Read Our Editor’s Note On The October 2022 Arts Preview Issue

”O.C. is an arts mecca; get dressed up and indulge.”
Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall

My teenage daughter and I love going to musicals. She started young: We saw “Mamma Mia” for her 7th birthday. Her favorite? “Either ‘Something Rotten!’ or ‘Come From Away,’ ” she says.

When I saw this season’s lineup at Segerstrom Center for the Arts, I couldn’t wait to tell her—she’s old enough to see “Book of Mormon” now! I also couldn’t wait to speak with Center President Casey Reitz. Not only are we getting shows on their first national tours—“Moulin Rouge! The Musical,” “To Kill a Mockingbird,” “Tina: The Tina Turner Musical,” and, the one I’m most excited for, “Six”—but some of the most acclaimed musicals in history will return: “Hamilton,” the aforementioned “Book of Mormon,” and “Chicago.” How are we so lucky? 

“I think the Broadway producers know we do a great job in presenting the shows and that they can access an exclusive audience here,” Reitz says. “Our production team gets you in quickly, puts the show up on its feet, and it looks fabulous. We also have 3,000 seats; it’s a bigger venue, and that matters for the economics.” He’s excited for this season, too. “The Broadway series across the board is fabulous. To go from ‘Hamilton’ to ‘Moulin Rouge’—which I haven’t seen before—to getting ‘Chicago’ and ‘Hairspray’ back, then ‘Frozen’ for the first time, and ‘Six.’ It’s jam-packed.”

In addition to a new musical, “North,” in the Family Series and the U.S. premiere of ABT’s “Like Water for Chocolate” in the Dance Series, the Center is launching two new genres: In Conversation and Headliners. “So much of what we’re trying to do these days is find ways to produce new work. We want to present genres or disciplines where we have gaps,” Reitz says. “The In Conversation and Headliners series appeal to me a great deal. If we can match the reaction we had with Kristin Chenoweth in the hall last year, that will be huge.”

Illustration by Martha Napier

The season is incredible countywide. And Orange County Museum of Art’s stunning new home opens this month. O.C. is an arts mecca; get dressed up and indulge.

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