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posted: 6/20/2010 12:01 AM

Rising Star to stage 'Thoroughly Modern Millie' in Kane County

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Return to the Roaring '20s this June as Rising Star Theatreworks presents "Thoroughly Modern Millie," a romantic, high-spirited, tap-dancing musical comedy, Friday, June 25, to Sunday, June 27.

The Tony Award-winning musical comedy takes audiences back to the height of the jazz age in New York City. Young Millie Dillmount has just arrived in search of a new life for herself. It's a New York full of intrigue and jazz - a time when young "moderns" were bobbing their hair, raising their hemlines, entering the work force and rewriting the rules of love.

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Based on the 1967 Julie Andrews movie, this stage version of "Thoroughly Modern Millie" includes a full score of new songs and bright dance numbers.

Songs include: "Not for the Life of Me," "Thoroughly Modern Millie," "How the Other Half Lives," "The Speed Test," "Forget the Boy," "I'm Falling in Love with Someone," "Long as I'm Here With You" and "Gimme Gimme."

RST production staff for this show is director Jeanne O'Donnell, vocal director Dawn Harkins, choreographer Lynn Kalita and music director Joe Blomquist. The show features high-school and college-age cast members from Batavia, Geneva, St. Charles, Aurora, Elburn, West Chicago and Yorkville.

It will be performed at 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 2 p.m. Sunday at the West Aurora High School auditorium, 1201 W. New York St., Aurora. Tickets are $15 for adults and $12 for students, seniors and children. Group pricing is available for groups of 10 or more. For tickets, visit www.rstix.com.

The final dress rehearsal at 7 p.m. Thursday, June 24, will be open to individuals with special needs and their families at no cost.

"It has always been a dream of mine to involve more people with special needs in theater," says Jeanne O'Donnell, co-founder of Rising Star. "I understand that some people are reluctant to attend events where the audience is supposed to stay quiet and only applaud at appropriate times."

Through this special invitation, Rising Star is striving to create an environment where it is okay if an audience member shouts out during the show or even sings along.

There is no charge to attend. To reserve tickets for "Special Night for Special Friends," contact Nancy E. Hansen at (630) 845-9165 or HansConsulting@aol.com. There are a limited number of wheelchair spaces available, so indicate in your message if anyone in your party requires a wheelchair space. Tickets will be distributed at the door the evening of the performance.

Rising Star Theatreworks is a nonprofit community theater group known for inspiring young people to become involved in theater and for providing the community with quality theater at affordable prices.

The show is presented through special arrangements with Music Theatre International. This program is partially supported by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency.

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