Broadway's Next H!T Musical, Dance, Magic, Festivals and More Set for The Berman's 2017-18 Season

Broadway's Next H!T Musical, Dance, Magic, Festivals and More Set for The Berman's 2017-18 Season

The Berman Center for the Performing Arts announces its seventh season with an exceptional series of shows, including Broadway and dance performances, music, magic, live shows, festivals, fairs, and programming for families.

"We are thrilled to host another terrific series of programming in our seventh year at TheBerman, one of Michigan's finest centers for the performing arts," says Elaine (Hendriks) Smith, senior director, The Berman. "This year we will present world-class entertainment, including incredible shows, not found anywhere else in southeastern Michigan. We hope people will enjoy our beautiful state-of-the art theater and fantastic performances," she says.

The Berman's 2017/2018 performance schedule includes theatre and improvisational comedy, such as Broadway's Next H!T Musical, and dance productions, including Eisenhower Dance and the popular Michigan Five, which features dynamic performances by the best local college dancers. Musical performances include Dallas String Quartet Electric, Jerry Herman: The Broadway Legacy Concert, and the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. THE FAMILY series has shows that are fun for everyone, like Pinkalicious, The Musical, Strega Nona & The Magic Pasta Pot, and Hannah and the Moonlit Dress. For bookworms, The Great Michigan Read, a biennial statewide literary program focusing on humanities themes, is on the docket. Fairs and festivals are also abound, such as the beloved JCC Annual Jewish Book Fair, JCC Lenore Marwil Detroit Jewish Film Festival, JCC Ethan & Gretchen Davidson Jewish Music Festival, Project Trio, and finally a community performance by The Berman's PAIJ PLAYERS (Performing Arts In the JCC) where anyone has the chance to perform in a homegrown production of The Wedding Singer.

"This season at The Berman has something for everyone," says Smith. We're hosting some of the best national productions right here, giving everyone in southeastern Michigan the chance to enjoy these performances right in their backyard," she explains.

Show details, dates and times are as follows:


Broadway's Next H!T Musical

Saturday, September 9 at 8 p.m.

Sunday, September 10 at 4 p.m.

Tickets: $25 - $43

The hilarious Broadway's Next H!T Musical is the world's only unscripted theatrical awards show. Master improvisers gather made-up suggestions from the audience and create songs. Audience members vote for their favorite and then watches as the cast turns it into a full-blown improvised musical - complete with memorable characters, witty dialogue and plot twists galore. Broadway's Next H!T Musical has been seen at the Triad, Tribeca Film Festival and at the New York Musical Theater Festival, among many others.

Under the direction of improv veterans Rob Schiffmann and Deb Rabbai, Broadway's Next H!T Musical has been hailed as "brilliant" (Theater Week) and "remarkable" (The New York Post).The New York Times calls Broadway's Next H!T Musical "hilarious!" Time Out NY says "At last! A musical of, for and by the people."

Don't miss the next great American musical, written by the audience.


Eisenhower Dance

Saturday, February 10 at 8 p.m.

Tickets start at $ 27

Humorous, reaching and heartfelt; Eisenhower Dance presents an evening of exhilarating dance reflecting on its ever-present need for human connection, whether full of joy, longing, or the endless flow of questions that come with trying to understand one another. Experience the awe-inspiring dancers of Eisenhower Dance in a program that includes works by Artistic Director, Stephanie Pizzo, Joshua Manculich and Founding Artistic Director Laurie Eisenhower.


Dallas String Quartet Electric

Saturday, October 28 at 8 p.m.

Tickets start at: $23

Dallas String Quartet Electric - an international music sensation - is coming to The Berman. This Fusion of classical and contemporary music on traditional and electric strings, Dallas String Quartet Electric has been featured in THE WALL Street Journal, ESPN and A&E. The group has been performed at the White House, too. This extraordinary act comprises composer and violinist ION Zanca, violinists Tatiana Glava and Melissa Priller, and bassist Young Heo. Dallas String Quartet Electric takes the audience on a journey to the nexus of classical music and modern pop where artists like Beethoven and Bono collide. Good Morning Texas says it's, "One of the most unique string quartets you'll ever see."

Jerry Herman: The Broadway Legacy Concert

Saturday, December 9 at 8 p.m.

