The upcoming Michael Jackson bio-musical Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough will now make its world premiere on Broadway, opening in New York in summer 2020. The producers (the Michael Jackson Estate and Columbia Live Stage) have canceled the previously announced pre-Broadway engagement in Chicago, citing scheduling difficulties following the recent strike by Actors' Equity.
Equity announced a strike January 7, calling for members to not participate in developmental presentations as negotiations took place. The strike was lifted last week after Equity and the Broadway League reached an agreement concerning new compensation packages that included profit-sharing and structured wage increases.
A developmental lab for the show was slated to start January 28 before being pushed to February 11—the Monday after the strike was lifted and the date initially listed in a casting notice posted in the fall. According to a representative for Equity, union members are currently participating in work sessions for the musical under developmental contracts.
A developmental work session will also take place in New York this fall. In lieu of the Chicago bow, which was slated to begin in October at the James M. Nederlander Theatre (formerly the Oriental), the show's eventual national tour will launch in the city.
Christopher Wheeldon will direct and choreograph the show, which will focus on Jackson’s career in his 20s and 30s, incorporating the music icon’s hits and a book by two-time Pulitzer Prize winner Lynn Nottage.