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'Stars on Broadway II' opens Saturday

Woodbury Community Theatre's production of "Stars on Broadway II" will open Saturday and will feature a number of Broadway classics. Father-daughter duo Chuck and Maggie Eckberg, of Woodbury, will be featured in the show.

Woodbury resident Chuck Eckberg spent his entire high school career, and much of his adult life, singing for audiences. But life got in the way and Eckberg, who works as a Realtor, hasn't performed in public for the past 25 years.

That's all about to change however since Eckberg will be part of Woodbury Community Theatre's production of "Stars on Broadway II," a revue-style show opening Saturday at the Loft Stage.

"I realized how kind of lost I felt without singing once I got back into it," Eckberg said. "I really missed it."

Eckberg will also be sharing the stage with a special co-star - his daughter Maggie, an eighth grader at Lake Middle School.

"I've always loved theater," she said. "When you're on stage, you really get a sense of how much of an art it actually is."

In fact, it was Maggie who convinced Chuck to get back into the performing game.

"I watched the fun Maggie was having," he said. "I thought about it for a while and then on the last day to sign up for auditions, I kind of said to myself 'When are you are going to put up or shut up? No guts, no glory.'

"Then I put my name in and went to tryout the next day."

Chuck said he had also been thinking about getting back into performing for a while.

"I don't know if it was watching too much 'American Idol' and wondering maybe," he said. "I wanted to be creative and expressive again.

"It really came down to loving music and having no outlet for it other than singing in the shower and singing around the house."

Lori Sager, who is directing "Stars on Broadway II," said she decided to do another Broadway revue-style show because the first "Stars on Broadway" was such a success and people wanted more.

"That's the one thing about Broadway," she said. "There's so much available."

"Stars on Broadway II" will feature 60 songs from nearly 30 shows.

Unlike the first "Stars on Broadway" where current, popular shows were highlighted, "Stars on Broadway II" will highlight many Broadway "classics."

"We will feature the shows that stood the test of time," Sager said. "It's a lot of the standards - oldies but goodies."

Some of the shows that will be featured in "Stars on Broadway II" include: "Sound of Music," "Guys & Dolls," "Music Man," "Oklahoma!" and "Fiddler on the Roof."

Maggie said she has enjoyed being exposed to new songs and new musicals that she wasn't familiar with before.

"These are songs in the future that I can add to my repertoire," she said.

Both Chuck and Maggie said they are eager to see the show come together.

"I'm looking forward to being able to say that the gift we worked on so hard was a gift worth getting and a gift worth giving to the audience," Chuck said.

"I'm looking forward to having all of our hard work create something that is spectacular," she said.

Sager said she is excited to see the show come together as well, since everyone has worked so hard on it.

"It's a true community theater project," she said. "It took every single person to make it shine."

Woodbury Community Theatre's production of "Stars on Broadway II" runs at 3 p.m. March 17 and March 23, and at 7 p.m., March 16 and March 21-22 at the Loft Stage. To purchase tickets and for more information visit

Amber Kispert-Smith

Amber Kispert-Smith has been the schools and Afton reporter at the Woodbury Bulletin since 2008. She holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Minnesota. She previously worked as a reporter for Press Publications in White Bear Lake.

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