Downton Abbey’s Lesley Nicol Brings Her One-Woman Musical to Chicago

Best known for her role as Mrs. Patmore in the hit TV series Downton Abbey, award-winning actor Lesley Nicol has been serving something new and more personal in her one-woman musical. 

HOW THE HELL DID I GET HERE? explores Lesley’s journey to success through masterful storytelling and original songs by Mark Mueller, the genius behind the catchy DuckTales theme song. The musical’s North American tour is coming to Chicago this Spring at the Greenhouse Theater Center in Lincoln Park.

lesley nicol photo
Image Credit: Heron Agency

An Uproarious Feel-Good Musical

Award-winning British actress of Downton Abbey, Lesley Nicol, shares her journey from up-and-comer to big-screen sensation in this one-woman musical, HOW THE HELL DID I GET HERE? coming to the Greenhouse Theater Center, 2257 N. Lincoln Avenue during its North American tour. Previewing March 9th and opening March 13th for a limited engagement through April 3rd, this uproarious feel-good musical takes the audience on a journey from Lesley’s childhood, through her time as a working actress to her success in the role as a cherished cook “Mrs. Patmore” on the worldwide phenomenon hit television drama Downton Abbey. Through the masterful storytelling and ten original songs by Mark Mueller, HOW THE HELL DID I GET HERE? is certain to have audiences tapping their toes to Lesley’s journey through life.

“Mark and I are so thrilled to bring our musical to Greenhouse Theater,” said Lesley Nicol, Actress and Writer. “Chicago theatre is rightly known and celebrated around the world and we are so looking forward to being part of the theatre community and playing to audiences in your wonderful city.”


A Story of Success and Journey of Self

HOW THE HELL DID I GET HERE? came into fruition when Lesley expressed to her close friend and successful American songwriter, Mark Mueller, her desire to write a musical. Having a successful acting career in Great Britain and in America, Lesley has been a part of countless theatre productions, successful television shows, and most notably, will be featured in the upcoming movie Downton Abbey: A New Era released on March 18th, 2022.


In this delightful new musical, instead of her beloved character, “Mrs. Patmore,” cooking up an extravagant meal, Lesley is serving up this fabulous musical autobiography about her incredible life. Through her own words, photos and songs, Lesley reveals how she overcame personal demons, found love, and achieved success on stage and on screen. HOW THE HELL DID I GET HERE? invites the audience to examine their own journeys while watching Lesley’s play out on stage. We are all on the same road, we all just have different bumps. 

Written by Lesley Nicol and Mark Mueller, HOW THE HELL DID I GET HERE? is produced by Pemberley Productions (The Woman in Black, Royal George Theatre; Private Peaceful, Greenhouse Theater) and directed by Luke Kernaghan. The production will feature scenic design by Anshuman Bhatia, lighting design by Lucrecia Briceno and sound design by Chicagoan Ray Nardeli.


How To Catch the Performance

HOW THE HELL DID I GET HERE? will run at the Greenhouse Theater Center, 2257 N. Lincoln Avenue in Chicago. Performances begin March 9 for a limited engagement through April 3, 2022. The performance schedule is as follows: Tuesday to Sunday performances. The running time is 80 minutes no interval. Tickets range from $30 to $89 plus processing fees.


For tickets and more information, visit ( or call the Greenhouse Theater Center Box Office at 773-404-7336.

Featured Image Credit: Heron Agency