The New World School of the Arts college music theater students take to the stage this month with the Broadway musical Ragtime, written by the award-winning composer/lyricist team of Stephen Flaherty and Lynn Ahrens, and noted playwright, Terrence McNally – based on the novel by E. L. Doctorow. Under the direction of NWSA dean of theater Patrice Bailey, and faculty member James Randolph, the award-winning musical highlights the artistic talent of the acting and music theater students in the theater BFA program.
“Although our time period for Ragtime is in the early 1900’s there is much relevance to our lives in America today,” explained dean Bailey. “Ragtime offers us a story of the American dream and what it means to an upper-class woman, a newly arrived immigrant, and a Harlem musician who all find courage and conviction in the hope for change and the future of America.”
Ragtime is a story of life in America at the turn of the century. It was a time of enormous change in the country and the economy was booming and growing at fast rate. Industrial growth was expanding and immigrants were changing the landscape of the country while the rich were getting richer. It was a time of mass production – creating industrial plants and factories. Labor unions began to form, and workers began to strike. It was also a time for immigrants and black America to fight for equality and justice.
The Ragtime musical style was created in African American communities throughout the southern parts of the Midwest, particularly St. Louis. Its name is believed to be a contraction of the term “ragged time,” which refers to its rhythmically broken up melodies.
A Florida center of excellence in the visual and performing arts, New World School of the Arts is an educational partnership of Miami-Dade County Public Schools, Miami Dade College, and University of Florida. NWSA provides a comprehensive program of artistic, creative, and academic development through a curriculum that reflects our community and the rich multicultural state of Florida. Through our partners NWSA confers the high school diploma, Associate of Arts degree, and Bachelor of Fine Arts and Bachelor of Music degrees in programs accredited by the National Association of Schools of Dance, Music, Theater and Art & Design. NWSA’s rigorous eight-year curriculum and conservatory-style teaching has empowered students in our community and our nation to become leaders in the arts for more three decades.
Information about New World School of the Arts at 305-237-3135 or nwsa.mdc.edu.
RAGTIME opens on Friday, February 25; 7 PM at Louise O. Gerrits Theater; 25 NE 2nd Street, 8th Floor, Miami. Follow-up shows are on February 26; 2 PM & 7 PM and February 27; 2 PM
Tickets are $15 for general admission; $10 for students and seniors.