MJ, the musical jukebox biography of the “King of Pop” Michael Jackson is headed to Broadway is headed for Broadway this summer. The new musical, which will feature a parade of hits recorded by the late superstar will begin previews at the Neil Simon Theatre on July 6, 2020, with an official opening set for August 13. Producers have now announced the creative team that will shape the physical production as it heads to the Great White Way.
Multiple Tony Award-winning lighting designer Natasha Katz (Aida, An American in Paris) will work her magic for MJ, joined by Tony Award-winning scenic designer Derek McLane (33 Variations), Tony Award-winning costume designer Paul Tazewell (Hamilton), and Tony-nominated sound designer Gareth Owen (A Little Night Music). Projection design will be by Peter Nigrini, with hair and wig design executed by Charles LaPointe.
Tony Award-winner Christopher Wheeldon will direct and choreograph the musical, which will feature a book by two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Lynn Nottage (Ruined, Sweat). Tony nominee for the hit musical Ain’t Too Proud: The Life and Times of the Temptations, Ephraim Sykes, will star in the role of Michael Jackson.
Michael Jackson was a celebrated artist of the pop music industry, whose life was a combination of superstardom and controversy. He started his illustrious career as a child, singing with his siblings in the 60s/70s music group The Jackson 5. As Jackson entered adulthood, he launched a stratospheric solo career, recording such hits as “Beat It,” “Billie Jean,” “Thriller,” “Bad,” “The Way You Make Me Feel,” “The Man in the Mirror,” “Black or White,” and co-wrote “We Are the World” with Lionel Ritchie, a song that served as a fundraising album that brought together popular music superstars, benefitting USA for Africa.
Mark Robinson is the author of the two-volume encyclopedia The World of Musicals, The Disney Song Encyclopedia, and The Encyclopedia of Television Theme Songs. His latest book, Sitcommentary: The Television Comedies That Changed America, released on October 15. He maintains a theater and entertainment blog at markrobinsonwrites.com.
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