Tony-Winning Musical 'The Band's Visit' Sets Broadway Closing Date
The critically adored show by composer David Yazbek and writer Itamar Moses will play its final performance April 7 at the Barrymore Theatre, before launching a national tour on June 25.
Winter is a brutal time on Broadway.
With grosses dropping to between 50 and 60 percent of potential earning capacity since the holidays, the 10-time Tony Award-winning musical The Band's Visit has set an April 7 closing date, wrapping a run of a year-and-a-half at the Ethel Barrymore Theatre.
Adapted from the 2007 Israeli film of the same name, and featuring a score by David Yazbek and book by Itamar Moses, the musical follows an Egyptian Police Band stranded overnight in a remote village in the Israeli desert, where the lives of strangers become memorably intertwined, even if just for a moment.
The production won 10 of the 11 Tony Awards for which it was nominated last year, including best musical, score and book, as well as best direction for David Cromer, lead actress for Katrina Lenk, lead actor for Tony Shalhoub and featured actor for Ari'el Stachel. The original cast recording currently is nominated for a Grammy Award for best musical theater album.
The musical world-premiered to ecstatic reviews in December 2016 at off-Broadway's Atlantic Theater Company, landing on the year-end Top 10 lists of several publications, including The Hollywood Reporter.
While many pundits wondered if the intimate show was too understated to survive the economic challenges of a Broadway transfer, critical momentum helped make it an instant hit, recouping its $8.75 million capitalization last September after less than a year, and earning $62 million to date.
"A year ago, I was asked if I believed The Band's Visit was commercial," said lead producer Orin Wolf in a statement. "My answer then was, 'I don't know. But I want to live in a world where it is.' How extraordinary to be sitting on the other side of that year, looking back and celebrating the unimaginable and unanimously beautifully written reviews, a historic 10 Tony Awards and perhaps most astonishingly, a profitable two-season run on Broadway."
"In a polarized and harsh world of politics and division, the success of The Band's Visit has filled my heart with so much warmth," continued Wolf. "I am so grateful to the theater community who has lifted our show to these heights."
The production will launch a North American tour June 25 at the Providence Performing Arts Center in Rhode Island, with scheduled dates to follow in Washington, D.C., Charlotte, Chicago, Minneapolis, Baltimore, San Francisco, Las Vegas and other cities to be announced.
When it closes at the Barrymore, The Band's Visit will have played 36 previews and 589 regular performances. That makes the show's lifespan on Broadway comparable to that of 2015's Tony winner for best musical, Fun Home, however that production played a smaller venue, yielding cumulative grosses of $41.5 million.
While Shalhoub departed the cast early last year to shoot season two of The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, his role of Egyptian band leader Tewfiq is currently being filled by renowned Israeli actor Sasson Gabay, reprising the part he played in the nonmusical 2007 film. Original lead Lenk, who remains with the production, will perform the song "Omar Sharif" Monday on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon.