Newsies, Spring Awakening, A Chorus Line Announced for Theatre Under the Stars’ 2019–2020 Season

Regional News   Newsies, Spring Awakening, A Chorus Line Announced for Theatre Under the Stars’ 2019–2020 Season
The season will also include the premiere of the new musical Pure Country, the national tour of Once On This Island, and more.
The Newsies
The Newsies Monica Simoes

Theatre Under The Stars’ 2019–2020 season at the Hobby Center for the Performing Arts will include A Chorus Line, Spring Awakening, Elf—The Musical, Disneys Newsies, the premiere of the new musical Pure Country, and the national tour of the Tony-winning Best Revival of a Musical, Once On This Island.

The singular sensation that is A Chorus Line will launch the season at the Houston venue, running September 10-22. Julie Kramer will direct the production with choreography by Jessica Hartman. A Chorus Line was conceived and originally directed and choreographed by Michael Bennett, with a book by James Kirkwood and Nicholas Dante, music by Marvin Hamlisch, and lyrics by Edward Kleban.

The Tony-winning Spring Awakening, with book and lyrics by Steven Sater and music by Duncan Sheik, will follow, running October 8-20. The production will be directed by Taibi Magar with choreography by Marlana Doyle.

Elf—The Musical, based on the 2003 film, will arrive just in time for the holiday season, playing December 7-22. Artistic Director Dan Knechtges will direct the musical about Buddy, a human accidentally transported to the North Pole as a baby, who mistakenly believes he is an elf. The musical features songs by Matthew Sklar and Chad Beguelin and a book by Thomas Meehan and Bob Martin.

The national tour of the Tony-winning Once On This Island—from director Michael Arden and choreographer Camille A. Brown—will kick off the new year February 18-March 1, 2020. The acclaimed musical features a score by Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty and a book by Ahrens.


The world premiere of Pure Country will entertain Houston audiences April 14–26. Based on the 1992 film starring George Strait, the musical tells the tale of a jaded country music mega-star, who suddenly walks away from his career to return to his Texas roots and rediscover his passion for life, love, and music. Pure Country features music by Steve Dorff, lyrics by John Bettis, and book by Rex McGee. Artistic Director Knechtges will direct and choreograph.

The season will conclude with Disney’s Newsies. Directed and choreographed by Chris Bailey, performances will run May 19–31. Newsies features a score by Alan Menken and Jack Feldman with a book by Harvey Fierstein.

Casting for the season will be announced at a later date.

“On the heels of our 50th anniversary, the upcoming season is a defining moment for us as we embark on our next 50 years,” said Knechtges in a statement. “We have an exciting mix of both traditional and contemporary Broadway classics, with the professional premiere of a new Texas-themed musical, the return of a heartwarming holiday classic, and the exclusive Houston engagement of the national tour of the 2018 Tony Award-winning Best Revival.”

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