When three talented and strong women, Jane Fonda, Dolly Parton and Lily Tomlin, came together in 1980 to make the hit comedy “9 to 5”, they brought conversations about women’s rights and workplace sexism into the public consciousness. Now, over 40 years later, that conversation is brought to Lees-McRae with the Department of Theater Arts production of “9 to 5: The Musical.”
The show will run April 6-9 at Hayes Auditorium and Broyhill Theater. Based on the film and featuring original music by Parton, “9 to 5: The Musical” is lively, fast-paced, and full of fun, while still managing to discuss serious issues.
“The show was set in the late ’70s and it was towards the end of the women’s movement. Women were beginning to assert themselves in so many aspects of society where they had previously been told no, and ‘9 to 5’ was the ultimate film about female empowerment,” said director Michael Hannah. “It’s gotten a lot better since 1979, but we still have a lot to do, and this show expresses that desire to keep pushing against that glass ceiling.”
According to Hannah, widespread admiration for Parton in the area contributed to the decision to perform “9 to 5: The Musical” here at Lees-McRae.
“She’s a representative of the Appalachian world. She always picked herself up, she went her own way, and she did it without hurting others,” Hannah said. “There’s just something about the way she approaches the world. She’s very positive and a very positive influence on people. Anything associated with her is probably going to have a positive impression on people.”
With a large ensemble cast and countless moving parts behind the scenes, in the sound and lighting booths, in the costume shop, and more, Parton’s spirit of hard work and uncompromising pursuit of your objectives are those that were necessary to organize this show.
The show will be presented at 7:30 p.m. from April 6-8 and at 2 p.m. on Saturday, April 9 at the Hayes Auditorium. This show is open to the public and students, faculty, staff and community members are encouraged to attend and enjoy an evening full of fun music and lots of laughs. Tickets for “9 to 5: The Musical” can be purchased here.
Nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains of western North Carolina, Lees-McRae College is a private residential college that grants bachelor’s and graduate degrees. At nearly 4,000 feet, the highest elevation of any East Coast campus, the college celebrates its location with distinctive programming. The emphasis on experiential education inspires students to learn by doing and gain broad knowledge through study in all disciplines. To provide opportunities for all, the college offers graduation programs online and in surrounding communities. For more information, please visit www.lmc.edua or call 828.898.5241.