Warren Gerds/Critic at Large: Green Bay show troupe plans 11th active year

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Daddy D Productions show troupe of Green Bay will present one more performance in 2017 ahead of its 2018 slate of varied shows.

An overview, with info at daddydproductions.com:


+ The troupe will present its “Daddy D’s Christmas” at 7:30 p.m. today, Friday, Dec. 23, Ashwaubenon Performing Arts Center. This show was performed in other locations, sometimes to sold-out houses. My review: http://www.wearegreenbay.com/critic-at-large-wearegreenbay/warren-gerdscritic-at-large-review-lots-of-trimmings-in-green-bay-troupes-show/876807505.

Ashwaubenon Performing Arts Center is where troupe leader Darren Johnson proposed to singer Shelly Lahti on stage during a performance Sept. 16.

From my review, here’s what happened:

“Oh yes, the proposal. Darren Johnson, a graduate of Bay Port High School, and Shelly Lahti, a graduate of Ashwaubenon High School (this was home turf for her) have known each other for years. They sang together in the Swinging Knights at St. Norbert College. With Daddy D Productions, they have been the mainstays for the troupe’s 11 years. Saturday night, the finale was a combination of the recent “Alleluia” of Leonard Cohen and the age-old “Hallelujah Chorus” of George Frideric Handel. As the “Alleluia” ended, Darren Johnson stopped the show, reached into a pocket, brought out a little box, opened it and produced a ring as he knelt and asked Shelly Lahti to marry him. “Absolutely!” she said. Next came the singing/playing of the magnificent “Hallelujah Chorus” in a circumstance most likely unlike any of its thousands upon thousands of performances over the world in its 276 years of existence.


The beginning of the year will see a break for Daddy D Productions locally as Darren Johnson heads with Daddy D Three to at least 25 gigs across Texas in January and February. The rest of the year is this:

+ March 3, Riverside Ballroom: “Broadway Hits” with Daddy D Productions and Knights on Broadway of St. Norbert College.

Swinging Knights was a forerunner of Knights on Broadway. Current Daddy D regular cast members are formerly of these groups – Johnson and Lahti of Swinging Knights, Ben Cahall and Maria Sausen of Knights on Broadway.

+ April 5, 6, 13, Riverside Ballroom: “Pure Country.”

+ June 7, 8, 15, Riverside Ballroom: “Rock ‘n’ Roll Revisited.”

+ Sept. 6, 7, 13, Riverside Ballroom: “That’ll Be the Day: A Tribute to Buddy Holly & 1959.” Holly’s birthday is Sept. 7. He famously performed at the Riverside Ballroom in 1959, before going on to his last show in Iowa and his death in an airplane crash.

+ Oct. 18, 19, 25, Riverside Ballroom: “Hollywood’s Greatest Hits,” including music from TV and movies.

+ Nov. 14, 15, 16, 17, Riverside Ballroom: “A ‘Musical’ Christmas Carol,” with original songs and traditional carols in the famed Charles Dickens story.

+ Dec. 5, 6, 7, Stadium View Bar & Grille, and Dec, 12, 13, 14, 15, Riverside Ballroom: “Daddy D’s Christmas.”

The troupe is heading into its 11th season.

Contact me at warren.gerds@wearegreenbay.com. Watch for my on-air Critic at Large editions on WFRV-TV at 6:20 a.m. Sundays. My books, “Three Miles Past Lost and in the Pickers,” “Nickolaus and Olive – a naïve opera (in words)” and the award-winning “Real, Honest Sailing with a Great Lakes Captain,” are available online and in Green Bay at Neville Public Museum, Bosse’s and The Reader’s Loft.

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