Michael Jackson

Lately, we've seen a lot of musicals centered around musical artists head to Broadway. First, there was Escape to Margaritaville, which was based on the music of Jimmy Buffett (little fact: after playing 29 previews and 124 performances, the musical closed this past weekend). Summer: The Donna Summer Musical, based on the life of the iconic Motown star, opened back in April. And The Cher Show, featuring the music and story of Cher (duh) is currently running in Chicago and will transfer to Broadway this November. And now there's one more iconic musical star headed for The Great White Way: Michael Jackson. 

There have been plenty of shows based on MJ's life and music: there's Michael Jackson One, which is Cirque du Soleil's show in Vegas, as well as Michael Jackson: The Immortal World Tour, and the tribute show HIStory. And of course, there's Thriller Live, currently playing in the West End in London. 

But it looks like this iteration is going to be quite different than the others. Jackson was known the world over not only for his voice, but for his iconic dance moves (we're looking at you, moonwalk). The Guardian has reported that the musical will be choreographed by Christopher Wheeldon, and other publications, such as Playbill, have stated that he will direct as well. Wheeldon has already cut his Broadway teeth, as he received a Tony Award for his choreography for An American in Paris! This new combination is definitely intriguing - while Wheeldon’s involvement in An American In Paris made sense because of its ballet-based scenes, we are curious to see what the former NYCB soloist will do with the King of Pop's more "commercial" moves.  The book will be written by two-time Pulitzer Prize winner Lynn Nottage. 

The musical doesn't have a title yet, and there's no word if it will play anywhere before it hits Broadway. We're definitely just going to to have to sit tight for a little while - this show is in development and isn't slated to open until 2020. But if you’re in NYC and want to audition, there’s a casting call next week (click here).

About the author

Anne Luben has performed works by notable choreographers such as Donald McKayle, Bill T. Jones, Jiri Kylian, Idan Cohen, Alex Ketley, and Summer Lee Rhatigan, among others.