The ALL HANDS ON DECK! Show was born of a heart filled with gratitude and patriotism. Creator and star Jody Madaras wanted to write a show that would say “Thank you” to the greatest generation – the men and women who served our country during WWII and The Korean Conflict — and also remind Americans of a time when our country was truly united.
Madaras said, “This new 1940’s show is very special to me — I spent nearly four years writing it.” The Ohio farm boy knew he wanted to say something important. “We are reminded everyday that our country has challenges. I wanted to write about patriotic unity, what’s right about our country, and thank our veterans in a musical way. I know how much these songs mean to them. I wanted audiences to leave feeling a little better and happier about our country.”
Madaras used the Hollywood Victory Caravan — a group of famous film stars who toured America by train in 1942 selling war bonds — as the setting for his new show. “When I got the idea to do the show, one of the things I found was that no one had ever done a show based on the Caravan. It was a huge part of the war effort and no one had ever fully honored them.”
“1942 was one of the most pivotal years in world history paving the way for much of the prosperity we enjoy in this great country of ours. That’s our theme: being united, then and now.”
“We are reminded everyday that our country has challenges. I wanted to write about patriotic unity, what’s right about our country, and thank our veterans in a musical way. I know how much these songs mean to them, and I have discovered as we have toured across America how much they inspire audiences of all ages. I want everyone to leave our show feeling a little better and happier about our country.” - Jody Madaras
Madaras’ strong patriotism is credited in large part to his family. His grandmother June was extremely active in the American Legion Auxiliary. “Growing up with Grandma, we always listened to these songs. She was very proud of the United States and believed we are at our best when we are united. Her handwriting is in this show.” His grandfather, Adolph “Duff” immigrated through Ellis Island from Hungary in 1911, and proudly served as an officer in the US Navy in WWII.
In a family of great Americans lives great patriotism, reverence, gratitude, honor, and integrity. Madaras has masterfully crafted together those values into a production that takes us all on a sentimental, and truly inspirational, journey.
The ALL HANDS ON DECK! Show premiered in 2011 in Perrysburg, Ohio. Madaras said it was a “complete surprise that so many people came to the show in Perrysburg. I had a simple idea worth trying, and the audiences’ response was overwhelming.”
2012 brought a highly successful national tour, playing to sold out houses all across the U.S.A.
Jody Madaras has been described as a “home town farm boy who went to New York, made it big, and has now come back home with a message of patriotism and gratitude.” Audiences in Branson, MO can now enjoy the show starting in March 2016.