In the kooky, upside-down world of the Addams Family, to be sad is to be happy, to feel pain is to feel joy, and death and suffering are the stuff of their dreams. Nonetheless, this quirky family still has to deal with many of the same challenges faced by any other family, and the spookiest nightmare faced by every family creates the focus Lippa, Brickman, and Elice’s musical: the Addams kids are growing up. The Addamses have lived by their unique values for hundreds of years and Gomez and Morticia, the patriarch and matriarch of the clan, would be only too happy to continue living that way. Their dark, macabre, beloved daughter Wednesday, however, is now an eighteen year-old young woman who is ready for a life of her own. She has fallen in love with Lucas Beineke, a sweet, smart boy from a normal, respectable Ohio family — the most un-Addams sounding person one could be! And to make matters worse, she has invited the Beinekes to their home for dinner. In one fateful, hilarious night, secrets are disclosed, relationships are tested, and the Addams family must face up to the one horrible thing they’ve managed to avoid for generations: change.
“Be careful what you wish for” seems to be the ongoing theme in Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine’s Brothers Grimm inspired musical, Into the Woods. The story follows The Baker and his wife who wish to have a child, Cinderella who wishes to go the King’s Festival, and Jack who wishes his cow would give some milk. When the Baker and his wife are visited by the neighborhood witch, who reveals to them that she placed a curse on their family, the two set off on a journey into the woods to reverse the curse. Also in the woods, we meet Little Red, who is trying to visit her grandmother, the Wolf who loves tasty little girls, the Witch’s daughter Rapunzel, and the Princes chasing after their loves. By the end of Act I, everyone has gotten their wish and will seemingly live happily ever after. But in Act II, when Jack’s beanstalk brings them a visit from an angry Giant, we see how the consequences of their actions haunt them in disastrous ways. The community must come together to save each other and their kingdom, but sacrifices must be made.
The Jazz Age lives on in Sandy Wilson's The Boy Friend, a light romantic spoof of 1920s musical comedy. Written in the fifties as "a new musical of the twenties," this is still considered the most successful and witty of the send-up musicals.
Set against the backdrop of the French Riviera, this romantic spoof of 1920s musical comedies tells the story of English heiress, Polly, who is longing for only one thing: a boy friend. Polly's father, convinced that any boy who isn't wealthy will court Polly strictly for her financial situation, forbids her to engage any potential suitors. Honoring his wishes, Polly explains to Tony, the messenger boy with whom she's fallen in love, that she is no rich girl. This is just the tip of the mistaken identity iceberg, as love proceeds to find its way charmingly through nearly every member of the cast and bring them all to a happy ending.
The Boy Friend is an essential Golden Age musical. Filled to the brim with tongue-in-cheek moments that both parents and grandparents will love, The Boy Friend has a catchy score and opportunities for complex dance numbers. With a fair amount of featured actor/actress roles, it's also an unforgettable chance to showcase a comedic and cheery talent pool.
The final collaboration between Richard Rodgers & Oscar Hammerstein II, The Sound of Music, has become a play beloved around the world. Based on the true story of the Von Trapp Family Singers, this play captures a personal tale of growth and hope amidst the horrors of World War II. The Sound of Music tells the tale of young postulant Maria Rainer, whose free spirit has trouble fitting into the rules and regulations of Nonnberg Abbey. Commissioned by the Mother Abbess to serve as the governess for seven motherless children, Maria transforms the Von Trapp family home from a place of dour rules and regulations to one filled with joy, with laughter, and with music. In the process, Maria wins the hearts of all seven children -- and their widower father, Captain Von Trapp. With the Mother Abbess’ blessing, and to the children’s delight, Maria follows her heart, and Maria and the Captain marry. Upon returning home from their honeymoon, Maria and the Captain learn that their beloved Austria has been taken over by the Nazis, and the retired Captain is asked to report for immediate service in the Nazi Navy. When the Nazis show up at their door to take Captain Von Trapp away, it is a family singing engagement (wily navigated by their friend Max) that buys the family time to make their narrow escape. Their Austrian convictions compel Maria, the Captain, and the children to flee over the mountains of Switzerland to safety, taking the words of the Mother Abbess to heart: “Climb Every Mountain… till you find your dream.”
Claiming to have never met a man he didn't like, Rogers was America's first international multimedia sensation, whose wit and homespun wisdom went straight to the nation's heart. The character of Will Rogers narrates his life story through a series of spectacular Ziegfeld Follies production numbers which come to life with Ziegfeld Girls, Ziegfeld's Favorite, wranglers, and a roper. After marriage, kids, fame and even a run for the presidency, Will's life ends with fateful plane ride he takes with his friend, Wiley Post.