By LINDSAY CAREY
HARTFORD—The Bushnell announced its 2015-16 Broadway Series season at a sneak peek event at the Bushnell Center for Performing Arts in Mortensen Hall on Monday, March 16.
Radio host of “Seth’s Big Fat Broadway” on Sirius/XM Satellite Radio Seth Rudetsky hosted the annual Broadway Series season announcement this year.
He teased the audience with Broadway theatre trivia as he revealed each of the shows that would be coming to the Bushnell within the next year.
Rudetsky also introduced three performances by actors from three of the shows coming from the 2015-2016 Broadway Season.
The first show of the 2015-2016 Broadway series at the Bushnell is “The Illusionists: Witness the Impossible” from Sept. 22 to 27. The Illusionists is a magic show with surprises and tricks done right before the audience on stage.
At the sneak peak event, comedian and magician Jeff Hobson from the Illusionists performed. Hobson not only held the audience’s attention, but made them laugh through his entire routine.
He pulled a woman from the audience and performed his egg bag routine, where he seemingly made the egg disappear inside a bag and then asked her to hold the bag to do it herself.
Hobson hilariously stole an audience member’s seat and made him stand, so that he could watch the volunteer do the trick. Only after she revealed the egg was gone, Hobson asked both the volunteer and man from the audience if they wanted their watches back.
Members of the audience were amazed that he’d managed to steal both of their watches before their eyes.
Disney’s “Newsies” is the second show of the Broadway series season, which will be at the Bushnell from Oct. 13 to 18. “Newsies” is a Broadway musical hit based off of a 1992 film about the Newsboy Strike of 1899 in New York City. It’s a show that the whole family can enjoy.
At the sneak peek event, two cast members from the cast sang a romantic duet from the show called “Something to Believe In.”
Two shows from last year’s Broadway series will return following the “Newsies” production. The Bushnell is bringing back “Mama Mia” during Halloween weekend from Oct. 30 to Nov. 1 and “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” will be back from Dec. 11 to 13.
With all the buzz around the new Cinderella movie, it’s no surprise that the Bushnell has decided to have Rodgers and Hammerstein’s “Cinderella” as a part of the 2015-2016 Broadway series. It’s a Tony Award-winning Broadway musical with magical onstage transformations including turning a pumpkin into a horse and carriage and Cinderella from rags into a gown.
Some popular songs from the show and 90s movie version, starring Brandy Norwood and Whitney Houston, include “In My Own Little Corner,” “Impossible/It’s Possible,” and “Ten Minutes Ago.” Cinderella will be at the Bushnell from Jan. 12 to 17.
Rudetsky revealed that “Love Letters” will be at the Bushnell from Feb. 9 to 16 by asking the audience trivia about the stars of the show Ali MacGraw and Ryan O’Neal, who will be reunited on stage after their classic 1970s film “Love Story”.
Although it’s not a musical, “Love Letters” is a story about two people who share their feelings, struggles, and life stories with one another through letters for fifty years because they can’t be together. It is a show about unrequited love.
“Motown the Musical”, which was written by Motown founder Berry Gordy and his journey building the record label, is a musical with all of the classic Motown songs and tells the story of Motown legends like Diana Ross, Michael Jackson, Smokey Robinson, and more.
Motown is coming to the Bushnell for the 2015-2016 Broadway series from March 22 to 27.
“Motown the Musical” cast members Ryan Shaw and Rebecca Covington closed out the event by belting out a medley of Motown hits including classics like “Get Ready” by The Temptations, “Dancing in the Street” by Martha & the Vandellas, You’re All I Need to Get By by Marvin Gaye, and “Sign, Sealed, Delivered I’m Yours by Stevie Wonder. Their medley received a standing ovation at the end of the program.
The Broadway how that will come to the Bushnell from April 26 to May 1 has yet to be officially announced, but at the sneak peek event Rudetsky implied that the show will be “Matilda.”
The final show of the 2015-2016 Broadway Season series at the Bushnell is “Dirty Dancing: The Classic Story on Stage,” a live adaptation of the film, Dirty Dancing tells the story of Baby and Johnny and their experience collaborating despite their differences.
The show includes hits from the movie like “(I’ve Had) The Time of Life” and “Do You Love Me?”
“Dirty Dancing: The Classic Story on Stage” will be at the Bushnell from May 24 to May 29.
Season ticket holders have been sent their renewal packages for the 2015-2015 Broadway series and those who wish to become a season ticket holder can do so by calling the Bushnell Box Office at (860) 987-5900.
Dates for individual tickets will be announced soon.
The remaining shows to close out the 2014-2015 Broadway Series at the Bushnell are Camelot from April 21 to April 26, Once from May 26 to May 31 and Kinky Boots from June 23 to June 28.