“Ragtime” to bring syncopation and style to the Grand Opera House


Image: Sterling Neill

Singing, dancing, and entertaining as the Ragtime show comes alive in real theater action.

Sterling Neill, Staff Writer

The Grand Opera House will kick off its new season with early twentieth century flair. For years, the ornate venue has been a hub for audiences to experience unique entertainment, including Broadway musicals, comedy shows, and educational programs.

The Grand’s latest acquisition is the touring production of “Ragtime,” a musical based on the culture of the early twentieth century, which will be performed Nov. 15 and 16 at 7:30 p.m.

“I have seen the sizzle reels of the production, and it looks amazing. From the elaborate costumes to the Tony award-winning score, The Grand is proud to present this nationally touring show as the first in our 2015-16 Broadway series,” Meagan Evans, coordinator of arts marketing at Mercer University, said.

The Broadway show encourages the audience to imagine what it would be like if the events in the production were truly coming to life.

“‘Ragtime’ is a musical, and the music is fantastic. Ragtime music is the precursor to jazz. The show also features some thunderous gospel and elaborate period costumes,” she said. “The music, art and culture of that period comes alive on stage.”

“Ragtime” follows the individual stories of a variety of characters, including a jazz pianist, a Victorian couple and an immigrant. These men and women struggle through obstacles of independence, novelty and race, and they all strive for their interpretation of the American dream.

On their paths of life, each individual is accompanied by an idolized and historic character of the time period, including Harry Houdini, Henry Ford and Booker T. Washington. These figures guide the characters and the audience through an inspirational journey of music, entertainment and education with an experience that will let you take a step back into America’s past.

“Theatre is an intimate and personal experience you just can’t get streaming a movie on your iPad. It is living art,” Evans said. “‘Ragtime’ will give the audience a glimpse of an era and will open up discussion to how our society has evolved.”

“I think that is very important,” she said.

Discounted tickets can be purchased for $20 with a Mercer University ID at the box office, located at 651 Mulberry Street, between the hours of 10 a.m. and 5 p.m.

For more information about the Broadway show “Ragtime,” contact Meagan Evans at [email protected] or go online to www.thegrandmacon.com.