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Rock star Eddie Money launches world premiere of his musical in Rochester

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Tue, Jan 2nd 2018 07:35 pm
`Two Tickets to Paradise: The Eddie Money Musical` (Photo courtesy of Dresden Public Relations)
"Two Tickets to Paradise: The Eddie Money Musical" (Photo courtesy of Dresden Public Relations)
'Two Tickets to Paradise: The Eddie Money Musical' was created by and stars Eddie Money
The world premiere of a new musical created by and starring Grammy-nominated Eddie Money takes the stage at Kodak Center in Rochester from Feb. 14-18. "Two Tickets to Paradise: The Eddie Money Musical" features the "Money Man" alongside a cast of 20 professional actors who dance and sing through his life story and rock 'n' roll journey.
"I've got two tickets to paradise, but I'm taking everybody," Money said.
Rocking the house with his biggest hits, plus new Broadway-style stage songs, Money's score includes the title song "Two Tickets to Paradise," plus "Baby Hold On," "I Wanna Go Back," "Shakin'," "No Control" and "Take Me Home Tonight." Money will appear throughout the show as the narrator, giving audiences comical insight into some of his most memorable - and darkest - moments. He also joins the cast in song and on saxophone ... and for an encore concert following the finale.
With full orchestra in a 2,000-seat theater, "Two Tickets to Paradise" follows Money's career from the late 1960s through the 1980s - an emotional and exciting journey from training to be a New York City police officer to reaching legendary global stardom as a singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist. Money's blue-collar brand of feel-good rock 'n' roll transcends generations, selling more than 28 million records and landing 23 hits in the Billboard Top 100.
Money was inspired to write the musical after seeing Broadway's "Jersey Boys," recalling his early days in rock 'n' roll with his own bandmates, and the wild trip he took upon achieving fame and fortune.
"For me, the musical captures that most important time when you're starting out before you get jaded," Money said.
He said "Two Tickets to Paradise" is not a "jukebox musical," but more like the classic Broadway shows he and his sisters used to act out as kids. "It's not just a 'Rock of Ages,' and it's not just a rock 'n' roll musical," Money said. "It's a Broadway musical with Broadway-style songs."
Money wrote the original book, music and lyrics to "Two Tickets to Paradise." The world-premiere production has been adapted and arranged by the Rochester Association of Performing Arts. The production is being presented by RAPA along with Eddie Money Entertainment Inc. and Premier Theatre Productions. The musical's artistic director is Eric Vaughn Johnson, the music and vocal director is Yunjin Audrey Kim, and the choreographer is Terri Filips Vaughan. John Campbell is the executive producer for Money.
"Two Tickets to Paradise: The Eddie Money Musical" will run for five shows at the Kodak Center, 200 W. Ridge Road. Tickets are $39.50 to $59.50 and are on sale at www.RapaTheatre.org, in person at Record Archive, or by calling 585-254-0073. Those buying tickets at Record Archive, 33 Rockwood St., before Jan. 16 will be invited to a meet-and-greet with Money on Jan.16. This production of "Two Tickets to Paradise" is presented with support from Record Archive.
About the Cast
Members of the cast portray Money's parents, little sisters, high school bandmates and friends, manager, and wife.
Leading the show's cast is 23-year-old Alec Nevin as young Eddie Money. A Webster native and graduate of Ithaca College. Morgan Troia is Laurie Mahoney, Eddie's wife.
Portraying Eddie's mom, Dottie Mahoney, is Dresden Engle, a Rochester-based actor, comedian, and playwright. Steve Vaughan is Eddie's father, Dan Mahoney. He is a Buffalo-based actor, artistic and opera director, and certified fight director and stage combat teacher.
About Eddie Money
Eddie Money was born Edward Joseph Mahoney on March 21, 1949, in Brooklyn. He dreamed of being a musician and, while attending high school in Long Island, sang with the band The Grapes of Wrath. However, he decided to follow in his father's footsteps and become a police officer.
In 1968, after serving as a New York City police officer for two years, Money put his law enforcement career on hold to pursue music. He moved to Berkeley, California, and began performing at local clubs. Then, in 1976, after changing his surname from Mahoney to Money, his fate changed when he was introduced to legendary promoter Bill Graham, who served as both a mentor and manager to Money. Said Graham of Money, "Eddie Money has it all ... not only can he sing, write and play, but he is a natural performer."
After signing a recording contract with Columbia Records, Money burst onto the scene with his debut album in 1977. Fans immediately fell in love with Money's sound, and the album, which went RIAA Double-Platinum, featured the hits "Baby Hold On" and "Two Tickets to Paradise." Money followed the success of his debut album with a stream of Top 40 hits, as well as some of the MTV's most creative videos for songs "Think I'm in Love" and "Shakin." In 1986, Money released the album "Can't Hold Back," which featured the Grammy-nominated duet with Ronnie Spector, "Take Me Home Tonight." The song reached No. 4 on the Billboard Hot 100. The album went Platinum and also featured the hit "I Wanna Go Back."
Maintaining a busy touring schedule, Money has been joined in the past year by his children on tour and is currently filming an AXS TV reality series titled "Real Money," set to begin airing on April 8. He and his wife of 29 years, Laurie, have one daughter, Jesse, and four sons: Zachary, Joseph, Desmond and Julian.
About RAPA Theatre
The Rochester Association of Performing Arts, founded 40 years ago in 1978, is a theater company dedicated and committed to all interested in the arts in Rochester and beyond. RAPA branches off into three opportunities to better serve the community: Professional theater, RAPA Family Theatre and School for Performing Arts. Home to a wide variety of performers, RAPA's actors and staff range from former Broadway performers to successful television and film personalities.

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