After years of anticipation, the long-awaited dream of a new theater on Howard Street in Evanston will become a reality on December 7 when Theo Ubique Cabaret Theatre begins previews for David Yazbek and Terrence McNally’s musical THE FULL MONTY, the kickoff show in its new 85-seat home. David Yazbek is currently one of Broadway’s hottest composer-lyricists, having just won a Tony Award® for his music and lyrics of this year’s Best Musical winner THE BAND’S VISIT. He also earned raves for his score for TOOTSIE, which had its tryout in Chicago this fall and will open on Broadway next Spring. THE FULL MONTY was Yazbek’s first musical and Broadway debut. This funny and heart-warming musical comedy, with a book by the prolific Terrence McNally based on a British film comedy, was an instant hit and ran on Broadway for nearly two years. Theo Ubique’s production will open to the press on Monday, December 10 following previews from December 7, and run through January 27, 2019.
Moving the film’s setting from Great Britain to Buffalo, New York, the musical follows the adventures of a group of unemployed steelworkers who decide to make some money and regain some pride by performing as a troupe of male strippers. Theo Ubique’s founding Artistic Director Fred Anzevino will be stage director, Resident Music Director Jeremy Ramey will be music director and Sawyer Smith will choreograph.
Matt Frye leads a cast of some of Chicago’s brightest up-and-coming musical theater talents as Jerry Lukowski, the mastermind of the scheme to bare it all for money. Frye is remembered for his roles in [TITLE OF SHOW] and NOW. HERE. THIS with Brown Paper Box Theatre Company. Nick Druzbanski, who earned a Jeff award nomination for his work as Barry in Refuge Theatre Project’s HIGH FIDELITY, will be Jerry’s best buddy Dave Bukatinsky.
Joe Giovannetti, who earned a Jeff nomination for Theo Ubique’s THE MOST HAPPY FELLA, will return to Theo to play Malcolm, the depressed security guard who unexpectedly finds love with Ethan. Neil Stratman, last seen with Theo Ubique in JACQUES BREL’S LONESOME LOSERS OF THE NIGHT, will be Ethan. Jonathan Schwart, seen earlier this year as Otto Kringelein in Kokandy’s GRAND HOTEL, will play Harold, the manager who hides his unemployment from his wife. Completing the six-man troupe of clothes-shedders will be Marc Prince (of Pride Films and Plays’ YANK!) as “Horse,” the middle-aged African-American who knows all the dance moves even if his joints have difficulty executing them.
Molly LeCaptain, a Jeff nominee this year for her multiple roles in YANK! for Pride Films and Plays, will be Dave’s supportive wife Georgie. Anna Dvorchak, who appeared in the Music Theater Works productions of PIRATES OF PENZANCE as Isabel, will be Jerry’s ex-wife Pam. Emily Barnash, also seen at Music Theater Works where she played the Old Woman in CANDIDE and Mazeppa in Gypsy, will play Harold’s wife Vicki and also Joanie.
Three-time Jeff Award nominee Kate Harris, seen recently as Mag in THE BEAUTY QUEEN OF LEENANE for Bluebird Arts, will play the piano accompanist Jeanette, as well as Molly McGregor. Eleven-year-old Sean Zielinski, a troupe member of the Second City Youth Ensemble, will be Jerry’s son Nathan. Also in the cast are Janyce Caraballo (Estelle), Tyler Symone (Susan, Delores), John Cardone (Keno, ensemble), David Stobbe (Reg, ensemble, u/s Jerry), and Alexander Christ (Teddy, ensemble). Additional understudies are Grace Bobber (Pam, Georgie), Andrea DeVriendt, (Susan, Estelle), Tim Avanti (Horse) and Michelle McKenzie-Voight (Jeannette, Molly McGregor).
Courtney Crouse is Assistant Director. The design team includes Ben Lipinski (scenic design), Bill Morey (costume design), James Kolditz (lighting design), Matt Zalinski (props design). Isabelle Rund is stage manager.
All performances will be staged in the new Theo Ubique Cabaret Theatre, 721 Howard Street, Evanston. Season tickets are on sale now at www.Theo-u.com and single tickets for THE FULL MONTY will be available soon.
Theo Ubique’s New Home
Theo Ubique’s new performance space will be a renovated storefront owned by the City of Evanston at 721 Howard Street, on the north side of the street that is the border between Evanston and Chicago. The theatre will have a flexible performance and seating area that will seat approximately 85 patrons – some 30 seats more than the previous capacity at No Exit. This expanded capacity will allow more audiences to enjoy the company’s frequently sold-out shows but maintain the intimacy of the No Exit Café.
Audiences will enjoy the increased comfort of a newly rehabbed building as well. The City of Evanston is investing $1.2 million of TIF money in a. gut rehab of the building, including all new plumbing, electric, HVAC, asbestos removal, new restrooms, and a “catering kitchen” and bar, allowing Theo Ubique to continue to offer bar service and dinners provided through a catering partner to be announced. The company’s ten-year lease with the city includes four options for five-year renewals.
THE FULL MONTY
Music and Lyrics by David Yazbek, Book by Terrence McNally, based on the motion picture released by Fox Searchlight Pictures and written by Simon Beaufoy, produced by Uberto Pasolini and directed by Peter Cattaneo
Directed by Fred Anzevino
Music Directed by Jeremy Ramey
Choreography by Sawyer Smith
December 7, 2018 – January 27, 2019
Press Opening Monday, December 10, 2018, 7:30 pm
Ticket prices previews December 7-9: All seats $25.00
Ticket prices regular run: Thursdays and Sundays $39.00, Fridays and Saturdays $44.00
$5.00 discount on regular run prices for seniors and students
Dinner (optional) is $25.00. Advance reservations required
Curtain Times: Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 pm; Sundays at 7:00 pm.
All performances will be held at Theo Ubique Cabaret Theatre, 721 Howard Street, Evanston
More information at www.theo-u.com or by phone at 800-595-4849.
Student/Industry Rush All Season Long!
(Starting 15 mins before curtain, all unsold seats will be released for $20 for those with a valid student ID or for industry with biz card or headshot.)
Based on the cult hit film of the same name, THE FULL MONTY follows a group of unemployed steelworkers from Buffalo who while spying on their wives at a “Girls’ Night Out,” see how much their wives enjoy watching male strippers. Jealous, out of work and feeling emasculated, the men come up with a bold and unclothed way to make some quick cash. In preparing, they find themselves extremely exposed; not merely physically but emotionally. As they conquer their fears, self-consciousness and prejudices, the men come to discover that they’re stronger as a group, and the strength that they find in each other gives them the individual courage to “let it go.”
ABOUT THEO UBIQUE
Theo Ubique was founded in 1997 by artistic director Fred Anzevino. Productions were first staged at the Heartland Studio Theatre, and from 2004 to May 2018, at No Exit Café, where the company began focusing on musicals and revues, reigniting the cabaret theatre trend in Chicago. The company will move to its own space in Evanston in December 2018. Theo Ubique has produced more than 50 shows and received more than 40 Jeff Awards, having received more than 100 nominations. It has also received three After Dark Awards.