On Stage: Some of Broadway’s best shows come to Philly

By Denny Dyroff, Entertainment Editor, The Times 

Into The Woods

Easter events and outdoor activities on pleasantly mild days will provide plenty of options for family events this weekend.

But there are also attractive indoor options – especially theater shows.

The Kimmel Cultural Campus (250 South Broad Street, Philadelphia, www.kimmelculturalcampus.org) has presented a steady stream of top-flight stage productions this year. Two of the more popular musicals on the schedule are drawing to a close this weekend — “SIX” and “Into the Woods.”

Both shows feature lively music. “SIX,” which has a dazzling cast, is like an arena style pop/dance concert. The six stars generate enough electricity onstage to power the entire city for a day.

“Into the Woods” is a comedy-driven musical with a cast of crafty and funny characters. It is a little challenging for audiences – until they realize that trying to follow the four fairy tales blended together is useless.

“Into the Woods,” which is running now through April 9 at the Miller Theater on the Kimmel Cultural Campus (250 South Broad Street, Philadelphia, www.kimmelculturalcampus.org), is a musical with music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim and book by James Lapine.

The Kimmel Cultural Campus and The Shubert Organization present the hugely acclaimed Broadway production of Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine’s Tony Award®-winning musical as part of a strictly limited engagement.

Direct from Broadway comes an all-star cast, including reprisals from Montego Glover as The Witch, Stephanie J. Block as The Baker’s Wife, Diane Phelan as Cinderella, Sebastian Arcelus as The Baker, and Gavin Creel as Cinderella’s Prince/Wolf.

“Most of the Broadway cast has come out on tour,” said Phelan, during a phone interview from a tour stop in Boston. “It’s a unique experience for audiences.

“The tour started in February – a few weeks after we closed on Broadway. The finals show on Broadway was on January 8. We all came together and started rehearsals two weeks later. Then, we were off to Buffalo for tech on February 14.

“Most of us weren’t finished bringing this show to people. This is something we’re excited to share with audiences. It’s been great so far and we’re not done yet.”

“Into the Woods,” which became the first Broadway hit of the 2022-2023 season after its sold-out run at New York City Center Encores!, is directed by Lear deBessonet, with music supervision by Rob Berman, and choreography by Lorin Latarro. This production is dedicated to the memory of Stephen Sondheim.

Into the Woods first premiered on Broadway in 1987, winning three Tony Awards including Best Score and Best Book. It has since been produced throughout the world and was adapted into a major motion picture in 2014.

Following a sold-out New York City Center Encores! run in May 2022, the production transferred to Broadway as a limited engagement beginning July 2022, marking its first time on Broadway in 20 years. Following tremendous critical acclaim and audience demand, it was extended twice and concluded its Broadway run on January 8, 2023.

The creative team for Into the Woods includes Tony Award winner David Rockwell (Scenic Design), Andrea Hood (Costume Design), Tyler Micoleau (Lighting Design), Tony Award winner Scott Lehrer & Alex Neumann (Co-Sound Designers), James Ortiz (Puppet Design), Cookie Jordan (Hair, Wigs & Makeup Design), and John Bell (Music Director). Casting is by Telsey & Co. with Production Supervision by Cody Renard Richard and Production Stage Manager is Scott Rowen.

The musical intertwines the plots of several Brothers Grimm and Charles Perrault fairy tales, exploring the consequences of the characters’ wishes and quests. The main characters are taken from “Little Red Riding Hood,” “Jack and the Beanstalk,” “Rapunzel,” “Cinderella” and several others.

The musical “Into the Woods” debuted in San Diego at the Old Globe Theatre in 1986 and premiered on Broadway on November 5, 1987, where it won several Tony Awards, including Best Score, Best Book, and Best Actress in a Musical in a year dominated by “The Phantom of the Opera” (1988).

The musical has since been produced many times, with a 1988 US national tour, a 1990 West End production, a 1997 tenth anniversary concert, a 2002 Broadway revival, a 2010 London revival, and in 2012 as part of New York City’s outdoor Shakespeare in the Park series.

