The Sunshine State’s love affair with local supermarket chain Publix is reaching new heights as a musical in the store’s honor debuted in Lakeland late last week at the annual meeting of the Lakeland Chamber of Commerce, according to The Lakeland Ledger.
Titled “When You Dream,” it tells the story of Publix’s founder George W. Jenkins, who started his career as a store manager at Piggly Wiggly before striking out on his own, and centers around his “spirit of giving to community.”
The musical is 30-minutes long is the creation of Daryl Ward, principal of Lakeland’s Harrison School of the Arts, who wrote the script along with five original songs for the musical.
And while Publix remains one of the most beloved brands in Florida — and is the largest employee-owned supermarket chain in the United States — it’s not without its controversy including numerous complaints of LGBT discrimination, questionable sustainability practices, and Jenkins’ children making massive contributions to political groups trying to ban medical marijuana in the state.
The show debuted on January 26, with an encore performance slated for April 7 during the school’s Red Carpet Gala, according to Instagram. Get a preview of the show below.
Students from Harrison School for the Arts debuted a musical about Publix Super Markets founder George Jenkins and his legacy of giving Thursday night at the annual meeting of the Greater Lakeland Chamber of Commerce. The play and lyrics were written by Harrison Principal Daryl Ward (@hsaprincipal) with music by Tyler Campbell, a Lakeland High School English teacher. The production was directed by faculty members Suzi Lambert and Laurel Renfroe. Ryland Marbutt, a recent Harrison grad now studying at Pace University in New York City, played George Jenkins. The musical will be performed again April 7 at Harrison's Roll out the Red Carpet gala. #lkld #publix