Based on Edna Ferber’s best selling novel of the same name, the musical follows the lives of the performers, stagehands, and dock workers on the Cotton Blossom, a Mississippi River show boat, over forty years, from 1887 to 1927. With showgirls, gamblers, flappers, nuns and more, Show Boat is an old-fashioned, sweeping epic musical which explores themes of prejudice tragedy and enduring love across racial lines. Show Boat features such classic songs as “Ol’ Man River” & “Can’t Help Lovin’ Dat Man."

From the Director:

"This is the first show on the American Musical stage to show black and white people living together and not treat them in a “color blind” way. This is 1887 on the banks of the Mississippi, a story moving in time to Chicago 1927, an amazing era of black music and dance being infused and celebrated into the white American experience.

We intend to use this show as a catalyst to create safe and honest dialogues around race in America for the cast and the greater Cleveland community. With this production, Near West Theatre continues decades of passion for bringing shows of diversity to our stage, and bringing people together to create them through a life-changing rehearsal experience."

Production Information

Spring Older Teen & Adult Production, ages 16 and up

Production rights by Concord Theatricals.

More info about the show

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