GREEN BAY, Wisconsin (WFRV) – The first joke is that the “Family Feud” TV show came to host an audition at Van Abel’s of Hollandtown (a real dining / banquet establishment east of Kaukauna).
The second joke is that everyone seems to be called Van.
The third joke is that the emcee of the audition is Steve Harvae, not to be confused with Steve Harvey, who is seen on air.
The next joke is that the show lives up to its title because the families who audition really quarrel. The husband of one and the wife of the other are divorced from each other. There’s mud galore – comedic in the case of “Frank’s Family Feud,” the latest creation from Green Bay’s Let Me Be Frank Productions.
Performances began Friday night at the Meyer Theater in downtown Green Bay. The program of the show includes outings to Kiel, Manitowoc and Marinette.
Yes, like the title says, the show is fueled by satire and song. But it’s more than simple.
Frank’s shows are showcases for singing. This is also the case with “Frank’s Family Feud”, with one difference: in accordance with what happens in the story, the titles of the songs and / or the subjects deal with games or fights. This means that some songs are acts that would not normally be heard in a Frank – Amy Winehouse show; Emerson, Lake & Palmer, Peter Gabriel and other dealers in the dark.
As it turns out, this prime musical landscape features the lead guitar a lot, so talented Dennis Panneck is featured in rich display after rich display.
The story demands that the master of ceremonies play a major role, so Tom Verbrick’s talents train completely in the end-to-end relationships with the goofs of both families while going through the all-cog process. Of the “Family Feud”. Game. Tom Verbrick is on stage all the time in a kind of high-flying comedy. It is formidable as Steve Harvae is hung on the cliff of despair but still manages to have some control. The chiropractor candidate is a problem, however. Steve Harvae is caught in a series of agonizing chiropractic crunches before making his way to the next candidate. Hilarious stuff.
The characters still drive Frank’s stories. This show teases the particular types that appear on television. The odious-icity fills “Frank’s Family Feud”.
Prime is Sarah Galati as a self-centered social media influencer. She comically defines the sheer selfishness of what an influencer is. The byplay that Sarah Galati has with her stage mom Lisa Borley is also spectacular.
And then there’s the character played by Pat Hibbard, a pillar of the troupe that wrote this show. Pat Hibbard wrote to himself as a veteran combat infantry sergeant with a bullet on his shoulder and many bullets outside his psyche. He glares at him. Loud noises make one shudder as if they are injured. His brain appears to be a dark, damp, and dangerous place – but a strangely comical lair.
Pat Hibbard also wrote this screenplay for Zach Hibbard (his son) and Blake Matthews Hermans (Frank Hermans’ son): They are twins and believe they are, even though everyone knows they are not alike. . In the story, they became twins because one is slow and was held up in school for a few years and is now in the same class as his brother… making them twins. That’s Pat Hibbard’s cosmic humor.
With the singers carrying these characters, the songs have foundations for the expression of meaning. Along the way, the soaring beauty of Lisa Borley, the flowing color of Amy Riemer, the sorrowful tones of Sarah Galati, the soulful sensibility of Blake Matthews Hermans, the rock feel of Zach Hibbard, the intoxicating rock of Pat Hibbard and the range of landscapes by Frank Hermans. In “Wicked Game”, Frank Hermans takes a sort of haunting moan into the lyrics.
The group trains this entourage in all kinds of fields. Most vivid are the showcases that end the first act and begin the second as the troupe explodes into song and dance behind Amy Riemer in “Fighter” and Frank Hermans in “Play That Funky Music”, respectively. Due to the game / combat effect in song choices, many (like “Fighter”) are not necessarily entertaining hits (like “Play That Funky Music”). Take “Fighter” or “Mind Games” or “Love is a Losing Game”. Imagine a glass of grapefruit juice. Take a sip. Your head is banging. It’s them.
“Frank’s Family Feud” is another Frank show. But they are all different. This is the 127e Franck’s show. One hundred and twenty-seven… all on a large scale, something new with familiar things, often with local touches, always full of color, live bands and vocal demonstrations, always anything but simple. Applause, applause. No kidding.
