Coming up this weekend at Huntington's Ritter Park amphitheater is an original musical based on the life of Huntington's namesake - Collis P! (as in Collis P. Huntington).
My pal Dave Lavender wrote an excellent story for the Herald-Dispatch about the production and its writer and director, Clint McElroy. You can read the article right here - here's an excerpt:
It seems appropriate for a musical about a railroad tycoon that it has been a slow train coming.
But perhaps Collis P is arriving right on time.
It was exactly 20 years ago this summer that Clint McElroy, Dave Wiley and Cliff Haddox were backstage during a Huntington Outdoor Theatre production of The Music Man talking about what would make a good theater show when McElroy blurted out about how cool it would be to do a show about Collis P. Huntington, the colorful railroad tycoon who founded Huntington and changed America and the world forever by funding the completion of the Transcontinental Railroad.
That conversation set McElroy, the well-known radio and stage personality, on a long and winding journey in birthing, Collis P, a new history-fueled musical that HART in the Park and The Greater Huntington Park and Recreation District will premiere at 8:30 p.m. Friday, July 10.
The new musical with book and lyrics McElroy and music by Ashland writer and musician, Danny Craig, will then be performed for the next three weekends - 8:30 p.m. July 10-12, 17-19, and July 24-26 at Ritter Park Amphitheater.
Gates open at 7 p.m., a children's pre-show "Wonderland" begins at 7:30 p.m., there's an adult or community pre-show at 8 p.m., and the main show begins at 8:30 p.m.
Tickets are $10 for children, $15 adults, $20 for reserved seating. Group rates are available. Folks can bring a chair or blanket to sit on and a picnic dinner with any legal beverages. There are also full concessions nightly.