Celebrate Veterans Day in 1942!
Posted on 08/19/2018
All Hands on Deck! Show is all about patriotism, American unity, and gratitude for the liberty we enjoy today. Created by Broadway actor Jody Madaras who has been described as a “home town farm boy who went to New York, made it big, and has now come back home with a message of patriotism and gratitude.” All Hands on Deck! Show is a "Thank you" to the men and women who served our country during WWII and The Korean Conflict, and reminds us all how it feels to be united. Come celebrate Veterans Day with us on November 11 at State Theatre New Jersey.
The celebration of America has been a labor of love for Madaras, whose professional credits include Broadway, national tours, and daytime TV. “I grew up with the theater songs of the 1930s and 1940s,” he said. But while he was touring in shows like The Drowsy Chaperone and Crazy for You, Madaras was thinking of creating a show of his own. “In 2011, we did our first performances at a community theater, and the place was packed,” Madaras said. "The success of our first performance led to touring the show across the country for the past six years, and we now are based out of the Andy Williams Moon River Theatre in Branson."
The show can be broken into two parts. Act one is modelled after the roadshows and war bond drives known as the Hollywood Victory Caravan that traveled across the country in 1942. “You would buy a war bond as the price of admission, and be treated to a few hours of entertainment by famous Hollywood stars like Bob Hope, Bing Crosby, Lucille Ball, and Hedy Lamar,” Madaras explained. Act two recreates a vintage radio broadcast for the troops. "Our audiences seem to love the fact that we sing all those timeless songs and comedy sketches of that era,” Madaras said. The actors also re-create famous jingles for products like Lincoln Mercury autos and Maxwell House Coffee. Audience participation is an important part of All Hands On Deck! Show. The roadshow portion of the show features a sing-along, and the radio broadcast includes authentic applause signs that help cue audience reactions.
Madaras’ inspiration for the All Hands on Deck! Show Is largely credited his family. His grandmother June was extremely active in the American Legion Auxiliary. Her handwriting can be seen throughout the show. His grandfather, Adolph “Duff” immigrated through Ellis Island from Hungary in 1911, and proudly served as an officer in the U.S. Navy in WWII.
When asked what his biggest challenge was when creating the show, Madaras said choosing the songs to include was the hardest part. “There was so much wonderful song and dance from the 1940s that we wanted to include,” he said. “We wanted songs that showed that can-do spirit.” One number was extremely important to include according to Madaras: a medley of the official songs of every branch of the military service, including the Merchant Marines.
Come celebrate America, the greatest generation of our time, and all veterans that made this country what it is today at the All Hands on Deck! Show At State Theatre New Jersey on November 11 at 3pm!
All Hands on Deck! Show is sponsored by Bank of America