Jukebox musicals are so meta: Often, they’re about how someone got famous enough to be the subject of a jukebox musical.

In its newly announced 2020-21 season, NC Theatre, the nonprofit professional theater company that stages Broadway musicals with regional actors at Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts, explores how a number of household names earned that status, from Gloria Estefan to Johnny Cash.

Titled “Sing Out and Soar,” the season “celebrates some of the most iconic names in entertainment and how they found their own voices, propelling them into greatness,” said Eric Woodall, NC Theatre’s producing artistic director, in a press release.

This is the second season in a row where the theater will produce all six shows in its lineup under Woodall, a native of Benson who spent years as a casting director on Broadway.

The season begins in October with the Dolly-Parton-scored 9 to 5the Musical, followed in November by Billie Holiday tribute Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar and Grill. February 2021 will bring Sister Act, while spring brings On Your Feet! The Story of Emilio and Gloria Estefan, Man in Black salute Ring of Fire, and Peter Pan, presumably more for that soaring business than for his jukebox hits.

Update: The season has been rescheduled because of the COVID-19 shutdown. The new dates are as follows:

SISTER ACT: February 9-14, 2021

ON YOUR FEET: March 23-28, 2021

RING OF FIRE: April 30-May 9, 2021

PETER PAN: July 27-August 1, 2021

9 TO 5: October 12-17, 2021


Season subscriptions are currently on sale starting at $232; find them online or at the NC Theatre box office at 919-831-6941.

Contact arts and culture editor Brian Howe at bhowe@indyweek.com. 

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