Summer of 2019 sees a classic American musical revived at Goodman Theatre. The Music Man, directed by Mary Zimmerman, is sure one of the highlights of the Goodman’s 2018/2019 Season. In anticipation of this sure-to-be spectacular production, we look back at Zimmerman’s history with the Goodman and Chicago’s vibrant theater community.
Award-winning director and playwright Mary Zimmerman has a long history with Chicago Theatre. Zimmerman is an ensemble member of the Lookingglass Theatre Company and the Manilow Resident Director at the Goodman. She received her BS, MA and PhD from Northwestern University, where she now serves as the Jaharis Family Foundation Professor of Performance Studies. Known mainly for her fresh takes on classic texts and stories, Zimmerman’s work encompasses everything from adapting Ovid to co-writing new operas, including Galileo Galilei, which premiered at Goodman Theatre in 2002. In the past decade, Zimmerman’s natural flair for musical storytelling has also been recognized, and her new productions of classic operas at New York’s Metropolitan Opera have been a great success.
Zimmerman’s unique ability to reimagine and reinvent classic stories for the modern era makes her a natural fit at Goodman Theatre. Her hit musical productions, including 2010’s Candide by Leonard Bernstein, 2013’s world-premiere of The Jungle Book and 2016’s revival of Wonderful Town, were adored by audiences and critics alike. The Chicago Tribune called Wonderful Town “the funniest show Mary Zimmerman ever has directed among her huge body of work in Chicago,” and The New York Times said of The Jungle Book: “Zimmerman has the sensibility of a stage poet.”
PHOTO GALLERY: Zimmerman at the Goodman
Next summer Mary Zimmerman will be at the helm of one of the most beloved American musicals of the 20th century, Meredith Willson’s The Music Man. A classic American tale of charismatic con man Harold Hill and his target, the unsuspecting town of River City, The Music Man’s infectious charm is sure to be hottest ticket in town for summer 2019. And with Zimmerman’s eye-catching designs and knack for inventive storytelling, the production promises to be a treat, with a few surprises too!