Stephen Schwartz Reveals What's Next for Hunchback of Notre Dame

News   Stephen Schwartz Reveals What's Next for Hunchback of Notre Dame
It looks like The Hunchback of Notre Dame, the new musical based on the Victor Hugo novel and the animated Disney film, will not transfer to Broadway following its recent run at the Paper Mill Playhouse.

In a recent interview Stephen Schwartz, who penned the lyrics for the new musical, said Hunchback would soon be licensed for regional productions, which likely means a Broadway staging will not be happening in the immediate future.

Schwartz, according to The San Diego Union-Tribune, said, "What one wants for any show is for it [to] have a [continued] life." The award-winning composer also remarked that "the two best shows I've done have never played New York." Schwartz was referencing Hunchback and Children of Eden. Those shows, he said, best fulfilled their artistic missions.

Produced in association with La Jolla Playhouse, Hunchback opened March 15 following previews that began March 4. Michael Arden, Patrick Page and Ciara Renée starred in the production, which played its final performance April 5. 

Page previously wrote on his Facebook page, "Hey folks--'The Hunchback of Notre Dame' is not transferring to Broadway. If you want to see Michael Arden give a performance for the ages there are two performances Easter Sunday and that's it. Don't miss it."

Fans started an online petition at to bring the musical to Broadway.

Inspired by Victor Hugo's novel, The Hunchback of Notre Dame features a book by Peter Parnell, music by Alan Menken and lyrics by Schwartz. The musical is billed as a "dramatic retelling of the famous love story on a grand scale, with a lush, emotionally rich score."

Hunchback of Notre Dame has been recorded by Sh-k-boom Records. The CD will be released Nov. 20 on their Ghostlight label. 

Menken, Schwartz and Parnell discuss the stage adaptation, which features a new ending and new songs, in the feature: Alan Menken and Stephen Schwartz Turn Hunchback Into a Stage Beauty.

Scott Schwartz directed a cast that includes Michael Arden (Big River, The Times They Are A-Changin’) as Quasimodo, Patrick Page (The Lion King, Spider-Man Turn Off the Dark) as Dom Claude Frollo, Ciara Renée (Pippin, Big Fish) as Esmeralda, Andrew Samonsky (Little Miss Sunshine, The Mystery of Edwin Drood) as Captain Phoebus de Martin and Erik Liberman (Lovemusik) as Clopin Trouillefou.

Read's interview with Patrick Page, about how his personal struggles influence his performances, here.

Rounding out the ensemble were Julian Decker, Mary Joe Duggan, Ian Patrick Gibb, Beth Kirkpatrick, Samantha Massell, Neal Mayer, Nora Menken, William Michals, Anise Ritchie, Vincent Rodriguez III, Richard Ruiz, Joseph J. Simeone, Jeremy Stolle and Dashaun Young.

Arden shares exclusive photos of a two-show day at the Paper Mill here.

Stephen Schwartz shares the other Disney films he would like to adapt for the stage here.

The musical was previously performed at La Jolla Playhouse, officially opening Nov. 9, 2014, and extending through Dec. 14.

Read reviews of the production here.

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