The acclaimed rock musical about an American family on the brink, which centers around a mother battling depression and bi-polar disorder, and delves into prescription drug abuse, suicide, grief and the breakdown of an American family, seemed like a Broadway gamble. However, audiences and critics responded to the work.
Next to Normal recouped its $4 million Broadway investment and also took Tony Awards for Best Score, Best Orchestrations and Best Actress. A national tour launched in November 2010, with original star Alice Ripley in tow, and is currently scheduled through July 31, according to the official website for the musical.
Theatre companies across the world, and at least 12 in North America, have already licensed the production from Music Theatre International for independent productions.
Next to Normal will get its first regional staging with the Uptown Players in Dallas, TX (June 10-July 3); followed by major productions at the Carousel Dinner Theatre in Ft. Collins, CO (Sept. 02-Nov. 12); and Boston's Speakeasy Stage Company (Jan. 13-Feb. 12, 2012).
Productions are also confirmed to play Memphis; Atlanta; Kansas City; Austin; Vancouver; Salt Lake City; Milwaukee; Buenos Aires; Winnipeg; Rio De Janiero; Little Rock; and Montreal during the 2011-2012 season. MTI also expects a surge of productions for the 2012-2013 season as well.
The rock musical made its international debut in Oslo last fall and played a recent Manila engagement. International productions are lined up for Lima and Melbourne.
Tom Kitt (music) and Brian Yorkey (book/lyrics) penned the emotional work that arrived on Broadway March 27, 2009, and officially opened April 15, 2009, at the Booth Theatre following an Off-Broadway run at Second Stage and a regional engagement at the Arena Stage in Washington, D.C. Next to Normal played 21 previews and 733 performances on Broadway when it closed Jan. 16, 2011.