by Hannah Schmidt
On February 27, inside the Connor Palace Theatre in downtown Cleveland, the seven musicals that will be performed in Cleveland from October 2018 to July 2019 were announced. As Playhouse Square is the biggest theatre district outside of New York, every year we are guaranteed a stellar group of national tours. However, this year is especially spectacular, and as HB’s resident Playhouse Square usher, I’m here to gush about just how awesome the upcoming season is.
Hello, Dolly! – October 2-21
This revival of a musical from 1964 will start off Playhouse Square’s 2018-2019 season. It is the joyful story of Dolly Levi, a matchmaker who intends to marry one of her clients. Along the way she meets various fun and unique characters, making for a simply lovely show that completely takes you back in time. It boasts many beautiful songs such as “Ribbons Down My Back” and “Before the Parade Passes By.”
Les Miserables – October 20-November 18
Les Miserables, the Broadway blockbuster, is coming to Cleveland next fall! The show tells the story originated in a novel by Victor Hugo in 1862, and is told entirely in song. The characters and story are extremely compelling, and the songs are beautiful. After a Broadway revival in 2014, Les Mis is back again to travel across the country! Starring Broadway regular Nick Cartell as Jean Valjean, this show is sure to be a hit.
Miss Saigon – January 29-February 17
The third revival of the season, Miss Saigon, will be at Playhouse Square next winter. This show follows the story of a young Vietnamese woman and American G.I. who fall in love towards the end of the Vietnam War. The show includes thrilling songs such as “I’d Give My Life for You” and “Movie in my Mind.” This tragic and engaging musical is not to be missed next year.
School of Rock – March 5-24
Based on the 2003 film starring Jack Black, School of Rock is nothing but energetic and fun. Featuring talented kids who act, sing, and play their own instruments, this show will keep you entertained the entire time. It follows the story of a wannabe rockstar who pretends to be a substitute teacher at a private school and ends up starting a rock band. Rocking Broadway since 2015, this is definitely a must-see next year.
A Bronx Tale – April 23-May 12
With music by famous Disney composer Alan Menken, A Bronx Tale is a brand new Broadway show making its way to Cleveland next Spring. Taking place in the 1960s, this musical tells the story of a young man with a choice between being part of his family and being part of a gang. With a funky score and compelling story, I’m positive A Bronx Tale will rock the stage.
Dear Evan Hansen – June 11-30
Winner of the 2017 Tony Award for Best Musical, Dear Evan Hansen has taken the Broadway world by storm, and I am ecstatic it is coming to Cleveland. The story follows Evan, a high school senior struggling with social anxiety, and his life after after a classmate dies. This emotional show is sure to keep audiences invested and in tears (which is a great way to be in a theatre, hear me out). The show features award-winning music by the Benj Pasek and Justin Paul, most known for writing soundtracks of La La Land and The Greatest Showman.
Come From Away – July 9-28
The jamming music and uplifting tale of Come From Away is sure to be a showstopper next summer at Playhouse Square. It chronicles the true story of 38 planes that were forced to land at an airport Gander, Newfoundland after 9/11. The population of this tiny town doubles, and the residents work tirelessly to help these people feel at home, learning their life-stories along the way. Last year it was nominated for Best Musical and Best Score at the Tony Awards. This show is truly moving, and a must-see this upcoming season.