Celebrating Disney's Broadway Hits
Book by Sandy Rustin
Music & Lyrics by (in alphabetical order):
Kristen Anderson-Lopez & Robert Lopez • Howard Ashman • Chad Beguelin • Phil Collins • Anthony Drewe Jack Feldman • Matthew Gerrard • Terry Gilkyson • Elton John • Alan Menken • Robbie Nevil • Tim Rice • Stephen Schwartz • Richard M. Sherman & Robert B. Sherman • George Stiles • David Zippel
Orchestrations and Additional Arrangements by Jim Abbott
Directed by Artistic Director Michael Unger
Presented by special arrangement with Disney Theatrical Productions
Ring in the holidays with a brand-new musical revue featuring 30 favorite songs from Disney’s biggest Broadway hits. A cast of phenomenal singers including an ensemble of talented youth performers will celebrate the season in style with a festive holiday party for the ages.
Production length: 2 hours including a 20 minute intermission.
WARNING! This production contains theatrical haze, streamers, snow and entrances in the aisle.
This production is recommended for ages 5 and up.
A Jolly Holiday Creative Team
Michael Unger (Director, Artistic Director) During the 2021-2022 season, Michael directed Dennis DeYoung’s The Hunchback of Notre Dame and Little Shop of Horrors and before that, amongst many virtual offerings, he directed the Broadway World Award-winning Being Earnest, now available worldwide online. He was previously Associate Artistic Director of Off-Broadway’s York Theatre, credits included You’re A Good Man Charlie Brown and Big. For nine years, he was the Producing Artistic Director of NewArts, started with a local father in response to the Sandy Hook Elementary School tragedy; directing 17 productions working with over 650 area-children. Other selected directing credits include A Christmas Carol (McCarter Theatre for 18 years), Two Point Oh (NY Times Critics’ Pick), Time Stands Still (Cape Cod Chronicle Best 2015), My Sister in This House (Deaf West, Ovation Recommended), and new versions of The Happy Time and The Rink. World premieres include The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, Caligula, and A ROCKIN’ Midsummer Night’s Dream (featured in the award-winning documentary film “Midsummer in Newtown”). He has directed 14 operas plus benefit concerts honoring Susan Stroman, André DeShields, Maltby and Shire, and Leslie Uggams, as well as for the communities of Sandy Hook, CT and Parkland, FL.
Tara Jeanne Vallee (Choreographer) choreographed for the Broadway stage in Cirque Dreams Jungle Fantasy, as well as shows Off Broadway, aboard cruise ships, on television, National Tours, and on the stage of the Grand Ole Opry. She has choreographed regional productions of The Little Mermaid, Triumph of Love, Mary Poppins, Elf, Annie, The Producers, School of Rock, Pippin, The King and I and On the Town, earning 4 Helen Hayes Awards nominations for Outstanding Choreography. Directing credits include The Little Mermaid, Joseph..Dreamcoat, They’re Playing our Song. Tara Jeanne has also developed and directed shows with Cedar Fair Entertainment, Virgin Voyages, and is on staff as a Choreographer for Walt Disney World Live Entertainment. Upcoming: Kinky Boots at Olney Theatre Center. www.tarajeannevallee.com
Christie Chiles Twillie (Music Director) is a Chicago based artist. Regional Music Direction credits include Five Guys Named Moe, Newsies, The Gospel at Colonus, Raisin (Skylight), HAIR (Asolo), Indecent (Milwaukee Chamber), Dreamgirls (Paramount Aurora) and Minnie’s Boys (Porchlight). Original Scores for A Raisin in the Sun (Invictus); America 2.0 (Definition); The Niceties (Forward). Sound Design for We Are Continuous and VietGone (GEVA), The Way She Spoke (Milwaukee Chamber), Fireflies (Northlight) and the Milwaukee Black Theatre Festival Productions Black Butterflies, Pretty Fire, Kill Move Paradise, Stew and Home. Film credits include The Pandemic Trilogy, The Clearing and Alone. Christie won the 2019 Footlights Best Musical Direction Award for a Professional Production, and a Rachel Rockwell Fierce Women Behind The Table. She earned a BTAA nomination for Best Music Direction - Original Score (Yellowman) and was a Chicago Broadway World Finalist for Best Music Direction, (Big Fish). Christie is a member of the AFM; MUSE, and MAESTRA.
