Newcomers include Mrs. Doubtfire and Girl From the North Country, plus revivals of The Wiz, Company and more
By SHARON EBERSON
And the answers are …
For those of us who followed and solved the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust’s social-media hints over the past few weeks, the PNC Broadway in Pittsburgh presentations for 2023-24 come mostly as no surprise.
Now we have the dates and the details.
Come what may (if you know, you know), the season includes several tours of relatively new shows, including the first up at bat: Moulin Rouge The Musical!, the winner of 10 Tony Awards, which opens September 27. The Trust clues added up to eight shows, with a ninth, The Book of Mormon, part of the announcement on Tuesday.
Based on the 2001 Baz Luhrman film, the stage version features all or snippets of 70 songs, credited to 160 songwriters, representing over 160 years of music.
The show is set in 1899, when Paris is a Bohemian hotbed of artistic expression and colorful characters. A young English writer becomes infatuated with Satine, a singer at the infamous Moulin Rouge. However, she has been promised by the company’s manager to a Duke in return for funding his next “Spectacular Spectacular” production.
As the first hint of the upcoming season, clues were drenched in the red, black and gold palette and tell-tale font employed by all things Moulin Rouge!
Girl From the North Country, a Depression-era play with music, written and directed by Conor McPherson and featuring the songs of Bob Dylan, and Mrs. Doubtfire, based on the 1993 film starring Robin Williams, are among the newcomers to the touring circuit that will stop in Pittsburgh.
Tours resulting from celebrated revivals also are coming our way:
The acclaimed gender-swap version of Stephen Sondheim and George Furth’s Company, winner of 2022’s best musical revival among its fiveTony Awards, arrives in April 2024.
The Wiz is starting down the road as a pre-Broadway tour. This is the groundbreaking show’s first revival since its four-year, Tony-winning original run that started in 1975 and a short return in 1984.
Lerner & Loewe’s My Fair Lady, which returned to Broadway in 2018 and garnered 10 Tony nominations, is also heading our way.
The national tour of The Kite Runner is set to kick off in 2024. The drama about guilt and redemption opened to mixed reviews on Broadway, including a rave by Variety: “Playwright Matthew Spangler’s adaptation of ‘The Kite Runner,’ Khaled Hosseini’s bestselling 2005 novel about the friendship of two boys living parallel lives in Afghanistan, is a heartbreaker – but so uplifting, it’s worth the pain.”
The two special events on the schedule are the ABBA musical Mamma Mia! , celebrating its 25th anniversary, and the uproarious, outrageous The Book of Mormon, which has undergone some tweaks since its last visit to Pittsburgh. The blockbuster production — still raunchy and rude yet oddly reverential — will “sharpen the satire of Mormonism,” The New York Times reports, and “give the Ugandan villagers more agency.”
2023-24 PNC BROADWAY IN PITTSBURGH SCHEDULE
All shows will be presented at the Benedum Center.
September 27-October 8, 2023: Moulin Rouge! The Musical! – At the 74th Tony Awards in 2021, Moulin Rouge! received 14 nominations and won 10. Directed by Alex Timbers, with a book by John Logan; orchestrations and arrangements by Justin Levine and choreography by Sonya Tayeh, all Tony winners.
October 31-November 5, 2023: The Wiz – This new production of the groundbreaking, Tony Award-winning musical is the first tour for The Wiz in 40 years. Directed by Schele Williams, choreographed by JaQuel Knight, The Wiz features a book by William F. Brown (additional material by Amber Ruffin) and a Tony Award-winning score by Charlie Smalls (and others). The Wiz design team will include scenic design by Academy Award-winner Hannah Beachler (Black Panther, Beyonce’s Black is King and Lemonade) and costumes by Emmy-winner Sharen Davis .
November 28-December 3, 2023: Mrs. Doubtfire – A new musical comedy based on the beloved film and directed by four-time Tony-winner Jerry Zaks. Mrs. Doubtfire tells the story of an out-of-work actor who will do anything for his kids. It’s “the lovable, big-hearted musical comedy we need right now,” raved the Chicago Tribune.
January 9-14, 2024: Girl From the North Country – Written and directed by Conor McPherson and featuring Tony-winning orchestrations by Simon Hale, the show reimagines 20 Bob Dylan songs for a 1934 story set in Dylan’s birthplace, Duluth, Minnesota. Songs include “Forever Young,” “All Along The Watchtower,” “Hurricane,” “Slow Train Coming,” and “Like A Rolling Stone.”
January 30-February 4, 2024: My Fair Lady – From the Lincoln Center Theater production directed by Bartlett Sher. “Every so often, a revival comes along that reminds you how indispensable great theater can be,” raved NY1. The loverly Lerner and Loewe classic has been revived four times on Broadway and various tours since it debuted in 1956.
April 16-21, 2024: Company – The revival “strikes like a lightning bolt. It’s brilliantly conceived and funny as hell” (Variety). Directed by Marianne Elliott (War Horse, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, Angels in America). In this Sondheim-approved adaptation, It’s Bobbie’s 35th birthday party, and all her friends keep asking, Why can’t she find the right man and isn’t it time to settle down and start a family?
May 7-12, 2024: The Kite Runner – Told across two decades and two continents, the adaptation by Matthew Spangler follows one man’s journey to confront his past and find redemption. Based on Khaled Hosseini’s international bestselling novel, this haunting tale of friendship spans cultures and continents and follows one man’s journey to confront his past and find redemption. The streets of Kabul, Afghanistan, are full of the excitement of a kite-flying tournament when best friends are torn apart, in a country on the verge of war.
February 27-March 3, 2024: The Book of Mormon – The New York Times calls it “the best musical of this century.” Winner of nine Tonys including best musical, he nine-time Tony Award® winning best musical, the comedy follows the misadventures of a mismatched pair of missionaries in Uganda. (Contains explicit language).
March 26-31, 2024: Mamma Mia! –
A mother. A daughter. Three possible dads (Mamma Mia! debuted on Broadway in 2001). And a wedding on a Greek island paradise, plus lots of ABBA hits by Benny Andersson and Björn Ulvaeus.
Categories: Arts and Ideas