Motown Will Move Out! Musical Will Take Broadway Hiatus With U.K. Plans in Store

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21 Aug 2014

Josh Tower and Krystal Joy Brown
Josh Tower and Krystal Joy Brown
Photo by Monica Simoes

Motown The Musical, the Broadway show featuring music from the legendary Motown catalogue, will play its final performance at the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre Jan. 18, 2015, producers announced. Plans for Motown to reopen on Broadway are in place for July 2016.

The musical — produced by Kevin McCollum, Doug Morris and Berry Gordy, the show's book writer — will return in a Nederlander theatre to be announced.

Producer McCollum said in a statement, "We are only saying farewell to Broadway for now. We are leaving on a strong note, because we have a plan in place to come back even stronger. We've seen that Motown The Musical demonstrably appeals to a wide range of audiences. The passionate response to our show and the Motown catalogue puts us in a great position to arrange a successful return, while at the same time Motown The Musical branches out nationally and internationally.

"Motown The Musical opened in New York without the benefit of an out-of-town tryout to immediate and amazing response. We learned a lot from producing the premiere, both on an artistic and practical level. When we launched the first national tour on a full Equity Production Contract, we were able to incorporate changes that present a new, visually and musically vibrant version of the show, equal in quality and excitement to its Broadway counterpart and that clearly appeals to audiences, as we have seen from the great sales figures in Chicago.

"By closing in January 2015, we have an opportunity to use the production assets from Broadway for the U.K. production next year. We are pleased to continue our great relationship with the Nederlander Organization for the next chapter of Motown The Musical on Broadway when we will return with a new production, our fourth, in the summer of 2016."



A U.K. production is planned for summer 2015, and the first national tour of Motown continues — thus far, it has grossed $20 million dollars during a 16-week run.

Motown has broken the weekly gross box-office record at the Lunt-Fontanne with million dollar-grossing weeks and an average ticket price of $112.72 since the start of performances March 11, 2013. The production will recoup its $18 million investment within the next few weeks at the Lunt Fontanne Theatre.

Nick Scandalios, vice-president of the Nederlander Organization, said, "The Nederlander Organization has enjoyed a great four-year partnership with Motown The Musical and look forward to that relationship continuing for many years to come. We would like Motown The Musical to open in London next year at the Dominion Theatre and we are committed to making one of our theatres available to Motown The Musical on Broadway in the summer of 2016. We are also grateful to the producers of Motown The Musical for making it possible for the Nederlander Organization to book the Lunt Fontanne for another production for the 2014-15 awards season."

Gordy added, "Since I founded the company, it has always been my goal to share the music and message of Motown with people around the world. I'm delighted that Motown The Musical has been successfully launched on Broadway and I now look forward to concentrating on future productions, as well as planning our return to New York City in 2016."

Directed by Charles Randolph-Wright, Motown features arrangements and orchestrations by Tony and Grammy Award nominee Ethan Popp (who also serves as musical supervisor for the orchestra), co-orchestrations and additional arrangements by Tony Award nominee Bryan Crook, dance arrangements by Zane Mark and music direction by Joseph Joubert.

The current cast stars Josh Tower as Berry Gordy, Krystal Joy Brown as Diana Ross, Charl Brown as Smokey Robinson and Bryan Terrell Clark as Marvin Gaye.

Motown features choreography by Patricia Wilcox and Warren Adams, scenic design by David Korins, costume design by Tony Award nominee ESosa, lighting design by Tony Award winner Natasha Katz, sound design by Tony Award® nominee Peter Hylenski and projection design by Daniel Brodie.

Visit MotownTheMusical.com.