Kenneth Martin (Scenic Designer) is currently the Artistic Director of the Clarence Brown Theatre and Head of the Theatre program at the University of Tennessee. A member of United Scenic Artists, his designs have been seen at theatres across the country including the Kansas City Repertory Theatre, Kansas City Actors Theatre, Florida Repertory Theatre, Sacramento Theatre Company, New Theatre, Ohio Light Opera, Cleveland Ensemble Theatre, Ocean State Theatre, and many others. Ken last designed a Holiday themed show for the Golden Nugget in Reno, NV. Ken has actively served his profession as a consultant for several regional theaters and through active participation in organizations like the United States Institute for Theatre Technology, and the Southeastern Theatre Conference. Ken is and is a proud graduate of the University of Wisconsin – Stevens Point and is thrilled to be designing for the first time at Skylight Music Theatre and in his hometown of Milwaukee.
Brad Musgrove (Costume Designer) Is thrilled to reunite with so many familiar faces Here at Shylight Music Theatre. As Resident Costume Designer at Stages St. Louis, Brad has Designed over 20 musicals. Favorites include; Anything Goes, St. Louis Theatre Circle Award, The Drowsy Chaperone, The Man of La Mancha, Oklahoma, The Boy From Oz, My One and Only, Sister Act, 101 Dalmatians, and, Sister Act. Other regional credits include; Crazy For You at Theatre By The Sea, Steel Magnolias, at Florida Rep., and the world premiere of Heatwave- The Jack Cole Project off Broadway. On Broadway Brad has worked closely with 6 time TONY Award winner William Ivey Long on the original productions of; The Producers,9 to 5-The Musical, The Boy From Oz, Young Frankenstein, Sweet Charity-Revival, and La Cage aux Folles-Revival. In his first life as a performer, Brad had the incredible good fortune to appear in the original TONY Award winning casts of; Fosse, The Producers, La Cage aux Folles-Revival, and Pippin- Revival.
Jamie Roderick (Lighting Designer) For Skylight: Dennis DeYoung’s The Hunchback Of Notre Dame, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee. Off-Broadway: Stranger Sings, ¡Americano!, Disney’s Winnie The Pooh, Emojiland, Midnight at the Never Get, Mrs. Warren’s Profession, Caesar & Cleopatra, Safeword., Accidentally Brave, We Are The Tigers (Theatre 80), Red Roses, Green Gold, The Woodsman, Afterglow, A Dog Story. London: It Happened in Key West. Regional: Many Disney Musicals, The Bikinis!, Romeo & Juliet, Twelfth Night, Midsummer, Macbeth, Hamlet. JamieRoderick.com
Joanna Lynne Staub (Sound Designer) is a NYC-based Sound Designer and Audio Engineer with over 30 years of experience in Live Entertainment. Her designs include work at Alliance Theatre, Asolo Rep, 5th Avenue Theatre, Geva Theatre, Goodman Theatre, La Jolla Playhouse, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Public Theater, and Seattle REP. She has extensive credits associate designing and engineering Broadway Shows including Angels in America, The Color Purple, Constellations, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, Les Misérables, Thoroughly Modern Millie, and The Radio City Christmas Spectacular. Her TV credits include the NBC-Live! Productions of The Sound of Music, Peter Pan, and The Wiz, the Summer Concert Series at GMA, and The Today Show, and several Puppy Bowls for The Animal Planet. She is a 2022 GRAMMY Nominated Recording Engineer for Best Musical Theatre Album on Snapshots. She holds degrees from Ithaca College and the University of Illinois. jlssound.com
Kate Ferdinandi (Production Stage Manager) is elated to be a part of the team at Skylight, both in the Cabot and in the office! Selected credits: The Full Monty, Little Shop of Horrors, The Hunchback of Notre Dame (Skylight Music Theatre); Working: A Musical, The Bridges of Madison County, The Sound of Music, Curious Incident…, Hands on a Hardbody, Intimate Apparel, Fun Home, Anna in the Tropics (Colorado Springs FAC); Chicago, Mamma Mia!, The Producers, The Music Man, The Wizard of Oz, Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story (Theatre By The Sea): A Christmas Carol (‘17 and ‘18, The Hanover Theatre); Little Women, Born Yesterday, White Christmas, Billy Elliot, The Miracle Worker, 1776, The Addams Family (Ocean State Theatre Company); The Wiz (Fiddlehead Theatre); Fiddler on the Roof (Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival); A Christmas Carol, Steel Magnolias (Trinity Rep); A Doll’s House, Glengarry Glen Ross, The Glass Menagerie (Sandra Feinstein-Gamm Theatre). Thanks to Mom for the roots and wings! Kate is a proud member of Actors’ Equity.
