into our pre-sale for THE ADDAMS FAMILY and I am warning now – don’t wait. Buy today with your American Express card and if you don’t have one apply now or borrow a friends. If you haven’t heard it is going to star Nathan Lane and Bebe Neuwirth! Not to be missed.

• We are 8.5 hours away from the opening of LEGALLY BLONDE – this is another show not to be missed. Be on the look-out for reviews or post your own here – this is sure to be raved about. First preview was last night and the crowd went wild.

• We are five days into the sale of Season Tickets – a really great season that includes: logostckd1 

 

 

 

 

 heights_logo_rgb1

 

 

101-logo-dog

 

 

 

bright-silhouette1

 

 

 

-Eileen

2 Comments

Filed under 101 Dalmatians, Dreamgirls, In the Heights, Legally Blonde The Musical, The Addams Family, Young Frankenstein