Peepilton the Musical comes in third in The Washington Post Peeps Contest
Actress Sara Chase, presently appearing in Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, and her cousin documentary filmmaker Aviva Kempner (The Life and Times of Hank Greenberg, Yoo-Hoo, Mrs Goldberg, and Rosenwald) submission of Peepilton the Musical came in third in The Washington Post annual peeps contest.
Their entry, named Peepilton the Musical, is based on the Broadway hit Hamilton, was judged a third place winner in the contest. The announcement of the award appeared Sunday in TheWashington Post magazine.
It was Kempner’s thespian cousin who had the insights how to construct a theatre based diorama because she stared on Broadway in First Date the Musical. Chase also saw Hamilton. Inspired by the musical she came up with the concept and executed it, and Kempner just delivered it.
Unlike her cousin, Kempner is just hoping to see Hamilton. And who knows since First Lady Michelle Obama loved the show so much and invited the cast to present at the White House, maybe she will invite them to present Peepilton the Musical to another group of students.
Peepilton the Musical!
Created by Aviva Kempner, 69, Washington, and Sara Chase, 32 , New York
Photos by Dixie D. Vereen for The Washington Post.
A miniaturized version of Broadway’s Richard Rodgers Theatre may be the closest either maker of this diorama gets to seeing “Hamilton.” The hit musical is effectively sold out for months to come, with prime seats going for more than $1,000 on secondary-sales sites.
Created by D.C. documentarian Aviva Kempner (“Rosenwald,” “The Life and Times of Hank Greenberg”) and her cousin, actress Sara Chase (“Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt”), “Peepilton the Musical!” captures a tableau of marshmallow bunnies in five of the show’s big roles: Alexander Hamilton, Aaron Burr and, along a catwalk in the back, sisters Peggy and Angelica Schuyler, as well as Eliza Schuyler Hamilton, who was Hamilton’s wife. (Onstage, the singing trio, dressed in bustled gowns, has been likened to an early America version of Destiny’s Child.) Two lucky theatergoers, holding copies of Peepbill magazine, look on from the side.
Stage lights, above and below, set everything off to glorious dramatic effect, using key-ring mini flashlights whose lenses have been colored with Sharpie pens. The costumes were created with wide cloth ribbon — a secret Chase says she picked up over four years of submitting to Peeps contests with Kempner.
Chase, who worked on Broadway (“First Date the Musical”) before moving to television, brought her knowledge of stagecraft to the construction of the scene. But she says it’s something more ineffable than lights, sets and costumes that completes the transformation of humble confections into the cast of a hot Broadway musical.
In a word, she says, the secret to a good Peeps diorama is magic. “Isn’t that what theater is all about?”
See the other winners here!