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‘PAZZAZZ!’ Coming to the Lobero This Weekend

The story of vaudeville comedians Joe Weber and Lew Fields opens Friday

Milt Larsen and Arlene Larsen present PAZZAZZ!, a brand-new “old Broadway musical,” opening this weekend at the historic Lobero Theatre, 33 E. Canon Perdido St. in Santa Barbara.

PAZZAZZ! is the fascinating story about legendary vaudeville comedians Joe Weber and Lew Fields, as told through George Cohan, the “King of Broadway.” The story takes place during picturesque turn-of-the century Manhattan, as vaudeville was transitioning into Broadway.

The musical is a creation by two longtime friends and collaborators. Richard Sherman is the composer, with his brother Robert Sherman, of many beloved movie musicals, including Mary Poppins, The Jungle Book, Aristocats and Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. Sherman has won Oscars, Grammys and Tonys, and even a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for his shows, musicals and songs such as “Spoonful of Sugar,” “Chim Chim Cheree” and “It’s a Small World After All.”

Sherman’s collaborator (and Santa Barbara resident) Milt Larsen is best known for bringing — literally — magic and pazzazz to productions across the nation. Larsen created the It’s Magic! touring revue show and founded The Magic Castle, the Mayfair Music Hall in Santa Monica (a Victorian music hall featuring live stage shows), the Variety Arts Theatre in Los Angeles and Caesars Magical Empire in Las Vegas.

PAZZAZZ! brings more joyous music of Richard Sherman to production, along with dazzling period costumes created by Arlene “Zam” Larsen, fabulous choreography and delightful characters from history. Cohan takes the audience back in time to learn about the antics and adventures of legendary writers/producers comedians Weber and Fields.

For audiences who relish the opportunity to see a full-length professional Broadway musical, but wary of sitting through “contemporary” language and themes, Pazzazz! will prove to be a satisfyingly upbeat show.

PAZZAZZ! will be performed at 8 p.m. this Friday, March 25, at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. Saturday, and at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are $22, $32 and $42 through the Lobero box office at 805.963.0761.

— Therese Ireland represents PAZZAZZ!.

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