Most of you probably haven’t heard of Joseph Moncure March or his poem from 1927, “The Wild Party,” but Adrienne Parker knows all about it.
She’s also quite familiar with Andrew Lippa’s musical adapted from March’s poem, which created quite an off-Broadway buzz when it was first produced in 1999. The Schenectady Light Opera Company will be mounting its production of the 2000 Drama Desk Award winner running Friday through Jan. 27, and Parker will be in the lead role of Queenie.
“I just happened to see the audition notice and that surprised me because nobody does this show,” said Parker, who grew up in Ballston Spa and returned to the area four years ago. “It’s been a favorite of mine since I was a younger.”
The play comes with plenty of music and a warning, “adults only.” Among those joining Parker on stage will be Keenon McCollum as Burrs, Francesco Archina as Black and Kelly Sienkiewicz as Kate. Brian Clemente is directing the show, which is set at a small dinner party during Prohibition with a variety of guests each with their own devilish motives.
“I love the complexity of all the characters, and the time period is amazing,” said Parker. “It’s set right in the middle of Prohibition when you’re not supposed to be having all this fun. Everybody seems to be taking risks.”
Parker did confirm that “The Wild Party” is not for children.
“I do have to warn my father and my brother about it because it is a little racy,” she said. “It’s mature content, but our director, Brian Clemente, has handled all that very well and the cast is really being respectful of each other.”
Parker, who is making her SLOC debut, grew up singing at the Round Lake United Methodist Church. After graduating from Ballston Spa, she attended the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in Los Angeles and remained in the area for a while before returning to the Capital Region in 2013.
“I did some background work on ‘Glee’ and ‘Austin & Ally’ and a few other shows,” said Parker, referring to the popular FOX and Disney Network series. “Then I moved back to the area and did an independent film. Then I got away from it because I got wrapped up in family and work, but when I saw that audition notice for this show I had to get back into it.”
McCollum, also a Ballston Spa Graduate, was last seen in “Joseph and the Amazing Technocolor Coat” at Home Made Theater in Saratoga Springs in April of 2018.
Archina was in SLOC’s production of “In The Heights” in the fall of 2018 and also performed with SLOC in its’ 2012 production of “Baby.” Sienkiewicz, meanwhile, kept herself busy in 2018, performing in SLOC’s production of “Curtains” in March and Home Made Theater’s “Frankenstein” in October.
In all, there are 21 actors in the cast, most of them guests at Queenie’s party. Dan Galliher is the musical director, Carolyn Frantz is the choreographer and Jessica Paul the stage manager.
Clemente, who graduated from Broadalbin-Perth High School and lives there now, is making his SLOC debut. A graduate of SUNY-Geneseo, Clemente earned his master’s in directing at Stony Brook University.
‘The Wild Party’
WHERE: Schenectady Light Opera Company, 427 Franklin St.,. Schenectady
WHEN: Opens Friday and runs through Jan. 27; performances are at 8 p.m. Thursday through Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday
HOW MUCH: $28-$22
MORE INFO: Visit www.sloctheater.org, or call 1-877-350-7378
More from The Daily Gazette: