A Tony Award winner from the original cast of "Hamilton" will open the 2022-23 season in September at the Mayo Performing Arts Center in Morristown.
Renee Elise Goldsberry, who played Angelica Schuyler in the smash Broadway musical, will perform on Sept. 30 to open the first full season after two years of closures, cancellations and reschedulings due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
"This upcoming season is going to be so exciting as we continue to emerge from the pandemic," said President and CEO Allison Larena, who is celebrating her 20th season at the helm of the 1,300-seat theater. "Looking ahead we need the arts more than ever."
Goldsberry follows an unofficial tradition of booking the leading ladies of Broadway to open seasons in Morristown. Previous openers have included Kristin Chenoweth and Sutton Foster. Chenoweth will return to Morristown with her "For the Girls" musical revue on April 29.
"There is a lot of diversity on our schedule moving forward," Larena said. "We're looking for ways to engage our audience and our community in new and innovative ways as we continue to serve the diverse population of our region."
Another "Hamilton" star, Leslie Odom Jr., will take the MPAC stage for a holiday-themed show on Dec. 8.
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Other highlights of the upcoming season include rock and pop headliners such as Michael Bolton and Richard Marx; comics including Jay Leno and Paula Poundstone; and a timely performance by the Lviv National Philharmonic Orchestra of Ukraine.
"That should be a very inspirational evening here," Larena said. "We're glad we can present such diverse performances, and our hearts go out to the people of Ukraine."
Larena is proud of the role the theater has played in Morristown's stunning transformation over the past 20 years. She lauded the "army of volunteers" who in 1994 renovated and reopened a 1930s-era Walter Reade movie palace that had fallen into disrepair and "was facing the wrecking ball."
Subsequent capital campaigns have raised more than $16 million to transform the theater into a state-of-the-art performing arts center that generates $15 million annually for the Morristown economy, according to economic impact reports.
"In many ways, the reopening of the theater was the catalyst for the revitalization of Morristown," Larena said. "Looking back, I'm so grateful for all those who helped this theater evolve and flourish."
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General ticket sales for the new season began on June 6. Performances continue throughout the summer. There are no current mask requirements or social-distance restrictions at the theater. Check with the box office for information and updates.
MPAC also will sponsor a series of free summer concerts at several venues including the Vail Mansion grounds next door. Free movie nights begin in August.
MPAC schedule for 2022-2023 season
14: Best of the Eagles
17: Generation Radio
26: Chris Isaak
27: Lyle Lovett and His Large Band
28: The Disco Nights
3: Boz Scaggs: Out of the Blues Tour 2022
10: Glen Burtnik’s The Summer of Love Concert -- Woodstock Edition
18: Air Supply
19: Manhattan Comedy Night
9: Guest Attraction: Jerry Seinfeld
16: The Robert Cray Band
24: Michael Sings Sinatra
30: Opening Night: An Evening with Renee Elise Goldsberry
8: Masters of Illusion
13: Jay Leno
14: Croce Plays Croce: 50th Anniversary of You Don’t Mess Around With Jim
16: Peppa Pig’s Adventure
29: Disney Junior Live On Tour: Costume Palooza
2: Richard Marx: An Acoustic Evening of Love Songs
11-12: The Illusionists — Magic of the Holidays
19: New Jersey Ballet presents New Direction
25: Manhattan Comedy Night
26: Darlene Love: Love for the Holidays
27: Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer: The Musical
2: The Kat & Dave Show: David Foster and Katharine McPhee
3: Mannheim Steamroller Christmas by Chip Davis
4: Top of the World: A Carpenters Tribute Christmas Show
7: Michael Bolton: Greatest Hits and Holiday Favorites
8: Leslie Odom Jr. Holiday Show
11: Deck the Halls with Disney featuring DCappella
16-27: New Jersey Ballet’s Nutcracker with New Jersey Symphony
12: Chaka Khan
13: Manhattan Comedy Night
14: The Doo Wop Project
20: DC’s Reflecting Fools Featuring Former Members of The Capitol Steps
11: Cirque Zuma Zuma
16: Lviv National Philharmonic Orchestra of Ukraine
18: Paula Poundstone
19: Ray on My Mind
3: Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis
5: The Cat in the Hat
16: Dublin Irish Dance presents “Wings”
22: Taj Express — Bollywood Jukebox
25: The Hit Men: The Ultimate Rock Concert
1: Elvis: The Concert of Kings
2: Dragons and Mythical Beasts
7: Manhattan Comedy Night
21: Terry Fator: The Voice of Entertainment
22: Piano Battle
23: Take Me Home, the Music of John Denver starring Jim Curry
29: Kristin Chenoweth: For the Girls
7: Trifecta of Folk: The Kingston Trio, The Brothers Four and The Limeliters
13: Lea Salonga
16: Manhattan Comedy Night
Free summer community events
(Funding for Arts in the Community concerts provided by ADP)
June 15: Darius Frowner & LaDonna Burns (Early Street Senior Center)
June 29: Salsa under the Stars featuring Newark Arts High Latin Band (Vail Mansion Plaza)
June 30: U.S. Army Field Band and Chorus (at MPAC; tickets required)
July 6: Nahscha (Cauldwell Playground, Clyde Potts Drive and Flagler Street)
July 13: Acute Inflections Vail Mansion Plaza (Vail Mansion Plaza)
July 27: The Bryan Hansen Band (Vail Mansion Plaza)
Aug. 10: Sabrina Genesis (Vail Mansion Plaza)
Aug. 24: John McDermott Band’s Sixties Soul Revue (Vail Mansion Plaza)
Free Movie Tuesdays at MPAC
(Tickets available in July)
Aug. 2: Clifford the Big Red Dog, 10:30 a.m.
Aug. 2: Summer of Soul, 7 p.m.
Aug. 16: Encanto, 10:30 a.m.
Aug. 16: West Side Story (2021), 7 p.m.
William Westhoven is a local reporter for DailyRecord.com. For unlimited access to the most important news from your local community, please subscribe or activate your digital account today.
This article originally appeared on Morristown Daily Record: 'Hamilton' star Renee Elise Goldsberry to kick off new season at MPAC