Archive for the ‘Dance’ Category

Candy Cane Tales and Holiday Carols

December 3, 2012

On Friday night, we continued a family holiday tradition by going to see Candy Cane Tales and Holiday Carols at the Waukesha Civic Theatre. This is the fourth year in a row that the theatre has presented this musical variety show for the holidays and we all agreed that this year was best one so far.

When the idea of this show was first conceived, the intention was to put together a live performance similar to the old holiday TV specials that were hosted by Bing Crosby and Perry Como in the 70s. The show was developed by John Cramer and he did a phenomenal job the first few years putting together a structure that allowed for a variety of songs and sketches to be switched out each year to keep the program fresh. This year, Jacob Sudbrink and Jes Hancock, enhanced the format by adding an underlying story to connect the individual pieces together. Additionally, they added several of the new humorous songs that had the audience in stitches.

Not to take away anything from the performances of previous years, but I have to say that this year’s show is extremely well cast. Paul Burkard as the father, Mark Cage as the Snow Miser, and Isaiah Reynolds as the Grinch were my favorites. Additionally, Martin Graffenius was absolutely superb with his solos of White Christmas and Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas. And let’s not forget the one individual that has been in it every year so far as WCT’s very own Santa Claus, Jim Volden.

If you have seen it before and were thinking about skipping it this year… DON’T! If you haven’t seen it yet, call the theatre now or go online to get your ticket your right away. You don’t want to miss the chance to start your own holiday tradition.

Once On This Island

August 18, 2012

Kristi, Erin, and I went to see Once On This Island at the Waukesha Civic Theatre last night. It was an amazing show. The music was beautiful, the dancing was fun and energetic, and the story was compelling. All of the performers in the show did a superb job. I’m so glad that we got the opportunity to see it.

Because I am on the Board of Directors at the theatre, I have access to the attendance numbers for many of the shows. Unfortunately, this wonderful show hasn’t been as well attended as the theatre had hoped. I’m sure that it was a combination on the great weather recently, the various other entertainment options, and the fact that this show doesn’t have the name recognition of other, more popular musicals.

I would like to make a plea to all of my fantastic friends. There are only three more performances left; 2pm and 6pm today, August 18th, and 2pm tomorrow, August 19th. Please go see this beautiful musical. I’m sure that you aren’t familiar with the title but trust me when I say that you won’t regret making the effort. The 2pm performance is the scheduled “Pay What You Can” performance. You pay whatever you can afford. There is no better way to see live theatre when your cash is running low. The ticket price for the other two performances is only $10 if you mention the special coupon code: Daniel. An amazing bargain for such an excellent piece of musical theatre.

Opening Night for Fiddler On The Roof

August 3, 2012

Fiddler On The Roof

Erin and I have made it through “tech week” with the help of Kristi working back-stage as a kid-wrangler for a couple of days. Tonight is Opening Night for Fiddler On The Roof! This show has really come together over the last week and it is going to be wonderful.

There are going to be only six performances over the next two weekends. You can get more information and purchase tickets online at the Imagination Theatre of Germantown website. Please consider coming out to see this charming classic.

Fiddler On The Roof

July 30, 2012

Oy! I can’t believe it. We are less than a week away from the opening night of Fiddler On The Roof with Imagination Theatre of Germantown and I just realized that haven’t posted anything on the Dramagoons blog. To catch you up, Erin and I were cast in the show back in late May. Erin is in the chorus and I will be playing the Rabbi.

For the last couple of months, Erin and I have been enjoying our summer “tradition” of rehearsing a musical together. We now find ourselves at the beginning of tech-week and a mere 5 days away from opening night. I have to say that this is going to be a wonderful show. The individuals in the lead roles are all so perfectly cast. It has been so enjoyable to watch them create their characters in rehearsal. I’m sure that you will find them just as endearing as I do.

This is the second summer for Erin and me to be in a show together. And although our characters don’t interact directly on-stage, it is fun to work with her in the show and watch her grow as a person and a performer. If you have the chance to be in show with your kids, do it! It is a bonding experience that neither of you will ever forget.

