Here’s a quick glance of some notable happenings on the Great White Way this week:
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SpongeBob SquarePants – Begins November 6th
A new musical based on the hit Nickelodeon cartoon series, SpongeBob SquarePants and the denizens of Bikini Bottom must rally to save their undersea world from total annihilation.
Escape to Margaritaville – Begins February 16th
A new musical, featuring the music of Jimmy Buffett, about the choices we make – and the people we become – once we’ve had a change in latitude.
Roundabout Theatre Company’s production of Scott McPherson’s 1990 play Marvin’s Room celebrated its Broadway premiere and opening last week at the American Airlines Theatre. Reviews from the critics were mixed, with many having issues with the direction and somewhat dated script: Variety – “The lack of energy is not only deadly for comedy, but also disastrous for performers forced to hold their poses while waiting for sluggish set changes and leisurely light cues.” Hollywood Reporter – Marvin’s Room, for all its warmly humanistic strengths, is very much a work of its time, and the director seems unable to connect with its particular wavelength.” But other critics praised the performances and the play’s powerful themes: NY1 – “Under Kauffman’s sensitive direction, the pacing is slow at times, though McPherson’s wonderfully low-key humor, particularly in the first act, enlivens the sad storyline. And the cast is excellent.” Time Out NY – “Kauffman’s luminous revival tends to McPherson’s legacy with grace. Without pushing its virtue too hard, the play movingly depicts a world in which loving others is, as it often has to be, its own reward.” Read more review excerpts and purchase discount tickets.
News and Notes:
Heartbreak Hotel Musical Sets Pre-Broadway Tryout
- A new stage musical about Elvis Presley’s early life called Heartbreak Hotel will premiere on August 30 at the Ogunquit Playhouse in Ogunquit, Maine. The production was written and directed by Floyd Mutrux, co-creator of Million Dollar Quartet, the hit Broadway musical inspired by Presley’s famous 1956 jam session with fellow Sun Records artists Carl Perkins, Jerry Lee Lewis and Johnny Cash. Heartbreak Hotel serves as a sequel to Million Dollar Quartet and focuses on Presley’s rise to superstardom. More details here.
Indecent Shows Box Office Strength After Extension
- Indecent, a play that was struggling at Broadway’s Cort Theatre, posted a June 25 closing notice despite two Tony wins (for direction and lighting). When word went out that the critically acclaimed and audience-pleasing show was getting ready to pack up, lines at the box office began to form. In response, Indecent cancelled its planned closure, extending for the rest of the summer instead. The show’s box office has more than doubled over the last three weeks, now sitting comfortably over $600,000. This week it outgrossed all its former competitors (save Best Play winner Oslo), and finally seems to be benefiting from the terrific word of mouth generated during the awards push. More details here.
Lin-Manuel Miranda’s #Ham4All Challenge Gains Celebrity Support
- Since the announcement of #Ham4All, the social media initiative supporting Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Immigrants, We Get the Job Done Coalition, celebrities have been tagging each other on social media to take part in the challenge, in which they record themselves singing a song from Hamilton in support of the cause. The coalition provides services to immigrants, refugees, and asylees. Those who donate ten dollars or more will be entered to win two VIP tickets to the opening night performance of Hamilton in Los Angeles, including a meet-and-greet with Lin-Manuel Miranda. Among those who have joined in #Ham4All are Nicole Kidman and the cast of the film The Beguiled, Stephen and Ayesha Curry, Shonda Rhimes, Ben Stiller, Eva Longoria, and the cast of Come From Away, among others. More details here.