Mark A. Philbrick
OREM — The director of "Hello, Dolly!" says the musical is just so much fun that audience members will go away humming the tunes and smiling.
Jerry Elison, who has directed the show once before for the SCERA Center for the Arts in the Shell theater, said it's just entertaining, a classic hit.
"Hello, Dolly!" opens April 19 for a three-week run on the SCERA Showhouse II stage.
And while Elison said it's more of a logistical challenge to put the show on inside with physical limitations, he's anticipating a good result.
The lead characters, Melissa Swingle (who plays the meddling matchmaker widow Dolly Levi), Eric Johnson (who plays Horace Vandergelder), Lauren Andersen (who plays Irene Malloy), Marshall Madsen (as Barnaby), and Jacom Clarkson (as Cornelius), are all talented actors and singers, Elison said.
Swingle has a lovely trained voice, Elison said, and has previously been one of the narrators in "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat."
“She is definitely up to the challenge of playing one of the most iconic characters of the musical stage,” he said.
Penny Colvin, from BYU's folk dancers, is the choreographer for the musical that includes three grand production song and dance numbers in the first act alone.
“She works every single detail out and never tries to do it off the cuff. It is delightful to have someone so artistic come completely prepared. She has designated 16 dancers for specialty dancing, but she involves the entire cast," Elison said.
Martha Glissmeyer is the show's music director. Julie Nevin is the stage manager, which is a challenge in the indoor theater, Elison said. Teri Griffin is the set designer and Brandon Moss is the lighting designer.
"Hello, Dolly!" is one of the most successful musicals to ever play on Broadway.
When it premiered in 1964, the show swept the Tony Awards with 10 prizes, including "Best Musical."
“This is a great musical for a talented ensemble,” Elison said.
“We chose this show to close our indoor season based on a patron survey,” said SCERA President and CEO Adam J. Robertson. “People love it because it’s full of personality, show-stopping dance numbers, happy songs and fabulous characters to laugh with and root for.”
If you go:
What: "Hello, Dolly!" musical
Where: SCERA Center for the Arts, 745 S. State, Orem
When: 7:30 p.m. Mondays, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays, April 19-May 11
Tickets: $12 adults, $10 children, seniors, students. Call 801-225-ARTS or purchase online at www.scera.org
Sharon Haddock is a professional writer with 35 years experience, 17 at the Deseret News. Her personal blog is at sharonhaddock.blogspot.com.
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