UPDATE, 11 AM: Motown The Musical will return to Broadway beginning July 12 for an 18-week limited run at the Nederlander Theatre. The show will star Chester Gregory as Berry Gordy, Allison Semmes as Diana Ross, Jesse Nager as Smokey Robinson, Jarran Muse as Marvin Gaye and J.J. Batteast and Leon Outlaw Jr. as Young Berry Gordy/Stevie Wonder/Michael Jackson. MTM originally ran at the Nederlander Organization’s Lunt-Fontanne Theatre, closing January 18, 2015, after 775 performances. A successful UK edition is running in London’s West End. The producers are Kevin McCollum (Something Rotten!), Doug Morris and Motown founder Gordy.
PREVIOUS, 10:50 AM: A show that wrote its own review as one of the early musical casualties of the 2015-2016 season, Disaster! will shutter July 3, if not before, at the Nederlander Theatre to make way for the return of another show, to be announced shortly. Disaster! will have lost its entire capitalization.
A parody of 1970s disaster movies that used mostly forgettable pop songs from the period, Disaster! has a cast packed with Broadway veterans including Roger Bart, Kerry Butler, Kevin Chamberlin, Adam Pascal, Faith Prince, Rachel York, Seth Rudetsky, Jennifer Simard, Max Crumm, Baylee Littrell and Lacretta Nicole. It’s directed by Jack Plotnick, with a book by Seth Rudetsky and Plotnick. The creative team includes scenic design by Tobin Ost, costume design by William Ivey Long, lighting design by Jeff Croiter and sound design by Mark Menard.
Despite all that talent — and a near-rave review from The New York Times (though not here) — the show never sparked, let alone caught fire, at the box office. As Deadline reported yesterday, its most recent weekly gross was less than 27% of its potential and the house was less than half-full overall throughout its nine week run (to date).