Animal Crackers, a family friendly musical at Blue Bridge Repertory Theatre August 2-14,2016. Preview.

Animal Crackers, a family friendly musical at Blue Bridge Repertory Theatre August 2-14,2016. Preview. (Media Release).

Before Monty Python, before Jerry Seinfeld, before all contemporary comic angels of anarchy, there were the Marx Brothers. Chico, Groucho, Harpo and Zeppo blazed their way through vaudeville, Broadway and Hollywood with their unique blend of comic and musical talents. They were, quite simply, hailed as one of the greatest comic ensemble of the 20th century. Alongside American playwright and director George S. Kaufman and lyricist Morrie Ryskind, the Marx Brothers opened their final Broadway musical Animal Crackers in 1928. Set in the Long Island home of socialite Abigail Rittenhouse, the Marx Brothers in the roles of Captain Spaulding the African explorer, Signor Ravelli and the Professor (a silent man with a thousand pockets), wreak havoc with the upper class pretensions of Mrs. Rittenhouse and her ‘toney’ guests.

Animal Crackers August 2016
Having assembled a cast of nine of Victoria’s most talented comic and musical performers and a band of four, Director Jacob Richmond, Choreographer Treena Stubel, and Music Director Brad L’Ecuyer are set to bring this Henry Wishkamper adaptation of this mad cap musical to Blue Bridge Repertory Theatre. “As we’ve been researching the Marx Brothers” said director Jacob Richmond “Treena and I have been sharing film clips of the best of Marx Brothers lunacy with our 3 year old son Ira. He loves them! Which just goes to prove to me that great comedy is ageless. It is this spirit of ‘agelessness’ that I and my colloaborators, are hoping to infuse into this production.”

To bring this ageless musical to life, Richmond and Stubel have drawn on some of the best of the music and comic talent working in Victoria. Playing the four Marx Brothers are R.J. Peters as Groucho, Wes Borg as Chico, Kelly Hobson as Harpo and Griffin Lee as Zeppo. They are joined by a talented ensemble that includes Samantha Currie, Kholby Wardell,  Sarah Murphy, Jane Gaudet and Pascal Lamothe-Kipnes. Music Director and lead keyboard player Brad L’Ecuyer has assembled a  top notch band that includes Sarah Tradewell on strings, Rainer Grant Roth on reeds and Jonathan Eng on percussion. Joining this talented performance ensemble are a team of some of the best of Blue Bridge designers and coaches that include: Brian Ball on Sets; Pauline Stynes on Costumes; Rebekah Johnson on Lights; and Iris MacGregor Bannerman as Dialect Coach.

Suitable for children of all ages, Blue Bridge has also introduced a special price of $12 for comic enthusiasts 12 and under in addition to its regular ticket prices that range from $ 25 to $ 47. Animal Crackers runs from August 2-14 with performances at 8 pm nightly from Tuesday to Saturday with matinees at 1 pm and 2 pm on Wednesdays and Saturdays. Tickets are available; online at; by phone at 250-382-3370; or in person from Tues. to Sat. from noon to 4 pm at Blue Bridge’s home, The Roxy Theatre 2657 Quadra Street, Victoria.


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