Wheelhouse

WHEELHOUSE is a musical performed by and written by the three members of GrooveLily: Valerie Vigoda, Brendan Milburn, and Gene Lewin. It is an autobiographical musical comedy about the worst decision we ever made: to ditch all of our worldly possessions and move into a used RV, which broke beyond repair after three months.Wheelhouse premiered in a limited run May-June 2012 at TheatreWorks of Silicon Valley.

“(Wheelhouse is a) rock-concert-on-the-move…a showcase for the considerable talents of Vigoda on electric violin, Milburn (her husband) on keyboards – in one song, rocking out with a guitar-shaped ‘keytar’ – and Lewin on cleverly varied percussion (his use of staplers, paper clips and a pencil sharpener is a treat). Most of the songs are enjoyable and some are terrific, such as Vigoda’s driven, vital ‘Take on the World’ and ‘Open Roads’ and her hilariously satiric ‘Foreboding Country Songs on the Radio’, or Lewin’s rapid-patter smarmy RV salesman (‘The Way to See America’).”  - Robert Hurwitt, San Francisco Chronicle

“(I’d) forgotten how fiercely quirky and downright kickass GrooveLily is musically…the tunes are so blissfully well-crafted. The bandmates play themselves with candor and humor and insight…all of the issues the trio struggles with, from selling out to setting down roots, strike universal chords. They capture the challenge of reconciling youthful dreams with adult compromises. And they are uniformly likable and witty on stage.” - Karen D’Souza, San Jose Mercury News
“What makes Wheelhouse especially interesting to me is that these three talented musicians (who are still in the early phases of their careers) have crafted a self-referential show which is highly entertaining, driven by some of their struggles to succeed, and yet manages to share the emotional and financial roller-coaster ride of an itinerant, unfamous musician’s lifestyle with charm, wit, and some great songs…the spirited, athletic, and emotional performances by Valerie Vigoda and Brendan Milburn offer a touching contrast to Gene Lewin’s more laid-back style as a drummer. The scene in which Lewin impersonates a used-car salesman is hilarious!
What sets Wheelhouse apart from many other new shows is that it is written and performed by musicians the audience genuinely cares for, and delivers GrooveLily’s songs with a balance, sensitivity, and ingenuity that never fails to please.” - George Heymont, Huffington Post

Meanwhile, here’s a bunch of things we’ve written about it here on this site.