The 1950’s brought us many things but perhaps one of the best was Rock and Roll music! Tonight we take a look in on a fun pastime from those days...the dance marathon. Join our couples as they fall in love and dance away the night to great music from stars like: Fats Domino, Elvis Presley, Chuck Berry, Little Richard, Bill Hailey, Buddy Holly, Jerry Lee Lewis and many more. No wonder these kids can’t stop dancing! Come and party with us as we Rock Around the Clock!
Director's & Writer's Notes
Hey there folks, and welcome to the nifty fifties, where life is simpler and rock and roll is king! I may not have been around back then, but my parents were going to sock hops and falling in love in 1959, all to the great tunes you’ll hear tonight. Much of my youth was spent on the living room floor listening to their records. Elvis and Buddy were as much a part of my past as Star Wars and bad hair. I moved all of those records to tape, then to cd, and now they’re on my phone. The way I listen to them has changed but the music never will. Mowing the lawn out on the farm with The King blasting on my Walkman was part of growing up. That’s why helping build this show has been a no brainer for me. With a fantastic cast, choreographer, the dry wit of our wonderful musical director Greg ‘The Animal” Dunstan, our stage manager Connie, our costume designer Tianna, the magic our set team and sound and light technicians provide, all under the supervision of Artistic Director Randy Apostle I’m sure you’ll be pleased. Very special thanks go out to the folks serving you tonight, our additional cast. Aren’t they great? Thanks guys! Thanks, too, go to Shane, Jess, Margaret and the box office staff, Janet and Doug for asking me back to do this, Randy for years of guidance (even when I didn’t deserve it), MJF, Chili, my Ma and Pops for letting me be me and most of all to MPO, my wife who always holds my hand and teaches me how to dance. Sit back, relax, and enjoy your night with us back in 1959.
Good evening all you cool cats and bobby soxers, welcome to the hottest dance party on TV - Rock Around the Clock! Tonight is our dance marathon where we will choose the hosts for the 1959 season’s show. As our studio audience, we ask you to please clap, cheer, sing along and even dance in the aisles if there is room! Let’s all… Rock Around the Clock!
The 50s brought the world so many great songs and it is a pleasure to feature a few of them in our show. The cast does a wonderful job recreating the many harmonies and lead vocals, all while dancing like fools! I enjoyed writing this little story and creating some fun characters that I hope you enjoy. I admit that my knowledge of the 50s is mostly based on television shows and movies from my childhood; but it always conjures up a world that seems less complicated and perhaps a bit more innocent compared to the one we live in today. I thank Peter for all his great work directing this tale and, as always, many thanks to our incredible production team for sharing their amazing talents to bring it all to life! I also would like to acknowledge the generous support of Canadian Actors’ Equity Association and our General Partners, Janet Cunningham and Doug Stephen. Finally I thank you, our audience, for your many years of laughter and support.
Randy Apostle - Artistic Director
Dave Elder – Craig
How’s it hanging, all you Jitter Bugs? Dave’s real keen to be back in the theater with all you jive turkeys. You may have seen him in some other swell shows here, including
Mugs and Molls (2011), and Modern Family (2015). Or touring with the barbershop group, "Hoja". Now he's back on the scene and ready to cut a rug, Daddy-O!
If you dig his pipes, be sure to find his A Cappella crooning online at www.youtube.com/triforcefilms. Now put an egg in your shoe and beat it, ya squares!
Dave Findley – Andy
David is thrilled to be back at Celebration’s Dinner Theatre for the fourth time! When not singing and dancing across this stage he’s been travelling to hippie festivals like Burning Man, hiking, kick-boxing, and guest performing with YEG:DND at Edmonton’s Fringe. Select stage credits include Oliver and Equus (Citadel Theatre), Little Red Riding Hood (Alberta Opera, Theatre for Young People) and both Big Boom Theory and Big Boom Theory 2 (right here!).
Dave hopes you enjoy these golden oldies as much as he’s enjoying working with these talented guys and dolls.
Jeff Rivet – Bruce
Hello Winnipeg! Jeff here, and I'm glad to be back. Over the past few years, I've had the pleasure of performing on this wonderful stage a time or two. That's Dirty Dancing, The Big Boom Theory 2 (Edmonton and Calgary), The Big Boom Theory, Jump For Glee, Mamma Mio, and Law and Order: The Canadian Files to be exact. 6 shows in 6 years?! Where has time gone?! It feel like just yesterday I was so nervous for my first opening night here. And now I'm back for round 7 and I'm so excited to take everyone back to the feel-good time of the 50s. Random facts about myself: I love to read teen-girl fantasy, I'm so excited for the Final Fantasy 7 remake, I'm currently obsessed with The Office, I enjoy the gym, and my David's Tea collection is intervention worthy. Have fun rocking around the clock!
Tanessa Andres - Samantha
Tanessa is thrilled to be taking her second turn on the Celebrations stage – with such a brilliant cast! You may remember her as the bridesmaid, Megan, in My Big Fat Winnipeg Wedding. Other favourite past roles include Ronnette in Little Shop of Horrors and Dorothy in Wizard of Oz. She completed her theatre training at Red Deer College and the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts in London, England, and has been a happy part of the Jubilations Dinner Theatre (the sister theatre to Celebrations) family in Calgary ever since. Tanessa is so thankful for her amazing friends and family who have supported her ridiculous dreams, and for all of you who have come to rock around the clock with us!! Enjoy the show!
