ChiIL Live Shows On Our Radar
Kokandy Productions Presents
SWEENEY TODD: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street
Music & Lyrics by Stephen Sondheim, Book by Hugh Wheeler
Directed and Choreographed by
Producing Artistic Director Derek Van Barham
Music Direction by Nick Sula
September 8 – November 6, 2022 at The Chopin Theatre
Kokandy Productions is thrilled to continue its 10th anniversary season with an intimate, in-the-round revival of Stephen Sondheim’s macabre masterpiece Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, featuring music and lyrics by Sondheim, book by Hugh Wheeler, direction and choreography by Producing Artistic Director Derek Van Barham (he/him) and music direction by Nick Sula (he/him). Just in time for Halloween, the already atmospheric Chopin Theatre basement will be transformed into 19th century London, daring audiences to attend this haunting, harrowing tale playing September 8 – November 6, 2022 at 1543 W. Division St. in Chicago’s Wicker Park neighborhood. Tickets are now on sale at bit.ly/SweeneyChicago.
The cast includes Kevin Webb and Caitlin Jackson as Sweeney Todd and Mrs. Lovett, partners in coiffed and culinary crime. They are joined by Quinn Rigg (Adolfo Pirell/Jonas Fogg), Isabel Cecilia García (Beggar Woman), Christopher Johnson (Judge Turpin), Josiah Haugen (Beadle Bamford), Chamaya Moody (Johanna),Patrick O’Keefe (Tobias Ragg) and Ryan Stajmiger (Anthony Hope). The Fleet Street ensemble includes Joel Arreola, Brittney Brown, Ethan Carlson, Stephanie Chiodras, Christopher Johnson, Nikki Krzebiot, Charlie Mann and Daniel Rausch. Swings include Tyler DeLoatch, Nathan Kabara and Angela Yu.
Sweeney Todd has become a bloody, worldwide success since being awarded eight Tony Awards, including Best Musical for its Broadway premiere. An infamous tale, Sweeney Todd, an unjustly exiled barber, returns to nineteenth century London, seeking vengeance against the lecherous judge who framed him and ravaged his young wife. The road to revenge leads Todd to Mrs. Lovett, a resourceful proprietress of a failing pie shop. Mrs. Lovett's luck sharply shifts when Todd's thirst for blood inspires the integration of an ingredient into her meat pies that has the people of London hungry for more. Stephen Sondheim's and Hugh Wheeler's tasty, thrilling, theatrical treat has simultaneously shocked, awed and delighted audiences around the world.
Kokandy Producing Artistic Director Derek Van Barham comments, “For our 10thanniversary season, it felt important to celebrate with a master of the musical form–and it doesn’t get much better than Sondheim. It will be fun to take on another tale of revenge, but this time with a twist on class. Whereas Cruel Intentions allows the elite to wreak havoc, no one is safe in Sweeney Todd, where those above will serve those down below. Another show of the flesh, this will be a dark delight for the Halloween season, a Sweeney you can smell and taste and feel.”
The production team includes G "Max" Maxin IV (he/him, Scenic and Lighting Designer), Rachel Sypniewski (she/her, Costume Designer), Mike Patrick (he/him, Sound Designer), Kirsten Baity (they/them, Intimacy Choreographer), Drew Donnelly (he/him, Stage Manager), Andrew Lund (he/they, Assistant Director), Vivica Powell (she/her, Assistant Choreographer), Roman Sanchez (he/him, Casting Associate), Scot Kokandy (he/him, Executive Producer) and Derek Van Barham (he/him, Producing Artistic Director).
COVID-19 safety: Patrons are required to wear a face mask when not actively eating or drinking. The theatre will no longer require proof of vaccination to attend a production.