Jack R. Lemmon (Executive Director) joined Skylight in 2015 after having worked in performing arts for his entire career. Now in his 8th season at Skylight, he is also currently president of the board of the Historic Third Ward Association and of the Milwaukee Arts Partners Consortium. Lemmon has served as Executive Director of the Joffrey Ballet, Louisville Ballet, and Colorado Ballet to name a few. He also served at the National Endowment for the Arts in Washington D.C. Previously, he served on the board of the executive committee of Dance/USA, was a board member of the Partnership for Creative Economies (KY) chaired the board of the Arts and Cultural Attractions Council in Louisville, KY, and the Chicago Dance Alliance. He holds a Bachelor of Music degree from Coe College in Cedar Rapids (Iowa) and an M.F.A. in Theatre (arts management) from the University of Utah.
DISNEY THEATRICAL PRODUCTIONS (DTP), a division of The Walt Disney Studios, operates under the direction of Thomas Schumacher. The group produces and licenses Broadway productions around the world, including Beauty and the Beast, The Lion King, Elton John & Tim Rice’s Aida, Tarzan, Mary Poppins (a coproduction with Cameron Mackintosh), The Little Mermaid, Peter and the Starcatcher, Newsies, Aladdin, and Frozen. Other successful stage ventures have included the London hit Shakespeare in Love, stage productions of Disney’s High School Musical, Der Glöckner von Notre Dame in Berlin, and King David in concert. DTP has collaborated with the country’s leading regional theaters to develop new stage musicals including The Jungle Book, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Freaky Friday, and Hercules.
Actors’ Equity Association (“Equity ”), founded in 1913, is the U.S. labor union that represents more than 50,000 actors and stage managers. Equity seeks to foster the art of live theatre as an essential component of society and advances the careers of its members by negotiating wages, working conditions, and providing a wide range of benefits, including health and pension plans. Actors’ Equity is a member of the AFL-CIO and is affiliated with FIA, an international organization of performing arts unions. #EquityWorks
A Jolly Holiday Cast
Daryn Alexus Born and raised in Washington D.C., Daryn Alexus began her acting career in local theaters and school plays within her hometown. Moving to Chicago to study music and theater at Columbia College Chicago led her to further developing herself as an actress and musician. She has since appeared in plays at The Apollo Theater in Chicago and The Paramount Theater in Aurora. Daryn has also made co-star appearances in several primetime television shows such as Chicago Med, Empire, Next, and The Chi, as well as a variety of commercials with household brands such as Adidas, State Farm, McDonald’s, and many more. Daryn continues to make a name for herself in her solo music career touring the U.S., Italy, and the Middle East, as well as sharing stages with artists such as the late Biz Marquee and Kendrick Lamar. She is represented by Stewart Talent.
Joey Chelius is ecstatic to be bringing some Disney magic and holiday fun with this return to Skylight and the Cabot stage. A Milwaukee native, Joey was a member of the 2018 BFA Acting class at UW-Stevens Point and an acting resident in the 2020-2021 EPR Cohort at Milwaukee Rep. At Skylight, Joey was most recently seen as Phoebus in Dennis DeYoung’s The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Malcolm in The Full Monty, RJ Willet in the reading of the new Paul Williams musical, Fortunate Sons, and Jack Worthing in the award-winning virtual production, Being Earnest! Other favorite roles include Jimmy Livingtson in Bubble Boy at Bombshell Theatre and Lincoln in indivisible with… at Milwaukee Rep. Joey can also regularly be seen as a guest vocalist and instrumentalist at Sunset Playhouse during their Musical Mainstage concerts and at the Forge Summer Concert Series in Lemont, IL.
Shawn Holmes is overwhelmed with joy to be back at his “theatre home” for A Jolly Holiday. He has been performing with theatres all throughout Wisconsin. Some theatres include Florentine Opera, First Stage, Middleton Players Theatre, Black Arts MKE, and Four Seasons Theatre. Some of his favorite past performances were Walker Jr. in Ragtime (winner of Best Actor in a Musical – Broadway World), Sebastian the Crab in The Little Mermaid, and Jacob in La Cage aux Folles (winner of Best Supporting Actor in a Musical - Footlights). Outside of performing on stage, Shawn works in an emergency department as a registered nurse.
