Tag Archives: New Year’s Eve

A Comic Celebration to Remember!

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For two frigid but otherwise fun and fulfilling weeks on Chicago’s North Shore, the cast and crew of “Mr. Olsen’s Champagne Celebration” staged a series of shows that rang in the New Year with satire, song and classic comic shtick. The three packed performances proved once again that The Practical Theatre Company and its motto “Art is Good” are alive and well in the Windy City.

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The Practical Theatre is like “Brigadoon” these days: a magical, fleeting moment of entertainment that vanishes as suddenly as it appears. For those of you who were not able to be among the receptive crowds that gathered at Studio5 in Evanston to witness this rare theatrical event – please enjoy the following photos, taken by former Chicago Tribune photographer Chuck Osgood at final dress rehearsal.

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The Opening Number: “It’s been a year to remember — to forget!”

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“Ed & Ellen & Ned” — Ed (Paul Barrosse) & Ellen (Victoria Zielinski) and Ned (Dana Olsen) share a moment in an airport bar with a young man (Daniel Rashid) who digs older women.

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Eva B Ross sings “Thou Swell” backed by Steve Rashid (keys) & The Studio5 All Stars: Rockin’ Ronny Crawford (drums), Joe Policastro (bass), Don Stille (accordion) and Don Stiernberg (guitar)

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“Limbo” — A bickering couple (Vic & Dana) find themselves in a state of suspended afterlife.

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“Parents” — Dana and Shelly Goldstein play parents with a lot of good (and not so good) advice for their high school graduate, bound for Northwestern University.

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“Please Come to Starbucks” — Paul is a forlorn, lovesick guy from Cleveland who lost his girl (Vic) to the Southern California dream. He seeks her out in a mournful musical complaint.

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“Stop Talking About Him” — A young couple (Daniel Rashid & Emilia Barrosse) struggle with the nagging, negative, inescapable influence of Donald Trump on their relationship.

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“Cut In Line” — This is the moment that an unlucky guy (Paul) discovers that the guy to whom he just gave his place in line (Dana) is the 1,000,000th customer and winner of a million dollars!

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The Mr. Olsen’ Dancers perform “We’re In The Money”

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Dana & Eva perform a multi-lingual duet of “Let it Snow” — just before it goes way off the rails.

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With sexual harassment dominating the news, the dancers make a statement.

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Don Stille burns up his accordion solo in “The Possible Side Effects Polka”

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The Mr. Olsen Dancers step lively in “The Possible Side Effects Polka”

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Emilia Barrosse opens the second act with an original stand-up comedy set.

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“Ed & Elena” — Ed (Paul) is about to get a big surprise from buxom blonde Elena (Vic).

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Steve Rashid performs a nostalgic musical tribute to George W. Bush — with beautiful, inspirational music by Steve and indescribable words by Dubya himself.

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The Mr. Olsen Dancers kick up a wild western rumpus.

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“Whisky Tasting” — Miss Vicky’s hootch has finally gotten the best of Paul’s boozing cowpoke.

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Groovy Shelly sings “The Middle Aging of The Age of Aquarius”

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“Meet the Robot” — Guess who’s coming to dinner? Your daughter’s synthetic human boyfriend, that’s who.

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A proper 19th Century minuet gets a bit topsy-turvy.

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Roland Masterton (Paul) and Elizabeth Cuddleton (Vic) share a long, long, long developing romance a’la Jane Austen — through correspondence, shipwreck, and a mortal duel .

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Donald J. Trump meets “Hamilton” in a rap production number. “How does a bastard, orange, TV show host with a toupe’, dropped in the middle of a polarized time in our America — with hands so freaking teeny — rise up to be the Mango Mussolini?”

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“What’s you name, man?” “Inmate number 45!”

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The Closing: “Resist! Resist! — and keep your sanity. Do your best, it’s a test — of our humanity.”

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3 Weeks until Big New Year’s Fun!

