Music Man with Bert Parks and Barbara Williams opens at Seattle's Aqua Theatre on July 17, 1962.

  • By Greg Lange
  • Posted 7/06/1999
  • Essay 1467

On July 17, 1962, two days after Bob Hope ends his run on the Aqua Theatre stage, The Music Man arrives with a cast of more than 20 for a six-day run. The Aqua Theatre is located on the south shore of Green Lake in Seattle. Bert Parks plays the lead man, Professor Harold Hill. Barbara Williams plays the lead woman, Marian.

Parks and Williams came to Seattle after performing the musical together for more a year on Broadway. They were two of the many stars to perform in Seattle during the 1962 World's Fair.

The nearly sold-out evening performance at the 5,618-capacity Aqua Theatre was "more conducive to turning up the furnace than to turning up at the Aqua Theater." The reviewer stated that Parks "not only socks his songs across -- particularly '76 Trombones' and 'Trouble [In River City]'  but he invests the role of the musical con man with the right amounts of humor and vitality to lure the audience into his hands and heart throughout the show." Williams was "fetching and saucy" and had a "good voice." The dance numbers of Music Man were "handled with zip and verve by a lively group."


John Voorhees, "Look and Listen At Aqua Theater: Music Man Has Gaiety, Warmth," Seattle Post-Intelligencer, July 18, 1962, p. 3.

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