THE MAN WHO MURDERED SHERLOCK HOLMES
JOHN REEGER (Book) previously collaborated with composer/lyricist Julie Shannon on the musicals Stones, Let the Eagle Fly, and The Christmas Schooner. This is his first collaboration with Michael Mahler. In 2008, John was awarded a fellowship in scriptworks by the Illinois Arts Council. Also an actor, John appeared last year at the Harvey Theatre (BAM) in New York City as Cecil Lewis in the Goodman Theatre’s production The Iceman Cometh, a role he had originally played at the Goodman in 2012. He has appeared in more than 150 productions at such theaters as Chicago Shakespeare, Steppenwolf, Writers, Court, Northlight, Marriott, Drury Lane, Paramount and Theatre at the Center. For their four decades as Chicago actors, John and his wife Paula Scrofano were honored in 2015 with Career Achievement Jeff Awards.
JULIE SHANNON (Music and Lyrics) studied musical theatre writing as a member of the BMI Musical Theatre Workshop in New York. She had the time of her life collaborating with John Reeger on four musicals and with Rives Collins on stories and songs for young people. Julie was working on The Man Who Murdered Sherlock Holmes when she passed away in 2012, and her memory was honored beautifully when Michael Mahler and Rachel Rockwell joined John Reeger to complete this show. When Julie heard superb performers sing her songs, and saw remarkable directors, designers, musicians and producers bring her work to life, she erupted in incandescent smiles and legendary hugs. Enormous thanks to all her cherished collaborators and especially to her mentor, lyricist Sheldon Harnick.
MICHAEL MAHLER* (Musical Director, CoComposer/Co-Lyricist) is the composer/lyricist of October Sky, Hero (Jeff Award: New Work), Wonderland: Alice’s Rock & Roll Adventure, Knute Rockne: All-American, How Can You Run with a Shell on Your Back?, The 9/11 Report, The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey and others. He served as English lyricist for the premiere English language concert reading of Boublil & Schonberg’s La Revolution Francaise and contributed additional lyrics to Cameron Mackintosh’s Broadway-bound smash revival of Miss Saigon. Projects in development include The Diary of a Wimpy Kid for Minneapolis Children’s Theatre Company, Gravediggers’ Hamlet for Chicago Shakespeare Theatre, and Secret of My Success for Universal. Visit www.michaelmahler.com.
WARNER CROCKER (Director) is thrilled to be directing this world premiere of the new musical The Man Who Murdered Sherlock Holmes. As a producer, director, and playwright his work has been seen on numerous stages in the US and Russia. He most recently directed the world premiere of The Seven-Per-Cent Solution for City Lit Theatre, Barnum for The Old Creamery Theatre and Boeing Boeing for Circa 21 Dinner Playhouse. Following a 20-year career in Chicago theatre, he served as artistic director of the Wayside Theatre in Middletown, Virginia from 1999 to 2013. In Chicago he was the founder of the Absolute Theatre Company and Plan B Productions, and served as Artistic Director for New Tuners Theatre and Pegasus Players. A short list of his directing work in Chicago and regionally includes Pentecost, The Kentucky Cycle, Passion, La Bête, Edward II, Good, Kiss Me Kate, Man of La Mancha, Cotton Patch Gospel, Southern Crossroads, Romeo and Juliet, Ballad of the Sad Cafe, Forever Plaid, Othello, Noises Off, Always a Bridesmaid, Tuesdays With Morrie, and Stonewall Jackson’s House. He is the recipient of a number of Joseph Jefferson Awards and other awards for his work as a director and designer. He is the author of Robert E. Lee and John Brown: Lighting the Fuse; the musicals Southern Crossroads and Southern Crossroads: New Orleans, a musical version of A Christmas Carol with composter Steve Przybylski, and a musical adaptation of The Three Musketeers with Gregg Opelka.
