MILLBURN, NJ -- Paper Mill Playhouse will open its 2020-2021 season with Clue, directed by Casey Hushion (Oct. 7–Nov. 11, 2020), producing artistic director Mark S. Hoebee and managing director Michael Stotts have announced. 

Next will be the family musical The Sound of Music (Nov. 25, 2020–Jan. 3, 2021), directed and choreographed by Mark S. Hoebee, including the songs “My Favorite Things,” “Edelweiss” and “Climb Every Mountain.” Rodgers and Hammerstein’s final masterpiece conjures an Austria replete with rolling hills, singing nuns, and a tender love story, set in the shadow of World War II.

Beginning the new year, Paper Mill Playhouse presents the Tony Award-winning Disney musical Elton John & Tim Rice’s Aida (Feb. 4 – March 7, 2021), directed by Schele Williams with choreography by Camille A. Brown. This updated version of the Broadway smash offers a fresh take on the tale with a contemporary score, while retaining the iconic characters, and powerful love story of the original production. Following the Paper Mill Playhouse premiere, the production will embark on a national tour.

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The spring welcomes the world premiere musical of The Wanderer (April 8 – May 9, 2021), directed by Kenneth Ferrone, which comes to the stage, in association with Jill Menza, following the show’s postponement from the 2019-2020 season. The new musical is based on the life of Rock & Roll Hall of Famer Dion DiMucci. 

Paper Mill Playhouse will close its 82nd season with the world premiere of Bruce (June 9 – July 4, 2021), directed and choreographed by Donna Feore, a new musical based on The Jaws Log by screenwriter Carl Gottlieb. Chronicling the making of an iconic movie, Bruce tells the story of a then-unknown 26-year-old director named Steven Spielberg, his beleaguered film set, and the challenges that thwarted him and his team at every turn, including the film’s star: an uncooperative mechanical shark named Bruce. 

“Paper Mill Playhouse is thrilled to produce this amazing season featuring both new works and reimagined favorites,” Hoebee said. “Producing new works is central to our vision of becoming recognized as one of the most important incubators of new musical projects. In addition, we endeavor to further the art form by producing reimagined works from the musical theater canon. We look forward to welcoming Thomas Schumacher and Disney Theatrical Productions back to Paper Mill Playhouse to collaborate with this formidable creative team on yet another inspiring piece of theater with a newly re-imagined production of Aida. I also am enormously happy to present the postponed world premiere of The Wanderer, which our audience has been eagerly anticipating.” 

(Watch Hoebee talking about the new season.)

“All of us at Paper Mill Playhouse look forward to turning the lights back on and welcoming audiences back to our theater for this incredibly exciting 2020-2021 season,” Stotts said. “We can’t get through this crisis and continue to fulfill our mission without the many donors and subscribers who take this journey with us every year. With the support of our subscribers and donors, Paper Mill Playhouse will continue to be a leader in creating and producing world-class musical theater and arts education programs while providing access to all.”

“We are honored to actively support Paper Mill Playhouse’s 2020-2021 season of sensational theatrical performances, which will engage audiences of all ages,” said Investors Bank chairman and chief executive officer Kevin Cummings. “Paper Mill enriches our communities by bringing Broadway-quality productions to local families and theater-lovers. More importantly, the theater inspires more than 40,000 students each year by providing invaluable experiences that inspire them in many positive ways. Our bank believes that arts education helps students recognize and develop their creative capabilities, which will serve them for a lifetime.”

Paper Mill Playhouse will produce eight performances a week, Wednesday through Sunday. Three-, four- and five-show subscription packages are available now starting at $114. Each subscription package includes a different level of special benefits (see www.PaperMill.org for details). Youth subscriptions are available for children ages 4-18 with the purchase of an adult subscription with accessible discount pricing. Single tickets will go on sale on Aug. 17, 2020, starting at just $35. Tickets and subscriptions may be purchased by calling (973) 376-4343, or online at www.PaperMill.org

Due to health restrictions the box office is closed for in-person transactions until further notice. Visa, MasterCard, Discover and American Express accepted. Groups of ten or more can receive up to a 40 percent discount on tickets and should call (973) 315-1680. Titles, casting and dates subject to change.

