New Jersey regional theater Paper Mill Playhouse is playing it safe next season, with a 2008-09 lineup of tried-and-true crowdpleasers including the popular legit touring incarnation of “High School Musical.”
Also on the bill are tuners “Oklahoma!” (Sept. 17-Oct. 19), “1776” (April 15-May 17, 2009), and “The Full Monty” (June 10-July 12, 2009). Plays offerings are Oscar Wilde’s “The Important of Being Earnest” (Jan. 14-Feb. 15, 2009) and Terrence McNally’s “Master Class” (March 4-April 5, 2009).
Since “High School Musical” (Nov. 5-Dec. 7) has so far made no plans to come to New York City itself, the monthlong run at Paper Mill provides area “HSM” fans one of the first chances to see the stage version.
The 2008-09 slate reps the theater’s 70th season. Company faced financial woes last spring, but has since worked to win back auds through more traditional programming choices.