SRJC Theatre Arts Brings Tony Award Winning Musical Comedy to the Stage in Monty Python’s Spamalot April 25-May 4
The Santa Rosa Junior College (SRJC) Theatre Arts Department presents the hilarious musical comedy in Monty Python’s Spamalot, adapted from the 1975 film Monty Python and the Holy Grail. The musicalpremiered in the 2005 season at Broadway’s Shubert Theatre in New York, where it received 14 Tony Award nominations and won 3 Tonys, including Best Musical.
Spamalot parodies the legend of King Arthur through a complicated—and thoroughly silly—quest of finding the Holy Grail. The play features gags involving knights, the Lady of the Lake, flying cows, killer rabbits, fish slapping, monks, and French people. Eric Idle, a veteran of the original BBC Monty Python troupe, wrote the book and lyrics with music by composer John Du Prez. This production is directed by the esteemed Reed Martin, an SRJC Theater Arts instructor who serves as Managing Partner of the well-known and irreverent Reduced Shakespeare Company.
Director Martin says, “I had the privilege of seeing the original Broadway production of Spamalot in New York featuring Tim Curry and David Hyde Pierce. It was quite simply the funniest musical I had ever seen. I first saw Monty Python on TV when I was a teenager and immediately loved their smart, absurd style. In fact, they inspired me to pursue a career as a comedian and have heavily influenced my work with the Reduced Shakespeare Company. For this SRJC production of Spamalot I’m trying to direct the show in a way that stays true to the spirit and style of the original Pythons.”
Spamalot will be performed in SRJC’s Burbank Auditorium, located on 1501 Mendocino Avenue in Santa Rosa and will debut on April 25 at 8:00 p.m. Evening performances at 8:00 pm in the Burbank Auditorium are on April 26, 30, and May 1, 2 and 3. Afternoon performances at 2:00 pm will be on April 26, 27, and May 3. The last performance will be on May 4 at 3:00 PM. Spamalot is presented through a special arrangement with Theatrical Rights Worldwide, New York. Tickets may be purchased by calling 707-527-4343 or through the online box office: http://www.santarosa.edu/
Eric Titus of Santa Rosa plays King Arthur of Britain. He finds it an honor and a challenge to step into a role made famous by the legendary Graham Chapman. Titus describes the moment he first saw Spamalot, in London in 2007, as being “the best live show that I have ever seen. No other has made me laugh harder. I enjoy all of Monty Python’s work, and working with the fabulous Reed Martin from the renowned Reduced Shakespeare Company has been simply amazing.”
Patsy, King Arthur’s trusty servant and companion, is played by SRJC Theatre Arts student Kot Takahashi of Santa Rosa. “Patsy gets to see the whole show from a very interesting perspective, and is so lively despite the limited amount of words he speaks aloud. The show has taken my sense of humor and put it in a physical form. It’s refreshing to know that the writers were as strange as me,” Takahashi explains.
Carmen Mitchell of Windsor plays the enchanted yet stage-time covetous Lady of the Lake, who urges King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table to proceed with their quest of finding the Holy Grail. Mitchell says that playing Lady of the Lake is a departure from her previous roles, explaining that she initially auditioned simply “to have the opportunity to work again with the great Reed Martin. Throughout this process, his brilliant notes and direction have been inspiring and eye opening.” Mitchell is currently finishing certificates in dance and theatre, with plans to major in theatre with a minor in music.
The Knights of the Round Table are led by Sir Lancelot the Homicidally Brave, played by Erin Galloway of Sebastopol. He is joined by Sir Galahad the Dashingly Handsome, played by Jason Soares of Windsor; and Sir Robin the Not-quite-brave-as-Sir Lancelot, played by Evan Held of Novato. Bringing up the rear is Sir Bedevere the Wise (and strangely flatulent), played by Brett Mollard of Santa Rosa.
Bridget Codoni of Rohnert Park is a member of the women’s ensemble and serves as the Dance Captain for the Spamalot production. Codoni, like many other ensemble members, performs dances as various characters, such as a cheerleader and one of the Knights Who Say Ni. Codoni, a dance major at SRJC, says “everyone can connect to this show. It’s about trying to accomplish a goal, and how even when you think you’ve failed, you’re somehow able to keep on trying and almost every time you do, you accomplish that goal.”