Who: Formerly of Central Oregon, actor Dan Schimmoller is now living in Sonoita, Arizona, “a beautiful little wine town right on the border of Arizona and Mexico,” he said. Audiences who miss his work in “Beauty and the Beast,” “Rock of Ages” and other productions will again get a chance to hear his booming voice in “Boogie Wonderland,” Friday and Saturday at the Tower Theatre in Bend. Schimmoller, 24, plays the DJ host of the show, which features six members from the Thoroughly Modern Productions cast of “Mamma Mia!” (coming in September) in full diva mode as they sing 1970s dance and disco hits — including “Lady Marmalade,” “I Will Survive” and several Abba cuts. Eight-piece funk band The Cutmen will provide live accompaniment. And if you want to get up and dance, the front of the theater will be converted into a dance floor. Tickets and more info at towertheatre.org.
Q: Are you in town now?
A: I am traveling to town this week for the “Boogie Wonderland” show.
Q: How are you prepping for that?
A: I’ve been prepping for that by sort of doing a character study on the host character that I’m going to be playing. He’s a rock ‘n’ roll expert and has been in the life a long time — sort of like one of those old rocker with a heart of gold kind of guys. Think a little bit Jack Black from Tenacious D.
Q: Is he pro disco then? I imagine some rock ‘n’ rollers from the ’70s would’ve been anti disco.
A: So Lonnie, the character, is pro anything where people are having a good time, and he has a chance to get out there and mix it up.
Q: You weren’t around in the ’70s, right?
A: I was not, but my favorite CD growing up was actually Abba’s “Gold” album, their greatest hits.
Q: Wow. Do you have a favorite Abba song?
A: That would be tough but probably “Does Your Mother Know” was my favorite growing up.
Q: So what are you overall impressions of the ’70s, given what you’ve seen in media and movies?
A: It was such a unique snapshot. There’s really very little like it. It’s a time when you had a lot of racial tensions coming over things, segregation in the ’60s. And so there was, as with rock ‘n’ roll and a lot of other genres, there’s a ton of influence from the African-American communities in disco, and a ton of foreign influence. It’s a lot about dance and expression more so than later musical movements. It was kind of like the last big dance movement, almost.
Q: Are you looking forward to coming back to Bend?
A: I certainly am. It’s beautiful down here in the Southwest, but Central Oregon is where my heart is.
— David Jasper