Rider University will present the Broadway hit The Producers at the Bart Luedeke Center Theater on the Rider campus in Lawrenceville April 18 through 22. Previews are Wednesday, April 18 and Thursday, April 19 at 7 p.m. Performances are Saturday, April 21 at 4 p.m. and 8 p.m., and Sunday, April 22 at 4 p.m. (Note: the Friday, April 20 performance is sold out.)
Robin Lewis will recreate the show’s original direction and choreography, and Nathan Hurwitz is musical director for the cast composed of students studying musical theatre at Rider University’s Westminster College of the Arts.
The Producers, the Tony Award-winning musical adapted by Mel Brooks and Thomas Meehan from Brooks’ 1968 film of the same name, portrays the story of down-on-his-luck producer Max Bialystock, his hysterically awkward accountant Leo Bloom and their "sure-fire" scheme to get rich quick.
Lewis appeared in the play’s original national touring company. He auditioned for Brooks and performed with Jason Alexander and Martin Short. “The content of The Producers can be shocking to some - dancing Nazis - the Third Reich as comic relief is not necessarily your normal funny fare,” he says. “The 1968 film version was released as an independent, with Hollywood studios rejecting it as too offensive. Yet, its quirky, sometimes shocking, blend of off-beat humor made it a cult classic. The New York Times review aptly expressed it this way: ‘This musical is sure to offend anyone without a funny bone and bring nothing but child-like glee to everyone else.’ Mel Brooks said The Producers is his love-letter to all the classic Broadway musicals.”
With 12 years of Broadway touring experience, Lewis has directed Fosse, Beauty and the Beast, A Christmas Carol, Victor/Victoria and The Producers. His choreographic work includes BERNIE, The Music Man, Damn Yankees, and Big River. His teaching and workshop credits include Texas State University, Broadway Theatre Project, Camp Broadway, Broadway Dance Center, American Ballet Theatre Summer Intensive/UT Austin, Cincinnati Conservatory of Music, US Performing Arts Camp and McCarter Theatre Center and several other University programs.
Nathan Hurwitz’s career spans from Broadway to regional theatres to the concert halls of the United States and Europe. His Broadway credits include Blood Brothers, Dream and Phantom of the Opera. He has taught acting and coached voice for many years privately as well as at New York Universtiy, HB Studios, Point Park College, the University of Pittsburgh, Northwestern State University of Louisiana and Syracuse University.
Admission for the preview is $9 for adults and $5 for Rider University students with a valid ID; tickets are available only at the door. Admission for the performance is $20 for adults, $10 students and seniors and $5 for Rider University students with valid ID. To order tickets call 609-896-5303 or email email@example.com. Rider University is located at 2083 Lawrenceville Road in Lawrenceville, N.J.