PERFECT PICTURE A New Musical About Norman Rockwell, Is Born

Perfect Picture, a new musical inspired by the dramatic life of Norman Rockwell and his quest to paint the 4 Freedoms will play The Arkell Pavillion at the Southern Vermont Arts Center (930 SVAC Drive in Manchester, VT) July 20-21, 2018. Perfect Picture is directed and choreographed by four time Tony® Award Nominee Randy Skinner (42nd Street, Dames at Sea, State Fair, WhiteChristmas), with book and lyrics by Emmy® Award winner Eileen Bluestone Sherman (The Odd Potato, Deep Dark Secrets), and music by Gail C. Bluestone (The Odd Potato). Starring Tony and Emmy Award Winner Lillias White (Cy Coleman's The Life, Dreamgirls, Sesame Street), the musicalis produced by Joshua Sherman Productions and The Mill, a not for profit production facility and center for artist collaboration in Arlington, Vermont.

Perfect Picture is the cornerstone of the 4 Freedoms FestivalSM, an inaugural arts festival, taking place in Manchester and Arlington, Vermont. The Official Schedule of Events for the 4 Freedoms Festival can be found on the Festival's website: www.TheMillVT.com/4freedomsfestival/

Inspired by his neighbors, Norman Rockwell captured the essence of Freedom of Speech, Freedom of Worship, Freedom from Want, and Freedom from Fear in simple everyday scenes.The musical celebrates the 75th anniversary of the famous oil series' original printing in TheSaturday Evening Post, and also recognizes the current relevance of these four essential human rights in 2018.

In 1942, illustrators enjoyed celebrity status - and Norman Rockwell was a superstar. He was too old to enlist, but still wanted to do his part, so he volunteered his services to The War Department to paint a series of posters inspired by F.D.R.'s Four Freedoms Speech. Despite his fame, Rockwell was flat-out rejected. Perfect Picture explores Rockwell's life, loves, insecurities, and resilience. The musical juxtaposes the extraordinary story of Norman's quest to create the iconic 4 Freedoms suite (which ultimately helped win World War II) with a portrait of the artist - whose life was anything but perfect.

In additional to Lillias White, the cast of Perfect Picture also includes Olivier Award® NomineeScarlett Strallen (Mary Poppins, Travesties); Sara Esty (An American in Paris, The Beast in the Jungle); Danny Gardner (Dames at Sea); and Jeremy Benton (Cagney, 42nd Street). Musical Direction by Timothy Graphenreed (The Wiz). Additional cast and production team members to be announced shortly.

The finale of Perfect Picture has been selected as the official anthem of the 4 Freedoms Festival. The song, "Stand Up Proud: An Anthem 4 Freedom," featuring powerhouse vocals by Lillias White, is now available on iTunes, Amazon and CDBaby.com.

"Perfect Picture is about optimism, freedom, and passion -- important ideals with what is happening in the world right now," said director/choreographer Randy Skinner. "We hope that this musical gives audiences insight into this iconic artist and how, at times, his life was vastly different than the small town America of his paintings."

The New York Historical Society is also celebrating Norman Rockwell with the launch of the first internationally touring exhibition devoted to Rockwell's iconic depictions of the Four Freedoms. Running from May 25 - September 2, 2018 in New York City, the exhibition explores how Rockwell's 1943 paintings: Freedom of Speech, Freedom of Worship, Freedom from Fear, and Freedom from Want gave visual voice to Roosevelt's call to the defense of freedom worldwide. The exhibition encompasses numerous other paintings and illustrations by both Rockwell and a broad range of his contemporaries, as well as historical documents, photographs, videos, and artifacts - all on the theme of the Four Freedoms.

The Sponsorship Consultant for Perfect Picture is The Erlick Group.

Perfect Picture runs at The Arkell Pavillion at the Southern Vermont Arts Center (930 SVAC Drive in Manchester, VT) on Friday, July 20 at 7:30pm, and Saturday, July 21 at 3:00pm and 7:30pm. Ticket can be purchased at: www.themillvt.com/4freedomsfestival/

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