Tickets on Sale on Small Business Saturday
Beach Haven — Beach Haven’s Surflight Theatre has announced its 2020 season. Its first mainstage offering of the year will be “Gershwin’s An American in Paris,” which will run from June 9 through June 21.
The action will shift from 1945’s Paris to 1931’s Weimar Republic in Germany – already threatened with a Nazi takeover – when Surflight will produce “Cabaret” from June 23 through July 12.
“Legally Blonde” will be the mainstage offering from July 14 to Aug. 2.
“Mamma Mia!” had a wildly popular Surflight run in 2019, so it will be back from Aug. 4 to Aug. 23. The show, a jukebox musical with a book by British playwright Catherine Johnson, was based on the songs of ABBA written by Benny Andersson and Bjorn Ulvaeus of ABBA.
Andersson and Ulvaeus also wrote the music for the next Surflight musical of 2020, “Chess.” Tim Rice, better known for his collaborations with Andrew Lloyd Webber and Disney, wrote the show’s lyrics and originally its book (the London production was reworked for Broadway by Richard Nelson). The show is based around both a sporting and romantic rivalry between an American grandmaster loosely based on Bobby Fischer and a Soviet grandmaster inspired by Viktor Korchnoi and Anatoly Karpov. “Chess” will run from Aug. 25 through Sept. 6.
“Almost Heaven,” a jukebox musical featuring 29 John Denver songs, will follow, running from Sept. 9 to Sept. 20.
Straight shows will take over after that. “Murder on the Orient Express” will run from Sept. 23 to 27; “Almost, Maine” from Oct. 1 to 4.
Music will return in December when Surflight’s holiday gift will be “Ebenezer, A Musical Christmas Carol,” which will run from Dec. 3 to 20.
Surflight will, as usual, present a full season of children’s theater shows as well, with the 2020 season being highlighted by “Disney’s Frozen Jr.” July 8 through 12 and Aug. 5 to 9.
The Beach Haven theater will also be home to several concerts in 2020.
“Something: A Birthday Celebration for George Harrison” featuring the Rave-Ons is set for Feb. 15 and 16, not only Presidents Day weekend, but the weekend of the Beach Haven Volunteer Fire Co.’s turkey dinner.
“Dancing Dream, the Music of ABBA” will be presented on May 23. Yeah, it is a big summer for ABBA! The Coasters and the Drifters will be heard on June 29.
“Who Loves You” – a musical tribute to Frankie Valli & the Four Seasons – is scheduled for July 20. Aug. 10 will be the evening for a Linda Ronstadt Revue. The original Oak Ridge Boys will visit Surflight on Aug. 31.
Finally, “Songs In the Attic: The Music of Billy Joel,” will be the New Year’s Eve attraction on Dec. 31.
Surflight’s entertainment isn’t limited to musical, plays and concerts. The popular “Comedy Tonight” series will return on June 15, July 6, Aug. 17 and Oct. 10. And talking about popular, the incredible Edwards Twins, male and female impersonators extraordinaire, will perform at Surflight once again on July 27.
But let’s not get ahead of ourselves. Surflight’s 2019 season isn’t over! “Bandstand Boogie! Starring The Diamonds” is set for Nov. 30 at 7:30 pm. “Tis the Season – A Joyous Holiday Musical” will run from Dec. 5 through Dec. 15. The Rave On’s will rock out 2019 at 5 p.m. and 8 p.m. on New Year’s Eve.
Tickets for all of the above shows will be on sale at the Surflight box office, located at 201 Engleside Ave., on Small Business Sarturday, Nov. 30, when the theater’s lobby will be open all day. Free coffee, hot chocolate and treats will be available, as will tickets for all of this year’s and next year’s events. Surflight T-shirts, sweats, gift certificates, and Joe’s Dream, a history of the Beach Haven landmark, will be on sale. The author and publisher of Joe’s Dream will be available to sign books.
Horse-drawn carriages will roll by with carolers from 4 to 7 p.m., and a gingerbread house display will be in the windows of the adjacent Show Place Ice Cream Parlour.
So, Merry Christmas. As for a Happy New Year, with a lineup of entertainment like Surflight’s, 2020 is definitely looking up!
— Rick Mellerup