For the first time in the theater's 50-year history, Goodspeed Musicals is staging the famed musical "Hello, Dolly!"
Playing that matchmaker extraordinaire Dolly is Klea Blackhurst, whose tribute show to Ethel Merman, "Everything the Traffic Will Allow," was given a Special Achievement Award from Time Out New York magazine.
Tony-nominated (for "Priscilla Queen of the Desert") Tony Sheldon steps in as the object of Dolly's affection, Horace Vandergelder.
And Ashley Brown - who was the original Mary Poppins in the recent Broadway production and who played Belle in "Beauty and the Beast" - takes on the role of Irene Malloy.
The production of this Jerry Herman-Michael Stewart classic is directed by Daniel Goldstein, who also did the honors for the 2011 "Godspell" Broadway revival.
- KRISTINA DORSEY
"Hello, Dolly!," Goodspeed Opera House, 6 Main St., East Haddam; opens Friday and runs through Sept. 8; 2 and 7:30 p.m. Wed., 7 p.m. Tuesday, 8 p.m. Friday, 3 and 8 p.m. Saturady, and 2 p.m. Sunday; also performances on certain Tuesdays at 2 p.m. and Sundays at 6:30 p.m., as well as 2 p.m. Aug. 13 and 27; tickets start at $27, all prices subject to change based on availability; (860) 873-8668, goodspeed.org.