All the Broadway Shows of the 2018-2019 Season

//All the Broadway Shows of the 2018-2019 Season
  • 2018-2019 season

All the Broadway Shows of the 2018-2019 Season

Gender-blind Shakespeare, an Elizabethan frolic set to 1980s girl pop, a giant gorilla, a young Rupert Murdoch, triple Cher and a wealth of new plays to counter last season’s shortage are on the slate.

Armie Hammer, Josh Charles, Daniel Radcliffe, Bobby Cannavale, Kerry Washington, Elaine May, Lucas Hedges, Ethan Hawke and Paul Dano are among the names hitting Broadway this season, along with British stage titan Glenda Jackson, fresh off her Tony win for Edward Albee’s Three Tall Women.

Following last season’s thin crop of new plays, debuts are lined up from Young Jean Lee, Christopher Demos-Brown and Tarell Alvin McCraney, as well as new work from Theresa Rebeck, Richard Bean, James Graham, Jez Butterworth and Aaron Sorkin, among others.

A handful of major musicals have out-of-town tryouts in the works and are eyeing Broadway this season. Those include stage adaptations of the movies Tootsie, Beetlejuice and Moulin Rouge!; Jagged Little Pill, which takes its score and its thematic cue from the chart-topping 1995 Alanis Morissette album and features a book by Diablo Cody; and Ain’t Too Proud, a bio-musical tracing the rise of Motown superstars The Temptations.

Pundits also are eagerly watching for news of possible London transfers, including the Tina Turner bio Tina, headlining a breakout performance from Adrienne Warren; and Matthew Lopez’s two-part epic on gay love after the AIDS crisis, The Inheritance, directed by Stephen Daldry. Another London hit, Conor McPherson’s Girl From the North Country, with music by Bob Dylan, will have its U.S. premiere at the Public Theater and seems a prime candidate to move uptown.

As Broadway plans for those shows are firmed and other new productions announced, The Hollywood Reporter will update this list to provide a complete roundup of all the contenders for 2019 Tony Awards. Keep checking back for production images and reviews once each show open

The Boys in the Band

Mart Crowley’s landmark 1968 comedy-drama about a birthday party attended by a group of pre-Stonewall gay New Yorkers has long been a divisive work in the LGBT canon, celebrated by many for representing queer lives at a time of minimal cultural visibility, and slammed by others for perpetuating the stereotype of the bitchy, self-loathing drama queen. Joe Mantello’s stylish production blows the dust off a history piece still surging with wit, vitality and a restorative sense of outsiders surviving through the lifeforce of community, making the play relevant at a time when hard-won rights could all too easily be lost again. In what might have been a mere marketing gimmick but ends up as a powerful political statement, the starry ensemble is populated exclusively by out gay men, led by Jim Parsons, Zachary Quinto, Matt Bomer and Andrew Rannells.
Opens: May 31
Closes: Aug. 11

Straight White Men

Armie Hammer, Josh Charles and Paul Schneider make their Broadway debuts in this dark identity comedy by Young Jean Lee, marking the first work by an Asian-American female playwright to be produced on Broadway. Anna D. Shapiro, a Tony winner for August: Osage County, directs the encounter of three adult brothers who gather at the home of their widowed father, played by Stephen Payne, to spend Christmas Eve, their celebrations taking a troubled turn when one of them reveals his refusal to conform to expectations. Second Stage produces the play, which was previously seen in an acclaimed 2014 run at the Public Theater, with a different cast directed by Lee.

Previews: June 30
Opening: July 23

The Go-Go’s and a 17th century romance? That’s the marriage cooked up by original book writer Jeff Whitty (Avenue Q), adapter James Magruder and director Michael Mayer, whose Broadway musical credits have included Hedwig and the Angry Inch, American Idiot and Spring Awakening, which won him a Tony Award in 2007. Based on Philip Sidney’s prose poem The Arcadia, the musical unfolds in a kingdom ruled by a divine “beat,” which is threatened by an oracle’s dark prophecy, propelling the royal family through a journey of mistaken identities, secret trysts and sexual awakenings. Spencer Liff serves as choreographer, with music supervisor Tom Kitt retooling such hits as “We Got the Beat,” “Vacation,” “Our Lips Are Sealed” and Belinda Carlisle’s “Heaven Is a Place on Earth.” Gwyneth Paltrow is a producer on the show, which debuted in 2015 at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival.

