Broadway's Hot-Ticket 'Moulin Rouge!' Musical Sets North American Tour Kickoff

Matthew Murphy
Aaron Tveit and Karen Olivo in 'Moulin Rouge! The Musical'

The blockbuster show based on Baz Luhrmann's 2001 movie musical will launch its first road company in New Orleans in November 2020, followed by a 10-week Chicago engagement.

Can't make it to New York? Yes, you can can can still see Moulin Rouge! The Musical.

The instant blockbuster of the 2019-20 theater season, which has been playing to packed houses since it began previews June 28 at the Al Hirschfeld Theatre, will kick off its North American tour in New Orleans in November 2020.

Produced by Carmen Pavlovic and Gerry Ryan for Global Creatures, with Bill Damaschke as executive producer, the tour will debut in The Big Easy at the Saenger Theatre, with a 10-week engagement at Chicago's James L. Nederlander Theatre to follow. Additional tour stops, on-sale dates and casting are to be announced.

Directed by Alex Timbers, with a book by John Logan, choreography by Sonya Tayeh and music supervision, orchestrations and arrangements by Justin Levine, Moulin Rouge! stars Karen Olivo, Aaron Tveit and Danny Burstein on Broadway. 

Since officially opening July 25 to strong reviews, the glitzy $28 million production has become one of the hottest tickets in town, second only to Hamilton in demand. In the last two months, it has regularly grossed more than $2 million a week, with cumulative box office currently at $21.6 million.

"After ten years in development, the fantastic response to Moulin Rouge! The Musical in New York is mind-blowing," said Pavlovic in a statement. "We're keen to share the enthusiasm across the country. It's thrilling that a second company will be going out to audiences across North America just one year after the Broadway opening."

Like the 2001 Baz Luhrmann movie on which it was based, the stage musical tells the story of a tortured love triangle in the eponymous nightclub in fin de siècle Paris, with a score that plucks from the popular music archives of the past 50 years.

The high-energy show takes the movie's lead on that musical mashup front and runs with it, adding a head-spinning collection of songs popularized in the 18 years since the movie was released, by artists including Rihanna, Katy Perry, Lady Gaga, Adele, Outkast, Beyonce, Lorde, Britney Spears, Gnarls Barkley and Sia, among many others.

The original Broadway cast recording of Moulin Rouge! The Musical debuted at No. 1 on Billboard's Cast Albums Chart, released for streaming through Luhrmann's House of Iona label and RCA. A physical edition of the album will be available Oct. 25.

The show will make its Australian debut in 2021 at Melbourne's Regent Theatre.