The Straz Center for the Performing Arts’ 2015-2016 Bank of America Best of Broadway Tampa Bay season is filled with Tony Award®-winners, audience favorites, stunning classics and amazing spectacle.

The Broadway series features the 2013 Tony Award-winning Best Musical Kinky Boots and the 2014 Tony Award-winning Best Musical A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder. Also on the 2015-2016 slate are the inspiring true story Beautiful – The Carole King Musical and the contemporary new musical If/Then, along with a new production of the beloved favorite The Sound of Music and family and critical favorites Matilda The Musical and Newsies. The series will also include a show to be announced in the Straz Center’s intimate Jaeb Theater. In addition to the eight-show Broadway series and back by popular demand is the multi-Tony Award winning smash Disney’s The Lion King.

“Our Broadway season will showcase the best that musical theater has to offer,” said Judith Lisi, president and CEO of the Straz Center. “Our theater-savvy audiences here in the Tampa Bay area have come to expect a rewarding and entertaining series that offers the highest caliber productions – and our new season is no exception. I am particularly thrilled that the season offers three Tony Award-winning Best Musical productions – Kinky Boots, A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder and Disney’s The Lion King.”

The season features:

 

A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder

Broadway-Tampa_Gentlemen-MurderOct. 20-25, 2015

Getting away with murder can be so much fun … and there’s no better proof than the knock-‘em-dead hit show that’s earned unanimous raves and won the 2014 Tony Award for Best Musical – A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder!

Coming direct from New York, where a most gentlemanly NPR critic said he’d “never laughed so hard at a Broadway musical,” Gentleman’s Guide tells the uproarious story of Monty Navarro, a distant heir to a family fortune who sets out to jump the line of succession, by any means necessary. All the while, he’s got to juggle his mistress (she’s after more than just love), his fiancée (she’s his cousin but who’s keeping track?), and the constant threat of landing behind bars! Of course, it will all be worth it if he can slay his way to his inheritance…and be done in time for tea.

 

Newsies

Broadway-Tampa_Sound-of-MusicNov. 10-15, 2015

They delivered the papers, until they made the headlines … direct from Broadway comes Newsies, the smash-hit, crowd-pleasing new musical from Disney. Winner of the 2012 Tony Award for Best Score and Best Choreography, Newsies has audiences and critics alike calling it “a musical worth singing about!” (The New York Times). Filled with one heart-pounding number after another, it’s a high-energy explosion of song and dance you just don’t want to miss. Now is the time to seize the day with Newsies.

 

Kinky Boots

Broadway-Tampa_Kinky-bootsDec. 1-6, 2015

Kinky Boots is the exhilarating Broadway musical that will lift your spirits to new high-heeled heights! Winner of six Tony Awards including Best Musical, this inspirational story follows a struggling shoe factory owner who works to turn his business around with help from Lola, a fabulous entertainer in need of some sturdy stilettos. Together, this unlikely pair finds that they have more in common than they ever dreamed possible…proving that when you change your mind about someone, you can change your whole world.

 

The Sound of Music

Broadway-Tampa_Sound-of-MusicDec. 22-27, 2015

A brand new production of The Sound of Music, directed by three-time Tony Award-winning director Jack O’Brien, is coming to the Straz Center. The spirited, romantic and beloved musical story of Maria and the Von Trapp Family will once again thrill audiences with its Tony, Grammy® and Academy Award®-winning Best Score, including “My Favorite Things,” “Do-Re-Mi,” “Climb Ev’ry Mountain,” “Edelweiss” and the title song. The hills are alive!

 

Matilda The Musical

Broadway-Tampa_MatildaFeb, 23-28, 2016

Winner of 50 international awards, including four Tony Awards, Matilda The Musical is the story of an extraordinary girl who, armed with a vivid imagination and a sharp mind, dares to take a stand and change her own destiny. Based on the beloved novel by Roald Dahl, Matilda continues to thrill sold-out audiences of all ages on Broadway and in London’s West End. The Wall Street Journal says, “The makers of Matilda have done the impossible – triumphantly! It is smart, sweet, zany and stupendous fun.”

 

Beautiful – The Carole King Musical

Broadway-Tampa_Carol-KingApril 26–May 1, 2016

Beautiful – The Carole King Musical tells the inspiring true story of King’s remarkable rise to stardom, from being part of a hit songwriting team with her husband Gerry Goffin, to her relationship with fellow writers and best friends Cynthia Weil and Barry Mann, to becoming one of the most successful solo acts in popular music history. Along the way, she made more than beautiful music, she wrote the soundtrack to a generation. Beautiful has a book by Tony and Academy Award-nominated writer Douglas McGrath, direction by Marc Bruni and choreography by Josh Prince. The show took home two 2014 Tony Awards.

 

If/Then

Broadway-Tampa_If-thenMay 17-22, 2016

If/Then is a contemporary Broadway musical about living in New York today – and all the possibilities of tomorrow. With unforgettable songs and a deeply moving story by the Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award-winning creators of Next to Normal, this “fascinating, ambitious, and original new musical” (New York Post) simultaneously follows one woman’s two possible life paths, painting a deeply moving portrait of the lives we lead, as well as the lives we might have led.

Also on the 2015-2016 season will be a Straz Center produced show, presented in the intimate Jaeb Theater. Details will be announced later.

 

Broadway Encore: Disney’s The Lion King

Broadway-Tampa_Lion-KingJan. 20-Feb. 14, 2016

More than 70 million people around the world have experienced the phenomenon of Disney’s The Lion King, and now you can, too, when Tampa’s best-loved musical returns to the Straz Center. Winner of six Tony Awards, including Best Musical, this landmark musical event brings together one of the most imaginative creative teams on Broadway. Tony Award-winning director Julie Taymor brings to life a story filled with hope and adventure set against an amazing backdrop of stunning visuals. The Lion King also features some of Broadway’s most recognizable music, crafted by Tony Award-winning artists Elton John and Tim Rice. There is simply nothing else like The Lion King.

The 2015-2016 Bank of America Best of Broadway Tampa Bay series is presented by the Straz Center for the Performing Arts. For more information, email the Straz Center at tickets@strazcenter.org, call the Straz Center Ticket Sales Office at 813.229.STAR (7827) or outside the Tampa Bay area at 800.955.1045, or visit www.strazcenter.org.