|Michael Pearce Donley, Bill Arnold, and Bob
Early in 1995, Bill
Arnold, Michael Pearce
Donley, and Bob Stromberg,
three successful solo performers who admired each other's work,
gathered over coffee, never knowing the full impact the caffeinated
brew would have on their future.
They decided to write
something they could perform as a trio. Something fun, something unusual, something that would make people laugh so hard they'd snort and embarrass themselves. With that idea--and nothing on paper--they
booked a performance for six weeks later at a local church.
magic and comedy, Donley's original music, and Stromberg's physical
humor, the three put together a show with elements of slapstick,
vaudeville, and a touch of audience involvement. They used original
songs, parodies and their unique chemistry to build a performance
that they hoped would give audiences a night at the theater unlike
any they had experienced before.
After its first performance,
the trio contacted Bill Partlan,
the Artistic Director of the Cricket Theatre. Partlan saw the show
and immediately booked it for the upcoming season at the Cricket.
With a little polishing, the show opened in 1996, and became the
biggest hit in the theater's 26-year history.
Somewhere in one of those
packed houses was Dennis Babcock,
an independent theater producer and former General Manager of the
Guthrie Theater. He had been invited to attend, and was impressed
with the performance. He asked about future plans for the show and
was told, "Well, that's why we invited YOU." Dennis signed on as
producer, Triple Espresso,LLC was formed, and its first production
opened to rave reviews and packed houses at the Music Box Theatre
in Minneapolis in the spring of 1997.
It soon became clear that the show had the potential to go far beyond
one theater in Minneapolis. The Triple Espresso team dreamed of playing several cities simultaneously, but the specialized skills of the authors made it difficult to cast with other performers. After searching through their collective network
of showbiz friends, in 1998, they identified three multitalented men and put them through
a long, arduous—and often hilarious—training process. Since then,
over thirty accomplished actors have been hand-picked and trained
in the art of being Buzz Maxwell, Hugh Butternut or Bobby Bean.
Espresso is continuously honed by the authors to make
it funnier, smarter, and more entertaining than ever. The show has
carved out a unique niche in the entertainment spectrum: its irresistible
humor crosses generations, and it's as funny the fifth time as the
In the past twenty-one years, Triple Espresso has entertained over 2 million people in over 50 cities in 6 countries in 3 languages (English, German and Flemish). The show continuously ran in Minneapolis and San Diego for over a decade. It has also played in Chicago, Seattle, Milwaukee, Dublin, London, Ghent, Munich, Berlin, Denver, Cleveland, St. Louis, Tulsa, Phoenix, Atlanta and many other cities.
It's amazing what a few cups of coffee can
A Few Places We Have Played (an incomplete list)...
||Music Box Theatre
|San Diego, CA**
||Lamb Players Theatre, Hahn Cosmopolitan Theatre & Horton Grand Theatre
||Madison Repertory Theatre
||The Performing Studio
||Providence Performing Arts Center
||Capital Repertory Theatre
||Marcus Center for the Performing Arts
||Portland Art Museum
||Andrews Lane Theatre and various tour locations
|Des Moines, IA
||Temple for the Performing Arts
||Portland Stage Company
||The Arts Theatre
|St. Jacobs, Ontario
||Ricketson Theatre, Rattlebrain Theatre
|St. Louis, MO
||Liddy Doenges Theatre
|Green Bay, WI
||Weidner Center for the Performing Arts
|Cedar Rapids, IA
||Theater Cedar Rapids
|Los Angeles, CA
||Hermosa Beach Playhouse, El Portal Theater
||The State Theatre
||Indiana repertory Theatre
|St. Cloud, MN
|Red Wing, MN
||Georgia Ensemble Theatre
||Central Lakes College Theatre
||The Cosmopolitan Cabaret
*Longest running show at Music Box Theatre (April 3, 1996 - April 27, 2008 continuously; holiday productions 2009-2016)
**Longest continuously running show in San Diego (January 14, 1998-February 17, 2008)
How We Operate
Triple Espresso is produced through arranagement with The Daniel Group, a provider of top-quality, professional theater and other entertainment, whose mission is to provide good, wholesome productions that positively impact audiences.
All booking, marketing, production, casting and artistic functions are conducted out of the Minneapolis, Minnesota headquarters, which oversees all aspects of each engagement.
The performers of Triple Espresso are cast and trained by the original director and the authors, then assigned to the various touring and resident shows across the globe.
If you have questions or would like to discuss booking opportunities, please contact Dennis Babcock, president of The Daniel Group and Executive Producer of Triple Espresso.