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Flying Dreams Speakeasy

In its most ambitious nouveau cirque theatrical production to date, Flying Dreams Aerial Arts Productions premiered the wildly colorful and darkly comic Speakeasy on Halloween, 2008, playing to sold out houses and garnering standing ovations and rave reviews.

The jazzy underworld of Speakeasy is peopled by a weird and whacky collection of life's little losers, all buried on Boot Hill, Chicago, 1929. Reanimated corpses gather in an astral hootch hall known as Fat Sam's Speakeasy — the name, a tribute to the portly pie-eating opera singer whose magnificent voice electrifies the space. This is the territory of Diamond Dick, a crude, brutish mobster who rules by fear and lives up to his penetrating, drill-bit name. The arm candy stuck to his sleeve is Trixie, the gun moll.

A stunning bevy of “splendidly cheeky” chorus girls in cabaret style song and dance, and a sorry lot of bumbling, gun-toting gangsters in snazzy pin-striped suits, set the scene of this glittering purgatory of the recently deceased.

Perched high in the rafters of Fat Sam's, we find a band of six killer floozies, straight from their most recent engagement on the gallows … where by popular demand, they were hung by the neck until dead. They are being tutored by a cranky celestial being, The Purple Angel, whose patience is sorely tried by the slaphappy souls he is charged with guiding. With the women showing little remorse for the rash of homicides that landed them in the ghoulish Speakeasy in the Sky, The Purple Angel lays down the law: Find a way to love Diamond Dick … penance for having failed love in life … or down into the fiery depths of hell you go.

And Dick ain't gonna make it easy.
The gang of floozies, played by six aerial acrobatic actors, descend into Diamond Dick's Den of Iniquity on curtains of black silk and plunge headlong into a trumped-up plot to infiltrate the Speakeasy … oh, and find true love, of course. Pawning themselves off as cabaret dancers, the ill-mannered prison rats vie for a place in the prestigious Fat Sam chorus line.

Dick, although suspicious and unimpressed by the most daring and death-defying aerial stunts, allows the “crusty old broads” to display their non-felonious talents in a smorgasbord of aerial displays including aerial hoops, spinning trapeze, spanish web, a triple trapeze act, and a fiery production number with six acrobats on red silks suspended thirty feet above the stage.

Meghan Howcroft, reviewer for the Gulf Islands Driftwood , said of the show:
The dialogue and plot were laugh-out-loud funny, which struck a nice juxtaposition to when we were holding our hearts in our mouths at the daring tricks taking place above us.

Props to Victoria Mihalyi for creating and writing this super jazzy piece of work; an amazing feat by one amazing lady, who (besides her flawless and fearless aerial moves) also proved quite the comedic actress as the leader of the rogue bunch of lovable floozies.

The role of tough-guy Diamond Dick was performed to perfection by actor Tony Ulc, who held the entire show together like an unbreakable rock or a guiding star, around which all the other actors, dancers and performers moved.

Another notable was Sappho Dawn Prince as the squeaky-voiced Trixie, Diamond Dick's bimbo girlfriend who, instead of playing the predictable piece of arm-candy, surprisingly took to the trapeze herself in a routine that was pure comedic genius.

Kristin Tuttle worked magic in the hoop, creating beautiful body shapes, and her sister Kyla was simply delightful in her role as a dangerously sexy simpleton, whose striptease “shimmy shakes” on the trapeze bar definitely kept all eyes on her.

Natasha Danchenko, as Cinnamon Hart, nearly stopped our hearts as we watched her spin at breath-taking speeds on the Spanish web, and Oria Atkinson and Kathleen Donovan performed a hilarious razzle-dazzle hoop routine — pink sequined thongs and all!

In the grand finale, all six ladies took to the aerial silks in an insanely acrobatic routine that featured drops and dives 30 feet above the floor.

Director Andrea Rabinovitch ensured all scenes were seamless and that the actors used all their comedic potential.

Happily, the ladies wear poor Dick down to a nub so you can't help but feel kinda sorry for the schmuck … and in so doing, they discover something … lovable. A round of redemption for everyone!

Created & Written by Victoria Mihalyi
Produced by Victoria Mihalyi
Directed by Andrea Rabinovitch

Original Cast In Order of Appearance

Gate Keeper: Victoria Mihalyi
Pall Bearers: Kathleen Donovan & Natasha Danchenko
Voice of Radio Announcer: Jan Rabson
Voice of Agnes: April Curtis
Voice of Erma: Kirsty Barclay
Diamond Dick: Anthony Ulc
Trixie: Sappho Dawn Prince
Fat Sam: Howard Kliaman
Bartender: Wellington Rodrigues
The Drunk: Karl Pazdernik

Gangsters
Knuckles: Gordon Keel
Rocky: Bobby Magee
Dandy Dan: Max Miller
Bugz: Dave Phillips

Chorus Girls
Lottie Devindisch
Yvonne Lam
Jekka Mack
Sue Newman
Chelsea Shergold

Merry Murderesses
Betty Lou Valentine: Oria Atkinson
Emmerencia Hunyak: Kathleen Donovan
Evelyn Lipschitz: Victoria Mihalyi
Velma Kelly: Kristin Tuttle
Candy Floss: Kyla Tuttle
Cinnamon Hart: Natasha Danchenko

The Purple Angel: Bryan Jamieson

Click here to see Speakeasy Photos
Click here to see Speakeasy Demo Video [44mb]

 

 

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