The smash UK hit arrives in Chicago!September 15th 2016 – March 19th 2017
How many spoilers will “Thrones! The Musical Parody” provide for the still blissfully unaware GoT fan? Will Tyrion’s accent ever improve? Can Jon Snow possibly know more than nothing? Just how red can the Red Wedding get? And is Gandalf still alive?! [wait…] Find out in this hilarious send-up of HBO’s phenomenally successful Game of Thrones.
Born from the twisted minds of Baby Wants Candy, one of the most exhilarating improv ensembles in the world, “Thrones! The Musical Parody” completely sold out its entire run in 2015 Edinburgh Fringe Festival, followed up with sold-out performances at London’s Leicester Square Theatre. This hilarious musical creation is an absolute must-see performance.
photos by Jessica Verma
Producers: Emily Dorezas, Rob Kolson, Al Samuels
Book and Music By: Chris Grace, Zach Reino, Al Samuels, Nick Semar, Dan Wessels
Director: Hannah Todd
Musical Director: Tyler Kivel
Choreographer: Sawyer Smith
Cast: Caitlyn Cerza, Nicholas Druzbanksi, Madeline Lauzon, Beau Nolen, Victoria Olivier, Christopher Ratliff, Nick Semar
Understudies: Dakota Hughes, Tanner Munson
Sound Designer: Eric Backus
Costume Designer: Amanda Gladu
Prop Designer: Patrick Ham
Set Designer: Thomas O. Mackey III
Violence Designer: R&D, Choreography
Light Designer: Claire Sangster
Stage Manager: JC Widman
Assistant Stage Manager: Kate Darby
Caitlyn is so excited to be in the musical version of her favorite TV show! She was most recently seen as the Stoner Chick in Kokandy’s production of Heathers. Other favorite credits include Marci in Dog Sees God, Vivienne in Legally Blonde, and Joanne in Rent. BFA in Musical Theatre, Roosevelt University. Thanks to Hannah, Nick, and the whole team for this opportunity! Ours is the fury.
Nick Druzbanski’s previous Chicago credits include High Fidelity (Refuge Theater), The Producers, Victor/Victoria (NightBlue Theater), You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown (Theater Hikes), The Gold Ball (The Bridge), Pr0ne (Underscore Theater), Henry III (Chicago Shakespeare Theater), Assassins (Viaduct Theater). Regional credits include Les Miserables (Alliance Theater; Atlanta, GA), Oliver! (Schuler Theater, PA), Elephant Man (Strand Theater; Marietta, GA), plus national tours for Sound of Music and Ragtime. Nick graduated from Roosevelt University in 2013 with a BFA in theater.
Madeline Lauzon is thrilled to make her debut at the Apollo Theater in Thrones! The Musical Parody. Since moving to Chicago in October, she’s had the joy of working with Davenport’s Piano Bar, 20% Theater, and The Annoyance. Notable roles include Prospero in The Tempest, Adult Woman in Spring Awakening, Adriana in The Comedy of Errors, and a deviser and ensemble member of A Reconsolidated Life. Proud graduate of Webster Conservatory of Theatre Arts. Love to Mom, Dad, and Podrick Payne.
Beau is wildly geeked out to be making his Apollo Theater debut in Thrones! The Musical Parody. He was seen most recently in Tapped: A Treasonous Musical Comedy with Forth Story Productions. You may have seen Beau on the short-lived ABC reality competition show, “Take the Money and Run.” He began his singing career in Germany after attending the American institute of Musical Studies in Austria. In the US, he has performed with Cleveland Opera, Sarasota Opera, and Nashville Opera. Finding a new love for comedy and musical improvisation, Beau recently graduated from the Music Improv Conservatory at the Second City training center.
Victoria Olivier moved to Chicago a year ago from Lafayette, Louisiana. Since then, she has appeared in Blood Brothers (Theo Ubique), Blue Nativity (Quest Ensemble Theatre), The Rise and Fall of the Mad King of Scotland (Nothing Special Prods.), and Haymarket: The Anarchist’s Songbook (Underscore Theatre). Some of her favorite past roles include Horatio in Hamlet, Woman 2 in Songs For A New World, and Feste in Twelfth Night. Victoria is absolutely jazzed to be a part of this crazy crew. She would like to thank Ryan and Promo for the gift of Viewpoints, her angels for the gift of perseverance, and Drew for the gift of Game of Thrones.
