Come on down to Coral Springs

To “The Price Is Right Live” and the chance to win prizes.

South Florida Sun-Sentinel (Sunday) - - Front Page - By Rod Stafford Hag­wood

If the words Plinko, Cliffhang­ers and the Big Wheel make your heart skip a beat, then you might want to check out a live show cloned from “The Price is Right,” the pop­u­lar tele­vi­sion game show.

“The Price is Right Live” will play the Coral Springs Cen­ter for the Arts on April

4. Like the TV ver­sion’s iconic catch phrase, some au­di­ence mem­bers will be in­vited to “come on down” and play var­i­ous games of chance to win prizes such as va­ca­tions, ap­pli­ances and, yes, even a new car. But if you want to try your luck on­stage, you need to reg­is­ter at the cen­ter three hours in ad­vance of the 7:30 p.m. cur­tain.

“The Price is Right” as we know it to­day has been on tele­vi­sion since

1972, although the DNA of the game show goes all the way back to a pro­toPrice is Right in 1956. That makes it the longest-run­ning day­time game show in North Amer­ica. Drew Carey cur­rently hosts the TV ver­sion, hav­ing taken over from orig­i­nal host Bob Barker in

2007.

What will hap­pen dur­ing the stage show?

The stage show com­ing to

South Florida also has a well­known host in Todd New­ton, who has over the course of his ca­reer awarded con­tes­tants around $50 mil­lion in cash and prizes on TV shows such as “Fri­day Game Night,” “Hol­ly­wood Show­down,” “Whammy!,” “Instant Mil­lion­aire” and “Mo­nop­oly Mil­lion­aire’s Club.”

In a tele­phone in­ter­view New­ton ex­plains the show: “We are a live, trav­el­ing pro­duc­tion of one of Amer­ica’s most iconic tele­vi­sion shows. There’s no cam­era, no com­mer­cial breaks. The sim­i­lar­i­ties of the tour­ing show and the tele­vi­sion show are end­less. The dif­fer­ences are very few. Ev­ery night you get to give out cash and va­ca­tions, a new car, kitchen ap­pli­ances — we have it all.”

New­ton says the same pro­duc­ers of the TV show are be­hind the tour­ing ver­sion. Some of the crew and even the set de­sign­ers are the same. But he says the crowds are very dif­fer­ent.

“No two au­di­ences are the same, so no two shows are the same,” New­ton says. “This is a live show, so I tell peo­ple any­thing can hap­pen, and it of­ten does. I’ve prob­a­bly been picked up and spun around and given big hugs more than any one host. I get a lot of that game show love.”

Why a road-com­pany ver­sion?

“I was here from the very first show,” New­ton says. “We started the show in a tiny lit­tle the­ater in Reno, Nevada. This show was cre­ated by Bob Barker for ‘The Price is Right’ fans who could never get out

to Hol­ly­wood. He wanted to bring a lit­tle bit of Hol­ly­wood to North Amer­ica. And Bob was my gameshow men­tor, so I am in­cred­i­bly grate­ful and hon­ored to be able to say that. I mean, 47 years on tele­vi­sion and al­most 15 years on the road now — it’s al­most some­thing un­heard of in the en­ter­tain­ment in­dus­try.”

New­ton adds, “There are peo­ple who have been wait­ing 40 years for their op­por­tu­nity to play Plinko or spin the Big Wheel. I like to host the show … be­cause you see the show through the eyes of the con­tes­tants. It’s like when you have chil­dren and you see Christ­mas and birthdays through the eyes of a child. It’s ex­cit­ing and fresh again.”

The tour is in the spring, usu­ally through the end of April, be­fore start­ing a se­cond cycle in the fall.

“Last night [in Jack­son, Mis­sis­sippi] we gave a won­der­ful va­ca­tion to a woman in the show who said she hasn’t been able to take a trip in 30 years. I love see­ing that.”

If you go

“The Price is Right Live” starts at 7:30 p.m. on Thurs­day at the Coral Springs Cen­ter for the Arts, 2855 Coral Springs Drive. Tick­ets are $43.87 and $54.57. To or­der, call 954-344-5990 or go to TheCen­terCS.com.

BRAD­FORD ROGNE PHO­TOG­RA­PHY

Todd New­ton

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