What’s On Broadway
For a more current guide, see What’s on Broadway 2012
Fifteen shows are opening on Broadway between March 29 and April 26, the cut-off date to be eligible for the Tony Awards.
To see reviews chronologically as the shows open, see Broadway’s April Avalanche.
The schedule of shows with opening dates:
Newsies: March 29
The Best Man: April 1
End of the Rainbow: April 2
Evita: April 5
Magic/Bird: April 11
Peter and the Starcatcher: April 15
One Man, Two Guvnors: April 18
Clybourne Park: April 19
A Streetcar Named Desire: April 22
Ghost The Musical: April 23
The Lyons: April 23
Nice Work If You Can Get It: April 24
The Columnist: April 25
Don’t Dress For Dinner: April 26
Leap of Faith: April 26
Harvey: June 14
Below, an alphabetical listing of these shows and those already on Broadway, with details, and links to my reviews:
Stephen Sondheim Theater
Opened: April 7, 2011
Cast: Sutton Foster, Joel Grey
Twitter feed: @AnythingGoesRTC
Revival of Cole Porter’s musical
THE BOOK OF MORMON
The Eugene O’Neill Theater
Opened: March 24, 2011
Director: Jason Moore and Trey Parker
Twitter feed: @BookofMormonBWY
This new musical by Trey Parker and Matt Stone (book), the creators of South Park, and Robert Lopez, one of the composer-lyricists for “Avenue Q” (music and lyrics) is about both the founder of the Church of Latter-Day Saints and a modern disciple.
Ambassador Theater (219 West 49th Street)
Opened: November 14, 1996
A chorus girl in 1920′s Chicago murders her lover and becomes a star. This cynical, tuneful 1975 musical adaptation by John Kander and Fred Ebb (“Cabaret” team) of a 1926 play was revived to great acclaim by director Walter Bobbie and choreographer Ann Reinking in homage to original choreographer Bob Fosse. But it has gone through many, many cast changes since then. Some say this is the production that invented the modern Broadway practice of “stunt casting.”
Walter Kerr Theater
First preview: March 26, 2012
Opening: April 19, 2012
Closing: July 8, 2012
A “white update” of “A Raisin in the Sun.”
My review of Clybourne Park when it was at Playwrights Horizons
Samuel J. Friedman Theatre
David Auburn’s (Proof) latest drama portrays the dilemma faced by powerful Washington columnist Joseph Alsop, host to the Kennedy Camelot circle who becomes involved in a political, and personal, drama.
Director: Daniel Sullivan
Cast: John Lithgow
First preview: April 3 2012
Opening: April 25, 2012
Closing: June 3, 2012
DEATH OF A SALESMAN
Ethel Barrymore Theater
A revival of the 1949 play by Arthur Miler
Director: Mike Nichols
Cast: Philip Seymour Hoffman, Linda Emond, Andrew Garfield, John Glover
First preview: February 13, 2012
Opening: March 15, 2012
Closing: June 2, 2012
Twitter handle: @SalesmanBway
DON’T DRESS FOR DINNER
American Airlines Theater
The play by Marc Camoletti is a sequel to “Boeing-Beoing”
Director: John Tillinger
First preview: March 30, 2012
Opening: April 26, 2012
Closing: June 17, 2012
END OF THE RAINBOW
Peter Quilter’s play with music is set in December, 1968, when Judy Garland is about to make her comeback.
Director: Terry Johnson
Cast: Tracie Bennett, Michael Cumpsty
First preview: Monday, March 19, 2012
Opened: April 2, 2011
A revival of the 1978 Andrew Lloyd Webber musical about Argentina First Lady Eva Peron
Director: Michael Grandage
Cast: Elena Roger, Ricky Martin, Michael Cerveris
First preview: March 12, 2012
Opened: April 5, 2012
The GERSHWIN’S PORGY AND BESS
A “re-imagined” version of the opera by George Gershwin, DuBose and Dorothy Heyward and Ira Gershwin set in the 1930′s in Catfish Row in Charleston South Carolina
Director: Diane Paulus
Cast: Audra McDonald, Norm Lewis, David Alan Grier, Phillip Boykin
Opened: January 12, 2012
GHOST The MUSICAL
A new musical based on the 1990 Whoopi Goldberg Patrick Swayze, Demi Moore movie.
Director: Matthew Warchus
Cast: Richard Fleshman, Cassie Levy
First preview: March 15, 2012
Opens: April 23, 2012
Circle in the Square
Director: Daniel Goldstein
Opened: November 7 2011
GORE VIDAL’S THE BEST MAN
A revival of the 1960 play about a race for the presidnt
Director: Michael Wilson
Cast: Candice Bergen, James Earl Jones, Angela Lansbury, John Larroquette
First preview: March 6, 2012
Opened: April 1, 2012
Revival of the 1944 play by Mary Chase about Elwood and his friend, a six-foot-tall invisible rabbit named Harvey.
