"Make Them Hear You": Ragtime Concerts Presented Feb. 1-3

News   "Make Them Hear You": Ragtime Concerts Presented Feb. 1-3 The White Plains Performing Arts Center presents five concert performances of the award-winning Stephen Flaherty-Lynn Ahrens-Terrence McNally musical Ragtime Feb. 1-3.
Jerry Dixon stars in White Plains' Ragtime
Jerry Dixon stars in White Plains' Ragtime Photo by Aubrey Reuben

Directed by Sidney J. Burgoyne, the epic musical is playing the White Plains, NY, venue as part of the Center's new Broadway in Concert series. James Bassi is musical director. Show times are Feb. 1 at 12:30 and 8 PM, Feb. 2 at 8 PM and Feb. 3 at 2 and 8 PM.

The cast, featuring several New York favorites, includes Mark Aldrich (Willie Conklin/Henry Ford), Farah Alvin (Mother), Allison Blackwell (Sarah's Friend), Jerry Dixon (Coalhouse Walker, Jr.), Jay Leland Krottinger (Stanford White), Keithon Gipson (Harlem Man), Rosena M. Hill (Sarah), Zach Landes (Little Boy), Kathryn Markey (Emma Goldman), Steven Nicholas (Harry Houdini), Patricia Noonan (Evelyn Nesbit), Robert Ousley (Grandfather/J.P. Morgan), Patrick Porter (Father), Yurief Rodriguez (Harry K. Thaw), Brian Charles Rooney (Younger Brother), Mikie Joy Sakanaka (Little Girl), David Villella (Tateh), Nicholas Ward (Booker T. Washington). The cast plays multiple roles.

The creative team also includes Matthew Hemesath (costume design), Aaron Montgomery (lighting design) and Justin Joseffy (projections design). BJ Forman is production stage manager.

Based on E.L. Doctorow's novel, Ragtime features a book by Terrence McNally, music by Stephen Flaherty and lyrics by Lynn Ahrens. The musical, according to production notes, "tells the story of Coalhouse Walker Jr., a fiery black piano man who demands retribution when his Model T is destroyed by a mob of white troublemakers. Walker's love interest is a young girl named Sarah who has been taken in by a WASP family ruled by Father, a patriarchal figure who dominates his household and submissive wife with his overbearing presence. Tateh is a Jewish immigrant who unwittingly finds himself involved in the birth of the motion picture industry after inventing a flip book for his daughter. Ragtime takes us into the lives of these characters in a tale of turn-of-the-century America that also features such historical figures as Harry Houdini, Booker T. Washington, J.P. Morgan and Henry Ford. The musical is patriotic and unyielding, celebrating America's greatness, persistence, vitality and hardships."

Ragtime originally opened on Broadway at the Ford Center for the Performing Arts Jan. 18, 1998, playing 834 performances before closing Jan. 16, 2000. The original company featured Brian Stokes Mitchell, Audra McDonald and Marin Mazzie. The White Plains Performing Arts Center is located on the third level of City Center at the corner of Main and Mamaroneck in downtown White Plains, 30 minutes from midtown Manhattan. For tickets, priced $35-$45, call (914) 328-1600 or visit www.wppac.com.