Christopher Ratliff is thrilled to be part of Thrones! The Musical Parody. He has a BA in Musical Theatre from West Texas A&M University and he moved to Chicago last August! His Chicago credits include Pygmalion (Rogue Theatre), Treasure Island (EDGE Theatre), and Little Women (20% Theatre). Some of his previous musical credits include Princeton in Avenue Q, The Wolf in Into the Woods, and Bobby Strong in Urinetown. He would like to thank his friends and family for their constant love and support. He’d also like to thank his wife for all of the love and laughs she brings him every day!
Nick Semar grew up just outside of St. Louis and received his BFA in Theater Performance from Missouri State University. He trained at the famous iO Theater and worked at ComedySportz Chicago. He has traveled the world performing with and teaching workshops with the fully improvised musical Baby Wants Candy and performing with “50 Shades! The Musical”. He is very excited to be a part a part of this production and would like to thank his family and Al & Emily.
Dakota Hughes debuts at the Apollo Theater, joining the brilliant team of Thrones! The Musical Parody. Dakota recently graduated from Columbia College Chicago where she received a BFA in Musical Theatre Performance. Chicago credits include: Title of Show (Open Door Rep), American Idiot (The Hypocrites), Hairspray, The Tempest, Spirits to Enforce, Spring Awakening and Mary Stuart. Dakota would like to thank the team of Thrones! for this wonderful opportunity and her friends and family for their love and support.
Tanner Munson is an actor and stand-up comic in Chicago. He graduated with a BFA in Acting from CCPA and was last seen in PFP’s “The Submission”. He also wrote, produced, and performed his first hour stand-up show titled “Chicken Nugget Soup for the Soul” and has performed stand-up in a variety of shows and venues in Chicago, New York, and Los Angeles. Love to my family and all the people in my life who keep me laughing.
Rob Kolson (Producer) is an Emmy Award-winning producer, writer, composer and performer. In addition to owning Chicago’s Apollo Theater, he is a founding partner of Wit.TV, Inc, a Chicago and Los Angeles based television production company. In a former life, he was on the faculty of the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business, but left academics to become a music director for Chicago’s renowned Second City and a political commentator on WFLD Chicago’s Fox 32 News. He then produced, co-wrote and co-starred in the critically acclaimed, interminably long-running Chicago musical comedy Do the White Thing, and has since produced countless long-running shows at the Apollo, including a three-year run of The Vagina Monologues. He loves dogs and is really good with kids. Hardly ever drops them.
Emily Dorezas (Co-Producer) is Co-Producer/Writer of 50 Shades! The Parody Musical. She is Executive Producer of Baby Wants Candy and Spark Creative and served as producer/writer for Second City’s Business Theater. Emily has performed stand-up comedy across the US and appeared on Comedy Central’s Tosh.0, Stand Up Live and Sports Action Team. Twitter: @Emdorezas
Albert Samuels (Co-Producer/Writer) is as proud as Daenerys at a cookout over this amazing cast and crew. Al is a founding member of musical improv supergroup Baby Wants Candy (with whom he currently performs at UCBLA), toured with Second City’s National Touring Company and co-wrote and performed in two critically acclaimed reviews on Second City’s Mainstage. He co-created and starred in the NBC Comedy Sports Action Team and The Venue, which won best pilot in the Comedy Central Pilot Competition.
Chris Grace (Writer/Composer) is proud to perform and collaborate with Baby Wants Candy regularly, the highlight of which was originating the role of Christian Grey in 50 Shades! The Musical Parody around the world and off-Broadway. He also co-wrote the independent pilot Actualized (NYTVF Best Writing), Star Wars: The Farce Awakens (with Jody Shelton and Tim Sniffen), and has written for McSweeney’s Internet Tendency. Follow him @ChrisGrace. He wishes to dedicate tonight’s show to the memory of his father Paul Shieh.
