Southeast lands 'The Producers' for Jan. 30 show at River Campus

Thursday, January 3, 2008
The River Campus will present "The Producers" on Jan. 30 at Bedell Performance Hall. (Submitted photo)

River Campus officials landed a performance of "The Producers" without much effort. In fact, all Robert Cerchio, assistant director of the Holland School of Visual and Performing Arts, had to do was answer the phone.

Managers of the show contacted him after a hole in the tour schedule developed.

"There was a theater being built, and they thought it would be ready. They found out a couple of weeks ago that would not be the case, so they got out a map and started calling other theaters," Cerchio said.

When called, Cerchio gladly accepted, and the Mel Brooks musical comedy will be performed at 7:30 p.m. Jan. 30 in the Bedell Performance Hall.

That leaves only about three weeks for ticket sales, but Cerchio foresees a packed house.

"We would love to have six to eight weeks, but there was one big consideration: This is the last year 'The Producers' will tour. The rights will be released for local productions after this year. ... We wanted to do a New York touring company," he said.

The performance will be the first touring musical performed in Bedell and is arguably the most well-known performance to come to the River Campus. It will be the biggest musical this season, Cerchio said.

The show, which opened on Broadway in 2001, won a record 12 Tony Awards. The tour coming to Cape Girardeau is produced by NETworks Presentations, which began touring in September 2006.

In the show, Brad Nacht plays Max Bialystock, a once famous but now struggling producer. Austin Owen is Leo Bloom, Bialystock's accountant, who discovers that it is possible to raise more money than is spent when a show fails after one performance.

Together Bialystock and Bloom develop a scheme for a "sure-fire" flop, using the script "Springtime for Hitler."

Cerchio recommends people buy tickets early. Tickets go on sale Monday.

To purchase tickets, call 651-2265, go to the box office at 518 S. Fountain St. from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays, order online at or call 800-293-5949.

335-6611, extension 123

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