Lodi is back in the 1950s and garment workers at the Sleep Tite Pajama Co. are fighting to get their 7 1/2 cent raise just like everyone else in the industry. One woman stands up to fight management but didn’t realize she would be fighting her desire to fall in love.
It’s a dichotomy of trying to figure out personal life and work life in Lodi High School’s upcoming musical comedy production of “The Pajama Game” coming to the Performing Arts Center Nov. 15-23.
The story follows Sid Sorokin (played by Ryan Winters), the third new superintendent this year at the pajama factory who is determined to prove himself to the owner and starts to change things around the failing company. Meanwhile, Babe Williams (played by Ashley Gray) is the head of the grievance committee and is fighting for the employee’s right to their 7 1/2 cent raise.
As the two work for what they want, they both find each other falling in love. Throughout the show’s ups and down and fun all around, they work to find a solution for both of them.
Director Erica Bardwell is leading this classical musical with 72 students making the production happen. She said the show has a number of entertaining parts that will draw in a crowd.
“It’s really sweet,” Bardwell said. “It’s a cute story. There’s some funny and fun elements with the knife throwing. We decided to “Hernando’s Hideaway” completely in the dark, with fire. That’s kind of fun.”
After previously performing “Beauty and the Beast” and “Legally Blonde”, Bardwell said a classical show such as “The Pajama Game” will fit in well with the student’s repertoire as they connect with characters from another decade and show off some original hit music numbers.
With songs such as “Steam Heat”, “Hernando’s Hideaway” and “Hey There”, she said people may be surprised to hear some songs they already know if they’ve never seen the production.
“I think a lot of people don’t realize they’re familiar with the song until they hear the song,” Bardwell said. “These were radio hits at the time and I think even if you’re not from the decade, you’ll pick up something that you know. It has great music.”
The family-friendly show will be a fun night of entertainment for everyone, she said, and will be an enjoyable evening of experiencing the arts.
“[People] should come see it because art is good for the soul and they should come see the kids that put in so much time and effort, and they’re really good,” Bardwell said.
Lodi High School will be performing “The Pajama Game” 7 p.m. Nov. 16, 2 p.m. Nov. 17 and 7 p.m. Nov. 22 and 23. Tickets are $10 for adults and $8 for students and seniors.
Tickets are on sale now and may be purchased in advance at the Lodi High School office. People can reserve tickets by calling 608-592-3853 ext. 4486. They will also be available at the door will supplies last.