After its acclaimed, record-breaking run in New York City, Jonathan Rockefeller’s Disney’s Winnie the Pooh: The New Musical Stage Adaptation will arrive in Chicago on March 15, 2022, bringing Pooh, Christopher Robin, and their best friends Piglet, Eeyore, Kanga, Roo, Rabbit and Owl (and Tigger too!) to the Mercury Theatre Chicago (3745 N. Southport Ave.) Tickets are on sale to “Pooh Crew” members now; go on sale to the general public on Jan. 4, 2022. To become a member of the “Pooh Crew” or for more information, visit winniethepoohshow.com.
Inspired by the beloved books by A. A. Milne and the classic Disney featurettes, the production was welcomed in New York with rave reviews where it was called “A perfect reintroduction to live theater. It’s a captivating adventure with spectacular puppetry,” (Mommy Poppins); “Charming and whimsical stage show that Pooh surpasses every expectation I had for it,” (The Laughing Place); “Winnie the Pooh is delightfully first-rate,” (Theatre Pizzazz); “Irresistible. ‘Winnie the Pooh’ is sweeter than honey,” (DC Metro Arts); “An hour of bountiful joy,” (New York Theatre Guide); “Mesmerizing life-size puppets and original Sherman Brothers tunes, the beautiful new Winnie the Pooh musical is must-see,” (Theatrely); and “The wonderful thing about musicals is that musicals are wonderful things. The New ‘Winnie the Pooh’ Musical Is Sweeter than Honey,” (Toy Insider).
“The music, the life-size puppets, and the charming performances are the perfect way to introduce (or re-introduce) audiences to live theatre, and this is a must-see show for Winnie the Pooh fans of all ages. I am thrilled to be entrusted to bring this celebrated character to the stage for new audiences as they join our adventure into the Hundred Acre Wood. And what a grand adventure we had in New York City and now we look forward to celebrating Pooh and friends in Chicago," said Jonathan Rockefeller, creator ofWinnie the Pooh: The New Musical Adaptation.
In a new story from the Hundred Acre Wood, this fresh stage adaptation is told with impressive life-size puppetry, telling exciting new stories featuring characters that have played iconic roles in the lives of children for generations. Accompanying the magical, modern narrative is an original score from Nate Edmondson, which features some of the songs written for the animated feature from The Sherman Brothers’, including Winnie the Pooh, The Blustery Day, The Wonderful Thing About Tiggers and Whoop-De-Dooper Bounce and A.A. Milne’s The More It Snows (featuring music by Carly Simon) and Sing Ho, a new arrangement.
Winnie the Pooh broke theatre box office records during its New York premiere for largest advance and is developed and presented by renowned family entertainment creator Jonathan Rockefeller (whose spectacular puppetry is omnipresent in the acclaimed productions of The Very Hungry Caterpillar Show, Paddington Gets in a Jam and the recently released streaming film Paddington Saves Christmas).
A leader in family entertainment, Rockefeller Productions values the safety of its patrons and its staff and will enforce current CDC and industry safety standards, all patrons will be required to wear a mask inside the theatre, and every person 12 + will be required to show proof of vaccine before entering the theatre. Children 5-11 will be admitted with one vaccine that was administered at least 14 days prior to performance. For children under 5, proof of a COVID-19 PCR test taken within 72 hours of the performance start time or a negative COVID-19 antigen test taken within 6 hours of the performance start time will be accepted. Health and safety protocols are subject to change in accordance with CDC and local public health mandates.
The Mercury Theatre Chicago is located at 3745 N. Southport Ave., Chicago
Tickets are now available for members of the “Pooh Crew” by visiting www.WinnieThePoohShow.com
Tickets, which start at $38 for performances from Thursday through Sunday, will go on sale to the general public at a future date to be announced.
ABOUT THE SHOW
Winnie the Pooh has been enjoyed by millions of readers and viewers ever since English author A.A. Milne first chronicled the adventures of Christopher Robin’s friends in the Hundred Acre Wood in 1926. The books, featuring illustrations by English illustrator E.H. Shephard, have sold over 50 million copies worldwide. The theatrical rights to the Pooh stories were acquired by Disney in 1961, with an original intent to produce a feature film, but after production began, Walt Disney decided to make short featurettes instead. The three featurettes were subsequently incorporated into the feature The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh. This was the last film in the Disney canon in which Walt Disney had personal involvement. The first featurette, Winnie the Pooh and the Honey Tree was released during his lifetime, while Winnie the Pooh and the Blustery Day was still in development. Disney’s Winnie the Pooh has since become one of the best-loved and most successful franchises in history.
The Sherman Brothers are the multi-talented Oscar® and Grammy® Award-winning American songwriting duo of Richard M. Sherman and Robert B. Sherman. The Sherman Brothers wrote more motion-picture musical scores than any other songwriting team in film history. Among these are the Disney classics Mary Poppins, The Jungle Book, Bedknobs and Broomsticks, and The Aristocats. The Sherman Brothers worked directly with Walt Disney on the first two Winnie the Pooh featurettes: Winnie the Pooh and the Honey Tree (which garnered a Grammy Award nomination) and Winnie the Pooh and the Blustery Day. The brothers won a Grammy Award for the third featurette: Winnie the Pooh and Tigger Too. All three featurettes were incorporated into the 1977 musical film The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh. The duo also wrote songs for Winnie the Pooh and a Day for Eeyore and The Tigger Movie, with their music also featured in the movie Christopher Robin.
Jonathan Rockefeller and Rockefeller Productions embraced the challenge of re-imaging Disney’s Winnie the Pooh for a new audience by bringing it to life on stage in puppet form. The company has garnered global accolades, from critics and audiences alike, for their production of The Very Hungry Caterpillar Show, with 14 productions playing on four continents. An extended run of the show in New York City culminated in Drama Desk and Off-Broadway Alliance nominations, as did Paddington Gets in a Jam, which tours China and the US in 2022. Other projects include the award-winning short film, 10 Little Rubber Ducks, written by preeminent author/illustrator Eric Carle and the recently released Christmas special Paddington Saves Christmas.
Produced in association with Disney Theatrical Productions