The true drama of a musical happens down in the orchestra pit, where musicians engage in highly ritualized combat to determine the next song's conductor. See some rising action with this GrouponLive deal.
- $32 for one ticket to see Sally Struthers in Hello, Dolly! (up to $52.50 value)
- When: Wednesday, December 4, at 8 p.m.
- Where: Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall
- Seating: section B
- Door time: 7 p.m.
- Ticket values include all fees.
- Click here to view the seating chart.
Before it made its Broadway debut in 1964, Hello, Dolly! had several other lives. Its plot came from English play A Day Well Spent, which Thornton Wilder turned into The Merchant of Yonkers and later The Matchmaker. At the center of all these versions was the endearingly meddlesome matchmaker who was known as Dolly Levi by the time the musical version landed on Broadway in the 1960s. When we meet her, Dolly's latest task is to whisk bachelor, half-millionaire, and curmudgeon Horace Vandergelder from Yonkers to New York City to find love—although she's secretly determined that he should find it in her. Along the way, she encounters other characters in need of her matchmaking skills and sets about arranging their happiness while plotting her own.
The winner of multiple Tony Awards including Best Musical, Hello, Dolly! has helped elevate the careers of an array of actresses, beginning with original star Carol Channing. In its latest production, Emmy- and Golden Globe-winning actress Sally Struthers takes over the role of Dolly, injecting the effervescent charm well known to fans of All in the Family and, more recently, Gilmore Girls. "Struthers is, like her character, a force of nature," the Florida Times-Union reported after a 2012 run of the show in Jacksonville. "She sings a little, dances a little, clowns a little and charms a lot." On this tour, she joins a cast of Broadway pros in an evening of joyful belting, with hits including "Put on Your Sunday Clothes," "Before the Parade Passes By," and, of course, title song "Greetings, Dorothy."
Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall
Built in 1968 with funds from a Sarasota bond referendum and help from philanthropists Lewis and Eugenia Van Wezel, the city-owned-and-operated Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall has been dedicated to expanding the cultural landscape around it ever since. Crowned the top North American performing-arts hall of its size by the aptly named Venues Today, the Hall welcomes Broadway shows, legendary vocalists, and world-class symphonies to its Bay-front stage. There, performers and audiences alike find the two seashells from the Sea of Japan that inspired the Hall's design, as well as an eye-pleasing lavender and purple color scheme. In addition to hosting quality shows in a fittingly regal environment, the Hall joins the Sarasota County School Board in the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts' Partners in Education Program, one of many impressive attributes of its education program.