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The Ritz Theatre Company Presents SHE LOVES ME, A Perfect Rom-Com Musical For The Holiday Season

Directed and choreographed by Roberta Curless, the production runs at The Ritz from December 2nd through December 18.

The Ritz Theatre Company Presents SHE LOVES ME, A Perfect Rom-Com Musical For The Holiday Season

With the hustle and bustle of the holiday season already upon us, The Ritz Theatre Company prepares to present the enchanting Golden Age musical She Loves Me, a perfect rom-com show for "the most wonderful time of the year." Directed and choreographed by Roberta Curless, the production runs at The Ritz from December 2nd through December 18th.

"When we sat down to create this season, we knew we wanted to produce a great show for the holidays, and we quickly decided to present audiences with this little gem of a musical," says Producing Artistic Director Bruce A. Curless. "Although it's not exactly an archetypal holiday musical à la A Christmas Carol, the show is set at Christmastime and is filled with laughs, tender moments, and classic musical theatre romance. She Loves Me is sure to warm your heart from the winter's cold!"

An intimate and touching show, featuring music by Jerry Bock and Sheldon Harnick (Fiddler on the Roof) and a book by Joe Masteroff (Cabaret), She Loves Me was nominated for five Tony Awards in 1964. The 1993 Broadway revival won the Olivier Award for Best Musical Revival, the Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Revival of a Musical, and the 1994 Critics Circle Award for Best Musical, while the 2016 Broadway Revival snagged the Tony Award for Best Scenic Design (beating Hamilton!). Considered by many to be the most charming musical ever written, She Loves Me is a warm romantic comedy with an endearing innocence and a touch of old-world elegance. The Mikos Lazlos play Parfuemerie, on which it is based, has inspired many adaptations, including the beloved film You've Got Mail starring Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks.

"I find She Loves Me inherently inspiring," says director/choreographer Roberta Curless. "I have joked with the cast that every time we have begun to work on a new part of the show, I always sit and think to myself, 'Wow, I love this part of the show, it's probably my favorite part!' ...Until the next day, when we move on and I think the same thing again! If all you did was close your eyes and listen to the actors sing and read the words on the page, you would 100% understand the journey of these characters. It is a very rare privilege to get to work with material like that. The heart of She Loves Me, what makes it so endearing, is the characters. Our cast has captured that magic by finding the love and joy each character experiences in a normal day, and sharing it with the audience in a way that feels extraordinary."

Set in a 1930s European perfumery, the driving conflict of She Loves Me occurs when a nervous young woman named Amalia Balash enters the sophisticated shop seeking a job. Shy Assistant Manager Georg Nowack is staunchly opposed to her being hired after she gives off a fiery first impression, and, even after she proves her prowess on the sales floor, the two find themselves constantly squabbling and bickering. After both respond to a "lonely hearts advertisement" in the newspaper, they begin to live for the love letters that they exchange, but the identity of their admirers remains unknown. The fun and frantic narrative momentum comes as the audience then joins Amalia and Georg on their journeys to discover the identity of their true loves, with tons of twists and turns along the way!

"In this time of turmoil and disconnection in the world, I want audiences to feel hopeful and joyful, and to realize that love is sometimes right in front of you where you least expect it," says actress Jessica Ball, who plays the role of Amalia, returning to The Ritz after her acclaimed portrayal of Marian Paroo in The Music Man back in 2019. "My approach to this role is connection: connection between me and Amalia,
connection between Amalia and Georg, and connection to the audience. Amalia's essence in this show is a truly human experience; she wants to be accepted and loved. We all do."

Rounding out the creative team on this Ritz production of She Loves Me are music and vocal director Benita Farmer, set and lighting designer Jen Donsky, costume designer Megan Iafolla, and stage manager Dorothy Trusty. Joining Ms. Ball in the show's cast are JJ Vavrik as Georg, Lindsey Krier as Ilona, Abia Johnson as Kodaly, Richard Johnson as Sipos, Matthew Camardo as Arpad, David Fusco as Mr. Maraczek, Brian Gensel as The Headwaiter, and Liz Baldwin, Ryan Dailey, Nathalie Dalziel, Allison Korn, and Gregory Pernicone as members of the show's multitalented ensemble. All involved are eager to bring this cherished and charming musical to the Ritz stage for the very first time.

"To me, She Loves Me is about looking for the love in your life," concludes Ms. Curless. "It's about the tiny moments of joy you can find throughout the day, and how that carries you through the rest. I hope that the audience will be able to relate to the characters on stage and be reminded that in the midst of each hectic day is at least one moment worth singing about."

The Ritz Theatre Company Presents

SHE LOVES ME

December 2 - December 18, 2022

Directed & Choreographed by Roberta Curless
Music & Vocal Direction by Benita Farmer
Set & Lighting Design by Jen Donsky
Costume Design by Megan Iafolla
Dorothy Trusty, Stage Manager

Cast

Jessica Ball as Amalia
JJ Vavrik as Georg
Lindsey Krier as Ilona
Abia Johnson as Kodaly
Richard Johnson as Sipos
Matthew Camardo as Arpad
David Fusco as Mr. Maraczek
Brian Gensel as The Headwaiter
Ensemble: Liz Baldwin, Ryan Dailey, Nathalie Dalziel, Allison Korn, Gregory Pernicone

Performance Dates & Times

Friday, December 2 at 8:00pm
Saturday, December 3 at 8:00pm
Sunday, December 4 at 2:00pm
Wednesday, December 7 at 7:30pm
Friday, December 9 at 8:00pm
Saturday, December 10 at 8:00pm
Sunday, December 11 at 2:00pm
Wednesday, December 14 at 7:30pm
Friday, December 16 at 8:00pm
Saturday, December 17 at 8:00pm
Sunday, December 18 at 2:00pm

Ticket Prices

General Admission - $30
Artist/Student Rush - $15
Tickets available online, over the phone, and at the box office!

The Ritz Theatre Company
"An All-Inclusive Theatre Company Celebrating Diversity in Our Stories and Those Who Share Them"
915 White Horse Pike Haddon Township, NJ 08107 / 856) 288-3500 / www.RitzTheatreCo.org



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