Previews: June 23
Opening: July 26

John Rando, a Tony winner for Urinetown, directs this original musical about Mitch Papadopolous, who put his dreams of being the next Bon Jovi on hold for the security of a high-paying job as a banker, only to get pink-slipped on his 40th birthday, forcing him to move back in with his mom in Sayreville, New Jersey. But when his former high school nemesis threatens to foreclose on their house, he reassembles his old musician buddies to compete in a Battle of the Bands. The feel-good show features music and lyrics by newcomer Mark Allen and a book by producer Ken Davenport and writer-performer group The Grundleshotz. It stars Mitchell Jarvis, Jay Klaitz, Manu Narayan, Paul Whitty and Sawyer Nunes as Mitch and his fellow members of Juggernaut, with Marilu Henner as Mitch’s mom.

Previews: July 19
Opening: Aug. 13

Pretty Woman: The Musical

The blockbuster 1990 romantic comedy about a Hollywood Boulevard hooker who gets rescued by a New York corporate raider and then turns around and rescues him right back made a star of Julia Roberts and pumped fresh blood into Richard Gere’s career. The Cinderella update now becomes a stage musical about self-discovery starring Samantha Barks and Andy Karl, with an original score by Bryan Adams and his longtime songwriting partner Jim Vallance. The book is by Garry Marshall and J.F. Lawton — director and screenwriter of the movie, respectively — with director-choreographer Jerry Mitchell (Kinky Boots) shepherding a cast that also includes Orfeh, Eric Anderson, Jason Danieley and Kingsley Leggs.

Previews: July 20
Opening: Aug. 16


The mighty Janet McTeer, who won a 1997 lead actress Tony Award for A Doll’s House, takes on the role of legendary classical stage performer Sarah Bernhardt in this new play by Theresa Rebeck. Blending high comedy with human drama and contemporary feminist perspective, it chronicles Bernhardt’s determined efforts to conquer the most ambitious role of her celebrated career, Shakespeare’s Hamlet, in a lavish production that played Paris and London in 1899. Director Moritz von Steulpnagel’s track record with subversive comedy (Hand to God) and farcical high jinks (Present Laughter) suggests an irreverent take on theater history.

Previews: Sept. 1
Opening: Sept. 25

The Nap

English playwright Richard Bean made a gut-busting Broadway debut in 2012 with One Man, Two Guvnors, his riotous take on Carlo Goldoni’s The Servant of Two Masters, which earned a Tony for lead actor James Corden. Bean returns with this comedy that premiered to positive response in 2016 in Sheffield, home of the annual World Snooker Championship. (That’s pool to Americans.) While no casting has been announced for the U.S. premiere, to be directed by Daniel Sullivan, that earlier production starred Jack O’Connell as a local snooker ace and Mark Addy as his verbally challenged ex-con father, forced into various underhanded dealings with a bunch of shady characters to avoid charges of match fixing.

Previews: Sept. 4
Opening: Sept. 27

The Lifespan of a Fact

A frequent presence on Broadway since winding down his Harry Potter duties, Daniel Radcliffe returns in his fourth production, starring alongside Cherry Jones and Bobby Cannavale in this unclassifiable world premiere based on the best-selling 2012 book by John D’Agata and Jim Fingal, which explores the blurred lines of what passes for truth in literary nonfiction. Cannavale plays D’Agata, a journalist commissioned by Harper’s Magazine to write a piece about a teen suicide in Las Vegas, which was pulled from publication after factual errors came to light. Radcliffe plays magazine staffer Fingal, with Jones as the editor who assigns him to fact-check the story, triggering a seven-year correspondence with the writer before the essay was finally published. Leigh Silverman directs the play, which was adapted for the stage by Jeremy Kareken, David Murrell and Gordon Farrell, all three Broadway newcomers.

Previews: Sept. 20
Opening: Oct. 18

The Ferryman

The 2018 Olivier Award winner for best new play, this latest modern pastoral from Jez Butterworth, author of Jerusalem, is a populous ensemble piece set in rural Northern Ireland in 1981, during the worst of The Troubles. An unexpected visitor disturbs the more routine chaos of Quinn Carney and his abundant brood when he arrives at the family’s farmhouse during the autumn grain harvest. Sam Mendes also won an Olivier for his direction, as did lead actress Laura Donnelly, who accompanies the transfer with fellow original leads Paddy Considine and Genevieve O’Reilly, as well as several other veterans of the London company.

Previews: Oct. 2
Opening: Oct. 21

The Waverly Gallery

The earlier works of Kenneth Lonergan, a 2017 Oscar winner for Manchester By the Sea, have been making welcome returns on Broadway of late, starting in 2014 with This Is Our Youth and continuing last season with Lobby Hero, which marked Chris Evans’ Broadway debut. Comedy legend Elaine May returns to Broadway after an absence of more than 50 years as the spirited Greenwich Village art gallery owner battling Alzheimer’s in this memory play from 2000, which also stars Lonergan stage regular Michael Cera, Manchester discovery Lucas Hedges and distinguished stage vet Joan Allen. Lila Neugebauer, who has turned heads with her striking off-Broadway productions of The Wolves and Edward Albee’s At Home at the Zoo, undertakes her first Broadway assignment with the humorous and poignant account of a family coming together in a time of crisis.

