The Ohio State University at Newark

America’s Prize Winning Musical 1776 Set to Open at Ohio State Newark

Licking County Players and The Black Box Theater Collaborate on Production

NEWARK, Ohio, June 10, 2016 —The Black Box Theater at The Ohio State University at Newark and Licking County Players (LCP) are proud to present a special production of America’s prize winning musical, 1776. Performances run from Thursday through Saturday, June 30 and July 1-2, 2016. Curtain is at 7:30 p.m. in The Alford Performing Arts Hall in the John Gilbert Reese Center. Adult tickets are $20 and senior, student, veteran and active military tickets are $15 and may be purchased at

Attendees will witness the birth of a nation as our forefathers struggle to craft the Declaration of Independence. It's the summer of 1776, and the nation is ready to declare independence...if only our founding fathers can agree to do it! 1776 follows John Adams (Charles Hupp) of Massachusetts, Benjamin Franklin (Dennis Kohler) of Pennsylvania, and Richard Henry Lee (Todd Lemmon) and Thomas Jefferson (PJ Gassman) of Virginia as they attempt to convince the members of the second Continental Congress to vote for independence from the shackles of the British monarchy by signing the Declaration of Independence.

“I'm very excited to be at the helm of this project, said Director Edie L. Norlin. “The Black Box Theater and LCP have never before embarked on such a vast production, and we're thrilled to offer our community the opportunity to see this wonderful musical showcasing some of the area's finest actors and musicians. Work began on this production over 14 months ago with both institutions sharing resources, materials, personnel and talent. It's been a joy to work so cooperatively together to produce a quality show neither organization could have achieved on it's on. I couldn't be more pleased or proud!”

The show was originally produced by Stuart Ostrow and directed by Peter Hunt. It premiered on the Broadway Stage in 1969, earning warm reviews, and ran for 1,217 performances. The production was nominated for five Tony Awards and won three, including the 1996 Tony Award for Best Musical. In 1972 it was made into the film also titled 1776. Music and lyrics are by Sherman Edwards, book by Peter Stone. The story is based on a concept by Sherman Edwards.

This production is presented through special arrangement with Music Theater International and will be directed by Edie L. Norlin. Musical direction is provided by Paul D. Sanders. For more information, contact the director at

The John Gilbert Reese Center is located on the shared campus of The Ohio State University at Newark and Central Ohio Technical College (COTC) at 1209 University Drive, Newark, OH 43055.

The Licking County Players (LCP) was founded in 1996 with the vision of producing high quality performing arts programs in Licking County. These include theatrical plays, Suitcase Theater, Dinner Theater and Children’s Workshops. LCP is celebrating their 50th anniversary this year.

The Ohio State University at Newark offers an academic environment that’s challenging but supportive with world-renowned professors and access to Ohio State’s more than 200 majors. It’s where learning comes to life. Research, study abroad and service learning opportunities prepare students for their careers in ways they never expected.