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Porchlight Music Theatre's MIRACLE ON 34th STREET Runs 11/20-1/3/2010


Porchlight Music Theatre will debut a live stage production of Miracle on 34th Street based on the holiday film classic at Theatre Building Chicago, 1225 West Belmont. The show plays from November 20, 2009 through January 3, 2010. The Press Opening is Sunday, November 22 at 2:30 pm.

This is a new production, destined to become a holiday tradition. Families are encouraged to bring the kids for their first theatrical experience. Following each performance, the audience is invited to visit with Santa Claus and share a Christmas wish.

Porchlight Music Theatre's production of Miracle on 34th Street combines the classic story from the film with traditional holiday music. When a white bearded gentleman claims to be the real Santa Claus, he brings about a genuine "Miracle on 34th Street," spreading a wave of love throughout New York City, convincing a divorced, cynical single mother, her somber daughter, and the entire state of New York that Santa Claus is no myth. The 1947 film version of Miracle on 34th Street is a perennial holiday favorite. Starring Natalie Wood and Maureen O'Hara, the film won three Academy Awards in 1948.

This theatrical version of Miracle on 34th Street is based on the novel by Valentine Davies. The production was adapted by Patricia Di Benedetto Snyder, Will Severin and John Vreeke. The Porchlight Music Theatre production will add traditional holiday music arranged by Chicago composer, Jon Steinhagen. He was the writer, composer, and lyricist for Porchlight's acclaimed The Teapot Scandals. Mr. Steinhagen recently received first prize in the Julie Harris Playwriting Award competition, presented by the Beverly Hills Theatre Guild for his play The Analytical Engine.

The Miracle on 34th Street cast features Jeff Award winner Jim Sherman as Kris Kringle/ Santa Claus, Christa Buck Van Ermen (Porchlight's Gypsy) as Doris, Karl Hamilton as Fred Gailey, Jim Heatherly as Judge Harper, Laney Kraus-Taddeo as Susan Walker, James Nedrud as Alfred/Bailiff, Rus Rainear (Porchlight's The Fantasticks) as Mr. Sawyer, Chuck Sisson (Porchlight's A Wonderful Life) as Mr. Macy and Steve Tomlitz as Thomas Mara.

The artistic team is led by Porchlight Music Theatre Artistic Director L. Walter Stearns. Musical Direction is by Eugene Dizon, Choreography is by Brenda Didier, Costume Design is by Jana Anderson, Projection Design is by Liviu Pasare, and Scenic Design is by Ian Zywica (Porchlight's The Fantasticks and Once on This Island).

Porchlight Music Theatre's 15th Anniversary Season, "Songs of Innocence and Experience," will conclude with the Tony Award-winning Sondheim musical Into the Woods, from April 9 through May 30, 2010.

About Porchlight Music Theatre

Porchlight Music Theatre is Chicago's music theatre leader; producing award-winning interpretations of classic musicals and cutting-edge new works on intimate stages. The company is recognized for providing nurture and challenge for stars-in-the-making as well as veteran performers. The company has staged 36 shows including four world premieres, among them, The Teapot Scandals, its first work developed through Off the Porch, Porchlight's new works program, as well as seven Chicago premieres. An Equity theater since 2004, the company has already received a total of 33 Joseph Jefferson Award nominations resulting in 11 Jeff Awards.

Porchlight Music Theatre is partially supported by generous contributions from the A.R.T League, the Arts Work Fund at the Chicago Community Trust, the William Blair & Company Foundation, Capri Capital, LLC, a City Arts Program 2 Grant from the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs, the Gaylord & Dorothy Donnelley Foundation, the Illinois Arts Council (a state agency), the MacArthur Fund for Arts & Culture at the Richard H. Driehaus Foundation, the National Association of Realtors, and Peoples Energy.

Ticket Information

Miracle on 34th Street previews November 20, opens November 22, and runs through January 3, 2010 with performances on Fridays at 8 p.m., Saturdays at 2:30 p.m. and 8 p.m. and Sundays at 2:30 p.m. Single tickets are $40.00, with discounts available for students and seniors. Single Tickets may be purchased through the box office at Theatre Building Chicago 773.327.5252 or Group Sales Discounts are available through Group Theater Tix at 312.423.6612 or 866.809.3075.

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