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There are now just three weeks left to reserve your seats for Mr. Olsen’s Champagne Celebration at Studio5 in Evanston. Tickets are going fast for the funniest and most fun New Year’s party on Chicago’s North Shore.

Poster 2017 NYE #6Following last year’s smash holiday engagement at Studio5, the legendary Practical Theatre returns with another entertaining comedy and music revue featuring veteran improvisational comedy writer-performers Victoria Zielinski, Paul Barrosse and Dana Olsen – Joined by the PTC’s musical director, Steve Rashid, songbird Eva B. Ross, standup comic Emilia Barrosse, Giggle Break’s own Daniel Rashid, cabaret chanteuse Shelly Goldstein — and the Studio5 All-Star Band, featuring Rockin’ Ronny Crawford on drums, Don Stille on accordion, bassist Joe Policastro, and Don Stiernberg on every stringed instrument a man can possibly play. Plus percussionist Robert Rashid.

All this — and The Mr. Olsen Dancers!

CastOnly 3 shows: Friday December 29, Saturday December 30 and Sunday December 31. Tickets are on sale here!

The show on December 31st will be followed by a fabulous dance party — as we invite you all to swing into the New Year with live music by the Studio5 All-Stars! (And enjoy some tasty food, too!)

There will be a cash bar for all three shows. Doors open for cocktails at 7:30.

And there’s plenty of free parking right in front of the theatre.

Don’t miss the biggest party of the year!

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Ring in the New Year with Laughter!

There are now just five weeks left to reserve your seats for Mr. Olsen’s Champagne Celebration at Studio5 in Evanston. Tickets are going fast for the funniest and most fun New Year’s party on Chicago’s North Shore.

Poster 2017 NYE #6Following last year’s smash holiday engagement at Studio5, the legendary Practical Theatre returns with another entertaining comedy and music revue featuring veteran improvisational comedy writer-performers Victoria Zielinski, Paul Barrosse and Dana Olsen – Joined by the PTC’s musical director, Steve Rashid, songbird Eva B. Ross, standup comic Emilia Barrosse, Giggle Break’s own Daniel Rashid, cabaret chanteuse Shelly Goldstein — and the Studio5 All-Star Band, featuring Rockin’ Ronny Crawford on drums, Don Stille on accordion, bassist Joe Policastro, and Don Stiernberg on every stringed instrument a man can possibly play. Plus percussionist Robert Rashid.

All this — and The Mr. Olsen Dancers!

CastOnly 3 shows: Friday December 29, Saturday December 30 and Sunday December 31. Tickets are on sale here!

The show on December 31st will be followed by a fabulous dance party — as we invite you all to swing into the New Year with live music by the Studio5 All-Stars! (And enjoy some tasty food, too!)

There will be a cash bar for all three shows. Doors open for cocktails at 7:30.

And there’s plenty of free parking right in front of the theatre.

Don’t miss the biggest party of the year!

Leave a comment

Filed under Art, Comedy, Improvisation, Music, Uncategorized

Just One Week Until the Party Starts!

new-show-art-2In just one week, The Practical Theatre Company will be saying goodbye to 2016 and ringing in the New Year with comedy and song – and your favorite adult beverages.

nye-art-a-copyTickets are going fast for Mr. Olsen’s Holiday Party on December 30 and 31 at Evanston’s new Studio5 (Dempster & Dodge). There aren’t many tickets left for the New Year’s Eve performance, but you can still reserve seats by clicking here.

PTC vets Paul Barrosse, Victoria Zielinski and Dana Olsen will perform comedy sketches and songs from “The Vic & Paul & Dana Show”, as well as new material crafted for this special variety revue – styled after those classic holiday specials hosted by Andy Williams, Bing and Dean.

Music director and keyboard wiz Steve Rashid will lead a quartet featuring drummer Rockin’ Ronny Crawford, Don Stiernberg on guitar and mandolin, and bassist Jim Cox.

Members of the PTC’s second generation will also perform, including standup comedienne Emilia Barrosse, Giggle Breaks’ Daniel Rashid, singer-songwriter Eva B. Ross and drummer Robert Rashid.

