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The Carnegie’s latest theatrical production offers emotional journey to the ‘End of the Rainbow’

Judy Garland was a star of stage and screen whose talent was unparalleled in its time. Her personal journey, however, was not always filled with sunshine and happiness. Now, The Carnegie will explore and celebrate her legacy when it travels to the ‘End of the Rainbow’ at Covington Plaza Outdoor Amphitheater this September.

Set in 1968, End of the Rainbow finds Judy Garland set firmly on the comeback trail. The failed marriages, the suicide attempts and the addictions are all behind her. At 46-years-old and with new flame Mickey Deans at her side, she seems determined to carry it off and recapture her magic. But lasting happiness eludes some people and there was never any answer to the question with which Judy ended every show: “If happy little bluebirds fly beyond the rainbow, why, oh why, can’t I?”

End of the Rainbow is a savagely funny drama featuring a glorious ensemble of Judy Garland hits such as “Get Happy,” “The Man that Got Away,” and, of course, “Somewhere Over the Rainbow.” The show was set to be final production of The Carnegie’s 2019-2020 season but instead became the first casualty of the COVID-19 pandemic. Now, it’s back with six performances, playing weekends Friday, Sept. 10–19 and tickets are $32 for adults, $29 Carnegie members and $25 for students.

“End of the Rainbow couldn’t be a more fitting production for us given the current times we find ourselves in. While the show is dramatic and definitely has its sober moments; there are happier, inspirational ones as well,” said The Carnegie’s Theatre Director Maggie Perrino. “When we originally chose the production, it was the year Renee Zellweger won an Academy Award for portraying Judy Garland. Now, as we all find ourselves in a time of great uncertainty like Garland herself, we hope to bring a smile to audiences’ collective faces once again.”

Kim Schroeder Long, the Ohio-born actress who portrays Garland in the show, agrees.

“One of the hardest things to navigate as a performer is uncertainty. The very nature of the profession can be subject to a lot of questions without answers. As the past 18+ months have shown, having something you were looking forward to – in my case, portraying a legend close to home – suddenly taken away makes you appreciate it even more,” said Schroeder Long. “Taking inspiration from Garland’s own longing for happiness, I’m excited for audiences to be able to enjoy End of the Rainbow as much as my castmates and I are to bring it to life.”

Performances of End of the Rainbow will run two weekends, September 10–12 with performances at 8 p.m. on Friday and Saturday and 6 p.m. Sunday and the following weekend, September 17-19 with performances at 8 p.m. on Friday and Saturday and 4 p.m. Sunday.

All performances take place at the Covington Plaza Outdoor Amphitheater. Tickets are $32 for adults, $29 for Carnegie Members and ArtsPass Members, and $25 for students. Tickets can be purchased through The Carnegie Box Office, noon to 5 p.m. Tuesday-Friday, in person or by phone at 859-957-1940, or online at www.thecarnegie.com. Patrons seeking group or student tickets should call to make arrangements.

The Carnegie

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