Charleston Light Opera Guild Presents: Rodgers & Hammerstein's Oklahoma!
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Charleston Light Opera Guild Presents: Rodgers & Hammerstein's Oklahoma!

Date: Nov 15 - Nov 16, 2019

The Light Opera Guild has returned to its roots and will present Oklahoma!, the show credited for propelling the Guild from operetta to musical theatre, as the final production of the 70th anniversary season. Shows are scheduled for November 8, 9, 15, 16 & 22 at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, November 10 & 24 at 2:00 p.m. at the Charleston Coliseum and Convention Center Little Theater.

A special 70th anniversary cast production of Oklahoma! (featuring performers from the 1960, 1971, 1990 and 2019 Guild productions of Oklahoma!) will be held on Saturday, November 23 at 2:00 p.m. with an anniversary celebration, dinner and party at the Coliseum & Convention Center to follow. Tickets for the November 23 events are $100.

Oklahoma! was the first collaboration of the legendary team of Oscar Hammerstein II and Richard Rodgers. The show set the standard for the American musical and is credited as the first fully integrated musical play that blended song, character, dance and plot - and was the model for Broadway shows for decades. A fifteen minute dream ballet at the end of Act I serves to advance the musical's plot and not just entertain.

The Broadway premiere in 1943 was a box office smash. The production helped launch many theatrical careers. Rodgers and Hammerstein were awarded a special Pulitzer Prize for Oklahoma! Award-winning Broadway revivals, national tours, international productions and innumerable regional, community and school productions have followed. The 1955 award-winning film version starred Gordon MacRae, Shirley Jones and Gene Nelson. The classic score includes Oh What a Beautiful Morning, Survey with the Fringe on Top, People Will Say We're in Love and the title song.

Set in western Indian Territory just after the turn of the 20th century, the spirited rivalry between the local farmers and cowboys provides the backdrop for the love story between Curly, a handsome cowboy, and Laurey, a beautiful farm girl. Their happiness is threatened by the sinister Jud Fry. A comedic side plot involves the triangle romance between cowboy Will Parker, peddler Ali Hakim and Ado Annie Carnes. As the road to romance and statehood converge, Curly and Laurey are prepared to spend their new life together in a brand new state O-K-L-A-H-O-M-A, Oklahoma!

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