Previews: Sept. 25
Opening: Oct. 25

Torch Song

The landmark play that put Harvey Fierstein on the map returns in this revival first seen off-Broadway in late 2017. Michael Urie takes on the role originated by Fierstein — back when the serio-comedy was called Torch Song Trilogy and won 1983 Tony Awards for best play and best actor — of Arnold Beckoff, a love-starved gay New York drag performer navigating the highs and heartbreaks of relationships in an era long before marriage equality. The entire cast of Moises Kaufman’s production will reassemble for the transfer, including Mercedes Ruehl as Arnold’s domineering mother and Ward Horton as the handsome schoolteacher he helps nudge out of the closet.

Previews: Oct. 9
Opening: Nov. 1

For her first major role since wrapping seven seasons as Olivia Pope on ABC’s Scandal, Kerry Washington stars as a desperate mother who turns up at a Florida cop station in the middle of the night searching for her missing 18-year-old biracial son in emerging playwright Christopher Demos-Brown’s intense four-character drama. Steven Pasquale plays her estranged husband, an FBI agent whose law-enforcement credentials fail to impress the tough black Miami-Dade County police lieutenant played by Eugene Lee. Jeremy Jordan completes the cast as the rookie desk officer on night duty, marking the Tony-nominated Newsies star’s first nonmusical role on Broadway. Kenny Leon, a 2014 Tony winner for the revival of A Raisin in the Sun with Denzel Washington, will direct the searing account of parents dealing with their worst fears while caught up in our national racial divide.

Previews: Oct. 6
Opening: Nov. 4

King Kong

This musical spectacular — retelling the classic 1932 tale of the giant ape enchanted by an actress, transported to Manhattan and tragically killed at the top of the Empire State Building — comes to New York after five years of further development since its 2013 premiere in Melbourne, Australia. Backed by Global Creatures, the Sydney-based company behind the international arena smash Walking With Dinosaurs, the $36.5 million production features a 20-foot animatronic gorilla, with Christiani Pitts as Ann Darrow, the actress who captures the beast’s heart. Playwright Jack Thorne, hot off his Tony win for Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, pens the latest version of the book, with songs by Australian musician Eddie Perfect, music by British composer Marius de Vries and direction and choreography by Drew McOnie. The long-gestating project has passed through the hands of various creative teams en route to this final iteration, making it perhaps the biggest gamble on Broadway since Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark.

Previews: Oct. 5
Opening: Nov. 8

The Prom

Director-choreographer Casey Nicholaw, a Tony winner for The Book of Mormon, brings his customary razzle-dazzle to an ensemble led by Brooks Ashmanskas, Beth Leavel, Christopher Sieber and Michael Potts in this original musical comedy with a book by Bob Martin (The Drowsy Chaperone) and lyricist Chad Beguelin (Aladdin) and music by Matthew Sklar (Elf). Described as a joyous celebration of the power of love and change, the show premiered to rave reviews at the Alliance Theatre in Atlanta; it tracks the big noise that ensues when brassy Broadway stars take up the cause of a high-school student sidelined from her small-town Indiana prom.

Previews: Oct. 23
Opening: Nov. 15

The Cher Show

Cher and Cher alike. Three actresses — Stephanie J. Block, Teal Wicks and Micaela Diamond — play the queen of a thousand farewell tours at different ages in this bio-musical viewed through the lens of the 1970s-style TV variety shows on which she first shot to fame. Rick Elice, who spawned a massive hit with another jukebox musical, Jersey Boys, pens the book, with Jason Moore (Avenue Q on stage, Pitch Perfect on screen) directing and choreographer Christopher Gattelli in charge of reinterpreting the period dance moves. The show traces Cher’s life and 50-plus years in showbiz, from early hits like her duet with first husband Sonny Bono, “I Got You Babe,” through her chart-topping comeback with “Believe,” her movie successes and beyond. Legendary costumer Bob Mackie plays a key role both onstage and off, appearing as a character while also designing the eye-popping array of outrageous outfits that made Cher such a fearless red-carpet trailblazer.