Tickets start at: $39

Jerry Herman is a legendary composer/lyricist of the American musical theatre and one of Broadway's most beloved icons. Hello Dolly, Mame, Mack and Mabel and La Cage aux Folliesare some examples of Herman's ability to light up Broadway with toe-tapping, soul-stirring musical showstoppers. Now he's sharing his legacy with a new generation of music lovers. The ASCAP Foundation and Spot-On Entertainment present Jerry Herman: The Broadway Legacy Concert, starring a cast of New York's top Broadway and concert stars who celebrate the songs and stories of one of the giants of theatre. Klea Blackhurst, Scott Coulter, Jason Graae, Debbie Gravotte (Tony Award winner) and Ron Raines star in this incredible show.


Pinkalicious, The Musical

Sunday, October 29 at noon & 2 p.m.

Tickets start at $13

Despite warnings from her parents, Pinkalicious can't stop eating pink cupcakes. Her pink indulgence lands her at the doctor's office, where she is diagnosed with Pinkititis, an affliction that turns her pink from head to toe. It's a dream come true for this pink-loving enthusiast, but when her hue goes too far, only Pinkalicious can figure out a way to get out of this predicament. Based on the book Pinkalicious by Elizabeth and Victoria Kann.

Strega Nona & The Magic Pasta Pot

Sunday, January 21 at 1 p.m.

Tickets start at $13

Strega Nona is a story that will satisfy one's appetite for laughter and fun. Strega Nona has a magical pasta pot, which only she can control. Come see what silliness ensues when Big Anthony does not listen to her, causing the streets of their small Italian village to fill with pasta. Nationally renowned artist Chris Roberts-Antieau has designed the sets, costumes, and props for this not-to-be-missed production. Performed by Wild Swan Theater Company who provides engaging and enriching live theater experience for children and their families. (Ages 3 - 8)

Hannah and the Moonlit Dress

Sunday, March 18 at noon & 2 p.m.

Tickets start at $13

Hanna and the Moonlit Dress is an interactive new musical about the magic of a good deed, based on the classic Israeli tale Hanna's Sabbath Dress. Overjoyed with her new dress, Hanna runs to show it to her friends: Zuzi the dog and Edna the cow. Little does she know what a meaningful adventure awaits. Hannah and the Moonlit Dress by Itzhak Schweiger-Dmi'el and adapted for the stage by Ronit Muszkatblit and Yoav Gal, is a wonderful story made even richer by the children helping to create Hanna's world and moonlight enchantment before the show. (Ages 2 - 8) "It's just beautifully, visually's really magical," said Adi Ezroni, Israeli TV star and film producer. "A winning combination, a simpler day in time; story-telling that captures the attentions of children with music deeply symbolic of the Sabbath," said The Squeaky-Clean Alternative.


The Berman is partnering with SOAR (Society of Active Retirees) to bring the Michigan Humanities Council's Great Michigan Read to the J. There will be multiple events throughout the season around X: A Novel, a book being read by people all the state, explores the roots of Malcolm X in Michigan, both good and bad, that molded him into one of the most prominent leaders of the twentieth century.

"X: A Novel is an engrossing tale of the arduous past of a Civil Rights leader, and a fine platform for engaging humanities programs and discussion across the state," said Shelly Hendrick Kasprzycki, executive director.

Start by reading the book, then keep an eye out for an announcement of events.


Vitaly: An Evening of Wonders

Sunday, February 18 at 2 p.m.

Tickets start at $23

Faces that disappear, brushes that paint on their own, photographs that literally come to life before audiences. Here's a whole new take on magic, which is Vitaly's world. Master Illusionist Vitaly has mystified fans all over the world, including in Las Vegas where he successfully fooled Penn & Teller in their hit TV show, Fool Us. Vitaly's signature illusions leave even the most jaded audience awestruck. Regarded "one of the most captivating and enjoyable illusionists in the world," by Chilliwak Press, Vitaly breathes innovation and artistry into the field of magic. He invented and designed every single illusion in his stage show, treating spectators to a theatrical experience not seen anywhere else in the world. "Incredible," says Penn & Teller. "Astonishing," says CBC. Bscene says, "If you ever have an opportunity to see Vitaly perform, I suggest you take it."


