Summer is not over yet, but the new Broadway season is already in full swing. Here’s what’s coming up for the rest of this year.
Following a more traditional path from screen to stage, Pretty Woman: The Musical (Nederlander Theatre), with a book by Garry Marshall and J.F. Lawton and a score by Bryan Adams and Jim Vallance, is based on the popular 1990 Julia Roberts movie. Broadway newcomer Samantha Barks and three-time Tony Award nominee Andy Karl (Groundhog Day, Rocky) play the romantic leads in the production directed and choreographed by Tony winner Jerry Mitchell (Kinky Boots, Legally Blonde). Learn more and buy tickets to Pretty Woman: The Musical.
Daniel Radcliffe, Cherry Jones, and Bobby Cannavale bring their star power to The Lifespan of a Fact (Studio 54, starts September 20, opens October 18). In the lively comedy-drama, a fact-checker (played by three-time Tony nominee Radcliffe) is assigned by his editor (two-time Tony winner Jones) to verify the accuracy of a story about a teenage suicide written by a well-known writer (two-time Tony nominee Cannavale). The timely new play by Jeremy Kareken, David Murrell, and Gordon Farrell is based on the essay and book of the same name, which documents the real-life seven-year debate on truth and embellishment in journalism between the intern Jim Fingel, who verified the story, and the author, John D’Agata. The production, which is said to feature Broadway’s first all-female design team — Tony winner Mimi Lien (scenic design), Tony winner Linda Cho (costumes), Jen Schriever (lighting), Palmer Hefferan (sound), and Lucy Mackinnon (projection) — is directed by Leigh Silverman (nominated in 2014 for Violet). Learn more and buy tickets to The Lifespan of a Fact.
Standing 20 feet high and weighing 2,000 pounds, Broadway’s most unusual leading man is a gorilla smitten by beauty in King Kong (Broadway Theatre, starts October 5, opens November 8). The mighty beast, originally conceived by Merian C. Cooper and Edgar Wallace, is a wonder of puppetry and animatronics designed for the stage by Australian creature engineer Sonny Tilders. Based on the 1932 novelization of the original movie screenplay, the book for the Broadway musical spectacle is written by Jack Thorne (2018 Best Play Tony award winner for Harry Potter and the Cursed Child); music and lyrics are by four-time Grammy nominee Marius de Vries (music director of La La Land), and songs are by Eddie Perfect (composer of the upcoming new musical Beetlejuice). Christiani Pitts (who plays the movie actress Anne Darrow) and Eric William Morris (the film director Carl Denham) star in the production, directed and choreographed by Drew McOnie. Learn more and buy tickets to King Kong.
The Cher Show (Neil Simon Theatre, starts November 1, opens December 3), three performers —Stephanie J. Block (Tony nominee for Falsettos), Teal Wicks, and Micaela Diamond — play the iconic singer and actress at various points in her six-decade-long career. Written by Rick Elice (Jersey Boys) with music arrangements and orchestrations by Daryl Waters (Tony Award winner for Memphis), the bio-musical charts the highs and lows in the Goddess of Pop’s trailblazing path to stardom. Expect to hear 35 of her hit songs and marvel at a glittering parade of those one-of-a-kind Bob Mackie costumes. The cast also includes Emily Skinner (Tony nominee for SideShow) as Cher’s mother, Georgia Holt, and Jarrod Spector as Sony Bono. The production is directed by Jason Moore (Avenue Q), with choreography by Christopher Gattelli (Tony winner for Newsies, and 2018 nominee for My Fair Lady and SpongeBob SquarePants: The Broadway Musical). Learn more and buy tickets to The Cher Show.
The Illusionists – Magic of the Holidays (Marquis Theatre, starts November 23) marks the return to Broadway for the fourth year in succession of the magic spectacular that has wowed audiences across the globe. Five masters of the art of defying reality ranging from sleight of hand to escapology – Darcy Oake “The Grand Illusionist), Adam Trent (The Futurist), Colin Cloud (The Deductionist), Shim Lim (The Manipulator) and Chloé Crawford (The Sorceress) — with special guests the Ukrainian troupe Light Balance (best known for their appearance on America’s Got Talent) promise to dazzle you with “the most outrageous and astonishing acts ever seen on stage.” Learn more and buy tickets to The Illusionists – Magic of the Holidays.