WELLSBORO - With baseball season is full swing, it's the perfect time for a classic musical about the national past-time. Hitting the stage at the Arcadia Theatre is "Damn Yankees," one of Broadway's most popular musicals ever. Based on the novel "The Year the Yankees Lost the Pennant," "Damn Yankees" gives a new twist to the legend of Faust when a middle-aged baseball fan sells his soul to the devil for the chance to play for his favorite team, the Washington Senators.
Transformed into a young athlete, this over-eager fan's dreams are soon fulfilled when he finds himself leading the team to victory. But authors George Abbott and Douglass Wallopp, along with composers Richard Adler and Jerry Ross, keep the story interesting, for there is a price to be paid, and the Devil and his seductive assistant Lola are waiting to collect.
"Damn Yankees" opened on Broadway in 1955 and won seven Tony Awards, including Best Musical. The show features such familiar songs as "You've Gotta Have Heart" and "Whatever Lola Wants, Lola Gets."
Starting its 11th year of live theatrical productions, the Arcadia Theatre is pleased to offer this classic musical that is great entertainment for the whole family. Manager of the theater and director of "Damn Yankees," Peter Davis, who has been producing the shows at the Arcadia since 2002, said this is a show that everyone will love.
"The 1950s are such an iconic period in our history and baseball is such an integral part of Americana that this show has repeatedly been a favorite throughout the country," Davis said. "This also is the very first musical that I ever worked on way back in high school. It has always held a special place in my heart and I am so glad to be able to bring it to the Arcadia stage for families and fans of musical theatre to enjoy."
This production also is the first time that a show presented at Arcadia has had a mixed cast of both Mansfield University students and Wellsboro Area High School students.
Davis said, "It is the Arcadia's mission statement to present high quality and unique theater productions that feature high school and college students. We strive to provide a challenging experience for the actors and entertaining and enlightening experience for the audience. Usually our shows are an all-high school cast or an all-college cast. Sometimes we have one college student play the lead with a high school cast. This time the cast is an equal mix and it has been a great experience. The entire group works so well with each other and have been gelling together. I can't wait until audiences can see them bring this show to life."
"Damn Yankees" has three performances - Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Each performance starts at 7:30 p.m. Adult tickets are $12 and student tickets are $8. Reservations may be made by calling the theater box office at 724-9371. Seating is limited.