"The Drowsy Chaperone" - Lisa Lambert, Greg Morrison, Bob Martin & Don McKellar - Lyric Stage Company (Boston, MA.) - REVIEW

(Cover Photo: Mark Linehan as “George” and Jared Troilo as “Robert Martin” in a scene from the musical "THE DROWSY CHAPERONE" by Lisa Lambert, Greg Morrison, Bob Martin and Don McKellar, now playing at the Lyric Stage in Boston, MA. until May 12, 2024. Photo Credit Mark S. Howard)

By Kevin T. Baldwin

METRMAG Reviewer

# 774-242-6724   

“Musicals take you to another world and give you a tune to carry in your head when you're feeling blue."

 - ("Man in Chair") / Lisa Lambert/Greg Morrison/Bob Martin & Don McKellar

Lyric Stage Company

Presents the Delightful Musical


Music & Lyrics by Lisa Lambert & Greg Morrison

Book by Bob Martin & Don McKellar

Directed and Choreographed by Larry Sousa° 

Music Director Matthew Stern

Cast Includes: Joy Clark* as “Janet Van De Graaff,” Yasmeen Duncan as “Trix the Aviatrix/Ensemble,” Kristian Espiritu* as “Kitty,” Danny Feldman as “Ensemble,” Maureen Keiller* as “The Drowsy Chaperone,” Mark Linehan* as “George,” Cristhian Mancinas-Garcia as “Aldolpho,” Paul Melendy* as “Man in Chair,” Katie Pickett as “Superintendent/Ensemble, u/s Chaperone, Mrs. Tottendale,” Nick Potts as “Ensemble/Superintendent cover,” Ilyse Robbins as “Gangster #2,” Kathy St. George* as “Gangster #1,” Carolyn Saxon* as “Mrs. Tottendale,” Damon Singletary* as “Feldzieg,” Jared Troilo* as “Robert Martin,” Todd Yard as “Underling,” Lizzy Cenicola as “Assistant Director/Choreographer/Swing,” Miki Grubic as “Assistant Director/Choreographer/Swing.”

Additional Creative Team:

Scenic Design - Cameron McEachern**; Lighting Design - John Malinowski; Costume Design - Seth Bodie; Sound Designer - Alex Berg; Props Artisan - Jennifer Butler; Production Stage Manager - Nerys Powell*; Assistant Stage Manager - Pat-Rice Rooney*

* Member of Actors’ Equity Association, the Union of Professional Actors and Stage Managers in the United States
** Represented by United Scenic Artists, Local USA 829 of the IATSE
° Stage Directors and Choreographers Society 


April 5, 2024 through May 12, 2024

(Contact Box Office for Exact Times) 

LYRIC STAGE OF BOSTON, 140 Clarendon Street, Boston, MA 02116


Contact the Box Office at # 617-585-5678 or go to lyricstage.com



Contact Venue for Most Updated COVID-19 Safety Protocols and Information.

Fun, multi-Tony Award-winning musical "THE DROWSY CHAPERONE" has arrived in Boston courtesy of the Lyric Stage Company and it is pure musical escapism at its finest. 

The musical farce, by Lisa Lambert, Greg Morrison, Bob Martin and Don McKellar, harkens back to an era when musicals had an innocence, enthusiasm and charm hard to reproduce in today's far more jaded world. 

A big component of the audience enjoyment of "CHAPERONE" comes courtesy of the obvious enthusiasm conveyed by its cast. 

The show begins with the stage and theatre both dark. 

No overture…not yet. 

As soon as the house lights dim, the only thing we hear is a voice in the dark. 

As lights come up, we see that the voice is coming from a mysterious “Man in the Chair” (Paul Melendy), who becomes our host for the Lyric Stage Company’s "THE DROWSY CHAPERONE" 

Sitting in his tufted chair, the haggard looking man wears a battered cardigan-style sweater and reflects quietly in his empty apartment. 

Melendy is perfectly suited for the Man in the Chair, who tells the audience of his currently isolated lifestyle. 

He confesses his loneliness - which he refers to as “feeling blue” - is eased solely by listening to his vast record (yes “record”) collection of Broadway shows. 

Melendy as our guide keeps us thoroughly entertained and we even become genuinely concerned about his character as the musical progresses. 

He places onto a turntable a scratchy, skipping, OLD record he has pulled out of his assortment of early musicals. 

For his – and our – entertainment, he has selected the fictitious long lost gem of a late 1920s musical entitled "THE DROWSY CHAPERONE" written by the equally fictitious “Julie Gable” and “Sidney Stein.” 

(Photo: Paul Melendy as “Man in Chair” serves as our host for the musical "THE DROWSY CHAPERONE" by Lisa Lambert, Bob Martin, Greg Morrison and Don McKellar, now playing at the Lyric Stage in Boston, MA. until May 12, 2024. Photo Credit Mark S. Howard)

The images represented on stage are coming from the Man in Chair's mind and are based upon his years of listening to the recording. 

How closely these images come to the actual staged performance of the show we will never know...nor will we be able to dispute, since it is fictional. 

However, the above does free up both the creative team and cast to experiment which has resulted in a simply sensational production.

In actuality, "CHAPERONE," the lighthearted Tony award-winning musical farce (for script and score), was written by the team of Bob Martin and Don McKellar with music and lyrics by Lisa Lambert and Greg Morrison

Within moments, we are transported from his kitchen to the “Tottendale Estate,” or rather the estate is transported literally through spots in the Man’s kitchen, with characters making entrances and exits via his hideaway bed or through his refrigerator. 

The Lyric set design for the Man’s kitchen and apartment is extremely imaginative, especially given the limited spacing allowed for such a musical staged on a larger scale. 

We are introduced to musical’s famous leading lady, beautiful bride-to-be Janet Van De Graaff (Joy Clark). 