Director: Scott Ellis
Cast: Jim Parsons, Jessica Hecht, Charles Kimbrough
First preview: May 18, 2012
Opening: June 14, 2012
Closing: August 5, 2012
HOW TO SUCCEED IN BUSINESS WITHOUT REALLY TRYING
Al Hirschfeld Theater (302 West 45th Street)
Opened: March 27, 2011
Director: Rob Ashford
Original Cast: Nick Jonas
until end of year.
Twitter feed: @H2SBway
A revival of the 1961 musical, spoofing self-help business books, about a go-getter rising up the corporate ladder.
August Wilson Theater (245 West 52nd Street)
Opened: November 6, 2006
The story of the 1950′s-60′s singing group Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons, whose hits include “December 1963 [Oh, What A Night]” (my favorite) as well as “Sherry,” “Can’t Take My Eyes Off Of You,” etc.
Here is what I wrote about the show recently, in an article entitled Jersey Boys vs. Jersey Shore: Although the music is better known than the musicians, and yes there are almost three dozen songs in the show, the story of the group is better than most of those ‘Behind The Music’ documentaries.
JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR
A revival of the 1971 Andrew Lloyd Webber musical
First preview: March 1, 2012
Opened: March 22, 2012
LEAP OF FAITH
St. James Theater
In this musical based on the 1992 film with Steve Martin, Raúl Esparza plays con-artist Jonas Nightingale, who, finding himself stranded in a backwater Kansas town, attempts to separate the locals from their cash via a revival meeting.
First preview: April 3, 2012
Opening: April 26, 2012
Twitter feed: @LeapofFaithBway
Minskoff Theater (200 West 45th Street)
Opened: November 13, 1997
Based on the 1994 Disney animated film about the coming-of-age of a young lion in the African jungle, this musical offers African-inflected music by Elton John, lyrics by Tim Rice and the visual magic of Julie Taymor. Taymor is the director, a composer and lyricist for some of the songs. But above all, she is the designer of the costumes, masks, and puppets — and it is these visuals that make this show a good first theatrical experience.
A play by the same team that produced “Lombardi,” that chronicles the rivalry and intertwined stories of basketball players Larry Bird and Earvin “Magic” Johnson.
Director: Thomas Kail
First preview: March 21, 2012
Opening 11 Apr 2012
Cast: Tug Coker
Rob Ray Manning, Jr.
Twitter feed: @MagicBirdBway
Winter Garden (1634 Broadway)
Opened: October 18, 2001
It’s hard even for hard-core Mamma Mia fans to argue that the story pieced together using some two dozen hits from the 1970′s pop group ABBA makes very much sense: A young woman getting married on the Greek island where she has grown up invites the three men who may be her father to the wedding, without telling her mother: She had summer-quickie affairs with all three. The lyrics of some of the songs don’t always actually fit with what’s supposed to be happening at any moment.
But fans don’t care. The infectious music, most memorably “Dancing Queen,” and the whimsical disco-era dance numbers are enough for them. And whatever else you may think about the musical, it is true what the fans say: It is not quite as cheesy at the Meryl Streep movie.
New Amsterdam Theater (214 West 42nd Street)
Opened: November 16, 2006
The musical is based on the 1964 movie musical starring Julie Andrews with some added songs, and added plot from the original P.A. Travers stories that tells of unruly children tamed by a magical, flying nanny. There is more of a focus on the overworked parents, and their strained relationship. I did not see this Broadway musical until recently. I am told the London version was darker and more sophisticated, and that its transfer to Broadway was sweeter but still suited for adults. What I saw, though, were sets that stood out — they seemed expensive and with sufficient mechanical innovations (such as Mary Poppins flying over the audience) to distract theatergoers with Attention Deficit Disorder. But otherwise I found this version longer and more lumbering that I was expecting.
Opened: Oct. 19, 2009
Director: Christopher Ashley
Choreographer: Sergio Trujillo
Original Cast: Chad Kimball, Montego Glover
A new rock ‘n’ roll musical penned by Joe DiPietro and David Bryan.
A musical based on the 1990 film of the New York Newsboys Strike of 1899
Director: Jeff Calhoun
Cast: Jeremy Jordan, Andrew Keenan-Bolger
First preview: March 19, 2012
Opening: March 29, 2012
Closing: June 10, 2012
Twitter feed: @Newsies
NICE WORK IF YOU CAN GET IT
A new screwball romantic comedy with a book by Joe DiPietro using the songs of George and Ira Gershwin
Director: Kathleen Marshall
Cast: Matthew Broderick, Kelli O’Hara
First preview: March 29, 2012
Opening: April 24, 2012
Twitter handle: @NiceWorkBway
Bernard B. Jacobs Theater
Based on the hit 2006 movie, Once tell the story of the romance between a Dublin street musician and a Czech immigrant. Its song “Falling Slowly” won the Oscar.