Kevin James Sievert is an actor, singer and musician based in Wisconsin. In 2017, Kevin made his professional debut at Skylight Music Theatre in Milwaukee, WI in Hot Mikado (Pish Tush), and Urinetown (Robbie the Stockfish/Dance Captain). Kevin returned to Skylight in the 2018-2019 season in Five Guys Named Moe (Little Moe), where he received a nomination and became a finalist for the Footlight s Choice Award for Outstanding Supporting Performer in a Musical (Professional). Other recent regional credits include Disney’s Newsies (Ensemble), The Gospel at Colonus (Balladeer), Little Shop of Horrors (Seymour), and his 2022 Chicagoland Debut in Spring Awakening (Otto/us Moritz). Kevin can also be seen behind the director’s chair, most recently directing Carrie: The Musical for The Forst Inn Arts Collective and assistant directing and choreographing the upcoming production of Heathers for Outskirts Theatre Co. in Waukesha. Enjoy the Disney magic, and Happy Holidays!
Samantha Sostarich is excited to be back in the Midwest after working on Emojiland, the Musical’s 1st National Tour and proshot recording. Favorite roles include Rona Lisa Peretti in The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, Velma Von Tussle in Hairspray, and Lily St. Regis in Annie with Skylight Music Theatre, Gretchen in Boeing Boeing with Milwaukee Chamber Theatre, Lady of the Lake in Monty Python’s Spamalot with Four Seasons Theatre, Mrs. Wormwood in Roald Dahl’s Matilda the Musical with Children’s Theater of Madison, and Fortuna in Fortuna the Timebender vs. The School Girls of Doom with Milwaukee Opera Theatre and Milwaukee Metro Voices. Other Skylight credits include Sweeney Todd, Violet, Pirates of Penzance, Into the Woods, Pump Boys and Dinettes, Avenue Q, Sunday in the Park with George, Dames At Sea, The Producers, and White Christmas. www.samanthasostarich.co
Taylor Arnstein is a junior at Nicolet HS and is excited to be returning to the Skylight stage. She was in Annie (Molly) at Skylight in 2017 and has been in Matilda the Musical (Matilda) and other shows at First Stage. She would like to thank her friends and family for all their support. Enjoy the show!
Bristol Beasley is very excited to perform in her first, big production! She has performed in The Lion King musical at Muskego Lakes Middle School and with Character Kids in Franklin. She is in choir and enjoys all things singing and dancing!
Ella Caglin has been performing in musical theater since the age of six. Favorite roles include Molly, Annie; Gretl, Sound of Music; Jojo, Seussical; Anna, Frozen; and Pinocchio, Shrek the Musical. She thanks her family for their love and encouragement and thanks her theater family back home in Sanford, FL, Theater West End.
Naima Gaines is a Senior at Pius. Naima has appeared in other productions at her school such as: Seussical The Musical, Willy Wonka and The Chocolate Factory, Shrek The Musical, The Laramie Project, Silent Sky as Annie Canon and Black Nativity three times at Black Arts MKE. She is a part of the young company at First Stage and was in The Legend of Rock, Paper, Scissors as the Georgia Peach. She enjoys dancing on her Varsity Pom Dance Team, volunteering, and going to school. This will be Naima’s debut with Skylight.
Bennett Schoonover is delighted to join the cast of A Jolly Holiday! He performed in The Lion King with Muskego Lakes Middle School and has been involved with First Stage Theatre and choir every chance he gets. He is grateful for family and friends that support his love of the stage.
Grant Schoonover is honored to debut with Skylight Music Theatre in A Jolly Holiday. His previous theatre credits include The Addams Family with Muskego High School, Fiddler on the Roof with Christian Youth Theatre and Annie, Mulan, and Honk in middle school. He is thankful for the support of his family.
Sydney Alexander-Brown is super excited to make her Skylight debut. She’s been in Hunchback of Notre Dame with Hartford Players, Freaky Friday with Sussex Hamilton High School and Once On this Island with Lake Country Playhouse. Sydney’s a Junior at Hamilton. A member of Synergy Show Choir, Choir, and Theatre.
Vivian Beeghly is thrilled to be making her Skylight debut. Vivian is 10 years old and in 6th grade. Her past roles include Tommy in Matilda the Musical, and Edgar in Aristocrats JR. Vivian enjoys spending time reading, singing in MCC choir, and playing soccer. She wishes you a Happy Holiday season.
