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Your Broadway Fall Preview! 2019 Edition

Date: Sep 06, 2019

A guide to 21 upcoming (or recently opened) productions

All those shows closing over the summer means Broadway is getting an incredible influx of new titles this fall. Between now and December, 19 new productions are bowing on the boards -- and that doesn't even include the recently opened Sea Wall / A Life and Betrayal. As usual, autumn is play heavy, with lauded London imports (The Inheritance, The Height of the Storm), Off-Broadway transfers (Slave Play) and shows coming from regional festivals (The Sound Inside, Grand Horizons). But there are a handful of new musicals too, including Tina: The Tina Turner Musical and Jagged Little Pill. Our guide helps you navigate what's coming.

NOTE: Within each category, shows are listed in first preview date order.



The Lightning Thief: The Percy Jackson Musical
Longacre Theatre, 220 West 48th Street between Broadway and Eighth Avenue

Previews start September 20. Opens October 16. Closes January 5, 2020. At press time, discount tickets were available for The Lightning Thief: The Percy Jackson Musical.

TheaterWorksUSA's family-aimed musical has enjoyed quite the legendary journey. Based on Rick Riordan's eponymous young-adult novel, which updates Greek myths to the 21st century, The Lightning Thief started out as a one-act, expanded to a full-length show and is now coming to Broadway for a limited run. With a bouncy pop-rock score, a joke-filled book and a trio of adolescent demigod heroes going up against Hades, it's an epic choice for tweens and teens.


David Byrne's American Utopia
Hudson Theatre, 139-141 West 44th Street between Broadway and Sixth Avenue

Previews start October 4. Opens October 20. Closes January 19, 2020.

Is it a concert or is it theatre? That's in the eye of the beholder of David Byrne's new performance piece, inspired by his album of the same name. The rock icon and former Talking Heads front man shares the stage with 11 multicultural musicians who play songs from his extensive catalog as they dance in provocative formations. The choreography is by post-modern dance master Annie-B Parson, and Tony nominee Alex Timbers is billed as production consultant, so it's sure to be theatrical, even if it's not quite a musical.


Tina: The Tina Turner Musical
Lunt-Fontanne Theatre, 205 West 46th Street between Broadway and Eighth Avenue

Previews start October 12. Opens November 7. Open run

Tony nominee Adrienne Warren reprises her celebrated London performance as the title rock diva in this bio musical. In addition to a slew of hits such as "Proud Mary," "Private Dancer" and "What's Love Got to Do With It," the production boasts a feminist lens, with co-book writer Katori Hall and internationally acclaimed director Phyllida Lloyd working with Turner herself to make sure her tumultuous life -- including her abusive relationship with her first husband Ike -- is handled with sensitivity and insight.


Jagged Little Pill
Broadhurst Theatre, 235 West 44th Street between Seventh and Eighth Avenues

Previews start November 3. Opens December 5. Open run

Three renowned women artists are behind this production, which made quite a stir when it premiered at A.R.T. last summer. Inspired by the themes in Alanis Morissette's Grammy-winning album of the same name, Jagged Little Pill is not a typical jukebox musical ready to wrap you in nostalgia. With a book by Oscar winner Diablo Cody and direction by Tony winner Diane Paulus, the show explores the trauma of rape culture and addiction as a seemingly perfect suburban family is forced to confront their dark sides. Despite the many hits included in the score ("Ironic," "You Oughta Know," "Hand In My Pocket"), don't expect happy-go-lucky singing along.


West Side Story
Broadway Theatre, 1681 Broadway at 53rd Street

Previews start December 10. Opens February 20, 2020. Open run.

Avant-garde director Ivo van Hove is known for reimagining classics -- he won a Tony for his bloody production of A View from the Bridge, though his unconventional takes on The Crucible and the video-heavy Network were much more controversial. What's he going to do to this landmark musical? Aside from saying he's making "a West Side Story for the 21st century" we don't know... but it's sure to have everyone talking.



Sea Wall/A Life
Hudson Theatre, 139-141 West 44th Street between Broadway and Sixth Avenue

Already open. Closes September 29. At press time, discount tickets were available for Sea Wall / A Life.

After a sold-out run at The Public Theater, this intimate production transferred to Broadway for a limited run. Screen stars Tom Sturridge and Jake Gyllenhaal perform a pair of complementary monologues about men grappling with fatherhood, loss and healing. It's a startlingly authentic and cathartic experience, so tissues are recommended.


Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre, 242 W 45th St between Broadway and Eighth Avenue

Already open. Closes December 8.

Although Tom Hiddleston and Charlie Cox may be best known stateside for their Marvel screen roles (the villainous Loki in the Thor and Avengers movies, and the title superhero in Netflix's Daredevil, respectively), they're stage vets in their native England. That's where this revival of Harold Pinter's slippery drama originated, and now the actors are making their Broadway debuts in the production alongside Zawe Ashton. The story of an affair that destroys a marriage and a friendship, the narrative unfolds in reverse. Even if you're not familiar with the play don't worry: it's easier to follow than the MCU.


Derren Brown: Secret
Cort Theatre, 138 West 48th Street between Sixth and Seventh Avenues

Previews September 6. Opens September 15. Closes January 4, 2020. At press time, discount tickets were available for Derren Brown: Secret.

Two years ago, big-name British mentalist Derren Brown made his U.S. stage debut Off-Broadway at the Atlantic Theater. In a neat trick, he's now bringing the production to Broadway to showcase his unique skills as a mind reader... or is he practicing mind control? Shhhh, no spoilers. You don't want to give this Secret away.


The Great Society
Vivian Beaumont Theater, 150 West 65th Street between Broadway and Amsterdam Avenue

Previews September 6. Opens October 1. Closes November 30.

A sequel to the Tony-winning All the Way, Robert Schenkkan's historical drama chronicles Lyndon B. Johnson's one full term as president, a four-year period when the Civil Rights Movement, multiple assassinations and the Vietnam War changed our country forever. Brian Cox stars as LBJ and is supported by an ensemble of 18 actors playing more than 50 characters, including Tony nominee Bryce Pinkham as Robert F. Kennedy.


The Height of the Storm
Samuel J. Friedman Theatre, 261 West 47th Street between Broadway and Eighth Avenue

Previews September 10. Opens September 24. Closes November 17.

Legendary British thespians Jonathan Pryce and Eileen Atkins return to Broadway after more than a decade absence in playwright Florian Zeller's latest brainteaser about upper-middle-class malaise. Like Zeller's The Father, The Height of the Storm features a married patriarch with dementia struggling with his familial relationships, which seem to change from scene to scene. Tony nominee Jonathan Kent directs the Manhattan Theatre Club production, which originated in London.


Slave Play
John Golden Theatre, 252 West 45th Street between Broadway and Eighth Avenue

Previews September 10. Opens October 6. Closes January 5, 2020.

Written by wunderkind Jeremy O. Harris, Slave Play may be the most polarizing show of the season. Last year, its sold-out run at New York Theatre Workshop sparked calls for its cancellation while many critics put the production on their best-of lists. Now it's coming to Broadway, where its raunchy and raw dissection of interracial relationships will undoubtedly continue to ignite passionate responses.


freestyle love supreme
Booth Theatre, 222 West 45th Street between Broadway and Eighth Avenue

Previews start September 13. Opens October 2. Closes January 12, 2020.

Years before In the Heights and Hamilton, writer-performer Lin-Manuel Miranda and director Thomas Kail arrived on NYC's theatre scene with freestyle love supreme, an improvised hip-hop comedy show that packed 'em in at Ars Nova in 2005. Earlier this year, they brought it back for a limited run at Greenwich House Theater; now that production is transferring to Broadway, where the core cast will perform a different show every night with the help of audience suggestions and special guest stars such as Daveed Diggs, Chris Jackson, James Monroe Iglehart, Wayne Brady and, yes, Miranda himself.


The Sound Inside
Studio 54, 254 West 54th Street between Broadway and Eighth Avenue

Previews start September 14. Opens October 17. Closes January 12, 2020.

The first of two plays starring Tony winner Mary-Louise Parker this season (How I Learned to Drive opens in the spring), Adam Rapp's mysterious two-hander explores the relationship between an ailing novelist and her promising student, as they write each other into their lives both figuratively and literally. Tony winner David Cromer directs the Lincoln Center Theatre production, which originated at the Williamstown Theatre Festival last year.


The Rose Tattoo
American Airlines Theatre, 227 West 42nd Street between Seventh and Eighth Avenues

Previews start September 19. Opens October 15. Closes December 8.

