Original post can be found here.
GREEN BAY, Wis. (WFRV) – A young woman discovers she has three possible fathers. A certain popular movie and stage musical tells the story in glossy ways, built around infectiously exciting songs.
In “Menoma Mia,” a young woman discovers she has three possible fathers. But Let Me Be Frank Productions show troupe of Green Bay takes the gloss off and puts the hormones on to tell the story, built around the same infectiously exciting songs along with other hits.
Double entendre meanings are ladled out by all the characters. What’s said and done often is slightly dangerous in propriety. The result is a spoof of the certain popular movie and stage musical – with an earthy, laugh-out-loud vengeance. “Menoma Mia” doesn’t hold back the tangy cheese.
“Menoma Mia” also toys with the stories of the three possible fathers from the show “Mamma Mia!” Instead of a Greek isle resort, the guys are coming to a Karaoke festival at a bowling alley in Menominee, Michigan. One guy is from Chicago, another from Green Bay and the third from Upper Michigan.
The show is loaded with Yooper talk. In addition, the guy from the U.P. has comical qualities that make the character particularly colorful. He’s an ex-con.
In “Mamma Mia!” and “Menoma Mia,” the name “Sheridan” factors in. It happens that the bowling place in Menominee is of that name – in reality, too – and both “Mia’s” have mother-daughter characters with the last name Sheridan. On opening night Friday, people who came to the Meyer Theatre from Menominee got all excited about the name connections. In a first for Let Me Be Frank Productions, this show will end its performances in Marinette because of the story’s connections to its neighboring city.
A reminder about this production, which was originally scheduled for April 2020: With the COVID-19 pandemic still holding on, it is a rarity as a live, in-person, full-scale adult show with a socially distanced audience. It is put on like normal in an abnormal situation. Friday night’s audience generally sat in twos and fours, with rows alternately empty. The show was “well attended,” such as what that means now.
Ten songs from ABBA are in “Menoma Mia.” The band and the singers deliver the goods in each. The lead singers vary, but the result is always splashy.
Among other songs, I especially like the performances of two. “I Know, I’ll Never Love This Way Again” finds Amy Riemer enveloping the emotion with her specially rounded voice. “50 Ways to Leave Your Lover” puts Pat Hibbard a bit out of his rock-powered realm but zipping into the rhythm smack of Paul Simon’s lyrics.
Color sparks the show in quirky costuming and light shows and the steady role of shenanigans.
In the story, Amy Riemer plays the mother and Sarah Galati the daughter. The possible fathers are played by Frank Hermans, Pat Hibbard and Tom Verbrick. The long-lost friend of the mother is played by Lisa Borley. Playing beer-drinking buddies are Zach Hibbard and Blake Matthews, who get the danger thingie going with rascally irreverence.
Parts of the plot and storyline are held together with baling wire, which is typical of a Let Me Be Frank Productions show. But the songs get sung and the alley-cat saga gets let loose. Not much is neutered.
Creative: Writers/directors – Frank Hermans and Pat Hibbard
Amy Sheridan – Amy Riemer
Sarah Sheridan – Sarah Galati
Lisa – Lisa Borley
Frank – Frank Hermans
Pat – Pat Hibbard
Tom – Tom Verbrick
Blake – Blake Matthews
Zach – Zach Hibbard
Band: Pat Hibbard, bass; Andrew Klaus, drums; Dennis Panneck, guitars; Tony Pilz, keyboards
Running time: Two hours, 10 minutes
Remaining performances: Meyer Theatre, Green Bay: 7:30 p.m. Jan. 30, Feb. 4, 5, 6, 7; 1 and 7:30 p.m. Feb. 11; 7:30 p.m. Feb. 12, 13, 17, 18 and 19; and 1 and 7:30 p.m. Feb. 20. Info: meyertheatre.org or ticketstaronline.com. Community REC Center, Marinette: 7 p.m. Feb. 27. Info: (715) 732-5162.
“Gimme! Gimme! Gimme! (A Man After Midnight)” (ABBA) – Lisa Borley and all
“Feel Like Makin’ Love” (Bad Company) – Zach Hibbard
“Lay All Your Love on Me” (ABBA) – Sarah Galati
“You Make My Dreams” (Daryl Hall & John Oates) – Blake Matthews
“I Know, I’ll Never Love This Way Again” (Dionne Warwick) – Amy Riemer
“Mamma Mia” (ABBA) – Lisa Borley
“Ring My Bell” (Anita Ward) – Lisa Borley
“The Winner Takes It All” (ABBA) – Amy Riemer
“You Are the Woman” (Firefall) – Frank Hermans
“Sunday Morning Coming Down” (Johnny Cash) – Tom Verbrick
“Rock’n Me” (Steve Miller Band) – Pat Hibbard
“Take a Chance on Me” (ABBA) – Sarah Galati
“Supa Boo Pa” (Frank Hermans) – Frank Hermans
“50 Ways to Leave Your Lover” (Paul Simon) – Pat Hibbard
“Paranoid” (Black Sabbath) – Zach Hibbard
“Chiquitita” (ABBA) – Lisa Borley, Amy Riemer, Sarah Galati
“One Way or Another” (Blondie) – Sarah Galati
“The Name of the Game” (ABBA) – Amy Riemer
“Does Your Mother Know” (ABBA) – Frank Hermans
“I Do, I Do, I Do, I Do, I Do” (ABBA) – Sarah Galati
“Off the Wall” (Michael Jackson) – Blake Hermans
“Dancing Queen” (ABBA) – Amy Riemer, Lisa Borley, Sarah Galati and all