James Lapine and Stephen Sondheim take everyone’s favorite storybook characters and bring them together for a timeless, yet relevant, piece… and a rare modern classic. The Tony Award-winning book and score are both enchanting and touching.

“The show itself is so dense – it can be a lot of story to sift through,” said Phelan, who grew up in Taipei and later New Haven, Connecticut.

“Take out what you know, evaluate, and then follow what happens next. It’s daunting – but it’s so well laid out. This production makes it clear – makes it easy to follow.”

The story follows a Baker and his wife, who wish to have a child; Cinderella, who wishes to attend the King’s Festival; and Jack, who wishes his cow would give milk. When the Baker and his wife learn that they cannot have a child because of a Witch’s curse, the two set off on a journey to break the curse.

Everyone’s wish is granted, but the consequences of their actions return to haunt them later with disastrous results. “Into the Woods” is a musically sophisticated show with the opportunity to feature actors who are adept at dark comedy.

“What I like about Cinderella is how she finds her voice at the end — and what she becomes,” said Phelan. “She has the largest arc of any character.

“It’s an incredible journey what these characters go through. What’s great is that we get to learn what happens behind the scenes.”

Phelan is a somewhat atypical Cinderella.

“I’m a Filipino/Irish American actress and we’re not usually cast as Cinderella,” said Phelan, who had also considered pursuing a career in immunology.

“I got to perform it on Broadway – and to work with three other incredible women of color. I closed it. I was the fourth person in the Broadway run.

“Cinderella was the role I wanted most. It’s been a dream to play Cinderella. It’s great to play in this sandbox.”

Video link for “Into the Woods” – https://youtu.be/XLOn5zoVd24.

“Into the Woods” is running now through April 9 at the Miller Theater. Ticket prices start at $49.


“SIX” is a musical that has reached legendary status in just a few years.

Now through April 9, the Kimmel Cultural Campus is presenting “SIX” at the Academy of Music as part of its 2022-2023 Broadway series, (Broad and Locust streets, Philadelphia,www.kimmelculturalcampus.org).

“SIX” is a British musical comedy with music, book, and lyrics by Toby Marlow and Lucy Moss. It is a modern retelling of the lives of the six wives of Henry VIII, presented in the form of a pop concert. In the show, each of the wives (Catherine of Aragon, Anne Boleyn, Jane Seymour, Anna of Cleves, Katherine Howard, and Catherine Parr) takes a turn telling her story to see who suffered the most because of Henry VIII.

The musical premiered at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in 2017, where it was performed by students from Cambridge University. “SIX” premiered on the West End in January 2019, and has since embarked on a UK tour, been produced in Australia at the Sydney Opera House in January 2020, and premiered on Broadway in March 2020.

After the break for the COVID pandemic, it officially opened at the Lena Horne Theatre in October 2021. Now, “SIX” is out on two North American national tours — the “Aragon” and “Boleyn” tours, both of which began in 2022.

“SIX” tells the story of the six wives of Henry VIII in a very different way. At the beginning of the show, the six women argue with one another as they try to claim that they had it worse. But as they listen to their stories, they open their hearts to each other and realize it’s better to stick together.

Marlow and Lucy Moss came up with the idea to create a musical based on Henry VIII’s wives while studying at the University of Cambridge – and then bring the characters to life based on the personas of current pop divas.

Catherine of Aragon, who was Henry VIII’s first wife, was married to Henry VIII from 1509-1523. Their divorce led to the creation of the Church of England. Beyoncé and Jennifer Lopez inspired the Catherine of Aragon character.

Anne Boleyn, who was the King’s second wife, was married to him from 1533-1536 when Boleyn was beheaded on accusation of incest and adultery. Avril Lavigne inspired the Anne Boleyn character.

Jane Seymour, the third wife, was only married for one year, but she did provide Henry VIII with his first son, Edward. Jane Seymour died in childbirth. Adele inspired the Jane Seymour character.

Anna of Cleves was Henry VIII’s fourth wife, and they were only married for seven months in the early part of 1540. Rihanna and Nicki Minaj inspired the Anna of Cleves Six character.