Similar to Melendy as the Man in Chair, Clark is thoroughly in her element playing the vibrant and talented Janet, especially as she belts out the multi-faceted first act musical number, “Show Off. 

(Photo: Joy Clark as “Janet Van De Graaff” surrounded by admiring reporters in a scene from the musical "THE DROWSY CHAPERONE" by Lisa Lambert, Greg Morrison, Bob Martin and Don McKellar, now playing at the Lyric Stage in Boston, MA. until May 12, 2024. Photo Credit Mark S. Howard)

Janet is intent on abandoning her career in order to marry oil tycoon Robert (Jared Troilo). 

Troilo is completely charismatic as the dashing, the occasionally goofy and, above all else, the scenery-chewing Robert. 

One of the fascinating aspects of the show is in how the Man in the Chair describes not only the show’s premise but also providing us a few gossipy background notes on each of the actors who appear on the “cast recording” being played. 

While we, the audience, are focused primarily on the "CHAPERONE" fictitious story and characters, this ingenious dichotomy added an additional layer for the actual Lyric Stage actors with which to approach their characters.

In the high octane two-man tapper, “Cold Feet” Robert teams up with Robert’s Best Man, George (Mark Linehan) for the highly entertaining number. 

Troilo was equally skilled at the roller skating required in the later number “Accident Waiting to Happen. Janet is the star attraction for "Feldzieg's Follies" with harried producer, Mr. Feldzieg (Damon Singletary). 

Kristian Espiritu was hilarious as “Kitty,” the ditzy "wanna-be-star" girlfriend of Feldzieg. 

Feldzieg is threatened by two gangsters disguised as pastry chefs, played equally and fabulously comical by the team of Ilyse Robbins and Kathy St. George

The two actors, along with Cristhian Mancinas-Garcia as lothario Aldolpho provide for some of the shows’ biggest laughs and scene stealing moments. 

(Photo: Paul Melendy as “Man in Chair” observing Cristhian Mancinas-Garcia as “Aldolpho” and Damon Singletary as “Feldzieg” hatching a plot in the musical "THE DROWSY CHAPERONE" by Lisa Lambert, Greg Morrison, Bob Martin and Don McKellar, now playing at the Lyric Stage in Boston, MA. until May 12, 2024. Photo Credit Mark S. Howard)

In an intentionally upstaging role is "THE DROWSY CHAPERONE" herself, played by the terrific Maureen Keiller

Her rousing number “As We Stumble Along” was milked for all it was worth and the audience appreciated it in kind, as ludicrous as it was. 

Carolyn Saxon portrays the absentminded “Mrs. Tottendale” who both amuses and aggravates her long-suffering man servant, Underling (Todd Yard). 

The above duo has great chemistry during their all-too-brief scenes together and especially during their 'lovely' duet, “Love is Always Lovely.” 

With perhaps the obvious and intentional exception of the Man in Chair’s sweater, the costumes for "CHAPERONE" by Seth Bodie were thoroughly resplendent at times and perfectly in tune with the heightened jubilant spirit of the show. 

(Photo: Mark Linehan as “George” and Jared Troilo as “Robert Martin” in a scene from the musical "THE DROWSY CHAPERONE" by Lisa Lambert, Greg Morrison, Bob Martin and Don McKellar, now playing at the Lyric Stage in Boston, MA. until May 12, 2024. Photo Credit Mark S. Howard)

The entire production is wonderfully staged and choreographed by director Larry Sousa with the live orchestra and entire cast guided by music director Matthew Stern. 

This is easily one of the most clever, most energetic and most enjoyable musicals presented this entire season.

As mentioned, part of the enjoyment of watching "THE DROWSY CHAPERONE" is seeing how the cast appears to be having just as good a time as the audience, and most of the musical numbers reflect this.   

Among the musical highlights included are the absurd and hysterically funny “Bride's Lament, "I Do, I Do in the Sky" and “Toledo Surprise. 

With an impressive set design, fabulous costumes, and casting perfection, "THE DROWSY CHAPERONE" is a musical well worth seeing...especially if you're feeling a little blue.

Coming up next at the Lyric Stage Company in May, 2024 will be "YELLOW FACE" by David Henry Hwang beginning May 31st and running through June 23rd.

For more information or tickets, contact the Lyric Stage Box Office at # 617-585-5678 or go to lyricstage.com 


Approximately 90 minutes with no intermission 

Kevin T. Baldwin is a member of the American Theatre Critics Association (ATCA) 




A refreshing musical cocktail that’s like a bubble bath for your heart. 

But with tap dancing. 

And spit takes.

A comfortable chair with an old record crackling away is the perfect cure for the “blues” for a charming but lonely “Man in Chair”, our guide into the world of the show-within-a-show, "THE DROWSY CHAPERONE." 

His favorite cast album from the Jazz Age comes to fizzy life complete with a self-admiring showgirl, her gin-soaked chaperone, a saucy Latin lover, a bumbling best man, a clueless soon-to-be groom, and a cornucopia of characters from a befuddled producer, to a dippy hostess and gangsters posing as pastry chefs. 

This bubbly love letter to musical theater sparkles with one show-stopper after another, mix-ups, mayhem, and a wedding (or two). 


Founded in 1974 and in residence at 140 Clarendon Street since 1991, THE LYRIC STAGE OF BOSTON is Boston’s oldest resident theatre company. Our mission is to produce and present live theatre in Greater Boston with an intimate approach that promotes inclusivity and connection. THE LYRIC STAGE leads an effort to integrate live theater and theater education into the lives of all residents of greater Boston.


140 Clarendon Street

Boston, MA. 02116

BOX OFFICE: 617-585-5678

WEBSITE: www.lyricstage.com