On February 10, the cast and creative team for Amélie, A New Musical invited the press to New York City’s Cutting Room for a sneak peek at the musical adaptation—set to begin previews at the Walter Kerr Theatre March 9. Before introducing the cast to the stage, director Pam MacKinnon revealed that the show—which has had two regional tryouts prior to its Broadway debut—now has a brand-new closing number.
“We really feel like we unlocked something, or solved something—the penny dropped,” composer Daniel Messé told Playbill.com. “All of a sudden, there’s a way to close the show. How do you end this story? It’s so open-ended because at the end of the movie, Amélie is just getting started…It’s really hopeful, but at the same time there’s something nerve-racking about that.”
“The original idea was to end with Amélie and Nino alone onstage in a very small, quiet way, but then we went in a completely different direction and ended up really big,“ he continued. “We tried a couple of different things, but eventually we’ve come back to a much smaller ending. It’s heartbreaking. Most people who hear it wind up crying—but at the same time, it’s really hooky. It does what love does, and makes you feel.“
“This whole show has been about experimenting with musical theatre tropes,” added lyricist Nathan Tysen. “Seeing what lands, what doesn’t, and how we can turn it on its head... We had to try all of the different versions until we found the most honest version. That’s been the rule of thumb with all the writing in this show.”
Amélie, A New Musical will officially open April 3 starring Tony nominee Phillipa Soo in the role of the beloved Parisian waitress. At the Cutting Room, Soo performed the solo number “Times Are Hard for Dreamers” as well as the duet “Stay,” with co-star Adam Chanler-Berat.