JCC's Annual Jewish Book Fair

November 2 - 12

The JCC's Annual Jewish Book Fair is a community-wide cultural and literary event, attracting a large and varied audience of more than 20,000 people of all ages. It is the oldest and largest Jewish book fair in the nation.

Prominent and emerging writers - from the community and all over the world - in literature, the arts, philosophy, theology, history and current events are invited to engage, educate and entertain.

JCC Lenore Marwil Detroit Jewish Film Festival

April 15 - 27

The JCC's Lenore Marwil Detroit Jewish Film Festival is one of the largest of its kind in the Midwest and is committed to bringing the highest quality films with a diverse cinematic experience to the annual festival. The goal is to entertain and to enhance a sense of community an inclusion for a broad range of audience members with films from around the world that illuminate Jewish issues and principles.

JCC Ethan & Gretchen Davidson Jewish Music Festival

Thursday, May 24 - Sunday, May 27

The JCC Ethan & Gretchen Davidson Music Festival returns for a second year with its fresh new take on arts and music. The festival features artists that are local, national and international who perform amazing music in a wide range of styles, including folk, rock, punk, klezmer and jazz. Not only does the JCC Ethan & Gretchen Davidson Jewish Music Festival showcase musical acts, but it also includes an Artists' Marketplace and a local Food Fair, so audiences can relax and enjoy an immersive experience.

Project Trio

Thursday, May 24 at 7:30 p.m.

Project Trio is a passionate, high-energy chamber music ensemble composed of three virtuosic composers/performers from Brooklyn. Blending their classical training with an eclectic taste in musical styles, Project Trio burst onto the scene with their landmark videos, right out of the Internet generation. Project Trio is a musical experience defining a new level of entertainment. The Trio was forged out of a collective desire to draw new and diverse audiences by performing high-energy, top-quality music. Using social media to broaden their reach beyond the concert stage and classroom, the Trio has its own Youtube channel, which has more than 80 million views and 96,000 subscribers, making it one of the most viewed instrumental ensembles on the Internet. Gramophone Magazine said, "An ensemble willing and able to touch on the gamut of musical bases ranging from Baroque to nu-Metal and taking in pretty much every stylish in between." "Project Trio has wide appeal, subversive humor and first-rate playing," said THE WALL Street Journal. Furthermore, The New York Times stated, "Beatboxing flutist Greg Pattillo is the best in the world at what he does."

The Wedding Singer - The Musical

PAIJ Players - Community Theatre Production


Thursday, January 25 at 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, January 27 at 8 p.m.

Sunday, January 28 at 4 p.m.

Wednesday, January 31 at 7:30 p.m.

Thursday, February 1 at 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, February 3 at 8 p.m.

Tickets start at $13

Join The Berman's PAIJ PLAYERS (Performing Arts In the JCC) for its second Community Theatre production. Anyone can take part. The year is 1985, and the place is New Jersey. A wannabe rock star (aka professional wedding singer) is left at the altar and finally changes his tune. Based on the hit Adam Sandler movie, the Wedding Singer's sparking score does for the '80s what Hairspray did for the '60s. Just say yes to the most romantic musical in 20 years.The Wedding Singer is presented through a special arrangement with Music Theatre International (MTI). All authorized performance materials are also supplied by MTI. ( Open auditions will be announced at a later date.

To purchase tickets, visit The Berman from 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. Monday - Friday, or call248.661.1900. Group of 10+ call 248.661.1900 or email To purchase tickets 24 hours a day - visit

Download The Berman app, which is available at iTunes and Google Play. The Berman app features the latest news and information on the theater and its performances, the ability to purchase tickets, and the option to receive personalized notifications.

The Berman Center for the Performing Arts is located at the Jewish Community Center of Metropolitan Detroit, D. Dan & Betty Kahn Building | Eugene & Marcia Applebaum Jewish Community Campus at 6600 W. Maple Rd., West Bloomfield, MI 48322.

The Berman Center for the Performing Arts is a beautiful, 600 seat state-of-the-art venue. The Berman showcases an eclectic variety of world-class entertainment for all audiences of Metro Detroit while showcasing the Jewish Community Center's exceptional events.

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