Mitch Albom Brings “Hockey: The Musical!” to City Opera House in Traverse City

“You don’t need to know hockey to understand this show, trust me. You really don’t need to know anything!”

Mitch Albom is bringing “Hockey: The Musical!” to the City Opera House, and it premieres Wednesday night.

Albom is known as a best-selling author and columnist, but he’s also an accomplished playwright.

He picked an unlikely topic for the latest show he’s bringing to Traverse City.

When you think of musical theater, you probably don’t think of hockey. So why would anyone combine the two?

That’s exactly what I asked Mitch Albom.

"I guess the fact that you’re asking me why ‘Hockey: The Musical!’ is kind of the answer. It was so preposterous and off the top that I thought it’s got to be funny. The title is ridiculous, and the play is ridiculous, but funny ridiculous and with heart," said Albom.

It’s show where the characters must prove to God the value of the sport of hockey, and maybe prove it to the audience as well.

I asked Albom, “You’re known to love a good underdog story. Hockey is an underdog sport. Is that why you chose this sport?"

Albom answered, "That’s very astute. I do like writing about underdogs. It’s always trying to be football or baseball, but doesn’t quite get there. But that’s what makes it lovable."

There’s no concern about the number of people “Hockey: The Musical!” will appeal to.

"When you make a musical that has singing, and dancing, and hockey, and Steve Yzerman and Brendan Shanahan. We call it the musical that brings couples together who’ve never gone to the theater together," explained Albom.

Bringing the show to Traverse City was a no-brainer.

"It’s a beautiful venue and I’d write a show just to be in the Opera House, honestly. That’s how beautiful it is," Albom said.

Kristi Dockter, from the City Opera House, said, "The community has really embraced it, and we’re almost at a sellout for opening night."

An audience treated to a ridiculous show, Albom admits may be hard to top.

"I guess if you can make a musical out of hockey, badminton’s probably next, so…" said Albom.

Mitch Albom’s sticking around to meet show-goers.

Wednesday night’s show starts at 7:30 and there are performances nightly through Saturday, along with a Saturday matinee.