For decades, local radio host Bill Rudman has made it his one-man mission to evangelize classic 20th-century pop and musical theater through vehicles like his syndicated radio show Footlight Parade and educational cabaret series The Song Is You! The latter’s Open a New Window: The Songs of Jerry Herman plays this weekend. In it, Rudman offers music and a multi-media narrative on a songwriter known for big, pizzazzy, triumphant musicals like Hello, Dolly!, Mame and La Cage aux Folles, in which larger-than-life characters celebrate in the face of challenges and despair. The 78-year-old Herman graduated from writing revues to full-fledged musicals in 1960, and it wasn’t long before he had a hit with 1964’s Hello, Dolly!, cementing his reputation. Rudman hosts the program with Nancy Maier; vocalists Jared Leal and Adina R. Bloom will present the songs. It takes place at 8 tonight at the Tri-C Western Campus Theatre (11000 Pleasant Valley Rd., Parma), and at 3 p.m. tomorrow at the Tri-C Metro Campus Main Stage Theatre (2900 Community College Ave.). Tickets: $10-$17. Go to tricpresents.com or call 216.241.6000. — Anastasia Pantsios
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