SCOTT DAVIS, U.S.A. (Scenic Design) Chicago credits include productions with: Chicago Shakespeare Theater, Steppenwolf, Court Theater, Paramount Theatre, Victory Gardens, Drury Lane Oakbrook, Northlight Theater, American Theater Company, Griffin Theater Company, and Northwestern University. International credits include productions with: Shakespeare’s Globe, Unicorn Theater (London) The Market Theater (South Africa), The Neuss (Germany), Gdansk Shakespeare Theater (Poland), The Cultch (Vancouver), DUCTAC Theater (Dubai), Brice Mason Center (New Zealand), and The Edinburgh Festival (Scotland). Regional credits include productions with Milwaukee Repertory Theater, Asolo Theater, Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center, Rep Stage, and Dallas Theatre Center. Mr. Davis serves as adjunct faculty at Columbia College having received his MFA from Northwestern University. www.scottadamdavis.com
YAEL LUBETZKY, U.S.A. (Lighting Design) has designed numerous productions in New York City and regionally including the Broadway production of Russell Simmons Def Poetry Jam. Chicago area designs include The Little Mermaid at Chicago Shakespeare Theatre and West Side Story at Drury Lane Oakbrook. Off-Broadway designs include productions at the Public Theater, Playwrights Horizons, The Theatre at St. Clement’s, The Duke, The Cherry Lane Alternative, Intar Theatre, The New Ohio Theatre, Venture Opera, National Yiddish Theatre, and Bleecker Street Theatre. Regional Theatre designs include productions at Trinity Repertory Theatre, The Children’s Theatre Company, Riverside Theatre, The Clarence Brown Theatre, and The Arkansas Repertory Theatre. Yael has worked as Associate Lighting Designer on many Broadway productions including Once, Follies, Sister Act, The Addams Family, A Chorus Line, The Little Mermaid, Tarzan, and Urinetown. Yael is a Recipient of the NEA/TCG Career Development Program for Designers.
KATIE CORDTS (Wig/Hair Design) works in the Wig and Makeup Department at Chicago Shakespeare Theater and teaches Stage Makeup at Roosevelt University. She is designing wigs and makeup for this season at the Paramount Theatre. She has also worked at Marriott Theater and American Players Theatre.
ROBERT S. KUHN (Costume Design) is pleased to be working at Mercury Theater Chicago for the first time. Recent design credits include White Christmas (Drury Lane Oakbrook), A Charlie Brown Christmas (Emerald City Theater), and SS! MacBeth (Chicago Shakespeare Theater). Other Chicago Credits include works with About Face Theater, Northwestern University, Concordia University Chicago, Mortar Theater Company and Theatre-Hikes. Regional design credits include Smokey Joe’s Cafe (Pennsylvania Centre Stage) and Dracula and Othello (The Arkansas Shakespeare Theater). Upcoming projects include Heathers, the Musical (Kokandy Productions) and After All The Terrible Things I Do (About Face Theater).
JOE COURT (Co-Sound Design) is excited to work with Mercury Theater Chicago for the first time! Joe has designed more than 100 shows since moving to Chicago in 2006 with many different theater companies including: Mary-Arrchie (where he is a company member), A Red Orchid, The Inconvenience, Theater Wit, Raven, TUTA, Haven, Emerald City, Seanachai, Theatre Seven, Backstage, Boho, Lifeline, Pine Box, The Gift, University of Chicago, 59E59 (Off-Broadway, NYC), Clarence Brown Theatre (Knoxville, TN.), Great Lakers Theatre (Cleveland, OH), Virginia Stage Company (Norfolk, VA), Actors Theatre of Indiana, and the Idaho, Lake Tahoe, and Illinois Shakespeare Festivals. From 2008 until 2012 Joe served as sound engineer for the Chicago production of the Tony Award-winning musical Million Dollar Quartet. He received a Joseph Jefferson Award nomination in 2009 for his design for The Unseen with A Red Orchid Theatre.
MIKE ROSS (Co-Sound Design) is an owner of Sound Production & Lighting LLC, a full service production, rental, and sales company. Mike / SPL has handled audio, video, and lighting production work for events across the country, ranging from corporate events for MillerCoors, Nike, The Chicago Bears, United, Volkswagen, The Chicago Consular Corps to national music acts, to high school and educational productions and installations. Previous theatrical sound designs for Mercury Theater Chicago include The Christmas Schooner (2011 thru 2015), The Addams Family, Avenue Q, The Color Purple, Barnum, and A Grand Night for Singing. Mike has also served as the audio dept. heard for the Chicago production of Million Dollar Quartet since 2012. For more information please visit www.spl-design.com.
