The Short List



      LAST CHANCE TO SEE Goodspeed Musicals’ production of LMNOP, a compelling new musical based on Mark Dunn’s novel Ella Minnow Pea. The show incorporates a love story, a clever word game and a fable. When letters begin dropping from a town monument, government officials attempt to ban them but a teenage girl rallies the community to fight for freedom of speech. Paul Loesel wrote the music and Scott Burkell the book and lyrics. The play runs through Aug. 18.

       At the Goodspeed Opera House in East Haddam, cabaret singer Klea Blackburst (pictured) sings her heart out as meddlesome Dolly Levi in Hello, Dolly! Blackburst is best known for her 2001 tribute to belter Ethel Merman, Everything the Traffic Will Allow. The seasoned cast also features Ashley Brown (Broadway’s Mary Poppins and Belle in Beauty and the Beast) and Tony Sheldon (Broadway’s Priscilla Queen of the Desert). Daniel Goldstein, who directed the recent Broadway revival of Godspell, directs the production, which features the classic Jerry Herman score with book by Michael Stewart (which was based on Thornton Wilder’s The Matchmaker).

      The legendary Herman, 81, has maintained a close relationship with Goodspeed Musicals. In 2000 his musical Dear World played at the Norma Terris Theatre, in 2007 he received the Goodspeed Award for Outstanding Contribution to Musical Theatre, and last year his blockbuster Mame was a sellout at the Opera House. Demand for Hello, Dolly! tickets prompted the addition of a dozen performances to the play’s schedule before it even opened in June; the show runs through Sept. 14.

(Photo by Diane Sobolewski)

  For tickets, call 860/873-8668 or visit           



       Singer/songwriter John Mayer recently launched his first major tour in three years (he was out of action due to a throat granuloma) to support his latest studio album, Born and Raised.

      The Fairfield native brings the show to Comcast Theater in Hartford on Aug. 16 with American Idol Phillip Phillips as the opening act.

      A portion of each ticket sold will go to The Veterans Health Research Institute’s work toward bettering the health of military veterans returning from active duty, a cause Mayer has been committed to for some time.


      For tickets, visit



      There are some wild things going on at Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo. Take a ride on a camel through Labor Day Hop atop one of the zoo’s two new dromedaries, Toby and Goliath, on the greenhouse lawn where rides are available from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

      Tickets are available at the front gate, gift shop, carousel, and at the camel ride (cash only). While there are no age restrictions for riders, anyone five years old and younger requires an adult rider with them. For the health and welfare of the camels, the operators can limit the weight for each camel ride at their discretion. Tickets $5 per person (includes a photo, too).

      For more information, visit







The Short List

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