This Hello Dolly is exciting, beautiful, and not to be missed

Ralph Malachowski
Adjunct Instructor at Berkeley College, New Jersey and Substitute Teacher at Northern Burlington County Regional School District

Do you love musicals, great dancing, a compelling story, and happy endings? Then get yourself and a few friends, neighbors, and polyamorous lovers to Philadelphia’s Academy of Music to see this award-winning Broadway hit, the amazing Hello Dolly!

Perhaps you’ve been lucky enough to have seen The Matchmaker, a 1958 film with screenplay by Thornton Wilder (based upon his 1938 farce The Merchant of Yonkers), starring the luminous Shirley Booth as Dolly Gallagher Levi, with a stellar supporting cast which included Paul Ford, Shirley MacLaine, Robert Morse, and an incandescent performance by Anthony Perkins as Cornelius Hackl. Michael Stewart and Jerry Herman created Hello Dolly! in 1964. The rest is history. Hello Dolly! Is one of the best-known, best loved musicals, with leading ladies from Carol Channing, Ginger Rogers, Martha Raye, Pearl Bailey, and Ethel Merman, to more recent Dolly Levis Barbra Streisand, Bette Midler, Betty Buckley, and now, Broadway veteran Carolee Carmello. If you’ve never heard of her, then you are in for a happy surprise. Carolee Carmello is a belter who is more than able to take on the myriad challenges posed by the role. Beloved standards such as “I Put My Hand In,” or the iconic “Before the Parade Passes By” are thrillingly sung with style, panache, and character.

Carolee Carmello has a great supporting cast with co-star John Bolton, who gives a compelling performance as Horace Vandergelder, the richest man in Yonkers, New York, Daniel Beeman as the earnest and charming Cornelius Hackl, and Analisa Leaming as a spunky, pert Irene Molloy. Outstanding contributions are also enjoyed from Colin LeMoine, Laura Sky Herman, Sean Burns, and the entire cast.

The late, great Gower Champion created the original choreography. For this production, Choreographer Warren Carlyle has done the impossible. He has reworked an established classic, making it so fresh and spontaneous that the dancing takes your breath away. The dancing is absolutely first-rate. Other great productions like Newsiesor work by Tommy Tune may come to mind. The dancers are acting in character all the while that they are giving their all on stage. To cap it all off, Broadway theatre legend Jerry Zaks directs.
For one of the best musical experiences to be had in Philadelphia this season, you owe it to yourself to see this splendid Hello Dolly!

Hello Dolly! Is part of the Kimmel’s Broadway Philadelphia season. It is now at Philadelphia’s Academy of Music until March 1. For information about Hello Dolly! and to buy tickets, visit , or call (215) 790-5883. Other shows in the Broadway Philadelphia season include Les Miserables, Rain: A Tribute to the Beatles, Jesus Christ Superstar, the return of Waitress, Summer: The Donna Summer Musical, and Escape to Margaritaville.

Local Gay Chef on Hell’s Kitchen

As the new year approaches, things are looking bright for Philadelphia native chef Kenneth J McDuffie. Chef McDuffie will be the next local chef to

Review: Wonder Woman 1984

The Christmas premier of the much-anticipated Wonder Woman sequel caused the gays to squeal – partially for the outfits, and partial for watching women kick

Philly Scores 100% on HRC’s Ratings

HRC’s Municipal Equality Index (MEI) demonstrates the ways that many cities can—and do—support the LGBTQ people who live and work there, even where states and

Bike Stop Covid Relief

From the Bike Stop: Help Save the Bike Stop The 2020 year has been more than devastating to the members of our community on a

Nominees for the Philly Digital Nightlife Awards 2020

Since March, artists and communities around the world have been innovating the ways in which they create, connect, and support one another. It’s time to celebrate the amazing art and activism we have seen in this new digital age with the Philadelphia Digital Nightlife Awards!