A Publication of WTVP

The word “Broadway” brings to mind distinct images and sounds—chorus lines of dancers kicking their legs in the air, melodies that bring audiences to tears, theatergoers dressed to impress, a feeling of class and sophistication. It’s come to be more than just the name of a street in Manhattan; for many, it’s the pinnacle of show business. It’s a place forged out of bright lights and etched into the history of America. It’s a modern legend, and now it’s on the move.

Five of the best in nationally touring productions will come to central Illinois beginning this October. Fiddler on the Roof, Legally Blonde the Musical, the Blue Man Group, Grease and The Color Purple will grace the theater stage of the Peoria Civic Center this year as part of the 2010-2011 Broadway Theater Series, sponsored by AmerenCILCO. In addition, Spring Awakening, Bus Stop and Cirque Du Soleil’s Dralion will be offered as season “extras.”

The Broadway Series at the Civic Center began in 1982 and has been exposing the region to top-notch shows ever since. General Manager Debbie Ritschel believes that it’s their duty to provide a wide range of shows. “Whether it is someone trying to come see a show they’ve seen before,” she said, “or to introduce a new show to people, we try to provide that.” Check out the 2010-2011 lineup as follows.

October 18-19, 2010, 7:30pm

Based on the stories of Sholom Aleichem, Fiddler on the Roof is one of the most popular musicals of all time. The show is filled with a heartwarming score which includes “Tradition,” “Matchmaker, Matchmaker,” “If I Were a Rich Man” and “Sunrise, Sunset.”

November 30, December 1-2, 2010 7:30pm

Legally Blonde, based on the movie of the same name, follows the story of Elle Woods. When her boyfriend dumps her for someone more “serious,” Elle puts down the credit card, hits the books and sets out to go where no Delta Nu has gone before: Harvard Law. Along the way, she proves that being true to yourself never goes out of style.

January 7, 2011, 8pm
January 8, 2011, 2pm & 8pm

The Blue Man Group, well known for their wildly popular theatrical shows and concerts, are impossible to describe. Combining comedy, music and technology, people of all ages agree that the men in blue produce an intensely exciting and wildly outrageous show.

February 5, 2011, 2pm & 8pm

Danny and Sandy fall in love all over again to the tune of your favorite songs: “Summer Nights,” “Greased Lightnin’” and “We Go Together,” as well as additional songs from the hit movie: “Grease,” “Hopelessly Devoted to You” and “You’re the One That I Want.”

March 15 & 16, 2011 7:30pm

The Color Purple is a soul-stirring musical based on the classic Pulitzer Prize-winning novel by Alice Walker and the moving film by Steven Spielberg. It is the unforgettable and inspiring story of a woman named Celie who finds her unique voice in the world.

“Cast & Crew,” the pre-show Q&A program, will continue again in the upcoming season. Anyone with a ticket is eligible to attend this discussion with performers and production members one hour prior to opening-night performances.

Season tickets for the Broadway Series are on sale now. Adult tickets at $276 for box seats, $235 for main floor and first balcony, and $177 for second balcony, and there is a modest discount for student tickets. For more information, call 673-3200 or visit