Opening night in East Haddam, CT, is July 27. The original close date was to be Sept. 11. Jerome Kern and Oscar Hammerstein's 1927 musical romance about the extended family surrounding a floating playhouse on the Mississippi broke ground for its integration of serious subject matter. The score includes classics of the American musical theatre — "You Are Love," "Can't Help Lovin' That Man of Mine," "Why Do I Love You?," "Make Believe" and "Ol' Man River," among others.
Show Boat is directed by Rob Ruggiero who returns to the Opera House where he previously directed Irving Berlin's Annie Get Your Gun, Camelot, Big River and 1776. Ruggiero also directed Broadway's High and Looped. Noah Racey (best known as an actor in Goodspeed's Where's Charley? and Broadway's Curtains and Never Gonna Dance) choreographs.
David Aron Damane, whose Broadway credits include The Life and the revival of Big River, plays Joe, the post-Reconstruction African-American stevedore who labors on the Cotton Blossom, cooing with his lady, Queenie (Andrea Frierson), and ruminating about the indifference of "Ol' Man River."
The company also boasts Sarah Uriarte Berry as ingenue Magnolia, Ben Davis as leading man Gaylord Ravenal, Lesli Margherita as tragic actress Julie, Karen Murphy as matron Parthy, Lenny Wolpe as Capt. Andy, Danny Gardner as comic man Frank, Jennifer Knox as soubrette Ellie and Maddie Berry, representing the next generation of performers, as Kim.