Thursday, September 8, 2022








The Axelrod Performing Arts Center announces our three main-stage musicals for 2023, including the 50th anniversary revival of a forgotten Black musical, the first production of a recent Broadway favorite and the first musical in our new Sondheim Centennial Project, a major eight-year celebration of the musicals of the legendary Stephen Sondheim. We welcome two new directors this season, Evelyn Collins, collaborating with two-time Tony winner Phylicia Rashad, and up-and-coming director-choreographer Eamon Foley, and we are thrilled to welcome back Tony-nominee Hunter Foster, who directed last season’s highly acclaimed musical The Bridges of Madison County


Fiftieth Anniversary Revival of 


Based on Lorraine Hansberry’s

A Raisin in the Sun

Production Consultant, Phylicia Rashad

Director, Evelyn Collins 

Music by Judd Woldin, lyrics by Robert Brittan

Book by Robert Nemiroff and Charlotte Zaltzberg


Performances: February 24 through March 12, 2023


Lorraine Hansberry's classic A Raisin in the Sun is transformed into a soulful, inspiring musical as a proud Black family's quest for a better life explodes in song, dance and incisive human drama. Tony Award winner for Best Musical, Raisin ran for over two years on Broadway and enjoyed a record-breaking national tour, including 40 major cities in the US and Canada, being seen by 3.5 million people.

Marking the fiftieth anniversary of Raisins opening on Broadway, with the approval of the Hansberry Estate and in association with Production Consultant, Phylicia Rashad (Two-time Tony winner, A Raisin in the Sun and Skelton Crew and three-time Emmy nominee), the Axelrod production will be directed by Evelyn Collins (Founder of the Denzel Washington School of the Arts) and be a major part of New Jersey’s Black History Month observations.

The story of a Black family aspiring to move out of the Southside, Chicago projects in the 1950s, Raisin is a poignant reflection on the American Dream, the obstacles Black families face, and the true meaning of trust, family and love.

The New York Times critic Clive Barnes noted that the book of the musical “is perhaps even better than the play... 'Raisin' is one of those unusual musicals that should not only delight people who love musicals but might also well delight people who don't.”



 The Prom 

Directed by Hunter Foster

Music by Matthew Sklar, lyrics by Chad Beguelin

Book by Bob Martin and Chad Beguelin

Based on an original concept by Jack Viertel


Performances: May 5 through May 21, 2023


New Jersey’s first professional production of the musical that Billboard calls “Hairspray meets Dear Evan Hansen,” The Prom opened on Broadway in 2018 and was a Broadway critics’ darling with six Tony nominations. Jesse Green in the New York Times called it "such a joyful hoot….it makes you believe in musical comedy again." The Axelrod’s production will be directed by Tony nominee Hunter Foster.

Recently made into a Hollywood film, The Prom tells the story of four eccentric Broadway stars who are in desperate need of a new stage. So, when they hear that trouble is brewing around a small-town prom, they know that it’s time to put a spotlight on the issue…and themselves. The town’s parents want to keep the high school dance on the straight and narrow—but when one student just wants to bring her girlfriend to prom, the entire town has a date with destiny.

On a mission to transform lives, Broadway’s brassiest join forces with a courageous girl and the town’s citizens and the result is love that brings them all together. This musical with real heart guarantees real laughs and real tears!




 Sunday in the Park with George


Directed and Choreographed by Eamon Foley

Music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim

Book by James Lapine 


Performances: November 3 through November 19, 2023


The first musical in the Axelrod’s Sondheim Centennial Project will be the Pulitzer Prize-winning masterpiece Sunday in the Park with George, written with James Lapine, regarded as one of the most acclaimed musicals of all time. The 1984 musical, which originally starred Bernadette Peters and Mandy Patinkin, was inspired by the French pointillist painter Georges Seurat's painting A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte. The Broadway production was nominated for an astounding ten Tony Awards, including Best Musical.

The Sondheim Centennial Project, curated by Artistic Director Andrew DePrisco, will present one Sondheim musical each year until Stephen Sondheim’s 100th birthday anniversary in 2030, as well as concerts and showcases of living composers, to honor the master’s commitment to new voices and the future of musical theater.

Eamon Foley, who began his Broadway career in 13 The Musical, is one of Broadway’s up-and-coming director-choreographers, who frequently works alongside Tony Award-winning director Michael Arden. Foley’s strikingly new concept for Sunday revolves around the use of color, light and movement to invite the audience into George’s mind to better understand his creative process and his personal struggles. Celebrating “the art of making art,” we bring the colors on George’s pallet to life through dance and light, allowing the audience to live alongside the painter as he creates his masterpiece.





APAC SHOW PASSES – Save Up to 48% on Our Musicals!

The Axelrod offers SHOW PASSES (for 6 tickets or 10 tickets) good for Premium seats for any musical on the mainstage. You can mix and match tickets, use the tickets for friends, come to multiple performances of the same show, or spread them out over all shows.






After six years ON Broadway and ten years OFF Broadway, AVENUE Q has finally crossed the Bridge and the Tunnel to come to New Jersey. From the creator of The Book of MormonAvenue Q cannot be WOKE or CANCELLED!

Winner of the Tony Award "Triple Crown" (Best Musical, Best Score and Best Book), the show is as relevant and laugh-out-loud funny today as it ever was. The content in the show is meant for Adults (and ONLY Adults who won’t be easily offended by the musical’s content and who will be in tune with the show’s intent, a positive message for all humankind.) The show is NOT meant for children.

With music and lyrics by Robert Lopez and Jeff Marx and a book by Jeff Whitty, Avenue Q tells the timeless story of a recent college grad named Princeton, who moves into a shabby New York apartment all the way out on Avenue Q, which he soon discovers is far from an ordinary neighborhood. Filled with gut-busting humor and a delightfully catchy score, not to mention puppets, Avenue Q continues to make us laugh, learn and reconsider the world around us.

The Axelrod’s all-star professional cast of actors and puppeteers will be directed by Todd LaBron Underwood with the original Broadway cast of puppets designed (and coached!) by Rick Lyon, himself a member of the original cast.


Stay tuned for details on the cast!