Broadway is back: Hamilton, Lion King, Wicked announce return in September
Billboards in Times Square, the heart of New York's theatre district, lit up with signs on Tuesday saying "Broadway is Back" as the reopening dates were announced. Tickets for some of the shows are already on sale.
Three of Broadway's biggest musicals – Hamilton, Wicked and The Lion King – on Tuesday (May 11) announced they would be back on stage in September, joining dozens of other shows that plan to reopen in New York after an 18-month pandemic-induced shutdown.
Disney's stage show Aladdin and the Alanis Morissette penned musical Jagged Little Pill also announced dates for late September and October, while producers of a new musical about Michael Jackson said that MJ would open in early 2022.
Billboards in Times Square, the heart of New York's theatre district, lit up with signs on Tuesday saying "Broadway is Back" as the reopening dates were announced.
Tickets for some of the shows are already on sale.
Producers of Hamilton, The Lion King and Wicked said they hoped the announcement "sends a message that Broadway is united in its commitment to ending a devastating period of hardship for the tens of thousands who make their living directly on Broadway shows and the tens of thousands in dependent industries".
Other Broadway shows that have announced dates later in the fall include The Phantom Of The Opera, Tina: The Tina Turner Musical, Six, Mrs Doubtfire, Chicago and a gender-swapping version of Stephen Sondheim's musical Company in which women play the lead roles.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said last week that theatres would be allowed to fill 100 per cent capacity, but it was not immediately clear whether audiences would have to be fully vaccinated, or what other coronavirus safety measures would be required at individual theatres.
Broadway shows, a major tourist attraction, brought in around US$1.8 billion in box office receipts in the 2018-2019 season, with more than half of the tickets being bought by tourists.
No dates have yet been announced for the return of major Broadway plays, including the stage version of To Kill A Mockingbird, which are generally less appealing to tourists.