Original Article: http://www.chicagonow.com/lets-play/2017/09/rock-of-ages/
‘AH,' the 80's, a time in history where Reaganomics ruled the decade. The rise of the "yuppie," and the emergence of cable networks like MTV, which introduced the music video craze that launched the careers of many iconic artists. The age where rock stars with big egos, big dreams, and big hair, became legends from songs that stirred up emotions within our souls. It was an era where we wanted to rock on, regardless of how gnarly life happened to be.
‘Rock of Ages' takes you back in time to where music lived within your soul and spoke to your heart. This true ‘Rock Concert' is a rocking festival of the ages that made you laugh and reminisce about when times felt rad as you sung along to songs of your favorite rocker.
Lonny (Nick Druzbanski) who serves as the show's narrator flawlessly sets up the story about an aspiring rock star Drew (Russell Mernagh) and southern small- town girl Sherrie (Cherry Torres). Drew's struggling career leads him to the temporary job at the Bourbon Room where he meets Sherrie a naïve but ambitious girl who decides to leave home and follow her dreams of becoming an actress. They both find themselves thrust into a fight to save Hollywood's Sunset strip from being demolished by a greedy mayor and an overzealous land developer.
This infamous battle of good versus wrong takes precedent in ‘Rock of Ages' when a pair of German developers, Hertz Klinemann (George Keating) and his son Franz (Nick Cosgrove), persuade the city's mayor (John Edwards) to abandon the "sex, drugs and rock-n-roll" lifestyle of the Sunset Strip and introduce "clean living" to the community. Angered by the mayor's decision, city planner Regina (Tiffany Tatreau) begins protesting the redevelopment plans with iconic favorites songs such as "We Built This City" and "We're Not Gonna Take It".
This iconic venue (The Bourbon Room ) along with other clubs such as the ‘Rainbow,' Gazzari's and ‘Whisky a Go Go, was the birthplace of a musical movement and home of a generation looking to discover their true individuality through music that some might call the "gutter of wickedness."
Glam Metal music was a humongous part of the counterculture of the 80's with its rebellious songs that promoted sex, drugs, violence and the occult that most parents thought were perverted and debasing; nonetheless, there was a story in the music that had to be told.
Director Scott Weinstein magically takes you on a journey back in time where a community was formed within night clubs with acid wash dreamers who fought for their place in society. The stage performance was filled with 28 classic 80s hits from legendary Rock Stars such as Bon Jovi, Pat Benatar, Poison, Styx and more.
We highly recommend Rock of Ages at the Drury Lane Theatre. This rocking, jukebox, was a musical filled with fun and excitement that reminds you of when lives were dramatically changed and sometimes the dreams with which you enter are not always the dreams with which you leave, but they still rock ("Don't Stop Believin").
Russell Mernagh (Drew), Cherry Torres (Sherrie), Nicholas Druzbanski (Lonny), Adam Michaels (Stacee Jaxx), and Gene Weygandt (Dennis) with Nick Cosgrove (Franz), George Keating (Hertz), Donica Lynn (Justice), and Tiffany Tatreau (Regina), Andrea Collier, Annie Joe Ermel, Michael Ferraro, Shariesse Hamilton, Colte Julian, Ron King, Lindsay Prerost, and Sawyer Smith.
Drury Lane Theatre Presents
Regional Premiere of Rock of Ages
Book by Chris D'Arienzo
Arrangements and Orchestrations by Ethan Popp
Directed by Scott Weinstein
Choreographed by Stephanie Klemons
August 24 – October 15, 2017