Thursday, March 12, 2009

2009-10 season annoucement and excitement

By Jennifer Hubbartt, Marketing Director

Although I can’t help but sound excited and convincing about our 2009-2010 – I am First Stage’s marketing director, after all – I sincerely believe this is going to be our best yet. How can we possibly top the touching story of friendship weaved in CHARLOTTE’S WEB; the joyous, jazzy trip to the North Pole with THE HAPPY ELF; or even the enchanting THE NEVERENDING STORY; that we’ve enjoyed this season? Here’s how:

Our 23rd season starts with a surefire hit – JUNIE B. JONES AND A LITTLE MONKEY BUSINESS. First Stage has been working for over four years to secure the rights to produce this show, and finally our turn was up. This is a delightful musical based on the popular books by Barbara Park about that spunky kindergartner, which has already received a huge response not only from those families with five and six-year-olds, but from those with 12 or 13-year-olds too, who remember and still appreciate this spitfire of a character.

Back by popular demand for the holidays is THE BEST CHRISTMAS PAGEANT EVER. Our box office each year receives many calls asking when we’re bringing this back, so we’re happy to have the Herdmans back to our stage, with a little of an 80s flavor this time.
Next winter comes THE THIEF LORD, based on the book by Cornelia Funke (who also wrote Inkheart, the recent film with Brendan Frasier), with resident playwright James DeVita adapting this world premiere. This show will have it all – adventure, mystery, suspense. I think parents and kids alike will enjoy reading this book, seeing it on stage and comparing notes along the way as a family.

Next spring First Stage will present our own adaptation of the Tony ® award-winning musical, THE WIZ. We all know the 1939 movie The Wizard of Oz, and many have seen the 1978 film The Wiz. This show will have a number of songs that families will be singing for days after seeing the play, such as Ease on Down the Road, Home, and Believe in Yourself.

Finally, we close our mainstage season next year with what is probably one of my favorite stories from my childhood – ALEXANDER AND THE TERRIBLE, HORRIBLE, NO GOOD, VERY BAD DAY. Whether your six or 96, everyone can relate to having a day that seems so bad you want to go to Australia, but realize that tomorrow is another day.

Our First Steps series is back for a third successful season, bringing the delightful IF YOU GIVE A MOUSE A COOKIE and its sequel, IF YOU TAKE A MOUSE TO SCHOOL, to our stage at the Milwaukee Youth Arts Center for families and children ages three to six next November and March.

Again, since I’m the marketing director here, I can’t help but mention that season tickets are on sale now, and tickets are flying out the door (our sales are up over 20% from last year)! For those who want to see at least three of these shows next year and save a bit of money in the process (up to 35% off the regular ticket price), season tickets are the way to go. And to get the seats you want at the price you want, we recommend ordering early online…don’t worry about knowing the rest of your season’s schedule yet; subscribers can always exchange for free.

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