Katherine Howard, Henry VIII’s fifth wife, married days after and were wed from July 1540 to February 1542. She was beheaded because of her extramarital affairs. Ariana Grande and Britney Spears inspired the Katherine Howard character.

Catherine Parr, the King’s sixth and final wife, got married in 1543 and stayed together until 1547 when Henry VIII passed away. Alicia Keys inspired the Catherine Parr character.

The show in Philadelphia is the “Boleyn Tour,” which features Gerianne Pérez as Catherine of Aragon; Zan Berube as Anne Boleyn; Amina Faye as Jane Seymour; Terica Marie as Anna of Cleves; Aline Mayagoitia as Katherine Howard; and Sydney Parra as Catherine Parr.

Both Pérez and Mayagoitia have Latin roots.

“I was born in Mexico City,” said Mayagoitia, during a phone interview Wednesday morning from a tour stop in Pittsburgh.

“We moved to Austin, Texas when I was 10. Then, I studied musical theater at the University of Michigan. I was also interested in comedy.

“Mexico City still feels like home. My mom is a theater director in Mexico City and I’m still very connected. I’m still a fan of  UNAM (one f Mexico’s top soccer clubs) along with the rest of my family.”

Pérez said, “I was born in Tampa. I was an Army brat and we lived in Massachusetts, Washington State, Georgia and Kentucky. New York and Florida are the main places I call home.”

For Pérez, it’s also an opportunity to integrate her Puerto Rican heritage into the role – especially with the Jennifer Lopez aspects of the role adding to the Boricua vibe.

“I first heard the ‘SIX’ album in 2019,” said Pérez. “It’s an incredible concept album. The second I heard it, I knew I wanted to be a part of it. It’s a musical like no other. I get to play the role in a very concert style.”

One by one, the queens take the stage in a solo song, each wife channeling a different modern pop act as she makes the case that her trauma was the worst trauma. Even when Six’s song pairings don’t make much historical sense, they can still be fun.

“Catherine of Aragon was his first wife,” said Pérez. “The pressure of her not giving the King a male child fractured their marriage. She was a spectacular woman – very fiery. She was a badass woman. Henry couldn’t outsmart her.”

In this play, all the queens are color-coded.

“I play the King’s second wife, Katherine Howard,” said Mayagoitia. “I’m color-coded and I wear pink. The color is based on the vocals but mainly the vibe.

“The show was written by history students at Cambridge. What my queen is known for is being promiscuous — but she was groomed for it when she was 14.”

The play deals with abuse, feminism, women’s rights and the trials women faced back in the Tudor age. In that respect, it has a lot of similarities to the present time.

“Sometimes, it’s sad that a lot of things women dealt with then are still happening now – assault, harassment, problems in the workplace,” said Mayagoitia.

“It’s 2023 – why are we still putting pregnant women at risk? Looking at these problems is sad but it’s also healing.”

“SIX” is a combination of a high voltage pop music show and an intriguing history lesson.

“It’s incapable to do this show at less than 90 percent,” said Pérez. “With some Broadway shows you can do 70 per cent and it still works — not this show. Everything is high energy. We break the fourth wall.”

Video link for “SIX” – https://youtu.be/Tucw-hVaU3o.

“SIX” will run now through April 9 at the Academy of Music. Ticket prices start at $35.

Other upcoming shows in the Kimmel Cultural Campus’ Broadway Series are “Jesus Christ Superstar” (May 2-7), “Beetlejuice” (May 30-June 11), “Moulin Rouge! The Musical” (July 5-30), and “The Lion King” (August 16-September 10).

The Candlelight Theater (2208 Millers Road, Arden, Delaware, 302- 475-2313, www.candlelighttheatredelaware.org) just opened its production of “I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change” – a show that will run through April 23.

The show is billed as “A musical presented in the form of a series of vignettes, connected by a central theme of love and relationships. Everything you have secretly thought about dating, romance, marriage, lovers, husbands, wives and in-laws, but were afraid to admit! For mature audiences. Adult content.”

