Music by: John Du Prez and Idle
Produced by: Hillbarn Theatre
Featuring: Dan Demers as King Arthur (replacing Russ Bohard), Paul Araquistain as Patsy, Ray Mendonca as Sir Robin, Russell Ward as Sir Lancelot, Thomas Ignatius as Sir Galahad, Tracy Chaippone as Lady of the Lake, Lawrence-Michael Arias as Sir Bedevere, Steven Ennis as Herbert, Ron Lopez as Character Male, and Foster City Police Chief Matthew Martell as The Black Knight. The ensemble includes Pauli Amornkul, Jennifer Butler, Evelyn Chan, Alyson Chilton, Amanda Ross, Jennifer Young, Jason Hobart, Loren Gonzales, Aristotle Justice McDaniel and Jacob Marker
Directed by: Dan Demers
When: August 30-September 22, 2013. Extended through September 29, 2013
Where: Hillbarn Theatre, 1285 East Hillsdale Boulevard, Foster City, California
Tickets:$23-$40. Call 650-349-6411 or visit hillbarntheatre.org
Read a pre-opening interview with director Dan Demers
Read a review of the show.
Demers steps in for Bohard
Russ Bohard was fabulous as King Arthur in Hillbarn Theatre's completely delightful production of "Spamalot" a show that has done so well it extended for a week, through this coming Sunday.
But then, as the show's director, Dan Demers explains, Bohard went to his doctor to find out why his eye was bugging him.
"They did the scans or whatever tests," Demers said on Friday, "and told him he had a detached retina, and had to have emergency surgery. Russ told them, 'But I have a show to do. It's closing weekend.' And the doctor told him, 'You can be blind and do the show, or I can do the surgery.'"
Which is why Demers got a phone call at 7 p.m. on Wednesday and learned that he would have to go on as King Arthur in 24 hours.
At the time of the call, he was on his way to Woodside Community Theatre, where he's been in rehearsal for "The Producers," in which he plays Max Bialystock, and that opens in late October.
So that night, in breaks from rehearsal, he went outside and worked on getting ready for "Spamalot."
Thursday morning, he was joined at Hillbarn by Lady of the Lake Tracy Chaippone, stage manager Amanda Roccuzzo and music director Greg Sudmeier, and they started working on all of the blocking, choreography and lines.
As it got closer to show time, they were joined by the rest of the cast, who all came in early to work with him. And at 8 p.m., the show went on. "HE ROCKED IT!" said Mae Heagerty-Matos on Friday, in a long discussion string about it on Facebook that began Thursday with this post from Demers: "Never forget...the show must go on..."
That string includes this note from Rosie Issel: "He has covered for crew, props, now a cast member, if we had another weekend left I am sure he could be the musical director too! Dan is just AMAZING!"
Friday afternoon with three more shows to go Demers talked about it. Of course, as director, he knows the show. But ...
"I was having this conversation with the actors," he said. "Being the director is one thing. The show is all in your head. You created it from nothing, know the blocking .... but as an actor, you have to have it in your head an in your body.
"The biggest hurdle was putting it in my body."
The show, which is an absolute blast, had already been selling out, and Demers said they'd been getting phone calls from patrons who were upset because they couldn't get tickets. Which is why the show extended another week, to close on September 29.
While Bohard was great as King Arthur, Demers is also an excellent performer, and lots of people are excited by the chance to see him in this role. So check for tickets, but don't be surprised if they are all gone, already. Small theater.
Bohard came through his surgery just fine, said Demers. "They were able to fix everything. He, basically, just can't move, drive, or anything till it's healed."
Long live both King Arthurs!
Email John Orr at firstname.lastname@example.org