Oscar winner Marisa Tomei plays a reclusive Italian widow who rediscovers her lust for life with the arrival of a handsome trucker in Tennessee Williams' play, last seen on Broadway almost a quarter century ago. Trip Cullman directs the Roundabout Theatre Company production.


Linda Vista
Helen Hayes Theatre, 240 West 44th Street between Seventh and Eighth Avenues

Previews start September 19. Opens October 10. Closes November 10. At press time, discount tickets were available for Linda Vista.

Pulitzer Prize winner Tracy Letts takes a deep dive into a white man's midlife crisis in Steppenwolf Theatre's Linda Vista, imported to Broadway by Second Stage Theatre. Post-divorce, 50-year-old Wheeler sets out to find himself, but first he needs to lose his old attitudes.


The Inheritance
Ethel Barrymore Theatre, 243 West 47th Street between Broadway and Eighth Avenue

Previews start September 27. Opens November 17. Closes March 15, 2020.

A two-part epic about the intertwined lives of gay New Yorkers... no, it's not Angels in America; it's The Inheritance. Inspired by E. M. Forster's novel Howards End, Matthew Lopez's meditation on three generations of gay men won the 2019 Olivier for Best Play in London. Now it comes to Broadway with much of its West End cast intact, notably Tony winner John Benjamin Hickey and Olivier winner Kyle Soller, and exciting new additions like two-time Tony nominee Lois Smith.


A Christmas Carol
Lyceum Theatre, 149 West 45th Street between Sixth and Seventh Avenues

Previews start November 7. Opens November 20. Closes January 5, 2020.

Stage incarnations of Dickens' A Christmas Carol are as plentiful as sidewalk Santas come the holidays. But it's been almost a decade since we've had a revival on Broadway, and this one comes with glowing notices from London's Old Vic. Adapted by Tony-winning Harry Potter and the Cursed Child playwright Jack Thorne and directed by Tony winner Matthew Warchus, the production stars Campbell Scott as Ebenezer Scrooge, a role his late father, George C. Scott, played in the 1984 TV movie


Slava's Snowshow
Stephen Sondheim Theatre, 124 West 43rd Street between Broadway and Sixth Avenue

Previews start November 11. Opens November 13. Closes January 5, 2020.

Russian performance artist Slava Polunin brings back his beloved clown show for the holidays, previously seen on Broadway a decade ago (and Off-Broadway before that). A wordless romp filled with fake snow, balloons, bubbles and whimsy, this spectacle charms the young -- and the young at heart.


The Illusionists - Magic of the Holidays
Neil Simon Theatre, 250 West 52nd Street between Broadway and Eighth Avenue

Starts November 29. Closes January 5, 2020.
Nope, you're not seeing things. This Vegas-style magic revue returns for the holidays with mentalists, sleight-of-hand masters, daredevils and tricksters. Always a fun option for families if your kid's over Radio City.


Grand Horizons
Helen Hayes Theatre, 240 West 44th Street between Seventh and Eighth Avenues

Previews start December 20. Opens January 23, 2020. Closes March 1, 2020.

Playwright Bess Wohl makes her Broadway debut with this dramedy at Second Stage Theatre about the breakup of a long-married couple (James Cromwell and Tony winner Jane Alexander, returning to Broadway after 22 years) and the impact it has on their grown sons, played by Michael Urie and Ben McKenzie. That may sound like a sitcom setup, but considering Wohl's inventive work (Continuity, Small Mouth Sounds), it's sure to go in unexpected directions.


A Soldier's Play
American Airlines Theatre, 227 West 42nd Street between Seventh and Eighth Avenues

Previews start December 27. Opens January 21, 2020. Closes March 15, 2020.

Charles Fuller's 1982 Pulitzer Prize-winning drama comes to Broadway in this Roundabout Theatre Company revival directed by Tony winner Kenny Leon. When a black sergeant is murdered on a Southern Army base in 1944, an African-American investigator must piece together what happened before his white supervisors make up their own convenient story. An exploration of what it means to be black in America, the play stars Blair Underwood and three-time Tony nominee David Alan Grier, who appeared in the original Off-Broadway production and the movie adaptation.


Raven Snook is the Editor of TDF Stages. Follow her at @RavenSnook. Follow TDF at @TDFNYC.

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