Big day ahead! A favorite of mine! Enjoying the cast of The Producers reaction to the 21 musicians playing this big, brassy Broadway score; jazzy, lush and sweet! It’s always an emotional high for me and I did get a preview of it yesterday at orchestra rehearsal. Simply sunk into my seat awed by the live, fullness of the sound. Its a sound becoming more and more rare and our 41,000 subscribers love it and support it!  For the next six weeks, crowds will thrall to the captivating, thrilling experience of these A-list musicians playing right here in downtown Aurora at Paramount. They are: Andy Baker, Kara Bershad, Peter Brusen, Tim Burke, Carey Deadman, Jim Gailloreto, Jeff Handley, Sharon Jones, Mike Joyce, Jill Kaeding, Sarah Kim, Steve Leinheiser, Sean McNeely, Ryan Miller, Adam Roebuck, Scott Rosenthal, Bob Rummage, Bob Sutter, Matt Wifler, Steve Winkler, with Conductor Tom Vendafreddo and Associate Conductor Kory Danielson. The company has been through a grueling week of tech and will be getting a huge boon from singing with these skilled players for the first time today!

Yesterday, Paramount announced its four shows for next season’s Broadway Series! The big kick-off (literally!) to Season Nine is Newsiesas the famous newsboys strike of 1899 is set to a raucous, heroic score full of dance championing the spirit and toughness of these young men and boys rising up against newspaper publisher of the New York World, Joseph Pulitzer. Fascinated with the gritty back story of these young men’s struggle to carve out an honest living on the streets of New York, I’ll be directing and happily collaborating again with William Carlos Angulo, Jeff Award recipient for his debut as choreographer for Paramount’s West Side Story.

For the holidays, another favorite for the whole family, will be the spectacular Beauty and the Beast directed and choreographed by Amber Mak of The Little Mermaid and The Wizard of Oz fame here at Paramount! You don’t want to miss all the love, invention and imagination Amber will bring to this like you’ve never seen it before anywhere!

It’s all played out to breathtaking orchestras, music and dance, with a theatricality that will win your heart, stimulate your mind and make memories to last a lifetime.

Paramount’s next offering is the world premiere musical adaptation of the Michael J. Fox comedy from Universal Pictures, The Secret of My Successwith an original score by Chicago’s own Michael Mahler and Alan Schmuckler! Expect the unexpected. These guys are prolific composers of beautiful new works individually and working together with director Gordon Greenberg, co-writing this show’s new book with Steve Rosen, there is a collaboration here upon which, I cannot help but think, the musical theater gods are smiling!

One bright, deeply felt and fun show leads to another with our closer: Kinky Boots, in a regional premiere here directed by Trent Stork (who wowed us with this season’s opener, Legally Blonde)! This musical adaptation of the British film comedy about a shoe factory in bankruptcy rescued by a indomitable drag queen has established itself as a Tony-winning Broadway blockbuster and will look and feel inspired, insightful and fresh, just the way you like it here at Paramount! Spirits will be riding high as the experience that is “Raise You Up/Just Be” transcends all our differences towards a better world together! It’s a season full of stories about how lives are transformed by what it means to be strong and noble, the best of our being human. It’s all played out to breathtaking orchestras, music and dance, with a theatricality that will win your heart, stimulate your mind and make memories to last a lifetime.

Love & thanks,