“The Bardy Bunch”


Written by Stephen Garvey.

Directed by Jay Stern.

Music Director/Arranger Logan Medland.

A Ghastly Glance at Old Friends Gone Bad starring the Brady’s and the Partridge’s.

Be sure and brush up your Shakespeare if you want to make any sense of this musical parody gone mad. It should really be called “The Bardy Banshees”!  In fact, Halloween may be a good time to see this show if you are into the walking dead, spirits, blood, gore and murder. Oh well wait, there are some cheery tunes and dance numbers choreographed by Lorna Ventura by to offset the foaming mouths, spurting blood and suicides.

Taking a stroll down memory lane with “Sunshine Day”, “Keep on Moving”, “I Think I Love You” and more, were the highlights of this show. I was so excited to re-live those 70’s moments! The musical numbers and costumes by Robert Kuhn were “right on”. However, the excessive murders and heads rolling were too over the top for my taste.

bardy-11

It is 1974, and the Brady Bunch and the Partridge Family are competing for the spotlight after their TV shows are cancelled.  Shirley is now married to Rueben and Danny seeks his mom’s attention. Keith is totally groovy, and digging Marcia, regardless if she has any brains or stays up to date with current events. Cindy and Bobby kind of get overlooked in the midst of chaos and so does Chris Partridge, who? Peter is hung up on his magic tricks.  Jan never gets any attention, “Marcia, Marcia, Marcia….” never did and never will, while living or dead. Greg is tricked into digging Laurie Partridge who is a rebel in disguise more of the time rather than the girl next door we are accustomed to knowing. Mr. and Mrs. Brady begin the killing spree early on while plotting the murder of Mike’s boss at the Masquerade Ball. Alice, who was in and out of scenes throughout the show is quick witted and acts a bit like the narrator. Her boyfriend Sam, also plays Mr. Brady’s boss and is the first to drop and the first ghost to appear throughout. A real standout character to me was Tracy Partridge whose comedic timing, monotone voice and connection with the audience was great. The scenes revolved around “Romeo and Juliet”, “Much Ado About Nothing”, “Hamlet” and “Macbeth”—“All’s Well That Ends Well”, and quite honestly I was thinking when is this going to end already?

I think this show may have a cult following that will find it to be “out of sight”! Me? Not so much.  The show is 1 hour and 45 minutes without an intermission and perhaps if there were less dancing spirits and blood soaked costumes it could be shaved down to 80 minutes. I do not recommend that you bring children to this show unless you want to pay for therapy later in life (there should be a minimum age requirement).

Cast includes:

The Brady Family

Carol Brady-Cory Goodrich

Mike Brady-Stef Tovar

Greg Brady-Sawyer Smith

Marcia Brady-Olivia Renteria

Jan Brady-Annie Watkins

Peter Brady-Dan Gold

Bobby Brady-Jake Nicholson

Cindy Brady-Callie Johnson

Alice Nelson-Tina Gluschenko

Sam the Butcher, Mr. Phillips-Bret Tuomi.

The Partridge Family

Shirley Partridge-Brianna Borger

Reuben Kindcaid-Jeff Max

Keith Partridge-Skyler Adams

Laurie Partridge-Erin McGrath

Danny Partridge-Jared Rein

Chris Partridge(s)- Timothy Eidman and Jake Stempel

Tracy Partridge-Mary-Margaret Roberts.

Not recommended.

Reviewed by Sally Jo Osborne.

Fate Reviewed: September 26, 2016.

Jeff Recommended.

Shows are on Wednesdays-Sundays show times vary-at The Mercury Theater 3745 N. Southport Ave, Chicago, IL. Tickets range from $30 to $58 and are available at www.MercuryTheaterChicago.com or by phone at 773-325-1700 or visit www.theatreinchicago.com.

Running time is 1 hour and 45 minutes without intermission through November 27th.