Jan. 15 - Feb. 27, 2022
Conceived by Sheldon Epps
With the music of Bessie Smith, Johnny Mercer, Harold Arlen, Vernon Duke, Gordon Jenkins, and Alberta Hunter and others
Featuring Tony Award-nominee Felicia P. Fields*
Directed and Choreographed by Kenny Ingram+
Assistant Choreographer Ariel Dorsey*
Music Director David Fiorello+
Associate Music Director and Conductor Maulty Jewell IV+
The Blues is one of America’s original art forms and Chicago was the home to some of the greatest Blues performers ever. Set in a history-filled hotel on Chicago’s south side one fateful night in the late 1930s, this Tony Award-nominated celebration interweaves the stories of three women who share their highs and lows of romance through the iconic songs of Bessie Smith, Duke Ellington, Johnny Mercer, Harold Arlen, Alberta Hunter, Jimmy Cox, Ida Cox and others.
Director & Choreographer
KENNY INGRAM+ (Director/Choreographer) is Grateful to be on the team of Porchlight Theatre’s production of Blues in the Night. Mr Ingram last directed and choreographed “Triple Threat” A play that moves and sings starring James T. Lane ahh The Zeiders American Dream Theatre in Virginia Beach. He received the White Nights Film Festival Diploma for his Direction and Choreography for Chicago Performing Theatrical production of “The Moment” in Russia. Kenny pioneered as a directed and choreographed for Chicago Shakes first summer musical Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat at navy Pier. He choreographed New York Times Critics Pick re -mount of Emojiland Off Broadway at The Duke on 42nd, and Till, The Musical based on the story of Emmett Till Off Broadway at Signature Theatre for the New York Musical Festival. Kenny won outstanding Choreography for his moves in Emojiland in 2018 at NYMF. Although Kenny lives in Harlem, He is excited to return home to Chicago where he began his career at Lou Conte Dance Studio on Scholarship, taught jazz dance here at Ruth Page Center and Choreographed at many Chicago Legendary Theatre’s including Goodman, Steppenwolf, Court Theatre, Organic Theatre, Hasted Street Theatre and now to cap it off Porchlight. He looks forward to staging the reading of CLEAR here at Porchlight.
ARIEL M DORSEY* (Assistant Choreographer) is a Chicago native, she began her formal training at Chicago Academy for the Arts under the direction of Ana Peskevska and Randy Duncan. Ariel went on to further her studies at SUNY Purchase College in New York where she graduated with a BFA in dance. Mrs. Dorsey’s credits include Winifred Haun and Dancers,Hot Crowd, Banks Performance Project (guest artist),Moonwater dance project, Porchlight music theatre production of “Memphis” (ensemble) and “Sophisticated Ladies”(female swing).
DAVID FIORELLO+ (Music Director) is a Music Director, Performer, Director, Composer & Arranger who’s no stranger to Porchlight. He has served as Music Director for Porchlight’s GYPSY, DO RE MI, WOMAN OF THE YEAR, several seasons of the New Faces Sing Broadway series, as well as several CHICAGO SINGS & ICONS GALA benefits. He also appeared onstage as Joe in MERRILY WE ROLL ALONG. David currently serves as Founder & Artistic Director of THE BEAUTIFUL CITY PROJECT, a theatre company committed to raising funds for local Chicago charities & non-profits, using some of the city’s finest musical theatre talents. He’s Music Directed National & International Tours, including John Doyle’s re-imagining of SWEENEY TODD. He also served as Music Director for the Off-Broadway hit DANNY & SYLVIA: THE DANNY KAYE MUSICAL. His orchestrations and arrangements have been heard across the nation, and on several albums. He’s taught and Directed/Music Directed as part of the International Lyric Academy in Italy, and is adjunct faculty at Columbia College Chicago. An in-demand Vocal Coach, Fiorello Studios has also provided unique cabaret programming featuring the music of The Indigo Girls, Jason Mraz, Kelly Clarkson, Eva Cassidy, Sara Bareilles & Colbie Caillat. Visit www.thebeautifulcityproject.com & www.fiorellostudios.com
Assistant Music Director & Conductor
MAULTY JEWELL IV+ (Associate Music Director/Conductor) a native of Gary, IN, began playing the piano at an early age under the tutelage of his father, renowned musician Maulty Jewell III. It was at the Clark Road Baptist Church, during services and his father’s choir rehearsals, where Maulty was introduced to the rich heritage of gospel music. By the age of 3 he showed an aptitude for hearing melodies and began to pick out cartoon songs and commercials on his father’s piano.
In 1982, he auditioned for and was accepted into the Emerson School for Visual And Performing Arts in Gary, IN as part of the inaugural group of students selected. It was there where he learned music theory as well as music history, and was exposed to classical music, jazz, and musical theater. He performed in many of the school’s productions, such as Joseph And The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Guys And Dolls, Flower Drum Song, West Side Story, Your Arms Too Short To Box With God, Dreamgirls, Cats, Jesus Christ Superstar, and many others. Already capable of playing by ear, he began studying private classical piano lessons with instructor Thelma Blumenthal as a sixth grader. Through his studies with Mrs. Blumenthal, he would learn many compositions by great composers such as Bach, Beethoven, Chopin, Brahms, and many others.
Pronoun Key: + (he/him/his); * (she/her/hers); ^ (they, them, theirs); = (any with respect)
“I am grateful to work with Porchlight Music Theatre as the director/choreographer of Blues in the Night. We approach this production with realism and look forward to taking audiences on a joyful ride that includes two parts of the ‘Night.’ There is that 11 p.m. side when you want to throw your hands up, give a shout and learn a lesson and then that 4 a.m. side when the truth hits you so bad in your guts you almost cannot move and you may only want to cry. We want audiences to feel all of these emotions and let them figure out ‘Which side of the night are they on?’”
Director/Choreographer Kenny Ingram+
Ruth Page Center for the Arts
Ruth Page Center for the Arts
1016 N. Dearborn St.
Chicago, IL 60610
Ruth Page Center for the Arts
1016 N. Dearborn St. Chicago, IL 60610
(2-1/2 blocks south of Division St. and 4-1/2 blocks north of Chicago Ave.)
The Ruth Page Center is easily accessible by bus (#22, #36, #70 and #156*) and “L” train (Red Line Clark & Division stop), visit the CTA website to plan your trip and for the most up-to-date information! *Please note the #156 LaSalle does not operate after 7:30/8:10pm, or on weekends or holidays.
Ruth Page, North Dearborn Street, Chicago, IL, United States