“Tumble outta bed” and stumble to the Athens Theatre in DeLand as the alarm clock is wound back to 1980 to bring you 9 to 5, the Musical, a tongue-in-cheek comedy based on Dolly Parton’s hit song and the cult classic film 9 to 5.
When the movie, starring the tremendous trio of Dolly Parton, Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin, hit the big screen 40 years ago, it was nothing short of radical — and remains so even today.
Originally conceived by Jane Fonda, this over-the-top office tale focuses on three working women among an underappreciated team at Consolidated. They contrive a scheme to wreak revenge upon their sexist, egotistical, lying, hypocritical bigot boss in the hope of achieving equality at the office.
Each of the three leading ladies embodies a group of women in the workforce.
First, there is Violet (played by Laurie Sullivan, a cruise-ship crooner who is making her Athens debut) as a single mother and the senior supervisor who does it all, trains everyone, and watches all her male subordinates pass her by on the corporate ladder because they have a Y chromosome rather than two X’s.
Then, there is Doralee (Bernadette Siudock, whom you may remember as Diana in Lend Me a Tenor or as Nellie in South Pacific), a blond, double-D bombshell, who is preyed upon by the boss and shunned by the other employees because of their assumption that she’s sleeping with the boss.
Last there is Judy (Grace Boynton, who starred as Julia in The Wedding Singer), the jilted housewife with no work experience who now needs to find a job and determine who she is as a single woman.
On the other end of the spectrum is the deplorable Franklin Hart Jr. (Andrew G. Johnson, who has recently wowed audiences as the Wolf/Stewart in Into the Woods and Franz Liebkind in The Producers), the sexist, egotistical, lying, hypocritical bigot boss.
Finally, there is Hart’s wingman Roz (Alexa Baldwin — me! — who last graced the Athens stage as Fantine in Les Misérables), his militant, brown-nosing, tattling secretary who is secretly in love with him.
Combine those characters, add some accidental rat poison and an unintended hostage situation, and stir for a proper dose of comic relief that will have you wanting to come back for seconds!
The Athens Theatre invites you to join them at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 21, as they celebrate opening night of 9 to 5, the Musical with a free champagne (or sparkling cider) toast.
Performances run through Sunday, March 15.
The historic Athens Theatre is at 124 N. Florida Ave. in Downtown DeLand.
Showtimes and ticket information
9 to 5, the Musical opens at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 21, and continues at that time Saturday, Feb. 22, Thursday, Feb. 27, Friday, Feb. 28, Saturday, Feb. 29, Thursday, March 5, Friday, March 6, Saturday, March 7, Thursday, March 12, Friday, March 13, and Saturday, March 14, and at 2:30 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 23, Sunday, March 1, Sunday, March 8, and Sunday, March 15.
Tickets cost $29 for preferred reserved seating (rows A-E, center); $25 for adults; $23 for senior citizens; $11 for students and children; and $21 per person for groups of eight or more. A $3-per-ticket processing charge will be added to each purchase.
To purchase your tickets in advance or find out more information, visit the Athens Theatre website at www.AthensDeLand.com or call the box office at 386-736-1500. Box-office hours are 1-5 p.m. Wednesdays-Saturdays, and 1 1/2 hours before live performances.
— Alexa A. Baldwin is director of marketing and operations for the Athens Theatre.