We have Great Expectations! The premiere of the musical "Great Expectations" at USF, summer 2010 will be worth the wait for its 96 year old adapter
"GREAT EXPECTATIONS" : The Musical
About this project:
96 year old former teacher turns Dickens classic into musical!
At 96 years old, Margaret Hoorneman may be about to realize a long-time ambition: The adaptation of Charles Dicken's "Great Expectations" as a musical, premiering on a Tony-Award winning stage. (The status of the theatre is BEYOND her expectations!)
Help make Margaret's dream come true:
At the young age of 82, Margaret, a former English teacher, grew tired of waiting for someone else to make this into a musical and took matters into her own hands. With the help of friends and family her initial draft has been turned into a full-fledged musical production. (See details below, if interested.)
Official Opening:July 9 (showing July 1st - August 28th 2010)
Where: The Utah Shakespearean Festival in Cedar City, Utah, Randall L. Jones Theatre (769 seats)
What is needed: The festival has not allocated funds to pay for travel and accommodations for the writing team, including Margaret, without whom this would not be (and who, at this stage of her life, needs a nurse, who will also be traveling with her). Also we have been asked to supplement production costs, given the economic downturn and resulting loss of grants.
Please help Margaret's dream come true! Not only will this make her dream come true but it will give so many the once in a lifetime chance to see "Great Expectations: The Musical!"
How you can help: We are seeking funds to cover all the extras discussed above. We only need $10,000 more to make this happen. We are asking you to open your hearts and pocketbooks to give in any amount you can (from $25) to support this project. Who knows maybe this will start a healthy trend among VERY senior citizens everywhere!!!
As an English teacher in Iowa in the late 60’s and all of the 70’s, Margaret Hoorneman had instilled in her students, a passion for literature through this great work. She says it is because they could identify with the trials and tribulations of Pip. It was about that time that “Oliver” and “A Christmas Carol” were made into musicals and she thought that “Great Expectations" could be even better adapted to that format. So she waited for someone else to take that step. She waited and waited and now fast forward to her retirement years in Ft. Myers, Florida. At 82, tiring of the usual retirement community activities, she took on this daunting task herself with the focus on staying very true to the intent of Charles Dickens, using in fact, many of his own passages and inserting suggestions where lyrics would be appropriate. She then showed the work (long-hand, mind you) to her critical family who felt it had merit. Grandson, Brian VanDerWilt conveniently , happened to be a writer for Disney Studios at the time, and so this was a logical starting point. Margaret sent it to him and then basically abandoned the idea. Unbeknownst to her, he enthusiastically embraced it and immediately enlisted the help of Dick Winzler, a talented composer who fell in love with the project and began writing the score for it immediately and then another great talent, lyricist, Steve Lane also became involved. In fact this dynamic duo have been favorably compared to Gilbert and Sullivan, by people in the know! Meanwhile, it was decided by the family that a great theme for her 85th birthday party would be “Send Margaret to Hollywood”. What better way to ensure her zest for life than through this sort of endeavor? That is when the project took wing. Steve Lozier, a great Dickens fan and very capable script specialist, and Brian combined their considerable talents and worked together to whittle down Margaret’s eight hour production into a manageable three hours. The revised script and the beginnings of the musical score were presented to a very pleased and surprised Margaret and dazzled all the birthday party guests who immediately formed a fan club. Renowned director Richard J. Alexander agreed to direct the first reading of this project in May 2001 with such stellar performers as Cloris Leachman, Hugh Panara, Anastasia Barzee, and others. There was a full page article about the musical and the Grandmother/Grandson team in the "New York Times" in May of that year. We had every reason to believe that we were Broadway bound. Then 9-11 happened and money for anything new and untried simply dried up. Much happened since that first reading in 2001, the child actors outgrew their parts and most of the other actors went on to bigger things. But the loyalty of the core creative team, and the dedication to the project was unwavering. They injectedt new dynamic energy into the project by involving an enthusiastic icon in the theatre world, Jules Aaron, to direct it. He had 250 stage and TV productions under his belt and now he was ready and willing to join our team to create again!
After many incarnations and a smattering of awards, bringing recognition and keeping the project alive, it is finally here thanks to the vision of the Artistic Director, R. Scott Phillips and his team at the Utah Shakespearean Festival who happened to catch a workshop version performance of it at the Odyssey Theater in LA in 2009. We encourage you all to make travel plans at sometime during the summer, to not only witness the launching of a terrific musical, but also to enjoy the other offerings of this fine theatrical complex . And bonus of bonuses it is near the spectacularly beautiful Zion and Bryce Canyons. The experience promises to heighten all of your senses and bring you untold joy. See you there!
For tickets and information go to : www.greatexpectationsmusical.com where you will also read about each member of our amazingly accomplished creative team.
Please put “expectations” in the code section when ordering tickets.
We, The Friends of Margaret and “Great Expectations” cannot thank you enough for your interest and support. We have “Great Expectations” that we will exceed our financial goal through this effort and your help.
Donations are being accepted through this website and the G&G Darehshori Foundation. This is a 501 (c) 3 charity, and donations are tax deductible. A receipt letter can be sent upon request.
Have a question? If the info above doesn't help, you can ask the project creator directly.
pledged of $10,000 goal
seconds to go
Apr 20, 2010 - Jun 30, 2010
Pledge $25 or more
As appreciation for your support we would like to offer you a free CD containing the complete musical performance of "Great Expectations" with your $25 dollar donation.
Pledge $50 or more
As appreciation for your support we would like to offer you a free CD containing the complete musical performance of "Great Expectations" and a free designer tee-shirt containing the first 5 notes of the theme song on the front and your personalized message on the back. Receive these 2 great gifts with your donation of $50 or more!
Pledge $1,000 or more
One glorious week (anytime there is availability between May1 and Nov 1) on the gulf of Mexico in a million dollar state of the art beachfront two bedroom, two bath condo on Sanibel Island, Fl AND a sunset dinner with Margaret and family learning the secrets to longevity and living your dreams!