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"Dirty Dancing – The Classic Story on Stage" Returns to Philadelphia!, Merriam Theater Engagement Runs May 16-21, 2017

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Have the time of your life when “Dirty Dancing” dances back into Philadelphia at @KimmelCenter’s Merriam Theater 5/16-21 #BWYPHL #DDOnTour

Press Contacts:

Amanda Conte                                                   Carole Morganti, CJM Public Relations                       

(215) 790-5847                                                  (609) 953-0570

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (Philadelphia, PA, March 23, 2017) –– The staged production of the worldwide smash-hit film – Dirty Dancing – The Classic Story On Stage – will play the Kimmel Center’s Merriam Theater May 16–21, 2017. The production is part of Broadway Philadelphia, presented collaboratively by The Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts and The Shubert Organization. Christopher Tierney of Broadway’s Spidermanwill star as Johnny Castle alongside Bronwyn Reed as Frances “Baby” Houseman.

“We are always thrilled to bring a fan favorite back to Philadelphia and Dirty Dancing is no exception,” said Anne Ewers, President & CEO of the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts. “The film has a special place in the hearts of generations of fans. This live stage adaption adds a new dimension to what is already a classic.”   

Tierney and Reed lead a company of 26 that includes Matthew Amira as Robbie Gould (The Hunchback of Notre Dame – Ogunquit Playhouse), Jordan Edwin André as Billy Kostecki/Singer (West Side Story – Regional), Alyssa Brizzi as Lisa Houseman (Beauty and the Beast – National Tour), Rachel Bell Carpenter as Marjorie Houseman (Dirty Dancing), Jerome Harmann-Hardeman as Tito Suarez (The Full Monty), Jennifer Mealani Jones as Penny Johnson (“So You Think You Can Dance” season 10), Gary Lynch as Max Kellerman (Les Misérables), Jon Powell as Dr. Jake Houseman (The Rose Bowl Queens - LA), Alan Scharf as Mr. Schumacher (Take Her – National Tour) and Matt Surges as Neil Kellerman (A Funny Thing Happened… – Regional). The ensemble comprises Estee Beck, Matthew Borchers, Henry Byalikov, Chante Carmel, Jenifer Dillow, Lindsey Hailes, Michal Kolaczkowski, Kelsey Kramer, Mark MacKillop, Sophie Lee Morris, Katelyn Prominski, Michael Thomas Pugliese, John Swapshire and D. Scott Withers.

“The company that we have assembled for our North American tour is beautiful and truthful,” says Eleanor Bergstein, screenwriter of the film Dirty Dancing and book writer for the musical. “I originally wrote the movie because I love to dance. And since the movie first appeared, the open-hearted audience response has made me believe that everyone has a secret dancer inside them, one they feel could connect them to the physical world in the way they dream. If that was true, then its natural form was theater – live audiences watching live bodies dancing and singing here and now. I have added 20 more new scenes, 36 numbers of live music, and an eight piece band onstage. It’s been a deep pleasure for us to watch audiences around the country respond as this extraordinarily talented group of people brings Dirty Dancing home to North America.”  

The production’s book is written by Eleanor Bergstein and the North American tour is directed by James Powell with choreography by Michele Lynch based on the original choreography by Kate Champion. The creative team also includes Stephen Brimson Lewis (set design), Tim Mitchell (lighting design), Jennifer Irwin (costume design), Bobby Aitken (sound design), Jon Driscoll (video and projection design), Bernie Ardia (hair design), Conrad Helfrich (music supervisor and orchestrations) and Alan Plado (music director).

The production’s book is written by Eleanor Bergstein and the North American tour will be directed by James Powell with choreography by Michele Lynch based on the original choreography by Kate Champion.

Dirty Dancing – The Classic Story On Stage is an unprecedented live experience, exploding with heart-pounding music played live by an eight piece onstage band, passionate romance and sensational dancing. Seen by millions across the globe, this timeless love story features the hit songs “Hungry Eyes,” “Hey Baby,” “Do You Love Me?” and the heart-stopping “(I’ve Had) The Time Of My Life.” London’s Sunday Express says “This crowd-pleasing stage adaptation hits the jackpot!”

