Twyla Tharp and Billy Joel Musical Movin' Out of Broadway; Final Performance Dec. 11

By Ernio Hernandez
18 Aug 2005

Michael Cavanaugh sings in Movin' Out.
Michael Cavanaugh sings in Movin' Out.
Photo by Joan Marcus

Broadway's Twyla Tharp-Billy Joel collaboration, Movin' Out, will end its three year run at the Richard Rodgers Theatre Dec. 11, producers announced Aug. 18.

The dance-heavy musical will play its final performance on Dec. 11, 2005, having played 28 previews and 1,303 regular performances.

Movin' Out boasts most of its original lead cast who have taken breaks here and there, but returned including Tony Award nominees John Selya, Elizabeth Parkinson, Keith Roberts, Ashley Tuttle, Michael Cavanaugh as well as Scott Wise and Benjamin G. Bowman.

"I am so proud to have been a part of this landmark production. As important as the creation of the show, a wonderful family has been created here," lead producer James L. Nederlander stated in a release. "It has been an extreme pleasure to spend the past three years in the company of some of the most talented and gifted artists that Broadway has ever seen. Long after the final performance, the memory of this show will live in the new standard of excellence and commitment they have set."

Producers of the Broadway run James L. Nederlander, Hal Luftig, Scott E. Nederlander, Terry Allen Kramer, Clear Channel Entertainment and Emanuel Azenberg also present the still-running national tour which launched Jan. 26, 2004. The show returned its $10 million capitalization in late 2004, according to production spokespersons.



The bookless show, currently residing at Broadway's Richard Rodgers Theatre, uses Joel's song lyrics and Tharp's choreography to tell the story of five friends and lovers across three decades through love, war and loss. There is no dialogue and all songs are performed by the pianist-singer, who sings non-stop and heads an on-stage band during the show.

Following a tryout at Chicago's Shubert Theatre, the show officially opened on The Great White Way Oct. 24, 2002 following previews since Sept. 30. The new show took home the Tony Awards for Best Choreography (Tharp) and Orchestrations (Joel and Stuart Malina).

The songlist includes many of Joel's hit songs and even interpolates some of his classical work. "It's Still Rock and Roll to Me" functions as a sort of overture, introducing the characters. The story kicks off with "Scenes from an Italian Restaurant" and moves through other songs as the popular "We Didn't Start the Fire," "Big Shot," "Uptown Girl" and "Captain Jack," as well as more obscure early work like "James," "Summer, Highland Falls," and "Angry Young Man." As a final curtain coda, Cavanaugh belts out the apropos "New York State of Mind."

For more information on the Broadway and national tour stagings of Movin' Out, visit www.movinoutonbroadway.com.