Timber Lake Playhouse to Produce World Premiere of What A Wonderful World, A Holiday-Themed Musical
Timber Lake Playhouse, the premier professional summer theatre of northwest Illinois, will produce the World Premiere of a new musical comedy, What a Wonderful World for a two-week run at the playhouse. The musical features a score of classic and contemporary pop hits
made famous by artists including Louis Armstrong, Elvis Presley, Kelly Clarkson,
R.E.M., Imagine Dragons, Kenny Chesney, The Romantics, Shawn Mendes, Hootie & The Blowfish, Nancy Sinatra among many others.
The musical was developed by Lively McCabe Entertainment of New York City in partnership with BMG. It features a book by Jeremy Desmon, an award-winning musical theatre book writer and lyricist. Arrangements and orchestrations are by Jesse Vargas, and the show is directed by TLP Artistic Director Paul Stancato.
Set in mid-20th century New York City, the feel-good musical comedy What A Wonderful World is the never-before-told story of how our modern-day Santa Claus came to be. When 1959 Santa and Mrs. Claus are ready to retire, they must pass on the baton to the new Santa. When the magic sleigh bells choose a young New York ad exec for the iconic position, he declines the offer, putting the North pole, and the fate of Christmas in jeopardy of disappearing forever.
What a Wonderful World features songs (made popular by artists) such as Best Day of My Life (American Authors), Blue Christmas (Elvis Presley), Breakaway (Kelly Clarkson), Fight Song (Rachel Platten), Good To Be Alive (Andy Grammar), Hold My Hand (Hootie & The Blowfish), Life Is A Highway (Rascal Flatts), Man With the Bag (Kay Starr), No Shoes, No Shirt, No Problems (Kenny Chesney), On Top of the World (Imagine Dragons), Still The One (Orleans), The End of The World As We Know It (R.E.M.), These Boots Are Made For Walking (Nancy Sinatra), Treat You Better (Shawn Mendes), What I Like About You (The Romantics), and What a Wonderful World (Louis Armstrong).
Featured in the show is Anna Catherine Smith (Lucy), Felicia Finley (Mrs. Claus), Nike Kohn (Santa Claus), Rebecca Larkin (Rhubarb the Head Elf), Mac Myles (Topher), and Jack Cahill-Lemme (Jack). The ensemble includes Joshua Lehman, Josh McWhortor, Alex Rudd, Cate Benioff, Paris Elaine, Nicole Fava, Caroline Portner, Angela Syrett, Avery Moran and Morelia Vargas.
Led by producer Michael Barra, Lively McCabe Entertainment is a live stage production company specializing in packaging and adapting iconic intellectual property into new stories for theater, film, and television. Projects include the stage adaptation of “Clue” – which is currently the most-produced play in the U.S. – based on the Paramount Pictures film and Hasbro board game. Their other projects include the stage musical adaptation of the MGM film “Mystic Pizza,” country musical “May We All” in partnership with multi-platinum duo Florida Georgia Line, and the musical “Punk Rock Girl,” with a book by Joe Iconis (“Be More Chill”) in partnership with BMG and featuring artists such as Blondie, Avril Lavigne, Pat Benatar, Joan Jett and Gwen Stefani.
Opening night events will include a tree lighting event where the entire Front of House Forest will be decorated with thousands of lights. The lighting event will take place at 6:30 with hot chocolate, cider and cookies available. Santa Claus will visit TLP before the show the entire first weekend. Pictures can be taken with Santa in the lobby before the show.
Tickets for all Timber Lake events are available online at www.timberlakeplayhouse.org or by calling the Box Oﬃce at (815) 244-2035. The Box Office is open daily from 10:00 – 5:00 and until intermission on show days.
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