“I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change” is a musical comedy with book and lyrics by Joe DiPietro and music by Jimmy Roberts. It is the second-longest running Off-Broadway musical. The musical was nominated for the Outer Critics Circle Award as Outstanding Off-Broadway musical in 1997.

The musical premiered Off-Broadway on August 1, 1996, and closed on July 27, 2008, after 5,003 performances. It was first produced in the town where playwright Joe DiPietro was born, Teaneck, New Jersey. This production ran from February 24 to March 12, 1995, at the American Stage Company Theater.

Despite the large number of characters, the show is typically done with a comparatively small cast: the original Off-Broadway production uses a cast of four.

The production at the Candlelight features a standout cast of Jessica Ball, Jared Calhoun, Tori Healy and Max Redman.

“I saw the show many years ago when it was playing in New York, so I was familiar with the original,” said Ball, during a phone interview Wednesday evening from her home in Philadelphia’s Overbrook Farms section. “I took the bus to New York from Allentown.”

Ball, who grew up in Coral Springs, Florida, was in Allentown studying for a degree in theater and dance from Muhlenberg College.

“I had a high school friend in Coral Springs who found Muhlenberg,” said Ball. “They have a really active summer program where the students work with equity actors.”

“I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change” is presented in the form of a series of vignettes connected by the central theme of love and relationships. The play’s tagline is “Everything you have ever secretly thought about dating, romance, marriage, lovers, husbands, wives and in-laws, but were afraid to admit.”

With few exceptions, the scenes stand independent of the others, but progress in a fashion designed to suggest an overall arc to relationships throughout the course of one’s life. A first date, for example, comes before scenes dealing with marriage, and scenes dealing with marriage come before those dealing with childbearing.

“In the current show, there are many updates from the original,” said Ball, recognizing how much the world has changed from 1996 to 2023.

“Most of the bones stayed similar but a lot of references were changed – references to things that were popular in the 1990s and 2000s. For example, they added a song about cell phones.

“There was an update done in 2018 but it was only updated for regional theater. I looked at all the YouTube videos, but most were old Broadway videos. It was the only way for me to hear the music. We’re doing the entire script as of the updates – 20 scenes with 11 in the first act and nine in the second.

“I’m not in all the scenes – probably about half. But, if I’m not onstage then I’m probably in the back doing a quick costume change. You’re on this train and you have to ride it. There’s no getting off.”

Watching this production is similar to watching a show by a comedy troupe like Second City – watching a rapid series of scenes that are intense, loosely related and very funny.

“The overarching theme is real emotions about love that we’ve all experienced,” said Ball, whose first post-college gig was the National Tour of “Oklahoma!”

“Audiences love the show because we’ve all been in one or more of these scenes in real life.

“I’ve been pleasantly surprised by the audiences. It seems like they have enjoyed even the scenes that are racier. They didn’t have any previous expectations and really enjoyed what they saw.”

“I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change” is running now through April 29. Performances are Friday and Saturday evenings (doors 6 p.m./show, 8 p.m.) and Sunday afternoons (doors, 1 p.m./show, 3 p.m.). Tickets, which include dinner and show, are $69.

Later this month, there will be another edition of the Candlelight Comedy Club.

Jake Mattera will headline a show on April 20. Jay Simpson will be the feature and Seamus Millar will be the emcee. Tickets are $30 for the 7:30 p.m. show.

The Candlelight Dinner Theater will also be presenting “Into the Woods” this season with a run that starts on September 16 and goes through October 29.

Other shows on this year’s schedule are “The Musical Comedy Murders of 1940” from May 13-June 25, “The Sound of Music” from July 15-August 27, and “It’s a Wonderful Life” from November 18-December 23.

There also will be a special one-night-only show on April 29 featuring Broadway’s Tyler Hanes in concert. The show, which is a benefit for Candlelight Education Programs, will start at 8 p.m. Tickets are $45 and include hors d’oeuvres and open bar.

Jamey’s House of Music (32 South Lansdowne Avenue, Lansdowne, 215-477-9985, www.jameyshouseofmusic.com) is a prime destination to hear folk, jazz and blues music every Thursday through Sunday.