The only downside of this whole experience is that I had to grow beard during the hottest summer on record. I last shaved on May 28th and I am looking forward to reacquainting myself with my razor soon.

Please come out and see this amazing show at Brown Deer High School. It runs for six performances over two weekends, August 3rd through August 12th. Go to the Imagination Theatre of Germantown website for more information and to buy tickets.

One Week Left to Create A Miracle

February 26, 2012

The time is at hand for you to be the catalyst for a miracle. Do you believe in MIRACLES? I do. I really do. And I need your help to make one come true.

With only one week left, Alleycat Enterprises, Inc. is still $6,000 dollar away from the goal of our Kickstarter project to produce You’re A Good Man, Charlie Brown in Waukesha in July. I know seems like a huge number but I know that we can do it with your help. Look at in this way; we only need to sell 400 tickets to the show. That is less than 2 sold-out performances of the show.

In order to become a backer of the show, you need to create a Kickstarter account but you do not need to give them your credit card information. They use Amazon Payments for all credit card processing. I’m sure that most of you already purchase your books and other things on Amazon and already have an account.

Please, please, please help support this amazing show.

Disney’s Beauty and the Beast at HHS

February 14, 2012

Last weekend, Hamilton High School in Sussex put on Disney’s Beauty and the Beast. As my son, A.J., was in the show, I was lucky enough to be able to attend three of their four performances in addition to the “Parent Preview” performance. I have to say that this was one of the best high school productions I have seen in a very long time. The students in the cast, crew, and orchestra as well as the adult directors of the show are to be commended on a job well done.

Three actors in particular gave standout performances. Emily Cox (Belle), Zachary Weis (Beast), and Abby Angelroth (Mrs. Potts) are amazing and talented singers and they made the show believable in every way. Two other actors gave notable portrayals as well. The comic timing of Andrew Cronin (Cogsworth) and Sree Karri (Lumiere) really made the show fun to watch. All in all, the entire cast did an awesome job with the musical and dance numbers. It was obvious that quite a bit of hard work went into getting this show done right and it paid off.

As a father, I would be remiss if I didn’t mention how proud I was of the fantastic job that A.J. Magoon did in his various roles as Narrator, Book Seller, Townsperson, Wolf, and Dancing Menu. He brings a level of professionalism to every part he plays.

Nicely done, Hamilton Drama Department. Keep up the good work!

Kickstarter Update

February 11, 2012

With a little more than 3 weeks left in our Kickstarter project, we are 28% of the way toward our goal. We are overwhelmed by the dedication of our friends and family. We currently have 45 backers with average pledge amount of just over $62. That means that each backer is purchasing 4 tickets to the show on average. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!

That being said, we still have an extremely long way to go and WE NEED YOUR HELP to get there. If you are wondering why you should pledge a few dollars now to see this show in July, I can tell you that this is going to be a show that you will not want to miss. These are some extremely talented kids.

In December, Isaiah Reynolds (our Snoopy) played Bert Healy in Annie at Sunset Playhouse. Three weeks ago, Elena Cramer (Lucy Van Pelt) performed on-stage as the Witch in the Waukesha STEM Academy’s production of Into The Woods, Jr. Just this weekend, A.J. Magoon (Schroeder) is appearing as the Narrator in Disney’s Beauty and the Beast at Hamilton High School in Sussex. And to top it off, our Charlie Brown, Ryan Albrechtson, will be playing the role of Edna Turnblad in the Waukesha South High School production of Hairspray in March. I will say it again… these are some extremely talented kids.

Can’t you just see how great a show like You’re A Good Man, Charlie Brown would be with six actors of this caliber. I can. Please take a look at our Kickstarter project. If you like what you see, please pledge now.

Charlie Brown in July (Hopefully)

January 21, 2012

The Kickstarter project that I mentioned on Thursday has become a labor of love for me. It needs to succeed because I am really looking forward to seeing this show that we are planning to produce in July. To understand what I am talking about, I need to take you back to the beginning. Sherman, set the wayback machine to last August.