PAPER MILL PLAYHOUSE’S 2020-2021 SEASON

CLUE
A farce-meets-murder-mystery

Based on the Screenplay by Jonathan Lynn
Written by Sandy Rustin
Additional Material by Hunter Foster and Eric Price
Based on the Paramount Pictures Motion Picture
Based on the Hasbro Board Game Clue
Original Music by Michael Holland
Directed by Casey Hushion
October 7–November 11, 2020

Murder and blackmail are on the menu when six mysterious guests assemble for a dinner party at Boddy Manor. Was it Mrs. Peacock in the study with the knife? Or Colonel Mustard in the library with the wrench? Based on the cult 1985 Paramount movie and inspired by the classic Hasbro game, Clue is a whodunit that will leave you dying of laughter. Casey Hushion (Resident Director, Mean Girls, Disney’s Aladdin) directs.

*

THE SOUND OF MUSIC
A triumphant story of family and love

Music by Richard Rodgers
Lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II
Book by Howard Lindsay and Russel Crouse
Suggested by The Trapp Family Singers by Maria Augusta Trapp
Directed and Choreographed by Mark S. Hoebee
November 25, 2020–January 3, 2021

Celebrate the holidays with the heart-soaring melodies of The Sound of Music, including such beloved gems as “My Favorite Things,” “Edelweiss,” and “Climb Every Mountain.”     

                            Directed by Paper Mill Producing Artistic Director Mark S. Hoebee, Rodgers and Hammerstein’s final musical conjures an Austria replete with rolling hills, singing nuns, and a tender love story, set in the shadow of World War II.

*

ELTON JOHN & TIM RICE’S AIDA
The timeless tale of lovers torn between their nations and each other

Music by Elton John
Lyrics by Tim Rice
Book by *Robert Falls, Linda Woolverton and David Henry Hwang
Revised by David Henry Hwang
Choreographed by Camille A. Brown
Directed by Schele Williams
February 4–March 7, 2021

This updated and reimagined version of the Tony-winning Broadway smash offers a fresh take on the tale with a contemporary score, while retaining the iconic characters and powerful love story of the original production. The show features Elton John and Tim Rice’s Tony- and Grammy-winning music and a revised book by David Henry Hwang (who co-authored the acclaimed original production with Linda Woolverton and Robert Falls), with direction by Schele Williams (original Broadway cast) and choreography by Tony nominee Camille A. Brown.

*

THE WANDERER
(A World-Premiere Musical)
Based on the Life and Music of Dion

Book by Charles Messina
Produced in Cooperation with Dion
Directed by Kenneth Ferrone
April 8 – May 9, 2021

Dion. One name set the standard of cool for a generation. But how does a kid from the Bronx make it to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame? In The Wanderer, the incredible musical journey of a troubled young man turned teenage heartthrob (and, ultimately, rock and roll icon) is told in intimate and no-holds-barred detail. Dion’s music helped define a generation of rock and rollers. His lifelong battle with addiction shed a stark light on the darker side of fame and success. This musical takes both subjects head on, set to the iconic sound of an incomparable era in American music, and celebrates the triumph of the human spirit against all odds. The Wanderer is the riveting true story of Dion, New York’s rebel king, the man Bruce Springsteen calls “the link between Frank Sinatra and rock and roll.”

*

BRUCE
(A World-Premiere Musical)
A man, a mechanical shark, and the making of a masterpiece

Music by Richard Oberacker
Book and Lyrics by Richard Oberacker and Robert Taylor
Based on the book The Jaws Log by screenwriter Carl Gottlieb
Directed and Choreographed by Donna Feore
June 9 – July 4, 2021