Levels will present the Tony Award-winning musical comedy “The Drowsy Chaperone” on Thursday, Friday and Saturday, Aug. 9, 10 and 11 at 8 p.m. in the Levels Teen Center on the lower level of the Great Neck Library’s Main Building, 159 Bayview Avenue in Great Neck. Admission is free and the show is open to the public.
Levels, the Library’s cultural center for teenagers established in 1974, presents several fully-staged theatrical productions a year, giving teens the opportunity to learn leadership and responsibility through the arts. Levels productions are traditionally directed, produced and performed by students in seventh grade through college-age under the guidance of Levels’ staff of accomplished adult artists.
“The Drowsy Chaperone” begins in the apartment of a fanatically devoted musical theatre fan, who insists on playing us the record album of his favorite (fictional) 1928 musical. The show comes to life in his apartment as he wryly comments on the music, story, and actors. The play-within-a-play features two lovers on the eve of their wedding, a bumbling best man, a desperate theatre producer, a not-so-bright hostess who plays the ukulele, two gangsters posing as pastry chefs, a confused Casanova, a dizzy chorus girl, an unflappable butler, an intoxicated chaperone, a monkey on a pedestal, and a daring aviatrix in an airplane bound for Rio De Janeiro.
Winner of five Tony Awards, The Drowsy Chaperone is a comic love letter to old-fashioned musicals and the people who adore them.
The student production staff is led by director Elaine Zhang, who was musical director for Levels’ previous summer musical, Fiddler on the Roof. Choreography is by Jonelle Robinson and associate choreographer Kate Smolens. Vocal direction is by Elaine Zhang. Phoebe Gordon serves as artistic producer, with Joy Chang as financial producer. Set design is by Simona Fine, costume design by Rebecca Hirschhorn, lighting design/set construction by Tyler Hakimian, and makeup/hair design by Rayna Cooke and Aliza Fine, with prop design by Julian Malater and associate prop designer Spencer Berman.
The cast of high school, middle school and college students includes Spencer Berman, Sam Calto, Christopher Chang, Joy Chang, Rayna Cooke, Simona Fine, Phoebe Gordon, Rebecca Hirschhorn, Daisy Korman, Faith Mosley, Molly Racsko, Adam Schiff, ZB Senft, Kate Smolens, Kevin Wang and Katie Wang. The live student orchestra features musicians Preston Chan, Daniel Chitsaz, Sara Chitsaz, Jonathan Kirschner, Freddy Sion, Berk Soykan and Omeed Tartak.
Though admission is free, tickets are available to guarantee seating as space is limited. They can be requested at the Circulation Desks of all Great Neck Library locations while they last. Doors open 45 minutes before showtime for ticketholders and 15 minutes before showtime for non-ticketholders. For more information, contact Levels at (516) 466-8055 ext. 216 or email [email protected]