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PPAC releases 2012-2013 'hottest hits' season schedule: Cranston man performs at gala announcement

Warwick’s Joe Walsh, Chairman of the Board of the Providence Performing Arts Center, announced the exciting 2012-2013 Broadway Series last week at a gala 35th anniversary gathering that also featured Cranston native Dan Mills, one of the stars in the upcoming musical tour of “Million Dollar Quartet,” coming to PPAC in January.

The cast of the Tony Award-winning musical “Million Dollar Quartet,” with Mills playing rock and roll legend Carl Perkins, performed a number of songs from the show for the large gathering. Mills was thrilled to be in Rhode Island and spend a night with his family in Cranston.

“My parents still live in the same house,” he said. “I went to Woodridge School, Western Hills and Cranston West. I was in the Marching Band. I played the trumpet.”

The rest of the cast, all from the southern part of the States, listened in on the interview, learning more about Mills’ Yankee upbringing and kidding him about his northern accent.

Mills has his own five-piece band, which includes another Cranstonian, Jesse Humphrey.

“I graduated from Ithaca College and formed the band,” he said. “We were playing in a night club in New York City. A casting agent was in the audience and asked me to audition for the Perkins’ role.”

Singer-songwriter Dan Mills landed the role and starred in the Broadway show. The show is still in New York City, and he’s not sure if he will be in the touring group, but said that right now he is “just enjoying the moment, and we’ll see where it goes.”

Mills has released two full-length albums. You can check out his music for free at www.danmills.net.

Broadway & Contemporary Classics Season

In a departure from past years, President Lynn Singleton, who has brought the “hottest hits” from Broadway to Rhode Island for the past 29 years, has scheduled a show for this summer.

“Jersey Boys,” the Tony Award-winning musical about Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons, which sold out most performances at PPAC two years ago, will fill the usually darkened theatre for three weeks, from August 15 to Sept. 2.

The regular season begins Oct. 7-14 with “Catch Me If You Can,” the musical about the true story of Frank Abagnale Jr., who posed as a doctor, airline pilot and lawyer.

The National tour of “Elf,” the original musical about an orphan who believes he is one of Santa’s elves, begins in Providence, another coupe for Singleton, playing Nov. 4-10.

“Memphis”, the hot new Broadway musical, plays Dec. 4-9, followed by “Jekyl & Hyde” starring American Idol contestant Constantine Maroulis and R & B star Deborah Cox, which begins New Year’s Day 2013 and runs until Jan. 6. “Million Dollar Quartet” runs Jan. 15-20, followed by the musical “Sister Act” from April 9-14.

The Broadway series, sponsored by Taco and the White Family Foundation, closes the Broadway series with the five-time Tony Award-winning “War Horse,” a Broadway hit which preceded the movie. “War Horse” plays June 5-9, 2013.

Two Contemporary Classics return to PPAC. “Fiddler on the Roof” plays Nov. 23-25, and Kathy Rigby returns in “Peter Pan” April 26-28.

Two Broadway Specials are also on the agenda. “Blue Man Group” returns March 1-3, 2013. Direct from Broadway, Green Day’s “American Idiot” plays April 8-10, 2013.

PPAC has some early bird renewal deals for series subscribers. New subscribers can reserve their seats for just $99. Looks like a great season. Call 421-ARTS for more information.


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