KATIE SPELMAN (Movement Consultant) is happy to be at the Mercury. Chicago choreography: James Joyce’s The Dead, The Secret Garden (Court Theatre); American Idiot, Pirates of Penzance, The Mikado, Into the Woods (The Hypocrites); Oklahoma!, RENT, In the Heights, Hair (Paramount Theatre); Juno (Timeline); Bellboys, Bears and Baggage (Redmoon); Idomeneus, Theories of the Sun (Sideshow Theatre Company); Fanny Brice (Asolo Repertory); Down and Derby (The New Colony); The Fly Honey Show (The Inconvenience); Cabaret, Spelling Bee, The Who’s Tommy (Northwestern University). New York: What’s It All About? (New York Theatre Workshop, Associate Director); Brooklynite (Vineyard Theatre, Associate Choreographer); Once (Broadway, 1st National Tour - Associate Movement Director) and Pulp Verite (NYU, Choreographer). London: What’s It All About? (Menier Chocolate Factory, Associate Director) and Close To You (West End, Associate Director). She has also assisted and performed with Goodman Theatre, Writers Theatre, House Theatre, Drury Lane Oakbrook and Marriott Theatre. Graduate of Northwestern University, and a member of SDC and AEA. Love to Mom and Dad. DJ REED (Properties Design) is happy to rejoin the Mercury family after assisting on The Addams Family last year. During the day he works in the amazing craft shop at Chicago Shakespeare Theatre. Favorite designs include Sweet Charity, The Odd Couple, Rocky Horror (costumes), Mr. Burns (crafts), and Writers production of Doubt. He is a graduate of Ball Sate University. This show and every show is dedicated to Mrs. Campbell and Mrs. Everidge.
MATT DEITCHMAN (Orchestrator/Keyboard Programmer) is an actor, composer, music director, and multi-instrumentalist whose Chicago credits include: La Révolution Française (FWD Theater Project); Spring Awakening, October Sky, The King and I, Hero (Marriott Theater); Road Show, Seussical, Shrek, Murder For Two (Chicago Shakespeare Theater); The Who’s Tommy (Paramount Theater); Adding Machine, Into The Woods (The Hypocrites); Wonderland (Chicago Children’s Theater); Spelling Bee (Drury Lane Oakbrook); Spelling Bee (Griffin Theater); She Kills Monsters, Ghost Bike (Buzz22 Chicago); Parade (BoHo Theater). He will be serving as the Music Director of Chicago Shakespeare’s history cycle Tug Of War, and is the composer of multiple new musicals in development.
LINDA MADONIA (Conductor) is thrilled to be conducting at Mercury Theater Chicago. As a Music Director and Conductor in the Chicago area for the past 30 years, credits include Plaid Tidings, Suds, Beehive and Gypsy at the Williams Street Rep. A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum and Double Trouble at Porchlight Music Theatre where she also serves as an Artistic Associate; Leo on Ice for Leo Burnett at the Chicago Theater; Hollywood’s Greatest Hits, The Fantasticks, Cabaret and Man of La Mancha for Light Opera Works; and Forbidden Broadway: SVU at the Royal George Theater. Other credits include Grand Hotel and Nunsensations at Drury Lane Water Tower Place, and A Chorus Line, She Loves Me and Me and My Girl at Theatre at the Center. For the past nine years, Linda has been the music director for Chicago’s Equity Joseph Jefferson Awards. During 14 Mercury Theater Chicago the day, Linda owns American Eagle Productions, a touring theater company that takes shows and workshops directly into schools. American Eagle has been doing shows for twenty-four years and presents 250 shows a year to Chicago area schools.
KRISTI J. MARTENS* (Production Stage Manager) is happy to be back at the Mercury Theater Chicago with The Man Who Murdered Sherlock Holmes after having the honor of being the Production Stage Manager for The Addams Family (Joseph Jefferson Award Winner, Musical – Midsize Theater), Avenue Q and The Color Purple. Some other theaters that she has worked at: Drury Lane Theater (Oakbrook Terrace), Northlight Theatre, Chicago Shakespeare Theater, Goodman Theatre, The Royal George Theater, Drury Lane Evergreen Park, Drury Lane Water Tower, Fox Valley Repertory, Oak Park Festival Theater, Fulton Opera House (Lancaster, PA), Maine State Music Theater (Brunswick, ME), Theater At the Center (Munster, IN), Carousel Dinner Playhouse (Akron, OH), Dallas Theater Center (Dallas, TX). A proud Equity member for over 25 years, Kristi started stage managing with children’s theater. Enjoy!
FERNANDO ALVAREZ, JR. (Production Assistant) is thrilled to be working with the Mercury Theater Chicago. He graduated with his Bachelors in Theatre Education from the University of Texas at El Paso. He spent the last two years on the road stage managing one of Second City’s touring companies. In Chicago, he completed a stage management internship at the Goodman Theatre for their production of Chinglish, stage managed Family Devotions (Halcyon), Assisted Living (Profiles), L-Vis Live! (Victory Gardens), The Diary of Anne Frank (Metropolis Performing Arts Center), Hedwig and the Angry Inch (Haven) and assistant stage managed Be A Good Little Widow (Collaboraction), Reefer Madness and Pippin: A Bollywood Spectacular (Circle). Forever grateful for Maldonado, Gunnels and Mom.