September 20 — November 6
On the Main Stage
Music by Richard Rodgers
Book and lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II
Based on the play Green Grow the Lilacs by Lynn Riggs
Original dances by Agnes de Mille
Directed by Chris Coleman
“Things are changing. The country is changing. Gotta change with it.” —Curly
Those words express familiar sentiments often heard these days, but are spoken in this case not by a politician of 2011, but by Curly, the cowboy who takes the notion of change and wrestles it to the ground in Oklahoma! Part charming love story, part stirring retelling of American history, and many parts beloved songs and stunning dance, Oklahoma! was the first collaboration by the legendary team of Rodgers and Hammerstein, and was a milestone in the development of American musical theater for its fusion of song, story and dance. We are giving this boisterous favorite a new spin: in the 19th century Oklahoma Territory, there were over 50 all African-American towns; in that same period, one in three American cowboys was black. Chris Coleman’s production will feature an all African-American cast, generating fresh insights into a classic American tale.
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