Based on the novel by Edna Ferber, with music by Jerome Kern and book and lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II, the winner of the 1994 Tony for best revival features a score of timeless classics, including “Ol’ Man River, “Can’t Help Lovin’ Dat Man” and “Make Believe,” Show Boat transports its passengers to a bygone era of American history, aboard Captain Andy Hawks’ Cotton Blossom, a 19th riverboat that travels from town to town on the Mississippi River with a troupe of performers.
The musical follows the performers’ lives during a transformative period in U.S. history, from 1887 to 1927 — from the dawn of the Progressive Era to the eve of the Great Depression. Show Boat explores many poignant topics, including racial diversity in marriage and economic hardships that still challenge the world today.
Plan Ahead: In two weeks, Asolo Rep will delve into more history through music with the special one-night-only event, A Hot Time in The Old Town Tonight, an intimate cabaret evening that explores racial identity via American music — from Show Boat to the Harlem Renaissance, Jazz and Motown, to contemporary pop music and modern musical theater. Updated casting information will be posted on Asolo Rep's website, asolorep.org. (This performance takes the place of the “Carefully Taught Cabaret” originally scheduled for Nov. 24.)
The cabaret is Sun., Dec. 15, at 7 p.m. at Asolo Rep's Cook Theatre. Tickets are $18 and are available at Asolo Repertory Theatre’s Box Office, located in the lobby of the theater.
Show Boat runs through Dec. 29. Tickets are $29-$75. Asolo is at 5555 N. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota. Tickets are also available by calling the box office at 941-351-8000 or 800-361-8388 or by visiting asolorep.org.