Cast (in alphabetical order): Joel Arreola (he/him, ensemble, Toby u/s), Brittney Brown (she/her, ensemble, Lovett u/s), Ethan Carlson (he/him, ensemble, u/s Turpin), Stephanie Chiodras (she/her, ensemble, Beggar Woman u/s), Isabel Cecilia García (they/them, Beggar Woman), Josiah Haugen (he/him, Beadle Bamford), Caitlin Jackson (she/her, Mrs. Lovett), Christopher Johnson (he/him, Judge Turpin, Sweeney u/s), Nikki Krzebiot (she/her, ensemble, Johanna u/s), Charlie Mann (he/him, ensemble, Beadle u/s), Chamaya Moody (she/her, Johanna), Patrick O'Keefe (he/him, Tobias Rigg), Daniel Rausch (he/him, ensemble, Anthony u/s), Quinn Rigg (he/him, Adolfo Pirelli, Jonas Fogg), Ryan Stajmiger (he/him, Anthony Hope) and Kevin Webb (he/him, Sweeney Todd).
Swings: Tyler DeLoatch (he/him, u/s ensemble), Nathan Kabara (he/they, ensemble u/s) and Angela Yu (she/her, ensemble u/s).
Location: The Chopin Theatre (Studio), 1543 W Division St. in Chicago
Dates: Previews: Thursday, September 8 at 7 pm, Friday, September 9 at 7 pm, Saturday, September 10 at 7 pm, Sunday, September 11 at 5 pm and Thursday, September 15 at 7 pm
Regular run: Saturday, September 17 – Sunday, November 6, 2022
Curtain Times: Wednesday, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays at 7 pm; Sundays at 5 pm. Please note: there will not be a performance on Wednesday, October 5.
Industry Night; Monday, October 24 at 7 pm
Tickets: Previews $25 (with code “PREVIEW). Regular run $40. Students/senior $30. There will be a limited number of $15 tickets available for students and artists for each performance. Tickets are now on sale at bit.ly/SweeneyChicago.
About the Artists
Derek Van Barham (Director/Choreographer, he/him) is the Producing Artistic Director of Kokandy Productions. He previously served as Associate Artistic Director of Pride Films & Plays and Artistic Director of The Ruckus. Directing credits include Head Over Heels (Kokandy); The View Upstairs (Circle Theatre); Three Days of Rain(BoHo Theatre); Miracle by Dan Savage, Poseidon, Skooby Don’t (Hell in a Handbag); Hot Pink, TRASH (New American Folk); Taylor Mac’s A Walk Across America for Mother Earth (CCPA); From These Fatal Loins (The Ruckus); Homos, or Everyone in America, Perfect Arrangement, Angry Fags in Steppenwolf Garage Rep, Songs from an Unmade Bed (Jeff nomination) and PRISCILLA, Queen of the Desert (PFP). He was named one of Windy City Times 30 Under 30, recognizing individuals from Chicago's LGBTQ community. MFA: Chicago College of the Performing Arts (CCPA) at Roosevelt University. www.derekvanbarham.com IG: @dvbarham
Nick Sula (Music Director, he/him) is a pianist, arranger and award-winning music director for theater and cabaret. Music Direction credits include Ghost Quartet (Jeff nomination), Nevermore, Amour, Coraline (Black Button Eyes); Myths & Hymns, The Glorious Ones (Jeff nomination), Pippin (BoHo Theatre), His & His, Boys in Briefs, Broadway at the Broadway (Pride Films and Plays); Head Over Heels, The Pajama Game, The Pirates of Penzance (CCPA). He performs with vocalists at venues such as Davenport’s Piano Bar, Skokie Theatre, Drew’s on Halsted and the Park West, and teaches as a music director, instructor and vocal coach at the Chicago College of Performing Arts (CCPA) at Roosevelt University.
About Kokandy Productions
Founded in 2010, Kokandy Productions seeks to leverage the heightened reality of musical theater to tell complex and challenging stories, with a focus on contributing to the development of Chicago-based musical theater artists, and raising the profile of Chicago's non-Equity musical theater community.
The company's artistic staff is comprised of Derek Van Barham (Producing Artistic Director), Scot T. Kokandy (Executive Producer) and Adrian Abel Azevedo & Leda Hoffman (Artistic Associates). The Board of Directors includes Preston Cropp, Allison Hendrix, Scot T. Kokandy, and Katie Svaicer.
For additional information, visit www.kokandyproductions.com.