The “Thursday Night Jazz Jam” and the “Sunday Blues Brunch & Jam” are regular features on Jamey’s calendar while Friday and Saturday night shows feature national and regional acts.

The Dave Reiter Trio lays down the backing for some out of this world jazz to happen, and you never know who might show up to join in. Reiter is a long-time jazz pro and is equally at home on the seven-string guitar, Nord keyboard or the venue’s top of the line Hammond organ setup. Bill Marconi is on drums; his name is known to jazz aficionados around the world. Holding down the bottom is first-call Philly bassist, George Livanos.

The schedule of “Guest Singers” for this month is April 6, Maci Miller; April 13, Phyllis Chapell; April 20, Julie Charnet; and April 27, Khadijah Renee.

Because of her varied musical background, Miller, this week’s featured singer, is equally comfortable singing an Ella Fitzgerald classic like “Lullaby of Birdland,” a standard blues tune, “Moje Zlato” (a Croatian wedding song) or one of her many melodic original compositions.

“I was singing into a hairbrush ever since I was able to talk,” said Miller, during a phone interview from her home in Bucks County.

As a young girl, Miller discovered her grandparents’ vast collection of vinyl, and after studying every great artist from Ella to Ellington, she honed her vocal skills and made her debut in local clubs and at special events.

“There were a lot of musicians on my mother’s side,” said Miller. “I had a lot of talented uncles who were writers, producers and sound guys. On my dad’s side, there was the Croatian influence. There was always Croatian music being played.

“When I was growing up, I was always singing in choirs and performing at local shows. When I was 20, I got into dinner theater in Harrisburg. Then I joined a funk band named Smooth – a pop/funk band.”

Miller grew up in the Harrisburg area in a small town called Enhaut (which means “skin” in German) and then graduated from Central Dauphin East High School.

“I was in a lot of bands that did wedding gigs,” said Miller. “Then, I did a lot of modeling and acting when I moved to Philadelphia. I also worked in New York. After a while, I stopped all the other things and focused on music. It was later that I got into jazz.”

Miller has worked with several music greats including trumpeter Steve Jankowski (Nile Rodgers, Chicago), saxophonist Larry McKenna (Woody Herman, Buddy DeFranco), Dean Schneider (music director for Diahann Carroll), Demitrious Pappas (Smokey Robinson’s music director), and the late George Mesterhazy (Shirley Horn).

She has sung in legendary rooms such as the The Jazz Standard and Danny’s Skylight Room in New York City, Ortliebs and Chris’s Jazz Cafe in Philadelphia, Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas, and Bally’s, Harrah’s and the Claridge in Atlantic City. Her travels have also taken her to the iconic Bamboo Bar in Bangkok, Thailand for several extended runs.

The arrival of a baby girl marked a career shift for Miller.

“I didn’t sing for about eight years so I could focus on being a mom,” said Miller. “A few years ago, my friend David O’Rourke said – you should sing again.

“Two years ago, I decided to dip my toe back in and an album came out of it – ‘Round Midnight.’”

On “Round Midnight,” Miller sings 15 favorite standards in an intimate duet format with guitarist David O’Rourke.

“I recorded ‘Round Midnight’ and released it just before the pandemic,” said Miller. “I was four gigs into my comeback and the world shut down.

“So, I got equipment and did my own gigs. I had livestream shows in my backyard throughout the pandemic. I’ve been fortunate to be able to do live shows at different places including here at the farmhouse. Now, I’m working on a new album.”

The pandemic, for the most part, hopefully is done. Miller’s album, on the other hand, is not.

“I’ve been working a lot,” said Miller. “I’ve been working on the album since 2021.

“We started near the end of the pandemic – mask up and stuff….and I’m singing in a nice clean little booth. I’ve been working on the album on-and-off. It’s coming along.”

Miller released her debut album, “A Very Good Night,” in 2001.

“My first album was a big band album,” said Miller. “It was all originals written in ’40s style. My second album, which came out in 2004 was ‘Take A Closer Look.’ It was a pop/jazz fusion album.”

