Audience favorite, Lennie Watts, who last appeared on stage at Theatre By The Sea as Nicely Nicely Johnson in Guys and Dolls (2000) returns in the lead role of Man in Chair in Ocean State Theatre Company's upcoming production of The Drowsy Chaperone, which opens on August 19.
Lennie Watts was a regular performer at Theatre By The Sea for many years and had created a following as the host of the Late Night Cabaret, held at the theatre's adjacent restaurant. In addition to Guys and Dolls, Lennie appeared as Pseudolus in A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum (1999), Jinx in Forever Plaid (1998), and Herod in Jesus Christ Superstar (1997). He also toured nationally and internationally with productions of The Music Man (Marcellus) and The Wizard of Oz (Lion) and directed productions of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat (2000), Dames at Sea (1999), and Godspell (1998).
When not performing at Theatre By The Sea, he had become a regular on the New York cabaret circuit as both a performer and director for a variety of artists and was producing and performing his own shows in numerous clubs throughout New York City. After an appearance on "The Rosie O'Donnell Show" for a segment showcasing "untapped talent," FourQuest Entertainment, who were the producers at Theatre By The Sea at the time, approachEd Watts about recording a CD, which he had wanted to do for several years. The result was I want... You want..., which was released in 2000 and celebrated in front of sold-out houses both at Theatre By The Sea and at Don't Tell Mama in New York City.
Watts is an eight-time MAC (Manhattan Association of Cabarets), five-time Backstage Bistro, and three-time Nightlife Award-winner. Recognized as an outstanding vocalist, director, producer, and booking manager, he has now been active in the New York cabaret scene for over 20 years. In addition to directing in small cabaret venues, he has directed events at Symphony Space, Town Hall, and BB Kings. He has performed at Town Hall in several concerts, including "Broadway Unplugged" and "Broadway By The Year, 1949," and can be heard on the cast recordings of both shows. Watts is the creator of "cablab" and "Summer In The City," both critically acclaimed professional cabaret performance workshops. David Finkle of The Village Voice calls him "A one man cabaret army!" He was voted "Best Male Vocalist 2008" by the members of Cabaret Hotline Online. Watts is currently the President of MAC, and was just named one of "The 50 Most Influential People in New York Cabaret" by Nightlife Exchange.
The Drowsy Chaperone will be presented at Theatre By The Sea from August 17 - September 4, with preview performances on Wednesday, August 17 at 8:00 pm and Thursday, August 18 at 2:00 and 8:00 pm and opening night on Friday, August 19 at 8:00 pm. All other performances are scheduled for Tuesday through Friday evenings at 8:00 pm, Thursdays at 2:00 pm, Saturdays at 4:30 and 8:30 pm and Sundays at 5:00 pm, with special performance times on Sunday, August 21 at 3:00 and 8:00. The theatre is located at 364 Cards Pond Road, Matunuck, RI. Tickets are $35 for preview performances and $39-$54 for all other performances. Discount rates for groups of 20 or more are available by calling (401) 782-3800 x18. Rush tickets are available on a limited basis one hour prior to curtain on the day of the performance. Tickets are on sale at the box office Monday through Saturday from 10:00 am - 4:00 pm, online anytime at www.theatrebythesea.com and via telephone during normal box office hours by calling (401) 782-TKTS (8587). The box office will also be open one hour prior to every performance.