Back in the 1960’s there was an amazing musical phenomena, in which many musical acts from the United Kingdom became popular around the world launching some of the most inventive and influential bands of all time. On December 10, 1963, the CBS Evening News with Walter Cronkite, ran a report about the “Beatle mania” phenomenon in the United Kingdom. On February 7, 1964 the CBS Evening News ran a story about the Beatles' United States arrival that afternoon and the “British Invasion” had began! Two days later they appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show and soon after were topping the American charts and would do so for many years. Ed Sullivan showcased several other musical acts from “across the pond” such as The Rolling Stones, The Who, Herman`s Hermits, The Kinks and many other up and coming stars. In many ways, Mr. Sullivan is responsible for introducing this musical invasion to the North American audience.
Tonight, we take you back to the days of live television and present a behind the scenes tale of the famous Ed Sullivan show during such an exciting time in musical history, when he brought these new amazing acts and performers into people’s living rooms. Celebrations Dinner Theatre is pleased to present “The British Invasion”.
Director's & Writer's Notes
Randy ApostleDirector's Notes: Randy Apostle
Welcome to 2014 and another exciting season of shows here at Celebrations Dinner Theatre! We kick off this new year with a little trip down memory lane as we pay tribute to an American television classic that for 22 years brought an incredible variety of entertainment segments to viewers. [from comedy (note: Canadian comedy team Wayne and Shuster appeared 58 times!) to ballet, to drama, to current interesting people and even a little furry mouse puppet, Toppo Gigio!] the Ed Sullivan show was a tradition for many families on Sunday evenings! The show was also known to introduce the very latest and greatest music acts. Elvis first took the stage on Sept. 9, 1956, other American bands such as the Supremes, The Beach Boys, The Jackson 5, Janis Joplin, The Mamas & the Papas, The Lovin' Spoonful, The Doors and so many others also appeared on his show. But tonight we are going to focus on the music Ed featured from jolly old Londown town in an explosion of popular music known as the British Invasion! My many thanks to all the production team members and to this very talented cast! A shout out to Mr. Bob Cunningham for his assitance with the music selections and finally my thanks to you, our audience for choosing to spend your evening with us! If you have any questions or comments about this or any of our shows please do feel free to email me. Enjoy the show!
Joseph Davies* - Ed Sullivan
Joseph is pleased to be back in Winnipeg for this really big show. He was here last winter in the Celebrations production of My Big Fat Winnipeg Wedding. He has performed all across the country and some of his credits include: The Producers, Picasso at the Lapin Agile, Party, The Rocky Horror Show, Toni and Tina's Wedding and A Closer Walk With Patsy Cline. He hopes this winter will be a mild one and he gets to see a Jets game.
(*Appears Courtesy of Canadian Actors' Equity Association)
Kelly Benzing - Maxine Goldmon | Dusty Springfield | Petula Clarke | Lulu
Kelly is thrilled to be performing for you all tonight. Born and raised in Winnipeg, Kelly enrolled in the Royal Conservatory of Music and Arts for Classical and Opera training at the age of five. You may remember Kelly as Helena from Thank You Mr. Presley, Chanel Alphonso from Mugs and Molls: A Mobster Musical, Rachel Berry from Jump for Glee or Lula Stewart from My Big Fat Winnipeg Wedding. A big thank you goes out to everyone who put so much effort into making this production come alive. A HUGE thank you to my cast mates who have been super helpful with this transition. And Thank you to the family and friends who have always been there and supported me. Have fun!
Cory Hicks - Ringo Starr | Fred Marsden | Charlie Watts | Barry Whitman
Blimey! I can't seem to get enough of this place! The British Invasion marks my 8th performance with Celebrations, and it's good to be back! You may have seen me last year as the not-so-bright jock, Jimbo. I hail from Calgary, Alberta (don't hold it against me though!) where I work as a photographer, but I'm enjoying the break portraying some of the greatest musicians of all time... or at least the drummers. I still remember hearing the Beatles for the first time and it was a life-changing experience. I have to thank my amazing parents for exposing me to music and being the most supportive people in my life. Next up are the friends, my amazing roommates and coworkers back back home, thank you for all the love sent across the provinces. Of course I have to thank my amazingly talented cast, the crew who puts it all together, our director Randy and SM Peter for the direction and support, the staff here at Celebrations, and finally YOU, the audience! I hope you enjoy re-living some of the most memborable performances on the Ed Sullivan show with us! Feel free to check out Cory's photos at www.facebook.com/coryhicksphotos.
Shannon Kehler - Betty Sullivan
Shannon couldn't ask for a better way to spend her year off. She ad casted in Calgary and is ecstatic about her Celebrations debut. Her recent work with AMC's Hell on Wheels proved to be an incredible opportunity for which she is grateful. Shannon would like to give a huge shout out to her support system, she wouldn't be here without their unconditional love. She thanks YOU and David Bowie. Enjoy the show!
Ian Samuel - Paul McCartney | Gerry Marsden | Keith Richards | Peter Noone
What to say, what to say.. Oh! Yes. I have been hanging around the company ever since I turned 18, which was only 12 weeks ago....... or 12 years... either way. Finally making my way to Winnipeg is such a surreal experience for me, and to share the stage with these amazing talented people is truly a blessing from the musical theatre gods. Cheap plug time! You can catch Chris and I on our bands debut album at hungryhollowband.bandcamp.com or on Facebook.com/hungryhollowband. New please sit back and enjoy my favourite era of rack n' roll, the 60's!
Chris Schermbrucker - John Lennon | Les Chadwick | Mick Jagger | Keith Hopwood
Hey everyone! This is my first time on Celebrations' stage! It's a very exciting time for me right now and I've been looking forward to it for a long time. I started at Jubilations in Edmonton last year as an additional cast and made a lot of great connections and even better friends. Ian and I started a band last January which restored my need to play music, while playing a part as the reverend in My Big Fat Edmonton Wedding gave me the confidence to begin acting. I'm thrilled to be doing two of the things I love with some very talented people. Enjoy everyone.
|Artistic Director||Randy Apostle*|
|Music Producer||WAMARH Music|
|Music Director||Greg Dunstan|
|Choreographer||Kristen Sawatsky & Sam Manchulenko*|
|Props||Connie Manfredi & Miguel Gauthier|
|Sound/ Light Design||Randy Hadubiak|
|Sound/ Light Assistant||Gail Ksionzyk|
|Set Design & Contruction||Rom Fantini & Jaimie Cooney|
|Scene Painters||Jaimie Cooney, Karen Turnbull, Janet Sarvis & Hilary Ivanchko|
|Carpenter's Assistant||Janet Sarvis|
|Costume Design||Lucille Laporte|
|Cast Photographer||Jim Woroniuk|
|Shop Carpenter||Jaimie Cooney|
|Playbill Advertising & Design||Cedar Publishing Corp 1-866-414-1560|
Celebrations Dinner Theatre is licensed by The Society of Composers, Authors and Music Publishers of Canada (SOCAN)
*Courtesy of Canadian Actors' Equity Association
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.