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Posted: June 24, 2018

Chicago, the Musical holding auditions

We may only be halfway through 2018 but Key City Theatre is already excited about the new year.

At Key City Theatre’s season launch June 14 it was announced that the same creative team that brought last year‘s hit, the Producers, to the stage will be mounting a new production for 2019.

Ringing in the New Year and bringing glitz, glamour and excitement to the stage will be the Broadway smash hit musical, Chicago.

Set in Chicago during the roaring “jazz hot” ‘20s, the musical tells the story of two rival vaudeville murderesses who’ve been locked up in Cook County jail.

Velma Kelly, nightclub star, is serving time for killing her husband and sister after finding the two in bed together. Chorus girl and adulteress Roxie Hart has been thrown in the joint for bumping off her lover. Velma enlists the help of prison matron Mama Morton and charming lawyer Billy Flynn, to razzle-dazzle her incarceration into a murder of the week media frenzy. But Roxie‘s got some of her own tricks up her sleeve and through charm, manipulations and dirty rotten lies, manages to turn a feeding frenzy into a full on war.

Chicago is a story of murder, greed, corruption, violence, exploitation, adultery, and treachery – all the things we hold near and dear to our hearts. It is hunger for fame, media spectacles, fake news and trial by publicity. Set nearly a full century ago, the plot is timeless, the music sensational, the Bob Fosse inspired choreography phenomenal, and when it all comes together, it promises to be a tour de force Cranbrook will not soon forget.

Brenda Babinski

Directing the production will be Brenda Babinski whose last few projects include Young Frankenstein, Spamalot, and the multi Abbott award winning production of the Producers. When choosing Chicago as her next project, Babinski opted for a new kind of challenge.

“My past few productions have been lots of fun, campy humour and outrageous antics. Chicago will be a different kind of fun. It’s sexy and fast-paced and challenging on a lot of levels.”

One of the newest challenges will be the addition of live music to the stage for this production. “Working with an orchestra has been my dream and with Chicago one of the featured components is having live music centre stage. It’s a great way to showcase a whole new aspect of our local talent,” Babinski said.

Galen Olstead, Managing Director of the Key City Theatre and Executive Producer of the project is excited to host another musical theatre production. “Last year‘s production was a huge success and a lot of fun. It brought together some of the most talented artists in the community to undertake a huge challenge – So just from the laughter and friendships and connections that were made from that project it is a no brainer to do it again.”

After spearheading the smash success and winning the first coveted Abbott award for best production for the Producers, Olstead hopes that this year’s project will reach out even further to the community. “We have a lot of talent in our community and projects like this allow people to stretch their wings and push themselves a little bit further. And it brings all sorts of people together. We get wonderful memories, a sense of pride in seeing a friend of loved one give a great performance, and friendships that last for many, many years afterwards.”

Auditions for the musical are happening Sunday, June 24 beginning at 1 p.m., Monday, June 25 and Tuesday, June 26 in the evenings. Anybody interested in taking part in this it extraordinary new project is welcome to attend. Contact Brenda Babinski (250-426-7006) for more information on auditions.

“I would love to have all of those people who have dreamed of being on the stage, who sing in their showers, and secretly listen to Broadway tunes in their car, all come out and give it a try. Because first and foremost, our goal is to have fun within our community,” Babinski said.

To reserve an audition time and get a detailed audition package you can email [email protected]

Tickets for the New Year’s eve gala spectacular and for the January run went on sale to members June 15 and to the general public on June 22. You can purchase tickets at the box office at Key city Theatre, by phoning 250–426–7006 or online at keycitytheatre.com

Lead image: Emily Bohmer (left) and Jelena Jensen (right) performed a sneak peak performance from Chicago – the Musical, at the June 14 Season Launch at Key City Theatre. Photo by Julian Bueckert

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