The Coffee County Arts Alliance presents “WE’LL MEET AGAIN: A NEW AMERICAN MUSICAL”
Created and Written by Jim Harris with Music Orchestrated by Mark Hayes,
Directed by Richard Rose.
This new musical sensation features 1930’s and 1940’s era music, including many of the most popular songs and the swing dances of WWII with such classics as “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy,” “I’ll Be Seeing You,” and “Juke Box Saturday Night,” while also incorporating several lovely Jewish and Hebrew songs intimately integrated into the story and also including the favorite “Hava Nagila.”
A patriotic and life-affirming story, WE’LL MEET AGAIN is inspired by the life of Henry Stern and his family’s remarkable odyssey of their narrow escape from German, their immigration to America, and their integration and settlement in Alabama. In 1937, then 5-year-old Heinz Stern, and his family escaped Westheim and Nazi Germany, leaving behind family, friends, relatives, and everything familiar.
They were welcomed with open arms to the small town of Opelika, Alabama. His family found love and acceptance and, in return, Henry became a true American original. He even earned the title “Mr. Opelika.” For more than 60 years, Henry Stern searched the United States to try to find surviving family members from the devastation of the Holocaust.
“Our hope in creating this show is to capture the essence of what America has meant to the world in our best moments – love of family, love of country, welcoming others into our culture, and striving and succeeding together as a community,” said playwright Jim Harris.
WE’LL MEET AGAIN is the second musical written by the team of Harris and Hayes.
Their first collaboration was CIVIL WAR VOICES, which was created and written by Alabama playwright James R. Harris, with music arrangements and orchestrations by Mark Hayes. Vocal arrangements and orchestrations for WE’LL MEET AGAIN are created by Mark Hayes, who is an award-winning concert pianist, composer,
arranger, and conductor of international renown.
Barter Theatre, Abingdon, Virginia, with Richard Rose as Producing Artistic Director, helped to develop and premiere CIVIL WAR VOICES and successfully produced the National Tour, with several performances in Alabama. The show has had celebrated productions in New York and at regional theatres around the U.S.
WE’LL MEET AGAIN was developed, in part, by the world-famous Barter Theatre, the State Theater of Virginia. It received its world premiere, directed by Richard Rose, in 2022 at Historic Savannah Theatre in Savannah, Georgia and as part of the East Alabama Performing Arts series in Opelika, Alabama. The initial run was highly
successful, with enthusiastic audiences cheering with standing ovations at every performance.
This Southern Tour of WE’LL MEET AGAIN is made possible by highly renowned Auburn basketball Coach Bruce Pearl and his wife, Brandy, who experienced the premiere at the Opelika Center for the Performing Arts.
“That night, we were treated to something we really weren’t expecting,” enthusiastically stated Coach Pearl. “We laughed and we cried. We enjoyed the music and the dancing. We were filled with great pride and happiness about the greatest country in the world that we love so dearly.”
“We think it is important for other people to see the show with their families,” Pearl believes. “We want as many middle and high school students as possible to experience this production, so that others can laugh and cry and be moved and inspired by the music, the story, and the dancing – just like Brandy and I were.”
Audiences from the world premiere posted their experience on social media with,
“Totally wonderfully amazing. Brought us some tears and excellent laughs.”
“Tears of joy and appreciation.” “Such a beautiful tribute – resilience and hope!”
“The story will make you proud you live in America.”
And among hundreds of other testimonials, “Absolutely awesome!!”
Saying, “’WE’LL MEET AGAIN,’ is a uniquely entertaining, uplifting, and edifying
experience,” Director Richard Rose shared his favorite quote about the show from a
patron, who called the show, “A great beam of light shining on the beauty and
potential of the American spirit.”
“We’ll Meet Again: A New American Musical” is on tour throughout the Southern United States. Visit meetagainthemusical.com for more information about the show.
This Event is Sponsored by: Enterprise State Community College
The 2023-2024 Season is dedicated to the memory of Luella B. Henderson.
These performances are made possible by a grant from the Alabama State Council on the Arts and the National Endowment for the Arts, and our faithful Sponsors.