Arts and Entertainment

Village Theatre bringing laugh-filled musical to stage

'The Producers' opens at Village Theatre May 9.
— image credit: CONTRIBUTED

Some of Broadway’s favorite characters will be taking the Village Theatre stage this month in Mel Brooks’ Tony award winning musical, “The Producers.”

Based on the original 1968 movie of the same name, “The Producers” tells the story of a down-on-his luck Broadway producer (Richard Gray as Max Bialystock) and his scheming accountant (Brian Earp as Leo Bloom) who plot to produce a guaranteed flop in order to make some quick cash - only to be stumped by a series of unexpected turns.

Full of laughs and over the top vaudeville numbers, the Village Theatre production is being directed by local veteran Steve Tompkins, with choreography by Seattle-gone-New York choreographer Kristin Hollard Bohr.

Playing the role of talentless Broadway director Roger DeBris, actor Nick DeSantis returns to the Eastside for a role he described as “just right.” A fan of the 2005 movie - featuring actors Nathan Lane and Matthew Broderick in the Bialystock and Bloom roles - DeSantis says he was drawn to the DeBris character because he’s so blissfully over the top.

“[DeBris] is so unaware of his complete lack of talent,” DeSantis said. “And that was so funny to me.”

The show also features a number of elaborate dance numbers - one being a tap dance featuring walkers (see: “Little Old Lady Land”).  DeSantis’ reaction upon finding himself in a room full of walkers on the first day of rehearsals? “Am I in the right place?”

Although the actor spent several years training as a dancer, DeSantis said learning the tap numbers proved to be a challenge for him. So much so, the actor said, that the sound you here during his performances may - or may not - be coming from him.

“When you get to a certain age as an actor you just assume, ‘I’m not going to have to learn how to tap,’” DeSantis said.

As far as what attendees can expect, DeSantis said “The Producers” is one of the funniest musicals he has ever been in. Sure, it’s a bit offensive (as it’s intended to be), but it’s sure to be two hours worth of gut-busting laughter.

“The Producers” plays May 9-July 1 in Issaquah, and July 6-29 in Everett. For more information and tickets, go to http://www.villagetheatre.org/, 303 Front St. N, Issaquah, 425-392-2202.

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