CHiPS the Musical:
The world premiere of the musical parody, CHiPS the Musical, presented by the Troubadour Theater Company has arrived at the Falcon Theatre with an original story-line and music written by Rick Batalla & Henry Phillips, and direction by Matt Walker. This is a high energy, entirely original production with singing and dancing that is TOTAL FUN!
The year was 1977, and TV welcomed the suave, macho and bright-white teeth of Officer Frank Poncherello (“Ponch”), and the perfectly blond coiffure of Officer Jon Baker (“Jon”) into our homes. They were the California Highway Patrol, CHiPS, packin’ their super tight, well-packed uniforms with grit and crime fighting muscle. It is now 2010, and Ponch’s teeth have only become brighter white, and Jon’s hair only more blond and coifed. The pelvic thrusting and super-tight uniforms are still with us, too.
The large cast is headed by Rick Batalla as Ponch, and Matt Walker as John. They are superb as the dynamic police officer duo fighting crime on the mean streets, err highways, of Los Angeles. Their latest “crime” is to catch the eco-terrorist “green gang” criminal operation headed by KG or “Kelly Green” played by Beth Kennedy. Her “gang” has formed to stamp out the fouling of the sewer system, and includes Joseph Keane in a dual role(Charlie/Sensitive Guy #1), Christine Lakin, also in a dual role (June/Statch), Meleney Humphrey (dual roles of Bill/Lady), Jen DeMinco (Crystal), and Jackie Seiden (dual roles of Frankie/Carmelite). Ms. Seiden gives us a fantastic vocal solo on the song “Frankly Frankie”. Kristin D’Andrea as Karen/Carmelite, and Michelle Anne Johnson as Carmel are excellent and show their expertise throughout the performance. Joel McCrary as sewer-fouling Jim is a standout with the song “Missed Opportunity”. The rest of the cast, Mike Sulprizio as Sgt. Getrear, Matthew Morgan as Grossman, Andy Lopez (Sensitive Guy #2), and Mike Teele as (dual roles Jenkins/Dispatch) all contribute to the high energy. Caroline Gross does a Cirque du Soleil type performance which is outstanding.
CHiPS the Musical is hilarious, and filled with tight pants, short shorts, roller skates and super flash! Batalla and Phillips have not missed an opportunity to make us laugh in their fun script and music, and coupled with Matt Walkers great direction, freedom has been given to the cast to create bright comical improvisation and interaction with the audience. As such, no two performances are alike. You can tell the cast and crew is having a ball. It shows in their performance and the energy is contagious.
Choreographer Nadine Ellis, Musical Direction by Eric Heinly, Costumes by Sharon McGunigle, Sound Design by Robert Arturo Ramirez, Set Design by Sherry Satillano, Lighting Design by Mike Jespersen, and Stage Manager Corey Womack are all integral to the success of this show.
The Troubadour Theater Company is an award winning, no holds barred, slapstick driven Los Angeles based ensemble of actors, musicians and comedians that that been performing for audiences throughout Southern California since 1995. They are successful professionals in all areas of the entertainment industry and have won numerous awards and nominations.
The Falcon Theatre and The Troubadour Theater Company have given us a complete, fun-filled evening of laughter, music, dance and audience participation. How much more can you ask for! It’s TOTALLY FUN!!!
Cast: Rick Batalla, Kristin D’Andrea, Jen DeMinco, Caroline Gross, Meleney Humphrey, Michelle Anne Johnson, Joseph Keane, Beth Kennedy, Christine Lakin, Andy Lopez, Joel McCrary, Matthew Morgan, Jackie Seiden, Mike Sulprizio, Mike Teele and Matt Walker