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Hairspray Broadway’s Big Fat Musical Begins July 20

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It’s time to let your hair down and dance the night away! HAIRSPRAY, Broadway’s new musical comedy phenomenon, is coming to the Pantages Theatre for a limited engagement July 20 to September 5 (press opening is Wednesday, July 21).

HAIRSPRAY will also be performed October 12 to 24 at Segerstrom Hall at the Orange County Performing Arts Center

After its acclaimed world premiere at Seattle’s 5th Avenue Theatre in June 2002, the fantastically fun musical opened on Broadway in August 2002 to rave reviews, winning eight 2003 Tony Awards, including Best Musical. And now, the people of Los Angeles will be swept away to 1960’s Baltimore in the mega-hit, piled bouffant-high with laughter and romance – and enough deliriously tuneful songs to fill a nonstop platter party.

Everyone is raving about this delightful musical, including the critics. “A great big fat gorgeous hit,” claims Clive Barnes of the New York Post. “Completely irresistible! Get those tickets now!” declares syndicated columnist Liz Smith. “So many numbers bring down the house, it’s a wonder the theater is still standing,” says Jeremy Gerard of New York Magazine.

As if HAIRSPRAY coming to Los Angeles isn’t enough to tickle your fancy, Marissa Jaret Winokur, who won the 2003 Tony, Drama Desk, Theater World and Outer Critics Circle Awards for Leading Actress in a Musical Award for playing Tracy Turnblad, stars with comic legend Bruce Vilanch as her mother, Edna Turnblad. At Segerstrom Hall at the Orange County Performing Arts Center Keala Settle will play Tracy Turnblad and John Pinette will play Edna Turnblad.

On screen, Winokur was recently seen in the ABC Family Channel romantic comedy Beautiful Girl in which she starred with Fran Drescher and Mark Consuelos. Winokur was executive producer of the film, which was ABC Family’s highest rated original movie of the year.

Marissa is also known for her portrayal of “Janine” in American Beauty, where she immortalized the phrase “You are so busted.” She just signed a feature deal with New Line Cinema to star and produce the movie Always a Brides Maid, written by Nina Coleman.

A native of New York, Marissa started her career on the stage, appearing as “Jan” in the Broadway production of Grease. After moving to Los Angeles, Marissa quickly landed roles in the features Teaching Mrs. Tingle and Never Been Kissed, followed by her memorable roles in American Beauty and Scary Movie, and the Reprise! production of Hair with Steven Weber. In television Marissa has recurred on Dharma and Greg and Moesha, and some of her guest staring roles include Just Shoot Me, Curb Your Enthusiasm: The Larry David Show, Boston Public, Felicity and Get Real.

Bruce has a long award-winning history in show business that encompasses 30 years of writing and performing. He has written for the most popular performers in the world and for virtually every televised awards show, event, and charitable function imaginable, from Hollywood to Washington and beyond. He has written for the “Quadruple Crown” of awards shows – The Oscars, The Emmys, The Tonys and The Grammys. He has co-written fifteen Academy Awards telecasts, winning consecutive Emmy Awards for Billy Crystal-hosted shows. Bruce has also won an additional four Emmy Awards for Outstanding Variety Shows.

Most recently, Bruce has written a book titled Bruce! My Adventures in the Skin Trade and Other Essays. It is an assemblage of his funniest and most wicked essays, stories and gags. In addition to his writing, Bruce is also well-known for his three-season stint as a regular guest on the hit series “Hollywood Squares,” for which he also acted as head writer. He is also the focal point of the riotous documentary Get Bruce? and continues performing limited engagements of his one-man show, a bio-comedy that he has performed in various cities across the country.

In HAIRSPRAY it’s 1962 – the ‘50s are out and change is in the air. Baltimore’s Tracy Turnblad, a big girl with big hair and an even bigger heart, has only one passion – to dance. She wins a spot on the local TV dance program, “The Corny Collins Show” and, overnight, is transformed from outsider to irrepressible teen celebrity. But can a plus-size trendsetter in dance and fashion vanquish the program’s reigning princess, win the heart of heartthrob Link Larkin, and integrate a television show without denting her ‘do? Only in HAIRSPRAY! Welcome to the ‘60s!

Everyone is raving about this delightful musical, including the critics. “A great big fat gorgeous hit,” claims Clive Barnes of the New York Post. “Completely irresistible! Get those tickets now!” declares syndicated columnist, Liz Smith. “So many numbers bring down the house, it’s a wonder the theater is still standing,” says Jeremy Gerard of New York Magazine.

HAIRSPRAY is based on the New Line Cinema film written and directed by John Waters, who serves as a creative consultant on the musical comedy. It features a book by Mark O’Donnell and Thomas Meehan. HAIRSPRAY features an original score by Academy Award-nominated Marc Shaiman (who co-wrote the music and lyrics for the acclaimed animated musical, South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut) and lyrics by Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman. HAIRSPRAY is directed by Jack O’Brien and choreographed by Jerry Mitchell; the scenic design is by David Rockwell; the costume design is by William Ivey Long; the lighting design is by Kenneth Posner; and the sound design is by Steve C. Kennedy.

HAIRSPRAY is produced by Margo Lion; Adam Epstein; The Baruch•Viertel•Routh•Frankel Group; James D. Stern/Douglas L. Meyer; Rick Steiner/Frederic H. Mayerson; SEL & GFO; New Line Cinema, in association with Clear Channel Entertainment; A. Gordon/E. McAllister; D. Harris/M. Swinsky; J. & B. Osher.

HAIRSPRAY will play Pantages Theatre starting July 20, 2004. Tickets priced from $27 to $87 go on sale May 9 at the box office, all Ticketmaster Outlets (Tower Records, Robinsons-May, Wherehouse Music, Tu Musica, and Ritmo Latino locations), Ticketmaster phone charge at 213/365-3500 and 714/740-7878, and on line at www.broadwayla.org. The HAIRSPRAY web site can be found at www.hairsprayontour.com.

HAIRSPRAY will also be performed October 12 to 24 at Segerstrom Hall at the Orange County Performing Arts Center starring Keala Settle as Tracy Turnblad and John Pinette as Edna Turnblad. Tickets for the Orange County engagement go on sale July 18 at The Center Box Office, online at The Center’s Web site at www.ocpac.org, and by phone through Centertix (714) 556-ARTS (2787). The Center’s TTY number is (714) 556-2746.

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