In the Darkness of a Rising Dawn, Axelrod's RAGTIME Illuminates the Night

Award-winning Director/Choreographer, Salgado, Makes Show Shiny and New
By: Axelrod Performing Arts Center
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RUMSON, N.J. - March 7, 2018 - PRLog -- It is very difficult for anyone intimately familiar with either the 1975 novel RAGTIME, or its brilliant 1996 musical adaptation of the same name, to believe that the story is 43 and 22 years old, respectively, when watching Axelrod Performing Arts Center's most recent, impactful production. The reason for this sense of disbelief isn't due to the story's familiar themes of uneasy attitudes toward immigration and immigrants, social and economic inequality, or racial tensions but, sadly, that these themes are so painfully timely for today's audiences. The proverbial 'theatrical mirror' is in no way hidden from view as RAGTIME's award-winning and socially aware director/choreographer, Luis Salgado (whom has called "one of the young Latinos on Broadway who has dedicated his entire life to both dance and social work"), has brilliantly meshed our chaotic current climate with the palpable past...and effortlessly.

Powerful and emotional themes aside, this current and creator-blessed production (multiple-award winning and prolific Neptune resident and lyricist, Lynn Ahrens, has shared her enthusiasm for Salgado's visionary interpretation) is breathtaking in all the ways that theater aspires to be: fluid in its storytelling, heartbreaking and comedic in equal proportions, awe-inspiring in the professionalism of the cast's acting, vocal, and dance talents, and visually dazzling; thanks to the 'stage pictures' which Salgado creates on an inspired yet minimalistic set construction.

Salgado has masterfully weaved the skills he has acquired through association with highly successful and more contemporary work such as In the Heights (which he directed/choreographed for APAC in 2017), On Your Feet: The Gloria and Emilio Estefan Musical, and the film Step Up 2 - The Streets and brought that intensity to this dawn of the 20th century tale; making it fresh for both veteran theater-goers and less-than-avid musical theater audiences.

This first production of 2018 for the newly 'upgraded' to regional status Axelrod (lead by CEO, Jess Levy, and Artistic Director, Andrew DePrisco) has set the bar exceedingly and excitingly high...not only for this nationally emerging shore-side facility but for Monmouth County arts in general.

RAGTIME: The Musical at the non-for-profit Axelrod Performing Arts Center can be seen March 10th, 17th, 23rd, and 24th at 8pm, March 11th, 18th, 25th and 3pm, and March 17th at 2pm.  Premium Adult Tickets are $42, Premium Senior Seats are $39, Regular Adult Tickets are $38, and Regular Senior Seats are $35...and can be purchased on the Axelrod's website at

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Thomas Ryan Ward
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Tags:Theatre, Musicals, Jersey
Location:Rumson - New Jersey - United States
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