Act 1 Presents the Monstrously Funny Musical Young Frankenstein

by Matthew Smaldone '20 | Mar 28, 2017

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Mel Brooks’ side-splitting film finds a melodic spin in this hilarious adaptation

Act 1 DeSales University Theatre winds up its 47th season with Mel Brooks’ hysterical comedy, Young Frankenstein.  This musical adaptation will be presented April 26 to May 7, 2017 on the Main Stage of the Labuda Center for the Performing Arts, Center Valley, Pa.

Young Frankenstein tells the tale of Frederick Frankenstein, a notable New York neuroscientist who is forced to travel to Transylvania in order to claim his recently departed grandfather’s estate. Upon his arrival, Frankenstein is greeted by a myriad of eccentric characters, including a hunchbacked henchman and a voluptuous, yodeling lab assistant, who try to convince Frederick to continue in his grandfather’s dark work.

However dismissive at first, Frankenstein eventually comes around after a dream inspires him to take up his family’s heinous cause. With his eyes set on conquering death, Frankenstein succeeds in creating life. However, his victory soon turns to chaos as a series of hilarious mistakes throws the village into hysteria.

Young Frankenstein delivers a flash-bang frenzy of memorable, musical numbers and hilarious laughs in the musical adaptation of Mel Brooks’ hit film. “Movie fans love Young Frankenstein, reciting many of the signature lines by heart,” says performing arts division head John Bell. “It is a wildly popular show with a devoted audience base.”

Mel Brooks started off his long career of comedy working as an entertainer and a writer, penning for The Admiral Broadway Revue and Your Show of Shows. His first small screen hit came when Brooks partnered with Buck Henry to write Get Smart, a television comedy that spoofed the spy genre. Three years later in 1968, he launched his cinematic career with the comedic classic The Producers, starring Gene Wilder and Zero Mostel. From then on, Brooks would create a collection of memorable genre spoofs including Blazing Saddles and the original film Young Frankenstein.

In 2007, Broadway was electrified with the new Young Frankenstein musical which, after a respectful run, enjoyed a national tour and picked up steam as it swept the country, entering regional theatres and university stages across the nation. As one of the only people to ever have received Oscar, Emmy, Grammy, and Tony awards, Brooks sits at the top of the entertainment world. In addition to his impressive track record for hits and subsequent awards, his prolific work earned him the National Medal of the Arts, presented to him by President Barack Obama in September of 2016. To this day, the world looks to Mel Brooks as king of the parody whose clever and innovative style never seems to lose its comedic luster.

Young Frankenstein is directed by Department of Theatre chair, Dennis Razze. Of the production, he says, “This musical version of Mel Brooks' parody of those 1930s horror films adds great songs and dances to the familiar storyline, increasing the quotient of fun and the number of laughs and making the most of every opportunity to be true to the vaudevillian comedy that infused the original movie.” 

Young Frankenstein is brought to life with sets and lights by Act 1’s resident creative faculty team: scenic designer Will Neuert and lighting and sound designer Elizabeth Elliott. Guest artist Sam Fleming designed the costumes.

Young Frankenstein contains mild language and moderate sexual innuendo and is best suited for ages 14 and older.

The production runs April 26 to May 7, 2017 on the Main Stage of the Labuda Center for the Performing Arts. Performances are Wednesdays through Saturdays at 8:00 PM and Sundays at 2:00 PM.  A talk back is scheduled for Sunday, April 30 after the 2:00 PM performance. There is an added matinee on Saturday, May 6 at 2:00 PM.

In an effort to improve accessibility for all patrons, the Saturday, May 6, 2:00 PM performance will feature Open Captioning for patrons who are deaf or hearing impaired and Audio Descriptions for patrons who are blind or visually impaired. During Open Captioned performances, all dialogue and sound effects are presented in real-time on an LED screen that is adjacent to the stage. During Audio Described performances, all action and physical appearances are described live through a headset. Tickets are half price for patrons using these special services on this date. Please call box office manager Catherine Logan at 610-282-3654, ext. 1 for more information.

Ticket prices are $29 for adults and $27 for students and seniors on Wednesdays and Thursdays, and $30 for adults and $28 for students and seniors on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays. Group discounts are available for all performances. Tickets may be purchased by calling the Labuda Center box office at 610-282-3192 or by visiting the web site at www.desales.edu/act1.

The Labuda Center is fully accessible and equipped with a listening enhancement system. Special seating is available for our patrons using wheelchairs or requiring other assistance. Please inform the box office of your needs when ordering tickets. 


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Tom McNamara
Executive Director of Communications
DeSales University
2255 Station Avenue
Center Valley, PA 18034

610.282.1100 x1219
Tom.McNamara@desales.edu