PLAYBILL.COM'S THEATRE WEEK IN REVIEW, July 5-11: Holler If Ya Hear Me is Losing Its Voice and Heathers Will Bite the Dust

"Holler If Ya Have 5 Mil."

Saul Williams, Dyllon Burnside and Joshua Boone
Saul Williams, Dyllon Burnside and Joshua Boone (Photo by Joan Marcus)

That's what the producers of the beleaguered Broadway musical Holler If Ya Hear Me were saying this week. Eric L. Gold, the lead producer of the Tupac Shakur-scored musical, is hoping to raise $5 million to sustain the production, which has been weekly posting the poorest box office numbers in town. Many Broadway observers have expected the show to shutter by now.

"It's week to week right now," Gold told Variety. "I can't tell you if it'll be two weeks or two months. It's an expensive game, and I'm the guy carrying the load financially. I made a rookie mistake by underestimating how much capital was necessary, but I'm tenacious."

Although the cast has made numerous television appearances over the last week, Gold hopes to get influential theatregoers (including New York City mayor Bill de Blasio) in the door.

He added, "If we don't succeed, it's going to be difficult to do another rap or hip hop show on Broadway."

Whether that would be a bad or a good thing depends on who you ask.

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Fairy Cakes sounds like the kind of cheeky title Douglas Carter Beane would give to one of his plays. And it is!

The new play by five-time Tony nominee, with music by Lewis Flinn, will have its world premiere at the Scranton Shakespeare Festival July 25.

Douglas Carter Beane
Photo by Joseph Marzullo/WENN

Beane will direct the piece himself. The play is written in rhymes and couplets and follows Shakespeare's fairies when they are off-stage in A Midsummer Night's Dream and pursuing that side jobs — such as being the Tooth Fairy. The cast includes Grant Chamberlin, Megan Stewart, Tamara Sevunts, Lauren Renehan, Billie Aiken-Tyers, Gerome Sevunts, Daniel Redfern, Jonathan J. Stevens, Pedro Almeida, Conor Ling, Tamara Ratcliffe, James Physick, Emmie Gelat, Katey Lewis and Michael Bradshaw Flynn.

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The Laurence O'Keefe-Kevin Murphy musical adaptation of the 1989 black comedy Heathers got some very good reviews when it arrived Off-Broadway March 15. Nonetheless, like some many of the characters in the show, it's going to be killed off in its youth.

Heathers will end its run Aug. 4 at New World Stages, producers announced July 10. When the production closes, it will have played 17 previews and 145 regular performances.

The musical arrived in New York following a sold-out 2013 Los Angeles premiere. It is based on the dark film comedy about a group of domineering high school girls, which starred Winona Ryder, Christian Slater and Shannen Doherty.

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What has Happy Days wrought?

A stage musical based on the popular 1970s sitcom, by librettist Garry Marshall and songwriter Paul Williams, was an unexpected hit at the Paper Mill Playhouse in 2007. A national tour followed.

No doubt inspired that that fluke occurrence, we now have The Beverly Hillbillies: The Musical. Jed Clampett and his family have moved to Indiana, where the world premiere of the musical began July 10 at Theatre at the Center. 

The musical features a score by Gregg Opelka and a book by David Rogers and Amanda Rogers. The score, of course includes the TV show's theme song ("Swimming pools, movie stars…."), written by producer and songwriter Paul Henning.