The national tour of High School Musical, with Broadway stars Ron Bohmer and Ellen Harvey, officially opens Aug. 1.

Disney Theatrical Productions presents the stage version of the Disney Channel original movie. Jeff Calhoun (Big River) — who originally staged the show at Atlanta’s Theatre of the Stars — directs the touring production.

Following its launch from Detroit’s Fisher Theatre (June 26-July 8) and its Philadelphia run at the Kimmel Center (July 11-22), the show reached Chicago’s LaSalle Bank Theatre July 25, where it currently resides through Sept. 2. . .

High School Musical centers on the unlikely friendship that evolves between the jock Troy and brainiac Gabriella at a karaoke contest. Little did the two know that she would be transferring to his school. The duo decide — against their friends’ wishes and to the dismay of school stars (a drama queen and her twin brother) — to audition for the high school musical.

The company features John Jeffrey Martin (Broadway’s Rocky Horror Show, Hairspray) as Troy, Arielle Jacobs as Gabriella, Shakiem Evans (Mamma Mia!, Fame) as Chad, Shaullanda LaCombe (The Lion King) as Taylor, Bobby List (The Human Comedy, The 60’s Project) as Ryan, Olivia Oguma (Mamma Mia!, Les Miserables) as Kelsi and Chandra Lee Schwartz (Gypsy, Hairspray) as Sharpay. Michael Mahany (Spring Awakening) plays a new character in the stage show, Jack Scott. Ben Thompson (Big River Deaf West tour) plays Zeke Baylor, and Lizzie Weiss (original Theatre of the Stars High School Musical) plays Martha Cox.

Bohmer (The Scarlet Pimpernel, The Phantom of the Opera, The Woman in White) plays Coach Bolton opposite Harvey (Thou Shalt Not, The Music Man, tour of Mamma Mia!) as drama teacher Ms. Darbus.

The tour line-up (subject to change) follows:

· Chicago, IL: LaSalle Bank Theatre (July 25-Sept. 2)

· Toronto, ON: Princess of Wales Theatre (Sept. 4-23)

· Buffalo, NY: Shea’s Performing Arts Center (Sep. 25-30)

· East Lansing, MI: Wharton Center (Oct. 2-7)

· Rochester, NY: Auditorium Theatre (Oct. 16-21)

· Columbus, OH: Palace Theatre (Oct. 23-28)

· Cleveland, OH: Palace Theatre (Nov. 13-18)

· St. Louis, MO: Fox Theatre (Jan. 9-13, 2008)

· Baltimore, MD: Hippodrome Theatre (Feb. 19-March 2, 2008)

The stage show features a book by David Simpatico, adapted from the original movie script by Peter Barsocchini. All the songs from the original soundtrack (written by numerous songwriters) are featured in the show along with two added songs.

Lisa Stevens choreographs. The design team for High School Musical includes Kenneth Foy (scenic), Wade Laboissonniere (costume), Kenneth Billington (lighting) and Duncan Robert Edwards (sound). Bryan Louiselle serves as music supervisor.

Disney’s “High School Musical” has become a phenomenon of its own, spawning a concert tour, an ice show, two stage versions and a forthcoming sequel slated to debut in August. The soundtrack and multiple DVDs are also available.

Tickets are available through each venue. For a complete list and further information, visit

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Last Updated on August 2, 2007 advertisement