Vibrant and Full of Rhythm, Lees-McRae Summer Theatre’s In The Heights Wraps up 2018 Season Starting July 31

Published Monday, July 30, 2018 at 11:36 am


Allison Gomez


Enjoy the energetic Latin rhythm and colorful stories of love, troubles, and living in the “heights” in the final show of the Lees-McRae Summer Theatre season, In The Heights.

Written by Hamilton composer, Lin-Manuel MirandaIn The Heights spans three generations of music representing the inhabitants of Washington Heights, New York. Following a dream, the people share memories of home, fall in love, worry about the changes in the neighborhood, and dance to Latin music from their countries, mixed with the rhythms of the streets. 

In The Heights will perform in Hayes Auditorium and Broyhill Theatre July 31, August 2, and August 4 at 7 p.m. and August 1, 3, 4, and 5 at 2 p.m.

Winner of the 2008 Tonys for Best Musical, Best Orchestration, and Best Score, this show not only tells an engaging story, but also “offers a unique look into Latin communities in New York,” said Director Janet Barton Speer. 

Before choosing the lineup for this year’s Summer Theatre, Speer visited the communities in Washington Heights.

“I climbed the steps out of the 175 St. station to an explosion of color,” she said. “The language, the music, the bodegas with their fruit and flower displays, the piragua carts and the spray-painted murals all danced and harmonized within a few blocks.”

Speer said Summer Theatre has “worked diligently to come as close as possible to that color through sets, costumes, props, and Latin-American actors and musicians.”

She added that, “We think of the streets of Washington Heights as urban and sometimes a little rough. And there was that, but there’s also this neighborhood of people who look out after one another.”

There are about 25 performers in this show, and Speer says, “I find myself learning as much from the cast as they are learning from me…my cast is just out of this world.”

Speer describes what the audience can expect to see, saying, “They’ll see singing, they’ll see dance, they’ll see love stories. They’ll see stories about people who immigrated and how it was when they came here, how they felt later. What is the definition of home? Is it here in the United States, or is home somewhere else? And I think you’ll like this…conclusion.”

For those who visited Hayes Auditorium and Broyhill Theatre earlier this summer for performances of The Wiz, some may notice parallel themes.

“Like The WizIn The Heights ends with a song about home,” Speer explained. “Dorothy looks for urbanism and excitement, whereas the characters of In The Heights look for opportunity and safety. Both musicals show us the important journey and identifies us—the journey to satisfying the definition of home.”

Speer and the cast are extremely excited to finally present this to everyone, and Speer says that, “The music is infectious; you won’t be disappointed.”

Individual show tickets range in price, per person, from $38–43 for adults, to $18–20 for students and/or children. In The Heights is rated PG-13.

Tickets can be purchased online at, by mail request and at the box office. Tickets are also usually available at the door, due to the large auditorium at Lees-McRae. 

Box office hours are Tuesdays through Fridays from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. Please check online for show day hours. For group sales, call the box office at 828.898.8709.

Purchase your tickets now >>



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