Plays Directory : The Drowsy Chaperone

The information below is intended to give you a brief guide to the show and highlight some of the other The Mandy Network members who have also been involved in this show.

  • Author
    Bob Martin and Don McKellar
  • Written
    1998
  • Overview
    The Drowsy Chaperone is an homage to American musicals of the Jazz Age, examining the effect musicals have on the fans who adore them

    The Man in Chair, a mousy, agoraphobic Broadway fanatic, seeking to cure his "non-specific sadness", listens to a recording of a fictional 1928 musical comedy, The Drowsy Chaperone. As he listens to this rare recording, he is transported into the musical. The characters appear in his dingy apartment, and it is transformed into an impressive Broadway set with seashell footlights, sparkling furniture, painted backdrops, and glitzy costumes.

    The plot of the show-within-a-show centers on Janet Van De Graaff, a showgirl who plans to give up her career in order to marry an oil tycoon, Robert Martin. However, Janet is the star of "Feldzieg's Follies", and a lot of money is riding on her name to sell the show; and Feldzieg, her producer, is being threatened with bodily harm by two gangsters employed by his chief investor (A reference to the gangsters-turned-actors in Kiss Me Kate). Disguised as pastry chefs, these two pun-happy thugs threaten Feldzieg to stop the wedding, in order to ensure Janet's participation in the next production of Feldzieg's Follies. In order to save himself, Feldzieg enlists Aldolpho, a bumbling Latin Lothario, to seduce Janet and spoil her relationship with Robert. Meanwhile, Janet is having doubts about her groom. Disguising herself as a French woman, she tempts Robert into kissing her, and a massive misunderstanding emerges. The ensuing plot incorporates mistaken identities, dream sequences, spit takes, a deus ex machina, an unflappable English butler, an absent-minded dowager, a ditzy chorine, a harried best man, and Janet's "Drowsy" (i.e. "Tipsy") Chaperone, played in the show-within-a-show by a blowzy Grande Dame of the Stage, specializing in "rousing anthems" and not above upstaging the occasional co-star.

    Watching from his armchair, Man in Chair is torn between his desire to absorb every moment of the show as it unfolds and his need to insert his personal footnotes and his extensive-but-trivial knowledge of musical performances and actors, as he frequently brings the audience in and out of the fantasy. As the show goes on, more of his personal life is revealed through his musings about the show, until, as the record ends, he is left again alone in his apartment — but still with his record of a long-beloved show to turn to whenever he's blue.

    The concept that the audience is listening to the musical on an old LP is used throughout the show. At one point, the record "skips", which causes the last notes (and dance steps) of a song to be repeated until the Man in Chair can bump the turntable. A "power outage" near the end causes the stage to go dark in the middle of the big production number. Despite the show-within-the-show being a two act musical, 'The Drowsy Chaperone' is played without an intermission; at the end of the "show"'s first act, the Man in Chair observes that there would be an intermission "if we were sitting in a theater, watching The Drowsy Chaperone. Which we're not." His monologue at the musical's intermission point ends when he changes records (ostensibly preparing the turntable to play the musical's second act), then leaves the stage "to use the bathroom". The new record is actually the second act of a different musical by the same composer and librettist, starring many of the same actors. "Message from a Nightingale" is performed in costumes evoking Imperial China, with the performers displaying cliched Chinese accents and mannerisms. The Man in Chair returns to the stage and replaces the disc with the correct one for Act II of "The Drowsy Chaperone."

If you would like to find work on The Drowsy Chaperone, join The Mandy Network today to get alerted to new roles and jobs.

1 known characters

16

6 known roles


Connected mandy members:

Jude Young
Jude Young
Actor
2019, Man In Chair
Brooke Crimmins
2019, Mrs Tottendale
The Arena Theatre
Kingsley Guo
Kingsley Guo
Actor
2019, George
Camila Fitzgibbon
2019, Kitty
Hudson Village Theatre
Adam Fisk
Adam Fisk
Actor
2019, Victor Feldzeig
The Arena Theatre
Carrington Nowak
2018, Kitty
The Lab Theater
Erin Maitland
2018, Drowsy Chaperone
Keefe Center of the Arts
Helen Peterson
Helen Peterson
Costume Designer
2018, Costume Designer
Heaven White
Heaven White
Assistant Technician
2018, Stage Crew/ Box Office Assistant
Sharina Emie Sabandal
Sharina Emie Sabandal
Assistant Stage Manager
2018, Dresser
Dianne Pare
Dianne Pare
Actor
2018, Beatrice Stockwell (The Drowsy Chaperone)
Keyano Theatre
Holly Marsden
2018, Kitty
Paradise at Agustines
Meagan Girard
2018, Kitty
Gina Cercone
Gina Cercone
Costume Designer
2018, Costume Designer
Joe Cannon
Joe Cannon
Actor
2018, Super
Victoria Green
Victoria Green
Director
2018, Wardrobe Run Crew
Tayler Winer
Tayler Winer
Make-up Artist
2018, Wig Supervisor
Joseph Plotts
Joseph Plotts
Technical Manager / Director
2018, Technical Director, Lighting Designer, Sound Designer
Town Hall Theater
Chlöe Whitham
2017, Chorus/ensemble
Randolph Theatre
Adrian Hau
Adrian Hau
Actor
2017, Producer / Conductor
Bridewell Theatre