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This epic new musical by the award-winning composer/lyricist team Stephen Flaherty and Lynn Ahrens (Lucky Stiff, My Favorite Year, Once On This Island, Seussical) paints a nostalgic and powerful portrait of life in turn of the century America. Based on E.L. Doctorow's distinguished novel, Ragtime intertwines three distinct stories that poignantly illustrate history's timeless contradictions of wealth and poverty, freedom and prejudice, hope and despair, and love and hate.

Flaherty's score is just as diverse as the Melting Pot of America that it seeks to recreate. It draws upon traditional Jewish folk sounds to color the haunting music of the immigrants, Vaudeville's outrageous style to capture the spectacle of Evelyn Nesbit, and Joplin and Jazz to invoke the enlivened spirit of Harlem.

With a book by Terrance McNally (Kiss of the Spider Woman, Master Class), this 1998 Tony award winning show for best score, book, and orchestrations, features such show stopping songs as "Getting Ready Rag," "Your Daddy's Son," "Wheels of a Dream," "Till We Reach That Day," "Back To Before," and "Make Them Hear You." This momentous musical is sure to inspire actors and audiences alike!

Jay Manley

Ragtime is the story of America. It is the story of the American Dream. It reminds each of us where we came from, and of the aspirations of our ancestors who came here seeking a better life for all of us who have come after, and received the benefits of their sacrifices. Ragtime also deals with the most pivotal issue of American life: race. Can we all, in this great melting pot of ours, actually coexist, thrive and come to appreciate each other? I love this show because it speaks to the heart of a "best" America. More important, as theatre, it speaks to the hearts of audience members, bringing them, alternately, to laughter, tears and cheers. This is epic theatre in the style of Show Boat, casting a long shadow across the great landscape of the American Musical Theatre, and justly earning Time Magazine's critical appraisal following it's 1996 Broadway opening, "The last great musical of the 20th Century."

Foothill Music Theatre welcomes back James Monroe Iglehart, Bay Area Theatre Critics' Circle winner for Foothill's 2001 production of Show Boat, as the very memorable Joe, singing Old Man River.
sarah cole

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Get a peek at what's going on behind-the-scenes, as we bring this classic American musical to life this summer. Our show blog will give you that peek, plus lots of other news and information about the show: The "Ragtime" Show Blog