Miller’s third album was written for a very specific audience.

“The third album was ‘Butterfly Moon’,” said Miller. “It was a lullaby album for my baby girl. We adopted her from Thailand. I made the album so she could get used to my voice before we went to Thailand to get her.”

Miller’s other creative endeavors as an actor, model, and spokesperson have afforded her numerous appearances on film (The Sixth Sense), print (Modern Bride, Women’s World Magazine), and television (Law and Order). Her charitable contributions include a lullaby entitled “Butterfly Moon”, originally composed for her daughter, which she contributed to a CD for The Mercy Center in Bangkok, which gives aid to orphans and children living with HIV.

Now, Miller is closing in on the release of her fifth album.

“I’m down to the final few songs,” said Miller. “It has a lot of new originals. It’s really cool. It was a labor of love.

“I’ve been recording it with Aaron Graves at his studio in Philadelphia. He co-writes the songs, plays piano and is the producer.

“We have Mike Boone on bass and the legendary Larry McKenna on sax. For drums, we’ve used Byron Landham, Leon Jordan and Joshua Orlando. There is no guitar which is funny because my last album was a guitar album.

“We also had a few more surprise guests coming into the studio. It’s been a lot of fun. I hope to have it out soon – independently released in May or June.”

Miller has also been busy onstage.

“I did Smalls in New York for the first time last week with the Mike Boone Quartet,” said Miller. “I also do trio and duo work with Aaron and Mike. I’ve been a guest singer for the Arpeggio Jazz Ensemble have also been singing with Webb Thomas’ group – Webb T’s Fleet The Super Band.”

This week, Miller will be singing with the Dave Reiter Trio.

“I love performing with the Dave Reiter Trio,” said Miller. “Dave is a lovely guy – and Jamey’s is a great room. I’ve been doing a blues thing there on Sundays but this time I wanted to focus on jazz.

“On jazz nights, the first set is with the band. The second part is a jam session. It’s nice to encourage up-and-coming young people to come up on stage and play. It’s a great way for young musicians to connect with seasoned veterans.”

Video link for Maci Miller — https://youtu.be/D3ktSJTVxDs.

The show on April 6 will start at 7 p.m. There is a $10 cover charge.

On April 7, the headliner will be Matt Waters.

Waters is a rock and soul artist from Cincinnati, who has been performing onstage since he was 14 years old.

In 2019 (the pre-pandemic era), Waters played more than 270 shows across the country — from the oceanside bars of Laguna Beach, California to the coffee shops of Burlington, Vermont.

Over the last three years, Waters has toured the country consistently with a mixed bag of configurations — from a one-man band with a loop pedal to a nine-piece funk band.

The show on Friday will start at 8 p.m. Tickets are $15 in advance and $20 at the door.

On April 8, Jamey’s will present Stevie & the Bluescasters.

Stevie & the Bluescasters is a three-piece acoustic blues band from Philadelphia featuring vocals, acoustic guitars, mandolin, National Steel and wood body Resonator, harmonica, and percussion.

For years, the band has performed at venues and festivals throughout the tri-state area and New York.

The threesome plays music in a wide array of genres such as old gospel, Fado, old country, and a pinch of R&B along with a lot of blues including Piedmont, Delta, Creole, Texas, and Chicago.

The show on Saturday will start at 7 p.m. Tickets are $20 in advance and $25 at the door.

One of the highlight attractions over the next week at World Café Live (3025 Walnut Street, Philadelphia, www.worldcafelive.com) will be a concert by Wilder Woods. The show is scheduled for April 7.

Wilder Woods is the solo project of Bear Rinehart, the front man of popular rock band NEEDTOBREATHE. Rinehart unveiled Wilder Woods in 2019, releasing a record focused on new beginnings: the advent of fatherhood, the launch of his solo career, and the updated branding of a longtime bandleader who had decided to expand his reach.

Wilder Woods now is touring in support of his upcoming sophomore album, “FEVER / SKY,” which was released on March 24 via Dualtone Records.

