It's Showtime Theatre's virtual talent show premieres online

To bring entertainment to audiences stuck at home during the COVID-19 pandemic, It's Showtime Theatre of Huntley, the resident theater group of the Huntley Park District, is premiering a virtual talent show on the park district YouTube channel.

The video also will be available at

“We live in a new normal,” said It's Showtime founder Rikki Lee Travolta. “It's not safe yet to open theaters but people still need to be entertained. It's Showtime Theatre's virtual talent show will bring the artistic gifts of actors from across Chicagoland into the homes of theater fans around the world.”

Lara Bell performs her original composition "A Couple More Rounds" during It's Showtime Theatre of Huntley's virtual talent show. Courtesy of It's Showtime Theatre

The virtual talent show features a short film by April Noel (“Laundry Day”); duets by Aly Blackwell and Jeff Harding (“Time Stops” from “Big Fish” musical), Chris and Izzy Griffin (“If I Didn't Have You” from “Monsters Inc”), Kristen Morey and Robyn Brown (Katy Perry's “The One That Got Away”), and Gianah Tomczak and Liam Bell (“Only Us” from musical “Dear Evan Hansen”); monologues by Shannon Mayhall (“Doll's House”) and Rikki Lee Travolta (“Jeff's New Girl”); solo songs by Christopher Plotts (“Hushabye Mountain” from “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang”), Colleen Sye (“For Good” from “Wicked” musical), Eddie Allegretti (“Undone”), Emma Overmyer (Green Day “Good Riddance”), Ethan Sherman (“Empty Chairs at Empty Tables” from “Les Miserables”), Lara Bell (“A Couple More Rounds”), Sammy Cruz (Ella Fitzgerald's “Misty”), Shawn Dunham (The Classic IV's “Spooky”), Stephen McKenzie (“Heavy Duty”), and Travis Greuel (“How It Ends” from “Big Fish” musical); and staged production numbers from Christy Sturm (“Poor Unfortunate Souls” from “The Little Mermaid”) and Rikki Lee Travolta (“If I Should Ever Leave You” from “Camelot”).

April Noel performs in her short film "Laundry Day" for the virtual talent show featured on It's Showtime Theatre of Huntley's Facebook page. Courtesy of It's Showtime Theatre of Huntley

“The talent level of the submissions we received is through the roof,” Travolta said. “We are excited to bring the talents of these artists into homes across the country.”

Short clips of each participating act are woven together to present a full talent show experience, thanks to the technical talents of Advisory Committee member Christopher Plotts.

Viewers of the talent show can then choose to watch the full clips of any of the acts that impressed them.

Stephen McKenzie performs his own composition "Heavy Duty" for the virtual talent show featured on It's Showtime Theatre of Huntley's Facebook page. Courtesy of It's Showtime Theatre of Huntley

It's Showtime Theatre of Huntley had been scheduled to bring a full season of theatrical entertainment to the Cosman Theater this year including “School House Rock Live Jr.” from director/choreographer Shannon Lee Day and music director James Gritschke, William Shakespeare's “Much Ado About Nothing” from director Roger Zawacki, and “I Hate Hamlet” from director Gina Belt-Daniels.

Due to quarantining and social distancing, the season has been moved to 2021.

“It's Showtime Theatre of Huntley is committed to bringing great entertainment to the community,” Travolta said. “We hope the It's Showtime Theatre Virtual Talent Show is just the right medicine for those stuck at home.”

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