Zach Reino (Writer/Composer) is an Actor/Writer from Santa Barbara, California, and joined the long running improvised musical company Baby Wants Candy in 2014. He received a Bachelor’s Degree in Drama from UC Irvine before moving to Los Angeles where he been a house performer with The Upright Citizens Brigade (LA) since 2010. Zach is one half of the musical sketch duo The Zach and The Jess. Acting Credits include: Party Over Here, Conan, James Corden, Comedy Bang Bang, Serious Music, Fatal Decision, Hotwives of Los Vegas, Nickelodeon, and Funny or Die. Writing Credits include: ABC, Nickelodeon, Funny or Die, Maker Studios, and Buzzfeed.
Dan Wessels (Writer/Composer) is a Los Angeles-based composer, songwriter and music director. Theater: 50 Shades: The Musical (Co-composer – Off-Broadway, US Tour, Las Vegas); Baby Wants Candy (music director – UCB LA, Edinburgh Fringe); Undateable & In Trump We Trust: The Musical (composer – Second City Hollywood). Film: Improvising (NYTVF award recipient). Much love to Mom and Dad for paying for all those piano lessons. Thank you for coming! www.danwessels.com
Hannah Todd (Director) is a recent Chicago transplant completing her MFA in Directing at Northwestern University. At Northwestern, Hannah has directed The Tempest in cooperation with the Actors Gymnasium, Miss Julie, and True West. Other Chicago credits include assistant directing two world premieres at Northlight Theatre (Funnyman, dir. B. J. Jones; Shining Lives, dir. Jessica Thebus). Prior to moving to Chicago, Hannah was based in Washington, DC, where she co-founded We Happy Few Productions (wehappyfewdc.com). In DC, Hannah served as Artistic Fellow at Shakespeare Theatre Company, assistant directed at Folger Theater (Orestes: A Tragic Romp, dir. Aaron Posner), Shakespeare Theatre (Twelfth Night, dir. Alan Paul; King Lear, dir. Robert Falls, starring Stacy Keach) and Studio Theatre (Reasons to Be Pretty, dir. David Muse), and directed for Theater Alliance, the Capital Fringe Festival and the Source Festival. With We Happy Few, Hannah directed critically acclaimed productions of Hamlet, The Tempest, Romeo and Juliet, and The Winter’s Tale. In her spare time, Hannah drinks, and knows things.
Tyler Kivel (Musical Director) received his Master’s of Music degree in Piano Performance and Literature from the University of Illinois Champaign-Urbana and holds a Bachelor of Music degree from Central Michigan University. He was an Artist in Residence at the Thunder Bay Theatre performing for such musicals as School House Rock Live!, Smokey Joe’s Café, and The Drowsy Chaperone. In 2012, he was the proud winner of the John A. Irwin Memorial Piano Competition. Tyler has been a featured soloist with the CMU Symphonic Wind Ensemble. He has collaborated on several cabarets at Davenports Piano Bar, including a benefit concert for Broadway Cares Equity Fights AIDS. In the city, he is a freelance performer, teacher, and collaborator. Tyler is excited and honored to be apart of the Apollo Theater’s production of Thrones! The Musical.
Sawyer Smith (Choreographer) is an Actor and Jeff Award winning Choreographer based in Chicago, and is thrilled to be playing the Game Of Thrones!!! Choreography Credits: Heathers: The Musical (Kokandy Productions)TITANIC, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee (Griffin Theater) Gentlemen’s Rule In Concert (PBS) Saudade: Dreams and Longing, The Pajama Game (The Music Theatre Company) Sweet Charity (Timber Lake Playhouse)
Recent Theater Credits include The Producers, The Addams Family (Mercury Theater). CATS, RENT, and A Chorus Line (Paramount Theater). First Date (Royal George) Carrie (Bailiwick Chicago) Hairspray (Drury Lane) Hairspray (Royal Carribbean). Pippin (Bohemian Theater Ensemble). (Timber Lake Playhouse). Sawyer is a Graduate of The Chicago College of Performing Arts at Roosevelt University. I dedicate this to Cersei Lannister!!!
