The Modern Maturity Center in Dover takes its annual summer production to New York City in "Red, White & Broadway," which hits the stage from Tuesday, June 21, to Friday, June 24. Tickets for the dinner theater production are on sale now.
Way, way off Broadway — about 170 miles off — volunteers at the Modern Maturity Center are prepping to bring music from the Great White Way to local audiences. The Center’s “Red, White & Broadway” dinner theater production hits the stage nightly from Tuesday, June 21, through Friday, June 24.
The musical revue centers around a young producer getting ready to stage her first show, a patriotic revue. When opening night jitters hit, veteran performers relive their first days on stage, performing hits from Broadway past and present. Audiences will travel to “Oklahoma!” with “The Farmer and the Cowman,” hear Tevye’s dreams in “If I Were a Rich Man” and find out why “There is Nothing Like a Dame,” or at least not in “South Pacific.” Once the new producer gets her cast and crew in order, they perform the patriotic program, which includes a special tribute reflecting on 9/11.
“I want razzle-dazzle red, white and blue,” Executive Director Carolyn Fredricks said to her cast.
The annual summer production always includes a patriotic medley, but the Broadway hits are new. Fredricks said a committee chose the music, although some regulars had their own ideas about what they’d like to sing.
“If you’re willing to work on that and give that to me, it’s in,” Fredricks said.
Henry Greene of Dover has been hooked on the stage since a teacher asked him to perform a poem onstage in fifth grade. Since then he’s become minister of music at Calvary Baptist Church and lent his powerful voice and comical expressions to many a role, including that of the stiff and heartless Tin Man in “The Wiz.” He’ll let audiences hang with Dorothy, the Tin Man and the Scarecrow in “Slide Some Oil to Me.”
“I wanted to introduce them to something else,” he said of “The Wiz,” the mid-70s “Wizard of Oz” adaptation starring an all-black cast.
Greene started doing the MMC shows as a favor to his godmother, but kept doing them for himself, and the center.
“It’s for a good cause, it goes to Meals on Wheels,” he said.
Knowing that they’re supporting the MMC and its programming is what brings back both volunteers and audiences, Fredricks said.
Organizers added a fourth night to this summer’s production after dealing with packed houses the past few shows. It’s not a problem they mind, of course, Fredricks said.
She added that audiences should get tickets now, because even with the extra night tickets won’t be sold at the door.
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