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Taylor Hicks to Star in National Tour of 'Grease'; Dates and Locations Announced

The producers of the Tony Award nominated new Broadway production of GREASE are proud to announce that "American Idol" Season Five winner, Taylor Hicks, will star in the first national tour of the show, launching at the Providence Performing Arts Center in Providence, RI on December 2, 2008.   Taylor Hicks made his debut on Broadway in the role of "Teen Angel" this past summer.  

Taylor Hicks achieved widespread fame in 2006 as a contestant on the hugely successful FOX singing competition "American Idol."  On May 24, 2006, Hicks was named the winner of the fifth season of "Idol" with over 63.4 million votes in total.  Winning the title over Katharine McPhee, the announcement was made during the live finale episode which aired to a worldwide audience of over 200 million viewers.

Born in Birmingham, Alabama, Taylor Hicks' passion for music began at an early age.  He toured the Southeastern Unites States during his teenage years and released two independent albums.  Known for his energetic performances with influences derived from classic soul, blues and R&B music, he quickly grew a large fan base among the millions of viewers and voters who tuned in to "Idol" each week.  His fans ultimately dubbed themselves the "Soul Patrol."  Immediately following "Idol," Hicks signed a recording contract with 19 Records Limited / Arista Records.  His debut single, "Do I Make You Proud," debuted in the #1 spot on the Billboard Hot 100 and was subsequently certified Gold.  His eponymous debut album, Taylor Hicks was released on December 12, 2006 and debuted in the #2 spot on the Billboard 200 charts and was later certified as a Platinum Album.  After signing a book deal with Random House, Hicks' memoir Heart Full of Soul: An Inspirational Memoir About Finding Your Voice and Finding Your Way was released in July of 2007.   Taylor is currently in the studio recording his next album to be released in early 2009.

"I had such a great experience on Broadway for the last three months," says Hicks.  "This is such a great opportunity to visit old fans and new fans across the country while bringing them a great Broadway show!"

This new production of GREASE™, which opened on Broadway on Sunday, August 19, 2007, was born out of NBC's landmark talent competition TV series, "Grease: You're The One That I Want."  The weekly talent competition drew 90 million viewers, and America voted for its favorite contestants to play the lead roles of Sandy and Danny on Broadway.   Directed and choreographed by two-time Tony Award-winner Kathleen Marshall (The Pajama Game, Wonderful Town), GREASE™ features book, music and lyrics by Jim Jacobs and WarRen Casey.

After spending a hopelessly devoted summer with Sandy Dumbrowski, the new girl in town, Danny Zuko's world is thrown upside down when Sandy appears at Rydell High on the first day of school. What follows is a rock n' roll celebration of growin' up, cruisin' with friends and goin' steady.  The new production of GREASE™ features songs from the smash hit 1978 motion picture for the first time ever in a Broadway production including "Sandy," the Academy Award nominated song "Hopelessly Devoted to You,"  "Grease" and "You're the One That I Want" - both of which were #1 hits on the Billboard Top 100 list.  These songs will be heard in addition to the Jacobs/Casey songs made famous by the original stage production including "Summer Nights," "Greased Lightnin'" and "We Go Together."

GREASE™ features scenic design by Tony Award nominee Derek McLane (The Pajama Game), costume design by two-time Tony Award winner Martin Pakledinaz (Thoroughly Modern Millie, Kiss Me Kate), lighting design by Tony Award winner Kenneth Posner (The Coast of Utopia, Wicked) and sound design by Brian Ronan (Spring Awakening, Curtains).

GREASE™ is produced on tour by Paul Nicholas and David Ian, Nederlander Presentations, Inc. and Terry Allen Kramer by arrangement with Robert Stigwood.

 
Full casting for the tour will be announced at a later date.

The schedule for the national tour of GREASE™ is as follows:

- December 2 - 7, 2008 at the Providence Performing Arts Center, Providence, RI
- December 9 - 14, 2008 at the Wharton Center for the Performing Arts, East Lansing, MI
- December 16 -21, 2008 at Palace Theatre, Columbus, OH
- December 30, 2008 - January 4, 2009 at the Orpheum Theatre, Minneapolis, MN
- January 6 - 18, 2009 at the Auditorium Theatre, Chicago, IL
- January 20 - February 1, 2009 at the Aronoff Center for the Arts, Cincinnati, OH
- February 3 - 15, 2009 at the Hippodrome Theatre, Baltimore, MD
- February 24 - March 1, 2009 at the Music Hall, Tucson, AZ
- March 3 - 8, 2009 at the Civic Theatre, San Diego, CA
- March 10 - 22, 2009 at the Pantages Theatre, Los Angeles, CA
- March 24 - April 19, 2009 at the Golden Gate Theatre, San Francisco, CA
- April 21 - 26, 2009 at Keller Auditorium, Portland, OR
- April 28 - May 10, 2009 at the Orange County Performing Arts Center, Costa Mesa, CA
- May 12 - 30, 2009 at the 5th Avenue Theatre, Seattle, WA

Photo Credit Walter McBride/Retna Ltd.



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