The Music Man has posted its closing notice and will play its last performance on January 1, 2023. The big-budget show attracted screaming Wolverine fans and Broadway groupies clamoring to see effervescent Tony winner Sutton Foster opposite Jackman, but even their combined star power couldn’t keep the musical, capitalized at $24 million, afloat.The pandemic delayed the production’s opening, followed by allegations of workplace abuse against lead producer and notorious Broadway bad boy Scott Rudin, who was quickly replaced with British producer Kate Horton.
The show originally premiered in 1957 and beat West Side Story for the coveted Tony Award for Best Musical. But despite premium ticket prices that soared to $697 each, average theatergoers didn’t seem to buy into what Jackman’s Harold Hill was selling.Related: Here’s what people are saying about Lea Michele in ‘Funny Girl’“We are endlessly grateful for the faith and support of our audiences, whose love affair with our show has weathered even the most complicated circumstances a global pandemic could throw our way,” said Horton. “We wish this ride could last forever but, alas, all good things must come to an end.”Critics were less than enthusiastic. “The problem arises when this fantasy is mounted as an upbeat, tidy time capsule, allowing audiences to ogle a version of America that never existed,” wrote Ashley Lee for the Los Angeles Times. “It asks audiences to cheer for yet another romanticized fraud.”“It’s easy to remember that The Music Man is a commodity as much as it is a creative endeavor,” wrote this reviewer upon the show’s opening. “The con is obvious — what you see is what you get.
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