St. John’s Theatre will be producing Chicago as this year’s spring musical. The show will run from April 23-25. They hosted a workshop on Jan. 22 to help new members prepare for the auditions, which took place on Wednesday and Friday of this week.
This will be the first musical directed by Mr. Hotaling at St. John’s. He put on a very innovative version of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time in the fall.
Many were surprised about the decision to produce Chicago at St. John’s. The musical is considered somewhat racy and mature by many. The story is set in the jazz age in Chicago and focuses on Velma, who murders her husband and hires Billy Flynn to defend her. He also takes on Roxie’s case and turns her into a media sensation. Velma and Roxie fight to see who will become the most famous.
However, St. John’s Theatre is looking forward to the production and is excited about the choice of Chicago. Mr. Hotaling explains why he chose the show: “Mrs. Fernandez, Ms. Yancich and I all thought the story, the choreography, and a lot of opportunities for student musicians suited St. John’s wonderfully.”
Craig Robinson ’21, an active member of St. John’s Theatre, said, “I think Chicago is a good play. It makes a lot of people want to try out and be a part of it because it’s Chicago. At the auditions, I liked the direction it was going in. It was really fun and energetic – positive energy all around!”
Dajah Childs ’22 of St. John’s Theatre said, “I’m excited to see how the outcome of this musical will be!”
It will be interesting to see what direction St. John’s Theatre takes the show in and how they tailor it for their audience. Mr. Hotaling is planning to take a new spin on it: “This version is perfectly suited for younger actors and I think the show is a great mix of a vaudeville, Fosse, comedy, and all that jazz.” The performances will occur April 23-25.