The musical The Adventures of Tom Sawyer will close with the matinee performance on May 13 after playing 34 previews and 21 regular performances. The show opened on April 26 following an engagement at the Shubert Theater in New Haven, Conn.
The Don Schlitz-Ken Ludwig musical received only mixed reviews. Since previews began on March 27 Tom Sawyer was widely regarded as a good children’s show. Tom Sawyer earned a Drama League Best Musical nomination and, on May 7, the date of the show's closing notice, the musical earned two Tony nominations in production categories but did not get a Best Musical nod.
Two other Broadway shows, The Gathering and Judgment at Nuremberg, will also shutter on May 13.
What began as an inspiration by the late director Mike Ockrent became a stage reality from Feb. 27-March 11 during Tom Sawyer's pre Broadway tryout in New Haven at the Shubert Theatre. A few years ago, Ockrent put some theatre veterans together with country songwriter and Broadway newcomer Don Schlitz to see what might come of their collaboration. As reported, Schlitz embraced Broadway as a new challenge, even though he is an entertainment veteran. Honored by the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers as ASCAP's Country Songwriter of the Year for four consecutive years (1989-1991), Schlitz has written fifty Top Ten hits, among them an astounding twenty four Number One songs- including the Grammy winning classic, "The Gambler." Ken Ludwig (Crazy for You, Lend Me a Tenor) wrote the book for Tom Sawyer. Directed by Scott Ellis (1776, She Loves Me, Company), the creative team comprises choreographer David Marques, set designer Heidi Ettinger (a Tony nominee), costume designer Anthony Powell, lighting designer Kenneth Posner (a Tony nominee), sound designer Lew Mead, fight direction by Rick Sordelet, hair by David Brian Brown, dance and incidental music by David Krane, with music direction by Paul Gemignani and orchestrations by Michael Starobin.
Tom Sawyer is billed as an “adventure” and is based on the Mark Twain novel.
The cast for the show includes:
Tom Sawyer: Joshua Park
Huck Finn: Jim Poulos
Aunt Polly: Linda Purl
Dobbins: John Christopher Jones
Sprague: Tommy Hollis
Sid Sawyer: Marshall Pailet
Becky Thatcher: Kristen Bell
Injun Joe: Kevin Serge Durand
Muff Potter: Tom Aldredge
Judge Thatcher: John Dossett
Pap/Doc: Stephen Lee Anderson
Widow Douglas: Jane Connell
Bellamy: Richard Poe
The Girls: Ann Whitlow Brown, Elan, Nikki M. James, Kate Reinders, Mekenzie Rosen-Stone.
The Boys: Michael Burton, Pierce Cravens, Joe Gallagher, Blake Hackler, Eric J. McCormack, Tommar Wilson.
The Townsfolk: Patrick Boll, Stacia Fernandez, John Herrera, Tommy Hollis, Donna Lee Marshall, Amy Jo Phillips, Richard Poe, Sally Wilfert, Ric Stoneback, Elise Santora.
Tickets range from $35-$85. The Minskoff Theatre is located at 200 W. 45 St. For information call Ticketmaster at (212) 307-4100 or visit ticketmaster.com. The official Playbill website for The Adventures of Tom Sawyer is www.tomsawyerbroadway.com.