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'Moulin Rouge' dances into the Van Wezel for the 2024-25 season

The musical set in the famed Paris nightclub is one of seven Sarasota premieres for the venue.

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  • | 5:00 a.m. March 22, 2024
"Moulin Rouge! The Musical" makes its Sarasota premiere March 18-23 at the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall.
"Moulin Rouge! The Musical" makes its Sarasota premiere March 18-23 at the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall.
Image courtesy of Matthew Murphy
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What do you do for an encore to "Hamilton"?

That was the question facing Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall Executive Director Mary Bensel for the venue's 2024-25 season.

Bensel thinks she's found the answer in a star-studded lineup anchored by the Tony Award-winning show "Moulin Rouge! The Musical" and six other Sarasota premieres.

Based on the hit movie starring Nicole Kidman and Ewan McGregor, "Moulin Rouge!" (March 18-23) tells the tale of an American scribe besotted with a Parisian nightclub performer.

"Building on the great success of last year's blockbuster shows, 'Hamilton,' 'Hadestown' and 'Ain't Too Proud,' I knew we needed to bring in another fantastic season," Bensel said in a statement. 

Besides "Moulin Rouge," Broadway shows coming to Sarasota for the first time include such recognizable names as "Dear Evan Hansen" (Nov. 1-2), "Tina —The Tina Turner Musical" (Dec. 13-15), "Clue" (Dec. 30-31), the revival of "Funny Girl" (Jan. 14-19), "The Addams Family" (Jan. 28-29) and "Beetlejuice" (April 22-27).

The Broadway revival of "Funny Girl" makes its Sarasota debut Jan. 14-19 at the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall.
Image courtesy of Evan Zimmerman

Returning to the Van Wezel is "Come From Away" (Feb. 18-20), which tells the story of a Canadian village that welcomed stranded travelers after 9/11, and "Les Misérables," set during an uprising in France more than 40 years after the French Revolution. 

The Van Wezel's 2024-25 season also includes a number of subscriber specials. Among them are the perennial holiday favorite "Salute to Vienna New Year's Concert" (Dec. 29), "Neil Berg's 115 Years of Broadway" (March 2), "Twyla Tharp Dance: Diamond Jubilee" (March 4) and a concert featuring violin legend Itzhak Perlman (March 16). Perlman and his wife, Toby, have ties to the Sarasota area through the Perlman Music Program they started here 20 years ago. 

"We are looking forward to bringing remarkable shows to Sarasota each year, and the season certainly accomplishes that," said Bensel. "We have glitz, glamour, comedy, incredible music and inspiring stories featured among these productions."

The much-anticipated "Hamilton" runs from March 26 to April 7 at the Van Wezel. Based on the life of Founding Father Alexander Hamilton, Lin-Manuel Miranda's hiphop musical has played in Tampa three times, but the Van Wezel has high hopes for its Sarasota debut.

Tickets for "Hamilton" range from $59-$209. There are a limited number of $10 seats that will be raffled off via the official "Hamilton" app. Digital lotteries begin each Friday and close the following Thursday for the upcoming week’s performances.

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