Wednesday March 29th 2017

“Thrones! The Musical Parody” Reviewed by Carol Moore

thrones-the-musical-8593Recommended ***  An audience of enthusiasts was at the Apollo the other night to see “Thrones! The Musical Parody”, a mashup of all six seasons of “Game of Thrones”.  In contrast to me (I’ve seen just enough episodes to get most of the references), these people knew what was coming.  “Thrones!” is funny in and of itself, but if you’ve never seen the show, like my friend Nancy, it was mostly kind of dumb with some very funny parts.  I give “Thrones! The Musical Parody” 3 Spotlights.

Three couples have gotten together to watch the season six finale of “Game of Thrones”.  As they speculate about what they’ll see, Brad (Nick Druzbanski) admits that he has never seen “Game of Thrones” and doesn’t understand what the fuss is all about.  The others, Spencer (Caitlyn Cerza), Hayden (Madeline Larson), Ross (Beau Nolen), Kelly (Victoria Olivier) and Tom (Christopher Ratliff), are so horrified by this revelation, they decided to act out the story right there in the living room.thrones-group

 

Jon Snow – curly wig kept falling in his eyes

GoT – complex – song about names – “These Are All The Names”

Cast: “Hold The Door”  protects someone by leaning on a door until someone knocks it out of the frame – still holds it

Beau Nolan – Tyrion Lannister – very tall guy wearing a jerkin over black jeans still managed to be the smaller man by adding a shaggy wig and attitude – same expression as Tyrion had when watching the faceoff in the conclusion of season 6

Ingenious dragons – made out of curtain rods and an umbrella –

“The Ending That We Want” – they make up their own

The parody musical asks audiences: Will Tyrion’s accent ever improve? Can Jon Snow possibly know more than nothing? Just how red can the Red Wedding get? With “Game of Thrones” references (read: spoilers), re-live the journey with sword-wielding men battling White Walkers, ravishing women riding fire-breathing dragons, and the infamous Walk of Shame—all set to an original score complete with “knockout vocal harmonies” (Chicago Reader). “Thrones! The Musical Parody” debuted to completely sold-out performances in August 2015 at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, followed by a sold-out, limited run at London’s Leicester Square Theatre and was hailed as “A resounding success!” by the Sunday Times Scotland.

“After seeing this brilliant cast of Chicago actors on the stage this summer, we couldn’t think of another way to begin this new run here at the Apollo,” said Executive Producer Emily Dorezas. “This group embraced the material with passion and care to create a seamless comedy that makes audiences laugh night after night, and we look forward to seeing what new surprises they bring to the performance this fall.”
The premise: a group of friends get together to watch the season premiere of Game of Thrones. One friend, horror or horrors, has never seen the show, so the friends take the only reasonable avenue available to them: they act it out for him. That means that six actors play upwards of 40 roles, switching in and out of wigs and accents, characters, and accents at breakneck speed. It’s a charming framework that lets the production have fun with props and costumes (the way the friends construct a functional Drogon out of random knick-knacks and an umbrella is particularly genius) and preserves a low-key, do-it-yourself energy that runs under the show’s 90 minutes.

There are a few songs that target big moments (e.g the above-mentioned “Hold the Door” or “Stabbin’,” a song all about the Red Wedding), but most give a bird’s eye view of the thrones-vertcharacters and their experiences. For example,Thrones! kicks off with a fun summary of Jon Snow’s time with his adopted brothers called “For the Watch,” while Jaime and Cersei get a twisted love balled titled “Fuck Everyone Who Isn’t Us.” The show may be at its funniest when it goes even wider, poking fun at GoT’s complexity with “These Are All the Names” or skewering fan wish fulfillment with “The Ending That We Want.” Naturally, that one makes for an excellent finale.

“Thrones! The Musical Parody” is written by Chris Grace, Zach Reino, Al Samuels and Dan Wessels. The production is directed by Hannah Todd, choreographed by Tyler Sawyer Smith

 

“Thrones! The Musical Parody” runs through November 13th at the Apollo Theatre, 2450 N. Lincoln Ave., Chicago.  Running time is 1 hour, 30 minutes, with an intermission.

thrones-twoPerformances are

Wednesday through Friday at 7:30 pm

Saturday at 6:00 and 9:30 pm

Sunday at 4:00 pm.

Tickets range from $39-$59.  Paid parking is available under the El next to the Apollo.  Street parking is also available.  FYI (773) 935-6100 or www.apollochicago.com or www.ticketmaster.com.

To see what others are saying, visit www.theatreinchicago.com, go to Review Round-Up and click at “Thrones! The Musical Parody”

 

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