Memorial Opera House Announces 2018 Season, Holds Opening Night of “The Drowsy Chaperone”

Memorial Opera House Announces 2018 Season, Holds Opening Night of “The Drowsy Chaperone”
By: Taylor Irby Last Updated: April 29, 2017

The Memorial Opera House announced the 2018 Season at the opening evening for The Drowsy Chaperone on Friday!

“It’s going to be our 125th Anniversary which is really exciting, Scot MacDonald, Business Director of Memorial Opera House, said. “We would never have gotten there without the support of our patrons and volunteers, so we’re looking forward to giving them something exciting next year!”

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The season will start in February with the regional premiere of The Hunchback of Notre Dame, followed by the hilarious comedy Blithe Spirit. The summer will bring "Legally Blonde: The Musical."

“We’ll go to a dark, scary place for Halloween,” MacDonald said “We’ll have with Sweeney Todd. We’re bringing Sondheim and we're bringing it hard!” he told Friday’s audience.

He was also excited to announce that the Christmas Show is not yet public, but will be a fun surprise. Keep up with the Memorial Opera House for updates! 2018 season tickets go on sale in July.

As for this season, Memorial Opera House opened their first weekend of The Drowsy Chaperone. Memorial is excited to host such a fun show.

“We love this show. It’s a 90-minute comedy and it’s absolutely one of the funniest shows that I’ve ever seen,” Scot said. “I think it’s relatable to our audiences. It’s easy to relate to the main character because a lot of people remember sitting in their rooms listening to albums over and over. I certainly can. That’s exactly what the main character is doing, but we get to see his imagination coming to life onstage.”

As for the cast, it's filled with people familiar with the show and the theatre.

The cast is one of the best group of professionals we’ve ever worked with,” MacDonald said. "This show has a lot of veterans to our theater, lots of familiar faces, and lots of new faces too. John and Colleen Peluso, the directors, have done a really wonderful job of working with them and making a fun world for them to live in."

The directors have previous experience with the show, and they're excited to bring that with them.

“We first acted in the show together 5 or 6 years ago and loved it," John Peluso said. “It’s a show that you leave, whether in rehearsal or in the audience, smiling. It’s just fun. It makes everyone feel good. The cast has been ready for an audience for a while. We hope everybody has as much fun with it as we have!”

The main character is the Man in Chair, who narrates the musical he’s listening to in his apartment. The characters come to life, climbing out of his refrigerator and spending time in his world, as well as in their own.

Grant Fitch, well-known in Northwest Indiana theatre circuit, plays the Man in Chair.

“It’s my second time playing the role, and I have been excited to build on that,” Fitch said. “The cast does all of the work and I just get to talk about it,” he joked. “They’re very talented, and they’ve really brought the show to life.“

The next show for this season is Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.

"Kurt Gillins will be directing that one," MacDonald said. “Auditions are on Saturday for 13 and under. We have auditions Monday and Tuesday for the people 13 and older. We should have a cast by next week and be ready to rock and roll. As The Drowsy Chaperone comes down, that starts going up. It’s another show we’re really excited about. It’s one of the shows that the patrons have been requesting for so long. It’s a really fun nostalgia for all of us. We grew up with that show, and have been in the show. And Kurt is getting ready to present something that audiences haven’t seen from that Joseph before. His choreographer is very acrobatic and she’s very into doing a lot of different tricks, and there’s going to be some things that people have never seen before. The ideas that Kurt has for costume and the set - it’s completely new. I’m really excited”

Tickets for The Drowsy Chaperone and the rest of the 2017 season are available at or at the box office. The box office can be reached at 219.548.9137. The show closes on May 14th.