Producers Dori Berinstein and Bill Damaschke announced July 13 that Gotta Dance, the Broadway-bound musical comedy that made its world premiere at Chicago's Bank of America Theater, has been retitled Half Time. Opening on Broadway is scheduled for spring 2017.
“We are thrilled with our new title Half Time and feel it far better captures the story and spirit of the show that came together during our premiere in Chicago,” producers Berinstein and Damaschke said. “We are so excited for theatergoers on Broadway to experience the heart, humor and joy of Half Time, as can only be found in a Jerry Mitchell production!”
It was also announced that award-winning singer, songwriter and music producer Ester Dean has collaborated with Matthew Sklar (composer) and Nell Benjamin (lyricist) on a new finale. Dean, known from the films Pitch Perfect and Pitch Perfect 2, has also co-written songs for Christina Aguilera, Beyoncé, Mary J. Blige, Nicki Minaj, Kelly Clarkson and Katy Perry (“Firework”).
“It is such a pleasure to have Ester Dean join our team,” director-choreographer Mitchell said. “She has produced some the biggest and best contemporary pop tunes that always keep us moving. Now, together with Matt Sklar and Nell Benjamin, this team will have you dancing up the aisle, into Times Square and all the way home!”
The new musical has a a book by Tony Award nominee Chad Beguelin and Tony Award winner Bob Martin, an original score by Tony and Emmy Award nominee Sklar and lyrics by Tony Award nominee Benjamin, with additional music by Marvin Hamlisch and direction and choreography by Tony Award winner Mitchell, with co-choreography by Nick Kenkel.
Half Time is described as such: “One remarkable dance team. One big chance. One small twist...you’ve got to be over 60. From the director/choreographer of Kinky Boots comes the incredible true story of ten ordinary seniors with extraordinary dreams who audition to dance at half time for a major basketball team. Only after making the cut do they learn they won’t be dancing tap, salsa or swing—instead, they will bring down the house with a style that is entirely new to them: hip hop. Take the uplifting journey with these dreamers—and the young coaches who inspire them along the way—as they battle self-doubt, stereotypes, and even each other for a chance to bust a move at center court in front of 20,000 screaming fans. Together they remind us that in life, when the odds are stacked against you and the challenges seem too great to overcome, it’s not the end of the game—it’s Half Time."
The creative team reunites Mitchell with his Kinky Boots collaborators, including Tony Award winner David Rockwell (scenic design), Tony Award winner Gregg Barnes (costume design) and Tony Award winner Kenneth Posner (lighting design), four-time Tony Award nominee Peter Hylenski (sound design), Josh Marquette (hair design), Jason Lee Courson (projection design), Tony Award winner Larry Hochman (orchestrations), Charlie Alterman (musical director) and Kenny Seymour (dance music arranger/electronic music producer) with casting by Telsey + Company/Craig Burns, CSA.