Make us your home page

'Thoroughly Modern Millie' comes to Richey Suncoast Theatre

Jimmy (played by Jeff Oles, 19) hopes for a kiss before declaring his love for Millie (played by Alyson Larkin, 17).


Jimmy (played by Jeff Oles, 19) hopes for a kiss before declaring his love for Millie (played by Alyson Larkin, 17).

Like Meet Me in St. Louis, Seven Brides for Seven Brothers and Singin' in the Rain, the musical comedy Thoroughly Modern Millie started out as a movie (1967) and only later was made into a Broadway show (2002). But, unlike its predecessors that followed the movie versions to the letter, the Broadway version of Millie keeps the general plot line and rearranges just about everything else.

The bouncy, happy-go-lucky show opens Thursday and continues for three weekends at Richey Suncoast Theatre.

Set in the 1922 flapper girl days, Millie is the story of a money-hungry Millie Dillmount, a spunky but naive Kansas girl who goes to New York City to land a rich husband — an age-old practice that she thinks is very modern.

Once in the Big Apple, Millie (Alyson Larkin, Pegeen in Mame) is promptly mugged and robbed, semirescued by the young, handsome, ne'er-do-well Jimmy Smith (Jeffrey Oles, Ren in Footloose), then checks into the seemingly respectable Hotel Priscilla for Single Women.

Unbeknownst to Millie, the hotel owner, Mrs. Meers (Tracie Callahan, Agnes Gooch in Mame) is running a white slavery ring out of the hotel in cahoots with two nice young men from China, Ching Ho (Keith Surplus, Johnny in Unsinkable Molly Brown) and Bun Foo (George Brazier), who only want to earn some money to bring their mom over from China. Their targets are orphan girls who can easily "disappear" without anyone checking to see where they went.

Millie, who may or may not be a target for Mrs. Meers, quickly runs out of money and is just about to be evicted, when young Dorothy Brown (Michelle Procida) arrives to check in. Millie promptly asks her to share a room (with Dorothy paying the rent, of course), but when Mrs. Meers learns that Dorothy is an orphan, she insists that she take the new, sunny room that was just mysteriously and suddenly vacated by Ethel Peas (Dandy Blethroad), an orphan with no relatives.

Meanwhile, Millie has been researching New York's rich, eligible men in the city and lands a job at Sincere Trust, where the boss is rich, eligible Trevor Graydon III (Rob Tilley, Tommy Awards for Che in Evita and Freddie in Chess).

All seems to be on track, except that Millie doesn't really love Trevor, and Trevor is in love with someone else. Out celebrating finding not only a job, but also a prospective husband, Millie runs into Jimmy at a speakeasy. Jimmy invites her to come along to a big party at the home of famous singer Muzzy van Hossmere (Kristen Bram Broughton, Daisy Mae in Li'l Abner), where Jimmy says his dad was once the gardener.

From there, it's love run amok, in fine Broadway and Hollywood fashion, where everyone seems to fall in love with the wrong person who really is the right person, and they all get the wrong idea about each other.

Then there's Mrs. Meers and the disappearing girls, one of them being Millie's best friend Dorothy. Somehow, in between the songs and dances, the love matches and kidnappings must be worked out for everyone.

In addition to the principal actors, there's a chorus of 17 singers/dancers and a few "celebrities." The score has both new songs and some oldies like Ah! Sweet Mystery of Life and a zany take on Tchaikovsky's The Nutcracker called The Nuttycracker Suite.

Thoroughly Modern Millie ran for more than two years on Broadway and won both the Tony Award and the Drama Desk Award for "best musical." It played for eight weeks at the Show Palace Dinner Theatre in early 2009.

The director is Marie Skelton, co-director is Linda Hougland and music director is Steven Schildbach.

.If you go

Thoroughly Modern Millie

The musical comedy in two acts will be shown at Richey Suncoast Theatre, 6237 Grand Blvd. in New Port Richey, on Thursday and Feb. 22-24; March 1-3 and 8-10. Shows are at 8 p.m., except Sundays at 2:30 p.m. Tickets are $17, reserved seating, student prices available. Box office is open 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Wednesdays through Saturdays and an hour before each show. Call (727) 842-6777.

'Thoroughly Modern Millie' comes to Richey Suncoast Theatre 02/14/13 [Last modified: Thursday, February 14, 2013 5:07pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Top things to do in Tampa Bay for Tuesday May 30


    Finding Neverland: The hit Broadway show follows the story behind playwright J.M. Barrie as he struggles to find inspiration to create Peter Pan, until he meets four young brothers and their beautiful widowed mother. 7:30 p.m., Carol Morsani Hall at the Straz Center for the Performing Arts, 1010 N MacInnes Place, …

    Mitchell Wray, Jordan Cole, Finn Faulconer and Ben Krieger as the Llewelyn Davies Boys in the National Tour of Finding Neverland. Photo by Carol Rosegg.
  2. Big rents and changing tastes drive dives off St. Pete's 600 block

    Music & Concerts

    ST. PETERSBURG — Kendra Marolf was behind the lobby bar of the State Theatre, pouring vodka sodas for a weeknight crowd packed tight for Bishop Briggs, the latest alternative artist to sell out her club.

    Sam Picciano, 25, left, of Tampa and Molly Cord 24, Palm Harbor shop for record albums for a friend at Daddy Kool Records located on the 600 block of Central Avenue in St. Petersburg, Florida on Saturday, May 20, 2017. OCTAVIO JONES   |   Times
  3. Restaurant review: Features Gastropub in Riverview is fine as movie theater fare, but unimpressive otherwise

    Food & Dining

    Movies aren't exactly dying. Despite all the sturm und drang of predictions that Netflix and streaming videos would kill the cinema, global box office receipts hit $38.6 billion in 2016, a 1 percent gain over the previous year. But that doesn't mean going to the cinema is precisely what it was a generation ago. …

    A cheesesteak sandwich i at the Features Gastropub.
  4. From the food editor: I love that food is a huge part of Master of None's transcendent second season


    Deep into a late-night binge of Master of None, Aziz Ansari's Netflix series that returned for its second season May 12, I realized I was laying as far back on my couch as possible, blanket clutched up to my chin, eyebrows permanently raised.

    Dev (Aziz Ansari) and Arnold (Eric Wareheim) eat lunch in Modena, Italy, in the second season of "Master of None."
  5. Three 'MasterChef' contestants from the Tampa Bay area talk cooking inspiration and more


    When Gordon Ramsay's MasterChef begins its eighth season tonight, the Tampa Bay area will have three contestants to root for. A marketing director from Tampa, a dentist and Palm Harbor native, and an employee for a steel supply company are all trying to impress a trio of judges with their home-cooking skills.

    Jeff Philbin in MasterChef. (Photo courtesy of Fox)