Previews: Nov. 1
Opening: Dec. 3

To Kill a Mockingbird

Now that the legal dispute with the Harper Lee estate has been resolved, Aaron Sorkin’s new stage adaptation of the author’s classic 1960 novel about ingrained racism in 1930s Alabama is back on track. Tony winner Bartlett Sher, who has brought impeccable nuance both to musicals (South Pacific, The King and I) and plays (Joe Turner’s Come and Gone, Awake and Sing!) directs a cast headed by Jeff Daniels as principled small-town lawyer Atticus Finch, with Celia Keenan-Bolger as his daughter Scout, Will Pullen as her brother Jem and Gideon Glick as their visiting friend Dill. The large ensemble also includes LaTanya Richardson Jackson, Stephen McKinley Henderson, Dakin Matthews, Stark Sands, Frederick Weller, Erin Wilhelmi, Phyllis Somerville and Gbenga Akinnagbe.

Previews: Nov. 1
Opening: Dec. 13

Choir Boy

MacArthur “Genius” Grant recipient Tarell Alvin McCraney, who shared an adapted screenplay Oscar with director Barry Jenkins for Moonlight in 2017, makes his Broadway debut with this coming-of-age drama from 2012, which examines the combustible tensions that rip through a prestigious prep school for African-American boys when a gay youth is appointed leader of its gospel choir. Chuck Cooper, Austin Pendleton and gifted newcomer Jeremy Pope reprise their key roles from director Trip Cullman’s critically lauded 2013 off-Broadway production of this stirring play about oppression and repression, graced by heavenly music.

Previews: Dec. 27
Opening: Jan. 22

True West

Ethan Hawke and Paul Dano face off as the brothers who come together after a five-year estrangement in Sam Shepard’s classic 1980 drama of sibling rivalry, unfolding against a mythic American landscape suspended between the California desert frontier and the seductive dream factory of Hollywood. The play has been a vehicle for a number of powerhouse actors since its premiere, among them John Malkovich, Gary Sinise, Peter Coyote, Tommy Lee Jones, Mark Rylance, Philip Seymour Hoffman and John C. Reilly, the latter two famously alternating roles in a 2000 Broadway production. This revival is staged by Brit director James Macdonald, who drew acclaim last season with his production of Lucy Kirkwood’s The Children.

Previews: Dec. 27
Opening: Jan. 24

Kiss Me, Kate

Kelli O’Hara and Will Chase lead this revival of the perennially popular show with a score by Cole Porter and book by Sam and Bella Spewack, which has the distinction of being the first-ever winner of the Tony Award for best musical in 1949. O’Hara, a 2015 Tony winner for The King and I, plays temperamental movie star Lilli Vanessi with Chase as her egotistical director-producer ex-husband Fred Graham, who lures her into starring as Kate to his Petruchio in Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew. The production reunites director Scott Ellis and choreographer Warren Carlyle, who collaborated on revivals of She Loves Me, On the Twentieth Century and The Mystery of Edwin Drood. The musical features such Porter standards as “Too Darn Hot,” “So in Love,” “Always True to You in My Fashion” and “From This Moment On.”

Previews: Feb. 14
Opening: March 14

King Lear

“Blow, winds, and crack your cheeks! Rage, blow!” Most octogenarians are thinking about retirement, catching up on reading, bingeing quality TV, maybe a little light gardening. Not Glenda Jackson. Last season, she returned to Broadway after a 30-year absence and translated her fifth Tony nomination into a long-overdue win for lead actress with her thrillingly inhabited performance as the dying protagonist of Edward Albee’s Three Tall Women. The English acting royalty and two-time Oscar winner will be back in the spring to take a second gender-blind bite out of the monumental role of Shakespeare’s tragic monarch, which she first tackled to enormous acclaim in 2016 at London’s Old Vic. That project marked Jackson’s return to the stage after 23 years as a member of Parliament for Britain’s Labour Party. The Broadway revival will be an entirely new production, with a director and fellow cast to be named.

Previews: March 6
Opening: April 11


A smash hit in London, James Graham’s rollicking depiction of the young Rupert Murdoch’s initial assault on Fleet Street crosses the Atlantic in director Rupert Goold’s hyper-kinetic production. The play chronicles the brash Australian media tycoon’s first foray into British newspapers in 1969, when he banded with rogue editor Larry Lamb and a team of cynical reporters to make over failing tabloid The Sun into a must-read daily with an unapologetically trashy popular bent. While casting has not yet been confirmed for the New York transfer, Bertie Carvel and Richard Coyle both drew raves on the West End in 2017 for their performances as Murdoch and Lamb, respectively; Carvel won an Olivier Award for best supporting actor, though the play was beaten for the top prize by Jez Butterworth’s The Ferryman.

Previews: April 2
Opening: April 24

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By |July 11th, 2018|Theater|0 Comments

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