Rinehart’s two older sons — Wilder and Woods — inspired the name of the first album and project itself, while “FEVER / SKY” is dedicated to his youngest child, Waters.

“FEVER / SKY,” the follow up to Wilder Woods’ 2019 acclaimed self-titled release, features 11 diverse tracks featuring powerful roots-rock/R&B infused anthems alongside potent, reflective moments. The first single is the album opener “Maestro (Tears Don’t Lie).”

With singles “Maestro (Tears Don’t Lie)” “Patience” and “Be Yourself,” Wilder Woods has already reached more than 10 million listeners on Spotify alone, with featured placements on playlists New Music Friday, Run Wild, Fresh Folk and more. Additional listeners are tuning in via Apple, Music, Amazon and other DSPs. Radio has embraced Wilder Woods as well.

“Maestro (Tears Don’t Lie)” continues its climb at Triple A radio with support from more than 50 stations and a recent Mediabase chart debut.

Rinehart wrote most of “FEVER / SKY” while touring lapsed during Covid-19. Sequestered at his home in Nashville, the longtime touring veteran conjured the ambiance of hair-raising live performances combined with personal, introspective lyrics.

Recorded with old friends and new collaborators, it’s a personal record about enjoying the modern moment – an album filled with soulful R&B textures, western wooziness, southern soul, and festival-worthy anthems.

According to Rinehart, “I’ve been in a band for 20 years, and a band is a democracy where you make decisions together. Wilder Woods is a different outlet.

“I’m giving myself the freedom to do what I want to do and say what I want to say. I’ve stopped worrying so much about imaging. This isn’t the kind of journey where I’m worried about the places I’m headed or the places I’ve left. It’s a journey where I’m just happy to be in the car, driving forward.”

Video link for Wilder Woods — https://youtu.be/N0Arl-5L94U.

The show on April 7 will start at 8 p.m. Tickets prices start at $31.

Other upcoming shows at World Café Live are Josh Rouse on April 6, Start Making Sense on April 8, Katie Henry on April 8, and Bowen*Young on April 11.

Kind Hearted Strangers are now touring the states – supporting their sophomore LP, “Now.here.” The tour will touch down locally on April 8 at 118 North (118 North Wayne Avenue, Wayne,www.118northwayne.com).

The Denver based rock band will be performing in support of their second full length album which is being released on April 7 on all streaming platforms.

Two singles — “Circles” and “In The Blue” – are already available to stream off the upcoming album. A third single – “Diesel” – was just released.

The project was an immersive collaboration with visual artist Dylan Lynch who worked with the band in a shared Richmond, Virginia warehouse space for five days. With no prepared material, the artists intentionally put pressure on themselves to create and deliver a Live Concert & Art Exhibition at the end of the week.

The resulting album contains brand new material that was recorded live with the same raw energy and passion KHS has been delivering across the country during their busiest year of touring to date.

Hailing from all corners of the country, Kind Hearted Strangers traces its origins to the foothills of Colorado, where an impromptu open mic performance by songwriter Marc Townes quickly evolved into something much bigger.

With genre bending improvisations from lead guitarist Kevin Hinder and bassist/vocalist Ace Engfer and drummer Eggy Gorman providing a solid rhythmic foundation, KHS has become a dynamic full band capable of bridging the gap between all out rock n’ roll and their harmony-driven acoustic roots.

Video link for Kind Hearted Strangers – https://youtu.be/yYCHGW2qXlo.

The show at 118 North on April 8 will start at 9 p.m. Tickets are $10.

Other upcoming shows at 118 North are Ryan Montbleau Band on April 6 and Hot’lanta on April 7.

Kennett Flash (102 Sycamore Alley, Kennett Square, 484-732-8295, http://www.kennettflash.org) will present The Blues Reincarnation Project on April 7 and Anthony “Turk” Cannon on April 8.

Uptown! Knauer Performing Arts Center (226 North High Street, West Chester, www.uptownwestchester.org) will have Jimmy & The Parrots on April 5 and a screening of the film “Little Richard: I Am Everything” on April 11.

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