You may recall that Erin and I were lucky enough to be cast together as Violet Beauregarde and her father in Roald Dahl’s Willy Wonka at Waukesha Civic Theatre last summer. During the show, Erin developed a good friendship with two of the other actors also playing Wonka ticket winners, Laney and Jude Cramer. They are the daughter and son of the theatre’s Managing Artistic Director, John Cramer. They were all having such a good time and doing such a fantastic job that I started to imagine what it would be like to put on a show with the three of them and A.J., who has been acting since he was 10. I thought that putting the Cramer kids and the Magoon kids in a show together would be fun.

I briefly mentioned the idea to John and he said that if we could find the right show, we could use his theatre production company, Alleycat Enterprises, Inc., and rent the theatre during a down time in July. I began searching for a 4 person show that consisted of all children or with parts that could be believable played by 4 kids. I’m sure that there probably is the perfect show out there like that, but I couldn’t find it. And then I was talking backstage at one of the Wonka performances with the brilliant Randall T. Anderson and he suggested adding a couple more fantastic kids and doing You’re A Good Man, Charlie Brown. Thank you, Randall. You’re a genius.

When John and I discussed You’re A Good Man, Charlie Brown, we quickly knew which of the four kids were right for each of the roles in which they were cast. The four kids were immediately excited about the project and could think of nothing else for a while. That left us with having to find a Charlie Brown and a Snoopy. It only took a couple of minutes for us to come up with the two perfect young men for the parts, Ryan Albrechtson and Isaiah Reynolds. No other names came to mind and luckily both of them loved the idea as well.

Our story closes with the discussion of financing this wonderful idea. The royalties for a musical are really expensive and you risk losing a lot of money if you don’t have a big enough audience to cover your expenses. Now, I love my kids. Of that there is no doubt. But I am not about to go thousands of dollars in debt on the chance that we might get enough people to show up. I remembered that Jonathan West had produced The Santaland Diaries a while back and he raised the capital by pre-selling tickets on Kickstarter. Now I know that I don’t have the influential circle of friends that Jonathan does but the ones that I do have love the theatre as much as I do. I figure that if he could do it, so can I.

As Paul Harvey used to say, “Now you know the rest of the story.” Please take a look at our Kickstarter project. If you like what you see and think that you would enjoy seeing these terrific kids all together in one show, please pledge now.

You’re A Good Man, Charlie Brown

January 19, 2012

Ladies and Gentlemen, the time has come… the time has come for action. The super-secret project that I alluded to yesterday has been announced. Alleycat Enterprises, Inc. is planning to produce You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown in July. A.J. and Erin have already been cast as Schroeder and Sally respectively. The entire cast is amazing. It is going to be a fantastic show.

Here is where we need your help. Producing a musical in very expensive and the financial risk is huge. Therefore, Alleycat Enterprises has created a Kickstarter project to raise the necessary finances for the show to at least break even. We want you to go to Kickstarter and agree to buy tickets to this show.

Kickstarter is really cool. It enables you to develop a project and the raise the money without the risk. Contributors agree to pay a certain amount for a reward if the project reaches its funding goal. When the goal is met, the contributor’s credit card is charged and the project is funded. If the goal isn’t met, no money changes hands and the project dies. Most of the rewards for this project are tickets to see this show. Although donations are appreciated, what we really want to do is sell tickets to this wonderful show.

This is going to be great. Thanks for your support. And go buy tickets now.

Upcoming Project for the Dramagoons

January 18, 2012

We have big news about an upcoming theatre production that A.J. and Erin will be in this summer. The announcement will be made in the next few days. Until then the project is still super secret. I’ll bet you’re wondering why I’m telling you this when I’m not really saying anything of value. Good Grief, I wish that I could tell you more. The deal is that in order for this amazing show to be produced, we will need to raise the money needed to cover the cost of putting it on. And we are going to do that by pre-selling tickets to the show. If enough people are interested in this fantastic opportunity and buy tickets, then the show will go on.

I know that I’m being a blockhead by not telling you anything important but hopefully you are now excited and will be willing to help us out when the time comes. Stay tuned, this is going to be great.