Steve Harvae – Tom Verbrick
Frank Vander Hermans – Frank Hermans
Amy Vander Hermans – Amy Riemer
Blake Vander Hermans – Blake Matthews Hermans
Lisa Van Hibbard – Lisa Borley
Pat Van Hibbard – Pat Hibbard
Sarah Van Hibbard – Sarah Galati
Zach Van Hibbard – Zach Hibbard
Group and support: Dennis Panneck (guitars), Pat Hibbard (bass), Tony Pilz (keyboards) and Adam Cain (drums), supported by Ross Loining (lights) and Kelly Klaus (sound)
Length :: 2 hours 12 minutes
– Green Bay, Meyer Theater (meyertheatre.org): 7:30 p.m. on September 18, 23, 24; 1 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Sep 25, 30; 7:30 p.m., October 1, 2, 7, 8 and 9. Meyer Theater safety protocols and regulations are available at https://meyertheatre.org/keeping-you-safe/.
– Manitowoc, Capitol Civic Center (cccshows.org): 7:30 p.m. October 9.
– Marinette, REC Center activity room (marinette.recdesk.com): 7 p.m. October 15.
– Kiel, Kiel Performing Arts Center (Facebook): October 23 at 7 p.m.
“Karn Evil 9 1st Impression” (Emerson, Lake & Palmer) – Pat Hibbard, all
“I lost on Jeopardy” (“Weird Al” Yankovic) – Tom Verbrick
“The Love Game” (Wayne Fontana & The Mindbenders) CFrank Hermans
“The Love Game” (Michelle Branch with Santana) – Amy Riemer
“Show Me The Way” (Styx) – Blake Matthews Hermans
“Fight Song” (Rachel Platten) – Lisa Borley
“Games Without Borders” (Peter Gabriel) – Pat Hibbard
“Love is a losing game” (Amy Winehouse) – Sarah Galati
“Games People Play” (Project Alan Parsons) – Zach Hibbard
“Villainous Game” (Chris Isaak) – Frank Hermans
“Fighter” (Christina Aguilera) – Amy Riemer, all
“Play That Funky Music” (Wild Cherry) – Frank Hermans, all
“Play the Game” (Queen) – Lisa Borley, all
“Mind Games” (John Lennon) – Pat Hibbard
“Crazy Games” (Bijou) – Sarah Galati
“Even Losers” (Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers) – Zach Hibbard
“Don’t Fight It” (Kenny Loggins & Steve Perry) – Blake Matthews Hermans, Zach Hibbard
“Show me the way” (Peter Frampton) – Amy Riemer
“Games People Play” (The Spinners) – Blake Matthews Hermans
“Play the game tonight” (Kansas) – Sarah Galati
“We are a family” (Sister Sledge) – Lisa Borley, all
FOLLOWING: “Un Noël de Frank”, from December 3 to 23.
THE PLACE: Stop and look around. The auditorium of the Meyer Theater is a real eye-catcher. Located at 117 S. Washington St. in downtown Green Bay, the Meyer is one of the state’s colorful historic theaters. In its current form, the Robert T. Meyer Theater opened on February 27, 2002. It can accommodate approximately 1,000 people. The building dates much further back. It opened on February 14, 1930, as one of the lavish Fox Theaters. The place is picturesque. The inner aura of the theater was its saving grace towards the end of the 20e century, when the building faced an uncertain fate. The architectural / decorative style is defined as the Spanish atmosphere. The auditorium is designed in the style of a Moorish courtyard of yesteryear. The eclectic mix of architectural styles and colors can be found in all of the halls.
THE PEOPLE: Robert Meyer was President and CEO of Tape Inc. of Green Bay. The theater took its name at the request of his wife, Betty (Janet Elizabeth) Rose Meyer, whose financial contribution at a crucial time helped revitalize the building. The Rose family has a history of deep commitment and involvement in the well-being of Green Bay. Robert Meyer died in 1984, Betty Rose Meyer in 2008.