The Actorsingers

 

Little Shop of Horrors (1999)

American Stage Festival (Court Street)
August 19-22, 1999

Book and Lyrics by Howard Ashman

Music by Alan Menken

Based on the film by Roger Corman
Screen play by Charles Griffith



Tom Gallo's photo gallery

Nashua Telegraph preview article

Nashua Telegraph review

The Little Shop of Horrors Unofficial Internet Site

The Making of Little Shop of Horrors

Cast

(In order of appearance)


Chiffon Lisa Frechette

Crystal Cindy Fisher

Ronnette Mary Beth Lyon

Girls Tajoura Davis, Erin Hadley, Robyn Nace

Mushnik Greg Tarsa

Audrey Heather Burnap

Seymour Jeff Goumas

Wino Steven Walsh

Businessman Steve Damboise

Hooker Alene Bonner

Customer #1 Gary Locke

Radio Announcer Gary Locke

Audrey II main puppeteer Dan Loya

Orin William Prest

Audrey II (speaking voice) William Prest

Audrey II (singing voice) Steve Walsh

Customer #2 Alene Bonner

Bernstein Steve Damboise

Mrs. Luce Alene Bonner

Skip Snip Steve Damboise

Patrick Martin Chuck Emmons

Orchestra

Bass Erik Thomas

Percussion Kevin Reed

Piano Drew Dhabolt

Acknowledgments

We wish to thank the following local merchants who donated items for our intermission raffles:

Anni Etelli's Restaurant, Merrimack

Toadstool Bookshops, Milford

The Pasta Loft Restaurant, Milford

The Ground Round, Nashua

Chili's, Nashua

Brookdale Fruit Farm, Hollis

Production and Technical Staff

Producer Charles Emmons

Director Glen Grimard

Music Director Rob Goeke

Choreographer Lynne Wifholm

Stage Manager Craig Brennan

Set Design Glen Grimard, Steve Damboise, Charles Emmons

Lighting Design Craig Brennan, Glen Grimard

Sound Design Laurie Brown

Properties Traci Bisaillon

Costumes Alene Bonner

Make-up/Effects Jonathan Fisher

Scenic Artists Gifford Scanlon, Glen Grimard, Jillian Cote, Lynne Mueller, Meaghan Bassett, Charles Emmons

Stage Running Crew Traci Bisaillon, Joe Flores

Lighting Technician Josh Friedman

Set Construction Steve Damboise, Debra Hull, Glen Grimard, Charles Emmons, Gifford Scanlon, Jonathan Fisher, Bob Lovering, Joe Flores, Craig Brennan

Sound Equipment Dennis Schneider, John Sauter, David Kasok

Photography Tom Gallo

Publicity Amy Friedman, Charles Emmons, Glen Grimard

Tickets Betty Badeau, John Liljeberg

Poster Design Gifford Scanlon

Lobby Display Lorraine Cote

Raffle Deb Walz

Audrey II Handler Joe Flores

Program Barry Bonner

Rehearsal Pianist Drew Dhabolt

Afterglow Corinne Hall, Glen Grimard, Lynne Wifholm

Concessions Val Levesque, Brian Mehlman

Auditioning Board Amy Friedman, Lowell Williams, Glen Grimard, Lynne Wifholm, Rob Goeke, Jed Holland, Ed Wall


Forward by Roger Corman

Our producer, Chuck Emmons, wrote to Mr. Roger Corman, director of the 1960 film The Little Shop of Horrors on which this musical was based, asking for comments that we might use as a forward for our program. Mr. Corman graciously replied:


Of all the films I've directed the one that has survived the longest as a "cult classic" is the one I made the fastest and the cheapest. It was written for a standing set, principal photography was completed in two days (after three days' rehearsal), the total cost was about $30,000, yet it has lived on for nearly 40 years now in midnight shows on campuses, revival cinemas, videocassette outlets and remakes for stage and screen.

One of the reasons for its astonishing durability may be that when I made the film, I was creating a new genre--the black-comedy horror film. I was tired of the straightforward horror genre and wanted to try a different kind of film--something more cynical, darker, more wickedly funny. This new mix had worked in my previous film "A bucket of Blood" and I wanted to make another in a similar tone. I called Chuck Griffiths (who wrote "A Bucket of Blood") and told him I wanted a variation on the "Bucket of Blood" story line. I wanted a somewhat gruesome premise, a quirky plot and unconventional, well-sketched characters. We brainstormed for a night and Chuck first suggested cannibalism as a premise, but the censors would have not allowed it so he came up with the premise of a maneating plant, and wrote the screenplay in a week.

In order to pull off the tight shooting schedule I turned to Corman 'regulars' for both cast and crew. I wanted actors I had used before and could rely on. For example, the role of Seymour was originally written for Dick Miller (who had played the lead in "A Bucket of Blood") but he decided not to do it. Instead he added his own deadpan style of humor as a customer who eats plants. One sequence that helped turn the film into a cult favorite was an inspired bit of bleak humor by an actor I began to use more regularly--Jack Nicholson, who plays a masochist at a dentist appointment.

We adhered quite closely to the script and despite a loose, improvisational feel to the witty exchanges, this film was in no way created on the set. Any changes made were worked out in the three days of rehearsal before rolling. Everyone just came in very well prepared.

In a sense, the creation of "The Little Shop of Horrors" may have been closer to the theatrical tradition of designing plays for a stock company than to standard film making. Perhaps this is why the original movie translates so well into the stage version. I thought the 1982 musical adaptation by Howard Ashman and Alan Menken was wonderful: it caught the spirit and youthful energy of the movie.

Running off-Broadway helped since I always believed both my film, which was reminiscent of a college humor show and the musical would have been diminished with a more expensive, slicker production in which the lavish appearance might work against the comedy.


Musical Synopsis

Act One

Prologue (Little Shop of Horrors) Girls

Skid Row (Downtown) Company

Da-Doo Seymour and Girls

Grow For Me Seymour

Don't It Go To Show Ya Never Know Mushnik, Seymour and the Girls

Somewhere That's Green Audrey

Closed For Renovations Seymour, Audrey and Mushnik

Dentist! Orin and the Girls

Mushnik and Son Mushnik and Seymour

Feed Me (Git It) Seymour and Audrey II

Now (It's Just the Gas) Orin and Seymour

Act Two

Call Back in the Morning Seymour and Audrey

Suddenly Seymour Seymour, Audrey and the Girls

Suppertime Audrey II and the Girls

The Meek Shall Inherit Bernstein, Skip Snip, Mrs. Luce, Seymour and the Girls

Sominex/Suppertime (reprise) Audrey and Audrey II

Finale (Don't Feed the Plants) Company

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