First preview: February 18, 2012
Opening: March 18, 2012
Twitter handle: @OnceMusical
ONE MAN, TWO GUVNORS
Music Box Theater
The production by the National Theatre of Great Britain of a comedy by Richard Bean about a confused man who works both for a local gangster and a criminal in hiding.
Director: Nicholas Hytner
Cast: James Corden
First preview: April 6, 2012
Opening: April 18, 2012
OTHER DESERT CITIES
Director: Joe Mantello
Cast: Stockard Channing, Rachel Griffiths, Stacy Keach, Judith Light, Thomas Sadowski
Opened: November 3, 2011
Majestic Theater (247 West 44th Street)
Opened: January 26, 1988
The Phantom of the Opera, based on a 1911 French novel by Gaston Leroux, is about a disfigured genius named Erik who lives in the catacombs of the Paris Opera House and falls in love with Christine, an aspiring singer whom he helps…until an old flame of Christine’s named Raoul steps back into the picture.
However, the story in the musical, written and composed by Andrew Lloyd Webber — with more than its share of 1980′s heavy power ballads — is starting to take second place to the story of the musical, which is the longest-running Broadway musical of all time, and probably the most profitable.
Webber has written a “sequel,” entitled “Love Never Dies,” which was set for Broadway in the 2010-2011 season, but, after scathing reviews in London, will now be delayed.
PRISCILLA QUEEN OF THE DESERT
Opened March 20, 2011
Director: Simon Philips
Cast: Will Swenson, Tony Sheldon and Nick Adams
Brooks Atkinson Theater (256 West 47th Street)
Opened: April 7, 2009
It is 1987 in an L.A. club, and a girl meets a boy — she is new to town, he is shy but has the voice of an aircraft carrier and dreams of being a rock star. Both are smitten by the 1980′s rock songs of big-hair bands like Journey, Bon Jovi, and Poison….which you must be too, in order to appreciate this generally well-reviewed juke-box musical.
John Golden Theater
A play by Theresa Rebeck about a writing class with a dictatorial instructor
Director: Sam Gold
Cast: Alan Rickman
Opened: November 20, 2011
The Broadway Theater
Opened: April 20, 2011
Director: Jerry Zaks
Musical based with songs by Alan Menken (“Little Shop of Horrors,” “Beauty and the Beast”) based on the 1992 Whoopi Goldberg movie about a lounge singer disguising herself as a nun and hiding out in a convent to escape the mob.
First preview: November 28
Original Director: Julie Taymor
Cast: Reeve Carney, Jennifer Damiano
Twitter feed: @SpideyOnBway
This musical originally by Julie Taymor and Glen Berger (book) and Bono and The Edge (music and lyrics) follows the story of Spider-man the geek turned superhero. It was originally scheduled to begin previews in February, 2010, finally did in November, 2010, and opened on June, 13 2011.
A Streetcar Named Desire
Revival of the Tennessee Williams play set in the French Quarter of 1940′s New Orleans about vulnerable Southern belle Blanche DuBois who comes to live with her sister, Stella, and her ruffian brother-in-law Stanley. The play has probably the most famous line ever uttered in an American drama.
Director: Emily Mann
Nicole Ari Parker
First preview: April 3, 2012
Opening: April 22, 2012
Closing: July 12, 2012
Twitter handle: @Streetcar2012
VENUS IN FUR
Reopened at the Lyceum beginning February 7, 2012
David Ives play inspired by an infamous 19th century erotic novel is most notable for the star-making performance by Nina Arianda
Director: Walter Bobbie
Cast: Nina Arianda, Hugh Dancy
Twitter handle: @VenusinFurBway
Vivian Beaumont Theater at Lincoln Center
Opened: April 14, 2011
Directors: Marianne Elliott and Tom Morris
A new play based on a novel by Michael Morpurgo about a boy and his beloved horse during World War I. This is the American premiere of a play that has been on the London stage for several years, and will be designed by the London team, including video and puppetry.
Gershwin Theater (222 West 51st Street)
Opened: October 30, 2003
The musical tells the story of “The Wizard of Oz” from the witches’ perspective, more specifically from the Wicked Witch of the West, who was not, as a child, wicked at all, but just green-tinted, taunted, and misunderstood. There is so much to like about this musical, the clever twists on the familiar tale, the spectacular set, and music that is a lot more appealing in context (such as the song “Defying Gravity”) that I will forgive the contortions necessary to tack on a happy ending.
Follow us on twitter@thefastertimes