The Music Man ,
an American musical classic first opened on Broadway at the Majestic Theatre on December 19, 1957. With lyrics by playwright Meredith Willson and the story co-written by Meredith Willson and Franklin Lacey, it starred Robert Preston as Professor Harold Hill and Barbara Cook as Marian Paroo, the librarian. The show ran for 1,375 performances. Preston again played the role of Professor Harold Hill in Warner Brothers' 1962 film version, which also starred Buddy Hackett as Marcellus Washburn.

Boulder’s Dinner Theatre's lively production, which runs through Aug 19th, 2006, stars an animated Brian Norber as Professor Harold Hill, lyric sophrano, Teresa Cope as Marian Paroo, Scott Beyette as Marcellus Washburn, Wayne Kennedy as Mayor Shinn, Alicia Dunfee as Eulalie Mackecnie Shinn, and Bryce Baldwin as Winthrop. Members of the Barbershop Quartet include: John Bosick, Ryan Francoeur, Lanny Boyer, and A.K. Klimpke. Barb Reeves plays Marian’s mother, Mrs. Paroo. The show is directed and produced by Michael J. Duran. The orchestra is directed by Neal Dunfee and Chuck Koslowske.

The story centers arounds Professor Harold Hill, a charming con man, who departs a train full of salesmen passing through River City, Iowa in 1912, when hears them talking about how hard it is to sell in Iowa, “You’ve got to know the territory.” He wants to meet the challenge and is sure he can con local citizens into believing that he can form a town band and teach the youngsters to play musical instruments, which he will persuade the parents to buy.

His strategy is to convince the townspeople that the new pool table that has just been placed in the billiard parlor could mean, "Trouble in River City." He creates minor hysteria about, “How to keep the youngsters moral after school." He convinces them that he has a solution to maintain the morality of the town’s youth - by forming a boys marching band.

Harold Hill claims to be from Gary, Indiana and says that he attended the Gary Conservatory of Music, class of '05. However, his plot is thwarted when he becomes attracted to Marian Paroo, the local librarian and piano teacher, who sees through his scam and confronts him with her research that proves Gary, Indiana didn’t even exist in 1905.

When some of the town's officials become suspicious of him, he distracts them by convincing them they can sing and forms them into a barbershop quartet. Then all they want to do is spend their time harmonizing, instead of investigating his musical credentials, as instructed by Mayor Shinn. Professor Hill gets around the mayor’s wife, Eulalie Shinn and the ladies of the town by flattering them and encouraging them to put on a dance concert.

Ultimately Harold Hill wins Marian over by his kindness towards her shy younger brother, Winthrop. Although she realizes he is a fake, she falls in love with him anyway.

After a cacophony of horns from his newly formed band, that attempts to use his, “think system” to play Bach's, "Minuet in G,” Professor Hill is found out by the town’s citizens, but he decides to stay and face the consequences. In the end, the townspeople forgive him because they realize that even though he tried to con them, he brought excitement and spirit to River City.

The musical finale ends with a real uniformed marching band coming on the stage playing the famous theme song, “76 Trombones.”


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