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'Judy and Me' Featuring Mac Will Run Off-Broadway

The critically-acclaimed play, Judy and Me, featuring legendary Garland impersonator Peter Mac, will be returning to the stage. Following rave reviews and a stint on the Off-Off-Broadway circuit, it has been successfully picked up for an exclusive Off-Broadway run at New York's St. Luke's Theater, starting Oct. 19.

Originally reviewed as "the gay play that requires only a heart and humor to enjoy -- regardless of one's own life or lifestyle," the autobiographical Judy and Me was first seen in January 2002 in a cabaret theater engagement at Rose's Turn. Public and critical response was such that the four-performance booking was eventually extended to a nearly three-year run, transferring along the way to the Arthur Seelen Theatre and then The Producers Club.

Addressing the issues of both homophobia and domestic abuse, Judy and Me recounts the true story of sixteen-year old character Anthony, trapped in the narrow-minded suburb of Elmont, Long Island (and the real hometown of playwright Mac).

An outcast at Sewankawa High School in Floral Park, Anthony is the daily target of verbal and physical torment from his classmates. His life at home is equally tenuous, as his volatile, violent father is a constant source of pain to both Anthony and his mother. The teen finds his only escape in the music and entertainment of the iconic Judy Garland, who comes to life before his very eyes and counsels him through his daily struggles.

Garland is herein portrayed as those who knew her best have remembered her: a sage, wise, omniscient, and compassionate human being whose humor, insight, and strength both championed and encouraged those around her. Through her compassion -- and through Anthony's passion for, and camaraderie with, Garland -- the boy learns to deal with his dysfunctional family, his school life, and the realization that he's gay.

HX critic Jonathan Warman defined Judy and Me as "a dizzy, happy upward spiral of joy!" and Backstage's John Hoglund praised it as "a warmhearted, compelling outing with human issues." There were additional raves for author Mac's portrayal of the legendary rainbow diva ("Judy Garland lives! Peter Mac is brilliant," marveled entertainment veteran Joe Franklin), and the show received a nomination from HX as 2003's "Best Gay-Themed Play."

Director Charles Tolliver and Producer Dr. John Schaefer are currently casting for the lead role. In support are Elyse Beyer, Jean Ann Kump, Chris McCabe, and Basil Meola. Peter Mac reprises his sympathetic portrayal of Garland herself.

In the intervening decades since her death, Garland's timelessness and ongoing effectiveness as one of the greatest entertainers of recorded time have proved to be unequalled and unsurpassed by either contemporary or current performers. Her preeminence as an inspiration to audiences both then and now is brilliantly manifested in the story told by Judy and Me; author/actor Mac uniquely demonstrates her everlasting, cross-generational appeal, both in and out of the gay community.

Previews of Judy and Me begin Tuesday, Oct. 7 at 8 p.m. The St. Luke's Theater is located at 308 West 46th Street, New York. Show times include Tuesdays through Saturdays at 8 p.m., Sundays at 7 p.m., with matinees Saturdays at 2 p.m. and Sundays at 3 p.m. Tickets, ranging in price from $47.50 to $72.50, are available after Sept. 1 by calling (212) 239-6200 or by visiting www.telecharge.com. There will be a limited number of Student and Teacher tickets for $20 available at only at the box office on the day of the performance. Valid school ID is required.

For more information on Judy and Me, please visit www.JudyandMe.com.


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