The Drowsy Chaperone: Far from drowsy


Photo Credit: Ben Raser

by Katie Mae Yetter

The auditorium is a buzz. The lights are slightly dimmed and a low orchestra is humming in the background. People are shuffling around to their seats, about to make themselves comfortable. Meanwhile, backstage is turbulent. Cast members are preparing for opening night. The vibes of nervousness and excitement are apparent. The curtain opens and the exhilaration is whirling in the audience.  

“It (The Drowsy Chaperone) was so much fun. It’s like such a great production family and just the surroundings were great. It wasn’t toxic or anything. It was just great,” Henry Finkenstadt, freshman, expresses. The cast truly treats each other as a family. After years of theater, the connection is unlike any other. 

In case you missed your chance to see “The Drowsy Chaperone” in action, here’s a recap. The Man in the Chair (Daniel Cece) is listening to his favorite record “The Drowsy Chaperone” in his living room. As The Man in the Chair is listening to the music, the show is happening in his living room. We see the story of Janet van de Graff (Sofia Fusco) and Robert Martin’s (Christian Schwarzbek) wedding unfold in the musical with hints and footnotes coming from the man in the chair. The musical is set in the 1920s. The best man George (Conor Ollendike) is determined to keep them apart so that chaos doesn’t ensue from “bad luck”. Janet’s chaperone (Sofia Serrano) is evidently drunk and her carelessness spirals a series of events that ends with a quadruple wedding. The show does a lot of pause takes, for when The Man in the Chair is explaining things but overall the show is absolutely hilarious, according to crowd reactions. “Oh, Drowsy Chaperone is a classic, the comedy in it is hysterical… It’s awesome to see everyone come together and act all the jokes out,” Choreographer Anna Lilikas or Mrs. Lilikas expresses.

The crowd was laughing hysterically with reactions from fan-favorite character Aldolpho played by Andrew Hendl. Aldolpho is initially recruited by Feldzieg (Tim Hillyer), Janet’s agent, to break up the marriage but when he mistakenly tries to break up the wrong woman, it adds to the chaos. Hendl’s improv when he had a costume malfunction during the opening night only added to the already comical character. Whether it was the lines that can’t help but make you smile or just his energetic stage presence, the crowd could not stop laughing. But we weren’t the only ones enjoying it. Linda Chiappetta (ensemble) joyfully states about the cast and crew gathering backstage just to watch this scene “Well, yeah, ‘cause we used to like cheer when it wasn’t the performance that we’ve been hearing and, oh my god, this is happening. Watching the Aldolpho scene and we’re like we can’t do that because there are people out there.”

Whether it’s karaoke in the morning while setting up equipment,standing on a small platform in the wings backstage with a friend, or watching the Adolpho song, everybody has a favorite memory from the show. This show left everybody with smiles on their faces and their sides hurting from laughter, both audience and cast alike.