February 2018
Mt. San Antonio from Rancho Cucamonga: photo by Amanda Walker
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Broadway is Coming to Rancho Cucamonga

Don't miss Broadway at the Gardens' 2018 production of In The Heights.

Lin-Manuel Miranda's high-energy, contemporary musical showcases a vibrant community of Latino characters in Washington Heights, New York, over three extraordinary days.

Broadway at the Gardens is delighted to welcome Director Benjamin "Benny" Perez, who is at the helm of the production. Benny starred as Kevin on the second national tour of In The Heights, training under the guidance of the original creative team including Alex Lacamoire (orchestrator and musical supervision), Andy Blankenbuehler (choreography), Thomas Kail (director), and Lin-Manuel Miranda (writer and star of the Broadway production). Benny's unique experience and passion for the musical has led him to perform in nine different productions of the show as Kevin, and direct two local productions.

Associate producer Nicki Heskin sat down with Benny to talk about the upcoming production, what audiences can expect, and what interests him about working at the Lewis Family Playhouse. "I think people who come to see the show don't really know what to expect. They hear that it's a contemporary story set in New York City and there's rap music and there's Latin rhythms, [but it's] nothing to be afraid of in terms of a night of theatre, it's very heartwarming, it's very authentic. I think the show In The Heights is a universal immigrant story. It's a 21st century version of Fiddler on the Roof about a community on the verge of change. [It's about] parents who are hardworking, who don't always understand their children's choices, about friendship, about the family that you're born into and also the family that you choose. You will recognize the people in this neighborhood as people that you know, people that you could be related to, even if you are not of Latin descent. It's definitely one of the big ships that is charting a new course for the genre of musical theatre in the 21st century. Many shows are still following a format that Rodgers and Hammerstein or Andrew Lloyd Webber laid down - [In The Heights has] a lot more sass, a lot more fun, a lot more energy, a lot of usefulness, [and more] heart than some musicals allow themselves to have," says Perez.

"I was so thrilled when I found out there's this 560-seat theatre here that was producing wonderful quality theatre for all ages. I think we have a responsibility as people in the arts to cultivate new stories, new forms of theatre, new audiences and I feel like the Lewis Family Playhouse is doing that. To use local talent is also another thing exciting about this. We're going to have a lot of people auditioning and you're going to have a spectacular cast here at this theatre. It's going to be beautiful."

In The Heights runs from March 9th-18th with performances on Fridays (March 9 & 16) and Saturdays (March 10 & 17) at 7:30 pm and Sundays (March 11 & 18) at 2:00 pm at the Lewis Family Playhouse, 12505 Cultural Center Drive, Rancho Cucamonga, CA 91739.

Be sure to purchase your tickets before they sell out at lewisfamilyplayhouse.com, on the LF Playhouse app (available in the App & Google Play store), or through the Box Office at (909) 477-2752.

Audition information will be made available soon and can be found at www.lewisfamilyplayhouse.com.