Max Chelius is thrilled to be making his Skylight debut in such a festive and magical way. A seventh grader at St. Alphonsus, Max was last seen rehearsing Horton the Elephant in Seussical Jr. Offstage, Max is an avid athlete and participates in basketball, baseball, volleyball, and cross-country.
Sophia Furshpan is a young artist whose favorite thing in the whole world is to be on stage. Recent community theater roles include Matilda (Matilda), The Secret Garden (Mary) and A Christmas Carol: A Radio Play (Tiny Tim). Sophia trains weekly (online) with the Professional Performance Prep./NJ.
Evie Patrick is ecstatic to welcome everyone back to live theater. Evie has previously performed in Skylight Music Theatre’s ANNIE, First Stage’s The Legend of Rock, Paper, Scissors, and Judy Moody & Stink, as well as Whitefish Bay Theater’s Working. Evie is a Whitefish Bay High School Junior who loves singing and playing the piano.
Shale Schroeder 13 years old and thrilled to be performing on the Skylight stage. He enjoys singing, playing piano and guitar, writing songs, playing sports, eating ice cream, and laughing with anyone who will share a lighthearted moment with him. He wishes everyone a happy holiday season!
EARLY CAREER PROFESSIONAL INTERNS
Gabriel Burdette has been seen in shows throughout Wisconsin such as Hair, Urinetown, Little Women, and most recently as Crutchie in Newsies at Sunset Playhouse. When not on stage he can be caught behind the sewing machine, fixing it, being a costume connoisseur, or altering clothes for his family. As a Milwaukee native, Gabriel is overjoyed to be a part of Skylight’s Early Career Professional Internship Program and can’t wait to make his Skylight debut!
Alexis Cimoch is thrilled to be part of the Early Career Professional program and make her Skylight debut! Alexis holds a BA in musical theatre from the University of Wisconsin - La Crosse. Favorite university credits include Amy March in Little Women, Hope Cladwell in Urinetown, Jenny Hill in Big Fish and Lana Sherwood in War of the Worlds. Special thanks to family and friends for their constant love and support. Instagram: @alexiscimoch
Marion Frank is proud to pioneer the Directing ECP position for Skylight’s 22-23 season! Marion recently graduated from Knox College with a major in Theatre and minors in German and Dance. Directing credits include The Violent Outburst That Drew Me To You, Let Me Hear You Whisper, and Machinal, which she conducted as her undergraduate Honors Thesis project. She looks forward to learning more from Skylight’s theatre artists this year.
King Hang is ecstatic to be a part of the ECP program with Skylight. A recent graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Parkside, King is a proud Milwaukee resident. Recent credits include Much Ado About Nothing (Claudio) with Summit Players Theatre, The Mole Hill Stories (Moon) and Freaky Friday (Louis) with Children’s Theatre of Madison, Macbeth (Banquo) with Sunstone Studios, and Miracle on 34th Street (Wallace) with Forte Theatre Company.
Sarah Zapiain is a Milwaukee based performer and director with a BA in Theatre from Franciscan University of Steubenville. Additionally, Sarah has trained with Shakespeare & Company and British-American Drama Academy. She recently appeared in The Sound of Music (Maria) and Little Women the Musical (Jo March) with Forte Theatre. Other credits include Maria in The Tamer (Sunstone Studios), and The Porter/Witch #2 in Macbeth (Voices Found Repertory) and Louise in Gypsy (The Snug Theatre).
News & Media
- Skylight Music Theatre Announces Ben Tajnai, “The Voice of the Milwaukee Bucks,” to Join "A Jolly Holiday: Celebrating Disney’s Broadway Hits" Now through Dec. 31, 2022.
- REVIEW: Skylight Music Theatre goes all-Disney for warmhearted 'A Jolly Holiday' – Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
- REVIEW: Disney Magic Combines with Holiday Wonder in Skylight’s New Musical – Shepherd Express
- REVIEW:“A Jolly Holiday” reviewed by Ryan Jay – Ryan Jay Reviews
- REVIEW: Jolly Holiday is a must-go holiday party for Disney fans. – BroadwayWorld
- REVIEW: “A Jolly Holiday” reviewed by Amy Menzel – Around the Town Chicago
- REVIEW: Skylight Theatre Brings Disney Magic to Milwaukee
- Skylight Music Theatre Announces Cast and Full Creative Team for 'A Jolly Holiday: Celebrating Disney’s Broadway Hits'
- Skylight Music Theatre Announces One Day Sale for 25% Off Tickets to 'A Jolly Holiday – Celebrating Disney’s Broadway Hits'