Kate Holley – Tammy
Kate is super excited to be in her third show here at Celebrations! You may have seen her recently in Modern Family Vacation or in Footsloose! She is also a graduate of the Theatre Arts program at Grant MacEwan University. Kate would like to thank her amazing and supportive family and she hopes you'll enjoy the show!
Gillian Moon –Mary
Hailing from Barrhead, Alberta, Gillian is pleased as punch to be back on the Celebrations stage with this exuberant cast! She now calls Winnipeg home and performed most recently at Celebrations as an 80s obsessed teenager, Dusty Rhodes, in Footsloose. She has also appeared as a ditsy cheerleader, a quirky old lady and a giant hamburger to name a few. Gillian also performs internationally in stage productions for children. Much love to Peter, MJF and Chili. Enjoy!
|Artistic Director||Randy Apostle*|
|Music Producer||WAMARH Music|
|Music Director||Greg Dunstan|
|Rehearsal Stage Manager||Connie Manfredi|
|Sound/ Light Design||Randy Hadubiak|
|Sound/ Light Assistant||Gail Ksionzyk|
|Sets Designed & Contruction By||Rom Fantini & Jaimie Cooney|
|Mural Design||Jaimie Cooney|
|Scene Painters||Jaimie Cooney, Karen Turnbull, Casey Richards, Genevieve Levasseur, and Rachel Maes|
|Costume Design||Tianna Lombardi|
|Cast Photographer||Jim Woroniuk|
|Shop Carpenter||Jaimie Cooney|
|Playbill Advertising & Design||Call 1-866-414-1560|
Celebrations Dinner Theatre is licensed by The Society of Composers, Authors and Music Publishers of Canada (SOCAN)
*The participation of these Artists are arranged by permission of Canadian Actors’ Equity Association under the provisions
Dinner Theatre Concept Production Team
The dinner theatre concept uses a consistent team for all productions. If a particular member of the production team is unavailable for a specific show, other alternatives are explored, such as guest writers and directors. The productions begin in Winnipeg where they run for approximately 10 weeks. At the end of the run in Winnipeg, the set, including lighting and sound designs, props, music and actors all move on to Edmonton where the show runs for another 10 weeks. The production team will then move on to Calgary. Unlike the restaurant business where management can be developed and moved from one location to another, the theatres require the services of a very specialized group of individuals. This group has been associated with the company since Janet Cunningham and Doug Stephen took over the Winnipeg dinner theatre in 1993. The biographies of the key individuals involved with the dinner theatre productions are presented below.
For the past 20 years or so, Randy has been the Artistic Director for WOW Productions the company that provides all of the shows for the Celebrations and Jubilations dinner theatre's in Winnipeg Edmonton and Calgary. Randy has headed up over 75 original productions for our venues, serving as writer on many and director of the vast majority.
In addition to artistic director, Randy also acts as producer for the shows. Auditioning and selecting the casts, script supervision, music selection and working with all other members of the production team on all aspects of each of our presentations.
Over his years in the Canadian arts, Randy has worked in many theatres across Western Canada as a Technician, Stage Manager, Writer, Actor, Singer, Musician and Director. Some of Randy's favourite roles have been in shows such as: Pontius Pilate in Jesus Christ Superstar, The Fantastics, Toronto Mississippi, The Foreigner and Last Call. A few Film and T.V. credits include: the motion picture - The Hessen Affair, made for TV projects - C7: The end of the world, Naughty or Nice, Killer Instinct, Hell on Heels and for those of you with long memories... 2 years on the children's show Putnam's Prairie Emporium!
Randy makes his home in Winnipeg where he lives with his wife Terri and their two year old son Jack! Besides his very busy schedule with the 3 theatres, Randy finds time to collaborate on a improvised soap opera on Monday evenings - "Soap Scum" at the Park Theatre in Winnipeg.
Randy would like to thank all of our patrons for their many years of laughter and support!
Randy is the individual responsible for the lights and sound in each dinner theatre production, including all aspects of the design process. Randy has performed those duties for over 20 years as a technician and designer. As the opening of each production approaches, Randy researches the music and history of the period in which the show is set in order to ensure that the production is as authentic as possible. Randy heads the technical staff in each location and as such is responsible for the transition from one show to another. That transition involves the set-up of the lights and speakers to suit the show, taking into consideration the uniqueness of each theatre. When Randy is not involved in a transition, he can often be found working the lights or sound in the Jubilations dinner theatre in the West Edmonton Mall.
Rom has been designing and building sets for the Celebrations and Jubilations concept dinner theatres since 1993. As a result of his technical expertise and professional background in graphic art, Rom was the logical choice to take charge of the entire set production and design.
While the design and building of each set is a major focus five times a year, Rom is also responsible for creating the environment for each production. That usually involves the design and decoration of the room in which the production is taking place. This adds to the authenticity of the production.
Over the past seven years, the beauty and complexity of the sets has grown dramatically. Rom's vision has the ability of bringing the stage to life while the themed walls complete the picture.
Van assists Randy Apostle in selecting the music for each production. Once the music is selected, Van maps out the music, records the bass and drum tracks, hires the stage musicians and goes into a studio to create the final product. When Van is not working for the Celebration and Jubilation dinner theatres, he is very much in demand on the Edmonton music scene as both a musician and musical director.