JC Widman (Stage Manager) is thrilled to be joining the Apollo on this show. Earlier this year she stage managed Hell in a Handbag’s Bette: Live at the Continental Baths ’16, Stage Left’s LeapFest XIII, Underscore’s Haymarket and Refuge Theatre’s High Fidelity. Other Chicago credits include Story of a Story: The Untold Story (Underscore), Bette: Live at the Continental Baths ’15 (Hell In A Handbag), All Our Tragic, Three Sisters, Into The Woods (The Hypocrites), Burning Bluebeard 2014 (The Ruffians), and Assassins (Kokandy Productions). JC is thankful for the support of her family and friends, especially Myles who first introduced her to Game of Thrones. anha zin shillolat she yer brother.
Kate Darby (Assistant Stage Manager) is a freelance stage manager and technician who recently graduated from North Central College in Illinois. She just finished a summer at Rocky Mountain Repertory Theater as their props manager and assistant stage manager. Other collegiate stage management credits include The Light in the Piazza, Macbeth, and Hedda Gabler. She would like to thank her family their continual support.
Eric Backus (Sound Designer) is excited to join the creative team of Thrones! Eric’s recent sound design and music composition credits include The Unfortunates (SoloChicago Theatre), Savage in Limbo (Poor Theatre), Northanger Abbey (Lifeline Theatre), The Bachelors (Cole Theatre), and The Old Friends (Raven Theatre). He also designed the Off-Broadway and touring productions of SoloChicago Theatre’s Churchill. Eric has worked with many Chicago theatres including Lookingglass, Chicago Shakespeare Theater, Steppenwolf, Route 66, American Blues Theater, Silk Road Rising, and Mary-Arrchie. To hear his music, please visit www.ericbackus.com.
Amanda Gladu (Costume Designer) is going in to her third year as an MFA candidate in Costume Design at Northwestern University. Amanda is originally from Texas and holds dual Bachelor of Arts degrees in Dance and Art History from the University of Texas at Austin. Previous work includes Equivocation (Wallis Lab Series) and Anna in the Tropics (Mainstage) at Northwestern University. Later this year and into 2017 she will be designing Sweet Charity (Mainstage) and Stick Fly (Mainstage) at Northwestern University. Amanda sends love to Logan for always supporting her. More information at amandagladu.com.
Patrick Ham (Props Designer) is an Assistant Professor at Wilbur Wright College, where he is the Production Coordinator and teaches Design & Technical Theatre. Selected Professional Design Credits include Dryland (Upstart Productions-Dallas), Dogfight, Ordinary Days, Amadeus, and Kiss of the Spiderwoman (Boho Theatre). Patrick holds a M.F.A in Scenic Design from Illinois State University and is an Artistic Associate at Boho Theatre. He would like to thank his wife Theresa for her love and support and his amazing son Cole who, at 8 years old, always seems to have great design advice.
Tom Mackey (Set Designer) is elated to be doing theatre in Chicago again after a five-year hiatus. Tom has previously worked behind the scenes and on stage with Strange Tree Group, The House Theatre, Strawdog and the Apollo (of course) among many others. He currently resides on a river in Indiana and teaches high school students the art and craft of theatre. Thank you to Kara for giving me permission to go out and play.
R&D Choreography (Victor Bayona and Rick Gilbert) is totally jazzed to be working on Thrones! The Musical Parody. R&D was founded in 1997 for the purpose of improving the power and effectiveness of Chicago area theatre through the art of violence design. We have designed violence for over three hundred productions and films, and taught stage combat at universities, colleges, and workshops. We have designed violence for dozens of Chicago area theatres, including About Face, ATC, Bailiwick, Blindfaith, Circle, First Folio, Griffin, Lifeline, National Pastimes, Oak Park Festival Theater, The Paramount, Pegasus, Piven, Theatre at the Center, Theo Ubique, Two Pence, and Vitalist.
Claire Sangster (Light Designer) is a Lighting Designer and Master Electrician. Recent design work includes The Raid, Lunacy!, Crumble, Lay Me Down Justin Timberlake, Exit Strategy, The Killing of Michael X, The Living Newspaper Festivals (Jackalope Theatre); The Seagull, Time of Your Life (Artistic Home); Human Terrain (Broken Nose Theatre); American Buffalo (Mary Arrchie); I & You (2015/16 Senn Arts High School/The Yard); Blueberry Toast (Tympanic Theater). Upcoming projects include Jackalope Theatre’s Octagon. She is the Lighting Supervisor for Jackalope Theatre and holds a BA in Theater Design from Columbia College Chicago.