Editor’s note: Director’s Chair is a column where Kris Sabel, who is in charge of cultural programming for the Vail Valley Foundation, gives his expert take on shows not to be missed at the Vilar Performing Arts Center in Beaver Creek.
It seems that summer in the Vail Valley began only a short time ago, and yet it’s already time to start thinking about winter — the Vilar Performing Arts Center’s winter Broadway season to be more specific. Tickets are already on-sale for what I believe is an amazing lineup of hit Broadway shows and reviews. The highlight for many of you will be “Mamma Mia!” on Feb. 3. But I think they are all great offerings, and I hope you will take some time to review all of the performances because you don’t want to miss a hidden gem.
The opportunity to see a show like “Mamma Mia!” or “Man of La Mancha” in our intimate venue is truly special. I know from experience because I often see these productions in much larger theaters, and then when I see them again in the cozy atmosphere of the Vilar Center I feel like I am seeing them for the first time. I know I’m not alone in this thinking as I hear similar comments from our patrons who say things like, “I saw this on Broadway and liked it, but I was concerned about how good this touring production would be, but to tell you the truth, I liked this production better.” While many of our second-home owners and guests may have seen these productions elsewhere, I realize that for many of our locals this may be their first or only chance to see these shows, so we are especially proud to make these opportunities available to our community.
Here’s a quick rundown of the Broadway season:
“100 Years of Broadway” (Dec. 30)- Five Broadway stars singing the songs they made famous on Broadway.
“Man of La Mancha” (Jan. 28) — “Dream the Impossible Dream” … There are certain Broadway shows that resonate for a long, long time, and this is one of them. Last year’s production of “Fiddler on the Roof” was one of those shows, and I think “Man of La Mancha” will be as well.
“Mamma Mia!” (Feb. 3) — This show hasn’t been around this long for no reason.
“TAO: Phoenix Rising” (Feb. 25) — Two years ago, we presented “TAO: The Art of the Drum” and we were so blown away by the artistry and energy of this company that we had to bring their new show.
“The Ten Tenors on Broadway” (Feb. 26) — Witness these great looking Australian tenors’ raw power and soothing beauty as they sing the very best of Broadway! What’s not to like?
“The Midtown Men” (March 21) — Don’t let this title fool you, these are four of the original stars of Jersey Boys singing all those great songs of the 60s that we know and love. I saw this in NYC a couple of years ago and knew it would be a hit for our audiences. For those who were disappointed when Frankie Valle had to cancel a number of years ago, here’s your chance to see the guys who made his music relevant again.
This season, we are offering a Broadway Season Package for the first time. There are two different options and either is your best chance to get the best seats at the best price before these shows sell out. This special offer is not available online, but rather by calling our box office at 970-845-8497 or visiting us in person at the VPAC in Beaver Creek or at the Gerald R. Ford Amphitheater Box Office in Vail.
Please don’t wait too long, only to hear the words “sold out.” Buy your season package today and join our growing Broadway community for some genuinely special shows this coming winter.
I’ll see you at the shows!