Apollo Theater THRONES Review—Spoilers Ahead

Apollo Theater THRONES
The cast of Thrones! The Musical Parody at Apollo Theater (Front row: Christopher Ratliff, Victoria Olivier; Back row: Madeline Lauzon, Nick Druzbanski, Beau Nolen, Caitlyn Cerza) Michael Brosilow

Don’t need to know everything

Full disclosure: I have never watched the entirety of Game of Thrones. However, I have watched an episode or two and get the general gist of the show.

This was the most information I had going into THRONES! and really that’s about all you need. The show starts with a group of friends waiting excitedly for the newest season premiere of Game of Thrones. But if you’re in the same boat I am, you’ll identify with Brad, played by Nick Druzbanski. He admits he has never actually seen the show. From there his group of die-hard fans take it away by summarizing all of the past six seasons in various musical numbers. And yes, there are show spoilers. You’ve been warned.

Apollo Theater THRONES
Victoria Olivier as Daenerys Targaryen in Thrones! The Musical Parody Michael Brosilow

Make Your Own Musical at Home

You’re introduced to the main characters and the major conflicts of the show. They make great use of regular household objects to put together costumes and props (you have Amanda Gladu and Patrick Sangster to thank for those). There are also raunchy and crude sex scenes, but as Ross (Beau Nolen) so aptly says “Do you like Lord of the Rings? Do you like porn? You’ll love the show,” those scenes are a prominent part of the Game of Thrones show itself.

Those types of references are ones a true blue Game of Thrones fan would understand and appreciate. So if you have seen every episode, you’re not going to be bored watching this show either. The writers Chris Grace, Zach Reino, Nick Semar, and Dan Wessels have constructed the story to play both to fans and non-fans as well.

They also did a fantastic job of composing the songs in different genres as well. You’ll hear a boy-band-esque number with “Walk Don’t Run,” an a capella gospel style “Hold the Door,” and of course a call out to Hamilton with the rap number “I’m a Bastard Baby.” All of these meant you’re not stuck in a one-note parody musical. You’re taken all over the spectrum and not bored for a second.

Apollo Theater THRONES
The cast of Thrones! The Musical Parody, including Christopher Ratliff, Nick Druzbanski, Caitlyn Cerza, Beau Nolen, Victoria Olivier and Madeline Lauzon) Michael Brosilow
Apollo Theater THRONES
The cast of Thrones! The Musical Parody Michael Brosilow
Apollo Theater THRONES
Caitlyn Cerza as Cersei Lannister in Thrones! The Musical Parody Michael Brosilow
Apollo Theater THRONES
Beau Nolen as Hodor in Thrones! The Musical Parody Michael Brosilow

Amazing Cast

What truly makes these musical numbers and characters pop is the all-star cast. There was not one weak link in the show. The aforementioned Druzbanski has great comedic timing trying to show the right level of enthusiasm and also frustration for the tv show. Victoria Olivier also delivers as Khaleesi mother of dragons, among other things. Madeline Lauzon is especially remarkable as King Joffrey. Caitlyn Cerza rocks the house with her musical numbers. And Christopher Ratliff does the perfect pouty Jon Snow.

There’s just enough character development without it being overwhelming or too detailed.  The characters are funny and understandable. And be sure to pay attention to everything happening on stage because sometimes the upstage action is better than what’s happening front and center.

For all those nerds out there

THRONES! really is all about exploiting the inside jokes and hyperbolizing the characters from the show. It captures the essence of fandom, especially at the end where the show devolves into fan-fiction which includes the likes of Harry Potter and Darth Vader. THRONES! will leave both fans and friends of fans laughing out of the theater.

 

 Recommended.

When:

Now through March 19, 2017:
Thursdays and Fridays at 7:30pm
Saturdays at 6:00pm and 9:30pm
Sundays at 3:30pm and 7:00pm
Extended schedule starting January 19th:
Thursdays and Fridays at 7:30pm
Saturdays at 6:00pm and 9:30pm
Sundays at 4:00pm

Where:

Apollo Theater
2540 N. Lincoln Ave
Chicago, IL 60614

Tickets:

$36-$59
To purchase tickets visit Ticketmaster.com. For ticket inquiries for groups of 10 or more, call Group Theater Tix at 312.423.6612.

Photos: Michael Brosilow

 

Note:  An excerpt of this review appears in Theatre in Chicago.

Editor's Note: A previous version of this review misspelled the character names "John Snow" and "Jeoffrey." They have since been corrected to Jon Snow and Joffrey.

 

Apollo Theater THRONES
Nick Druzbanski as Jorah Mormont in Thrones! The Musical Parody Michael Brosilow

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