This June, just over 20 years after Hello, Dolly! first played the Paramount, this glorious musical will once again parade into the theatre for a new two-weekend run of laughs, dancing, and romance. Hello, Dolly! is the 29th Paramount Summer Musical.
Set in both Yonkers, New York, and New York City during the 1890s, Hello, Dolly! follows Dolly Gallagher Levi, a widowed matchmaker and professional meddler, as she travels to Yonkers, New York to secure a match for the tight-fisted “well-known half-a-millionaire” Horace Vandergelder – and herself. Over the course of a single adventurous day in New York City, Dolly ensures that Vandergelder will not be the only one going back to Yonkers with a match.
A high-energy musical farce, Hello, Dolly! features music and lyrics by Jerry Herman, of La Cage Aux Folles and Mack & Mabel fame, and a book by Michael Stewart. It is based on the play The Matchmaker by Thornton Wilder.
Opening in 1964, the original Broadway production of Hello, Dolly! ran almost seven years and played 2,844 performances. Throughout the years, Dolly Levi has been played by a host of wonderful women, including Caro Channing, Pearl Bailey, Ethel Merman, and Mary Martin. The successful 2017 Broadway revival brought Dolly’s antics to new audiences through stars Bette Midler, Donna Murphy, and Bernadette Peters.
Katie Hahn will direct the Paramount production as she begins her second year as Director of Programming for the Paramount. An Abilene Christian University and Texas Tech University theatre graduate, Hahn is a former Directing Fellow at Asolo Repertory Theatre and has worked for Dallas Theater Center, Creede Rep, and Hardin-Simmons University. Her directing work was last seen at the Paramount in The Last Five Years.
Hahn was most drawn to the hilarious Hello, Dolly! because it features strong women charging forward with their lives in the face of adversity.
“Dolly wants desperately to emerge from her grief and take on all the joy and adventure that life has to offer, and that resonates acutely with us now,” she said. “After the past two years, I think the desire to live life more fully is something we can all identify with as we move forward into our new normal.”
Hello, Dolly! will feature a cast of local actors as well as the work of local designers and artists. Music Director Marc Sanders will lead the cast through Dolly’s beautiful score, and Lily Balogh will choreograph. Balogh is completing her fifth year as ACU Theatre’s artist in residence and has recently joined Ballet Lubbock as Assistant Artistic Director; her work was last seen at the Paramount in Newsies.
The Paramount’s Technical Director, Grayson Allred, will design lights alongside HSU’s Technical Director, Trey Spivey, who will create the scenic design. Allred’s dynamic lighting was seen in last year’s summer musical, The Last Five Years. Professional costume designer Richard Transki is also on board; his work at the Paramount includes Newsies, Parade, The Last Five Years, and Pippin.
Hello, Dolly! runs June 24-26 and July 1-2. For tickets and additional information, please visit: www.paramountabilene.com.
Contributed By The Paramount Theatre