Studio5 features full bar service – and acres of free parking.

The New Year’s Eve performance includes light food and a New Year’s party with live music and dancing after the show.mohp-banner-1-copy

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The Party’s Less Than A Month Away…

new-show-artActually, it’s a bit less than three months away — but comedy lovers in the Chicago area looking to shake off the madness of this wild and crazy year still have a chance to ring in 2017 with a raucous good time at Mr. Olsen’s Holiday Party. Tickets are going fast — but you can still join the party!

For Tickets go to: http://studio5-holidayparty.bpt.me

 Mr. Olsen’s Holiday Party is a classic holiday variety show featuring grown-up sktetch comedy, live music, standup comedy, adult beverages — and The Mr. Olsen Dancers! It’s happening at Studio5, Evanston’s newest, classiest performance venue at 1934 Dempster Street (at Dempster & Dodge).

nye-art-a-copyPractical Theatre Company veterans Victoria Zielinski, Paul Barrosse and Dana Olsen will perform comedy sketches and topical songs from “The Vic & Paul & Dana Show”, accompanied by keyboard wiz Steve Rashid, drummer Rockin’ Ronny Crawford, bassist Jim Cox — and Don Stiernberg playing every stringed instrument imaginable.

The PTC’s next generation is also on the bill: standup comedienne Emilia Barrosse and Giggle Break’s own Daniel Rashid, plus singer-songwriter Eva B. Ross (whom North Siders have seen at Katerina’s Jazz Club, The Beauty Bar and The Whiskey Lounge at 27 Live) and drummer Robert Rashid.

Mr. Olsen’s Holiday Party runs for two shows: a performance of the comedy-variety show on December 30 — and a New Year’s Eve party on December 31st featuring the comedy-variety show (including light food) followed by live music by the Studio5 All-Stars, who will keep the dance floor grooving into 2017!

Studio 5 has acres of free parking – and there will be a cash bar on both evenings.

For Tickets go to: http://studio5-holidayparty.bpt.me

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Just One Month Until The Big Party!

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For tickets go to: http://studio5-holidayparty.bpt.me

A splendid time is guaranteed for all!

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The Party’s Just About A Month Away…

mohp-banner-1-copyComedy lovers in the Chicago area looking for a way to shake off the madness of this wild and crazy year can ring in 2017 with a raucous good time at Mr. Olsen’s Holiday Party.

 Mr. Olsen’s Holiday Party is a classic holiday variety show featuring grown-up sketch comedy, live music, standup comedy, adult beverages — and The Mr. Olsen Dancers! It’s happening at Studio5, Evanston’s newest, classiest performance venue at 1934 Dempster Street (the SW corner of Dempster & Dodge).

mohp-pngPractical Theatre Company veterans Victoria Zielinski, Paul Barrosse and Dana Olsen will perform improvisational comedy sketches and topical songs from “The Vic & Paul & Dana Show”, accompanied by keyboard wizard Steve Rashid, drummer Rockin’ Ronny Crawford — and Don Stiernberg playing every stringed instrument imaginable.

The PTC’s next generation is also adding to the fun: standup comedienne Emilia Barrosse and Giggle Break’s own Daniel Rashid, plus singer-songwriter Eva B. Ross (whom North Siders have seen at venues like Katerina’s Jazz Club, The Beauty Bar and The Whiskey Lounge at 27 Live) and drummer Robert Rashid.

Mr. Olsen’s Holiday Party runs for two shows: a performance of the comedy-variety show on December 30 — and a New Year’s Eve party on December 31st featuring the comedy-variety show (including light food) followed by live music by the Studio5 All-Stars, who will keep the dance floor grooving into 2017!

Studio 5 has acres of free parking – and there will be a cash bar on both evenings.

For Tickets go to: http://studio5-holidayparty.bpt.me

Leave a comment

Filed under Art, Comedy, Improvisation, Music, rock & roll