FOCUS ON FAMILY: RAGTIME

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A multiple Tony Award-winning spectacle featuring families of all kinds occurring at one of the most pivotal moments in American history, RAGTIME is a musical like few others.

Based upon E.L. Doctorow's 1975 novel of the same name, RAGTIME showcases a plethora of early 20th century figures while simultaneously telling the tale of three distinctly different families as they cope with the rapidly changing times. Historical personages that appear throughout the action include automotive entrepreneur Henry Ford, master magician Harry Houdini, vaudeville queen Evelyn Nesbit, banker extraordinaire J.P. Morgan and iconic political activists Booker T. Washington and Emma Goldman, among others.

Presenting a triptych of story-lines exploring the white upper-middle class, African Americans and Jewish immigrants, RAGTIME highlights three distinctively different family dynamics, with the stories ultimately merging in an extremely moving and memorable manner all with the backdrop of one of the most volatile periods in American history.

Featuring a Tony Award-winning score by Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty as well as an award-winning book by Terrence McNally, the original 1998 production of RAGTIME was directed by Frank Galati, with choreography by Graciela Daniele. Leading the pack with 13 Tony Awards at that year's ceremony, the show also notably took home a trophy for its incandescent Featured Actress - eventual all-time Tony Award queen Audra McDonald.

Packed with powerful and soulful songs such as "Wheels Of A Dream", "Your Daddy's Son", "Back To Before", "Our Children", "Till We Reach That Day" and many more, the score expertly evokes a multitude of musical styles ranging from the titular ragtime to cakewalk, jazz, gospel, klezmer, vaudeville showstoppers and rich character numbers.

RAGTIME is one of the most historically vivid and culturally detailed musicals of the 20th century and its performance opportunities for actors of all ages makes it an ideal musical to reference when looking forward to the 2019 Lotus Lee Foundation Children's Play Initiative, currently seeking submissions.

For more information on the Children's Play Initiative, visit the official submission page here: https://www.lotus-lee.foundation/submission/

By Pat CerasaroComment