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BWW Previews: PRETTY WOMAN HAS LOCAL CONNECTION, OPENS AT Straz Center

Titusville Native Kevin McNaughton performs as drummer in Broadway tour of PRETTY WOMAN.

BWW Previews: PRETTY WOMAN HAS LOCAL CONNECTION, OPENS AT Straz Center

Opening on Tuesday, May 17 at the Straz Center is the musical PRETTY WOMAN, based on the beloved 90s classic romantic comedy. Directed and choreographed by two-time Tony Award® winner Jerry Mitchell, with an original score by Grammy® winner Bryan Adams and Jim Vallance and a book by the film's director Garry Marshall and screenwriter J.F. Lawton, PRETTY WOMAN tells the story of Vivian Ward and Edward Lewis. Vivian is a Hollywood prostitute, and Edward hires her to be his companion for business and social functions for a week. Business services unexpectedly evolve into so much more.

BWW Previews: PRETTY WOMAN HAS LOCAL CONNECTION, OPENS AT Straz Center Titusville, Florida native Kevin McNaughton who graduated from the University of South Florida with a Bachelor in Jazz Studies Performance, is on tour as a drummer with the production.

Kevin naturally came by his passion for music; He was born into it. His father is a drummer, and his mother is a trumpet player.

"Music has always been a big part of our lives and family."

He fell in love with drumming at ten years old, then musical theatre in high school, and doing shows for Cocoa Village Playhouse in his teens. At 14, he subbed for his music teacher at the playhouse and got his first taste of performing professionally on his own as a drummer for a production of GREASE.

"That was my first taste of being a professional in the field. I knew I loved the drums. My love is musical theatre and I think that is something that sets me a part from a lot of the musicians in my industry."

He performed over 20 shows with his friend and music director Daniel Klintworth, who grew up Titusville in musical theatre and both started their touring careers simultaneously eleven years ago.

BWW Previews: PRETTY WOMAN HAS LOCAL CONNECTION, OPENS AT Straz Center Kevin has over 50 productions under his belt, touring as a drummer with various Broadway tours, including Disney's BEAUTY AND THE BEAST, SOUTH PACIFIC, ELF, SHREK, and DIRTY DANCING.

The PRETTY WOMAN tour finally offered the friends an opportunity to perform together on a professional Broadway tour. They haven't performed together in Florida in over a decade.

Kevin hadn't seen the movie until he joined the PRETTY WOMAN tour in September 2021.

"I'd never seen the movie until I got the show, so I had to watch it. It's exciting to be part of such a cult classic."

He said both the opening number, "Welcome to Hollywood," which sets the tone for the show, and "Never Give Up on A Dream," are his favorite songs to perform.

"It's an introduction of characters and style of music. Right out of the gate, it's really rock-driven with music by Bryan Adams and Jim Vallance. They created some amazing new songs for the show. It's all original music with a little surprise in there too," he said. "Coming out of Covid, getting back together and performing again, "Never Give Up on a Dream" lyrics, the song, everything about it - it's a reaffirmation: we're on the right track, which is cool."

Kevin said that PRETTY WOMAN transfers perfectly to the stage.

"The direction with Jerry Mitchell is brilliant. It is one of the most theatrical stage adaptions of a screenplay that I've seen."

PRETTY WOMAN is May 17-22 in Straz Center's
Carol Morsani Hall. For more information and order tickets, visit https://www.strazcenter.org/Events/Straz/Shows/2122_Broadway/Pretty-Woman



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