Zephyr Theatre actor finds soulmate in ‘School of Rock’
Dewey Finn, the adult ringleader in “School of Rock,” has a passion for rock ’n’ roll. Desperate and broke, he cons his way into a teaching job at a prep school, knowing he knows nothing about teaching readin’, writin’ and ‘rithmetic. What he learns when he faces a classroom full of fifth-graders is he can teach music — his passion — and he uses his skills to tap the inner rockers and rebels in his wound-tight students.
The wildly physical role in this Andrew Lloyd Webber Broadway hit, which The Zephyr Theatre is staging in Lowell Park this month, has Dewey running and jumping and dancing through seven rockin’ songs, including the show-stopping “Teacher’s Pet.”
The pace and the passion seem perfect for actor Reed Sigmund, who always has a huge presence on stage. Zephyr audiences saw him portray the adventurous lover in “Mamma Mia!” last summer. Minneapolis Children’s Theatre Company fans have watched the longtime CTC actor portray the Grinch in four different productions.
But what makes this character special? “I’ve played a lot of roles, but I’ve never played one that is my actual soulmate,” Sigmund said. “I just open myself up and follow my own impulses. I’ve never had to — or gotten to — embody this character.”
So, was he typecast for this “School of Rock” character? “Absolutely,” said Sigmund, who clearly identifies with Dewey’s physicality, tenacity, and audacity, if not his conniving ways.
But there are a couple of other differences between the actor and his soulmate.
While Sigmund wields a guitar during the show and says he loves rock ’n’ roll, he has never played in a band. “I don’t play guitar on stage,” he said. “Not a single note.”
And Sigmund knows more than a little about teaching. After all, he is The Zephyr’s director of education.
“School of Rock” will be presented at 7 p.m. July 21-25 and 27-28 in North Lowell Park in downtown Stillwater. General admission tickets are $30 for adults and $22 for children and students with valid ID. Chairs provided. Reserved seats are $45 for adults and $30 for children. VIP seats (which include a complimentary drink and shuttle service from The Zephyr’s parking lot) are $120. For tickets, go to stillwaterzephyrtheatre.org. For parking info, go to ci.stillwater.mn.us/community/amenities/parking-information.
Riverside Swing Band, July 17
This popular band — with guitar, trumpet, saxophone, trombone, upright bass, drums, and four voices — often gets Zephyr audiences up and dancing. The musicians will return with their modern take on vintage sounds of the Swing Era, the Fifties, rockabilly, blues, and original music.
Riverside Swing Band will perform at 3 p.m. July 17 on the outdoor stage at The Zephyr Theatre, 601 Main St. N., Stillwater. Free; $10 donation appreciated. Cash bar open. Bring your own chairs.
Literature Lovers’ Night Out, July 27
Valley Bookseller will present a gathering of national and local authors at The Zephyr Theatre. The featured authors will be Jennifer Chiaverini (“Switchboard Soldiers”), Matt Goldman (“Carolina”), and Antonia Angress (“Sirens & Muses”).
Literature Lovers’ Night Out will be held from 7 to 8:30 p.m. July 27 at The Zephyr Theatre, 601 Main St. N., Stillwater. Tickets are $15 and are available at fareharbor.com/valleybookseller. Cash bar open.
“The Music of Adele,” July 31
Adele’s music spans all ages, and Colleen Raye brings the heart and soul of it to this show. Backed by six musicians and singers under the musical direction of keyboardist Jordan Hedlund, the full sound of Adele’s production will be re-created.
“The Music of Adele” will be performed at 6 p.m. July 31 at The Zephyr Theatre, 601 Main St. N., Stillwater. Tickets are $35 at stillwaterzephyrtheatre.org or at the door. Cash bar open.
“Springsteen With Strings,” Aug. 10
Veteran singer and producer Mick Sterling returns to The Zephyr with a guitar, piano, and string quartet to honor Bruce Springsteen’s music. Anticipate unique renditions of “Thunder Road,” “New York Serenade,” “Incident on 57th Street,” as well as newer songs.
“Springsteen With Strings” will be presented at 7 p.m. Aug. 10 at The Zephyr Theatre, 601 Main St. N., Stillwater. Tickets are $35 and are available at stillwaterzephyrtheatre.org or at the door. Cash bar open.
“The Young & The Rest …,” Aug. 28
SimpleGifts with Billy McLaughlin presents “The Young and the Rest …,” an acoustic tribute to Neil Young; Crosby, Stills, and Nash; America; The Eagles; and more.
“The Young and the Rest …” will be presented at 7 p.m. Aug. 28 at The Zephyr Theatre, 601 Main St. N., Stillwater. Tickets are $25 in advance at stillwaterzephyrtheatre.org; $30 at the door. Cash bar open.