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Oklahoma! by the masters of musicals Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein, will tour New Zealand in August.
Since its premiere on Broadway in 1943, Oklahoma! has been a box-office smash and is now considered the birth of the modern musical. Its multi-million dollar set and costumes are certain to have audiences throughout New Zealand reliving their youth as well as thrilling new ones with a story that has become one of the greatest classics of all time.
Oklahoma! will play in 19 cities starting on 16th August. See other listings.
Set in Midwest America in 1906, the high-spirited rivalry between the local farmers and cowboys provides the colourful background against which Curly, a handsome cowboy, and Laurey, a winsome farm girl, play out their love story. Although the road to true love never runs smooth, with these two headstrong romantics holding the reins, love's journey is as bumpy as a surrey ride down a country road. That they will succeed in making a new life together we have no doubt, and that this new life will begin in a brand-new state provides the ultimate climax to the triumphant Oklahoma!
The music and lyrics have proven to be some of the best in musical theatre with songs that include "Oh What a Beautiful Morning", "The Surrey with the Fringe on Top", People Will Say We're in Love, "I Can't Say No", "Oklahoma!” and many more, making this a musical treat for all the family.
Oklahoma!, the musical that won Rogers and Hammerstein a Pulitzer Prize, was the first musical to tell a story with music, dance and lyrics. Oklahoma! forever changed the form of musical theatre. It is considered by many to be the first musical comedy to have a plot, musical score and dances that were necessary ingredients to advance the story line.
It features what critics deem the greatest dance sequences in musical theatre, the 'dream ballet'. In it, dancers portray Laurey's confusion over choosing between her two suitors. This was one of the first times in which a dance sequence was used to move the play's plot forwards, not just as an entertaining break in the action.
Dancing with the Stars star Stefano Olivieri -- dancer, singer, choreographer and actor -- will play the lead Will Paker. Olivieri was adopted by New Zealand during his three seasons on DWTS, partnering Suzanne Paul, Tempara George and Geraldine Brophy and is delighted to be returning to the country he considers his second home.
Uber talented romantic leads Cameron Douglas (Curly) and Tizane McEvoy (Laurey) will be supported by the highly versatile and experienced entertainer Ali Harper in the role of Ado Annie -- one of the greatest comedy roles in musical theatre. Veterans of the New Zealand stage, Paul Barrett and Geraldine Brophy, will play Ado's Father, Andrew Carnes and Anne Eller.
Oklahoma! will be directed by former Shortland Street star Geraldine Brophy and choreographed by Stefano Olivieri. Musical Director is Tim Bridgewater and Set Designer is Chris Reddington.
- Oklahoma! broke all box office records when it opened in 1943. As the first musical to tell a story with music, dance and lyrics, Oklahoma! forever changed the form of musical theatre. It is considered by many to be the first musical comedy to have a plot, musical score and dances that were necessary ingredients to advance the story line.
- Oklahoma! was the first musical to have its entire score recorded, thus creating the original cast album.
- Oklahoma! won the Pulitzer Prize for drama in 1944.
- Oklahoma! was the first show choreographed by Agnes de Mille.
- Oklahoma! was the longest running musical during it's day. It held the record for 15 years, until it was taken over by My Fair Lady!
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