It’s the summer of 1963, and 17-year-old Frances ‘Baby’ Houseman is on vacation in New York’s Catskill Mountains with her older sister and parents. Mesmerized by the racy dance moves and pounding rhythms she discovers in the resort’s staff quarters, Baby can’t wait to be part of the scene, especially when she catches sight of Johnny Castle, the resort’s sexy dance instructor. Passions ignite and Baby’s life changes forever when she is thrown in to the deep end as Johnny’s leading lady, both on-stage and off.

Dirty Dancing – The Classic Story On Stage began as an eight-week staged workshop in Manhattan in the fall of 2001. It was first performed at the Theatre Royal in Sydney, Australia in November 2004 before embarking upon a hugely successful tour of Australia and New Zealand. A new production opened at the Theater Neue Flora in Hamburg, Germany in March 2006 where it broke records for achieving the highest advance in European history.

The production began performances on London’s West End in October 2006 with an £11 million advance and went on to become the longest running show in the history of the Aldwych Theatre. It closed in July 2011 in advance of a two-year UK national tour and then returned to London for a strictly limited season at the Piccadilly Theatre.

The show has gone on to perform across the world in markets as diverse as Utrecht, Holland, Johannesburg and Cape Town, South Africa. Most recently, it has been represented by a new UK tour (which launched March 2014 in Bristol), a German tour (which launched April 2014 in Berlin) and an Italian production (which launched October 2014 in Milan). The show returned to Australia with a new tour that premiered in late 2014 in honor of the stage production’s 10th anniversary.

The North American tour of Dirty Dancing – The Classic Story On Stage is produced by Amber Jacobsen, NETworks Presentations LLC, Grove Entertainment and Col Joye in association with Lionsgate (NYSE: LGF), the premier next generation global content leader, and Magic Hour Productions.

For more information, please visit


Merriam Theater at the Kimmel Center Campus

Dates and times:

Tuesday, May 16, 2017, 7:30 pm

Wednesday, May 17, 2017, 7:30 pm

Thursday, May 18, 2017, 7:30 pm

Friday, May 19, 2017, 8:00 pm

Saturday, May 20, 2017, 2:00 pm and 8:00 pm

Sunday, May 21, 2017, 1:00 pm and 6:30 pm


Tickets are on sale to the public now and start at $40.00. Tickets can be purchased by calling (215) 893-1999, visiting, or at the Kimmel Center Box Office. Group sales are available for groups of 10 or more and can be purchased by calling (215) 790-5883. More information at

The Shubert Organization

For more than 100 years, The Shubert Organization has been in the forefront of the American theatre. Under the leadership of Philip J. Smith, Chairman, and Robert E. Wankel, President, the Shubert Organization owns and operates 17 Broadway theatres and six Off-Broadway venues, as well as the Forrest Theatre  in Philadelphia The company has produced and co-produced hundreds of plays and musicals, including the original Broadway production of CATS, Dreamgirls, Sunday in the Park with George, Amadeus, The Real Thing, The Grapes of Wrath, Equus, The Elephant Man, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, Hedwig and the Angry Inch, School of Rock ­The Musical, and The Humans. The Shubert Organization is proud of its ongoing refurbishment program for its theatres, seeking to preserve the historic character while modernizing them to accommodate the needs of today’s audiences.

The Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts

Located in the heart of Center City, Philadelphia, the Kimmel Center’s mission is to operate a world-class performing arts center that engages and serves a broad audience through diverse programming, arts education, and community outreach. The Kimmel Center Campus is comprised of the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts (Verizon Hall, Perelman Theater, SEI Innovation Studio, and the Merck Arts Education Center), the Academy of Music (owned by the Philadelphia Orchestra Association), and the Merriam Theater. The Kimmel Center is also home to eight Resident Companies: The Philadelphia Orchestra, Opera Philadelphia, The Pennsylvania Ballet, The Philly POPS, PHILADANCO, The Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia, The Philadelphia Chamber Music Society and Curtis Institute of Music. With nearly 9,000 seats per night, The Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts is the region’s most impactful performing arts center, and the second largest in the country. TD Bank, America’s Most Convenient Bank, is the season sponsor of the Kimmel Center’s 2016-2017 Season. American Airlines is the official airline of Broadway Philadelphia. For additional information, visit

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For a PDF version of this press release, please click here