Mrs Doubtfire to close on Broadway, a month after reopening

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NEW YORK (NYTIMES) - Mrs Doubtfire, the Broadway musical adapted from the popular 1993 film, announced that it will close this month after a bumpy run that was interrupted by the pandemic closure in March 2020 and included a return amid the tumultuous current Broadway season.

The show's producer said that the musical's final performance, at the Stephen Sondheim Theatre, would be on May 29, just over a month after it reopened after a three-month hiatus.

The news comes days after the show's star, Rob McClure, scored a Tony nomination for his comedic and chameleonic performance in the title role, but the musical failed to garner nominations in any other category.

The closing reflects the challenges of this Broadway season - the first since the pandemic shutdown - when tourism remains down, Covid-19 cases are a constant complication, and a large number of new shows opened around the same time in April, making it difficult for a returning Mrs Doubtfire to break out.

"Even though New York City is getting stronger every day and ticket sales are slowly improving, theatre-going tourists and, especially for our show, family audiences have not returned as soon as we anticipated," Mr Kevin McCollum, the show's producer, said in a statement late on Thursday (May 12).

"Unfortunately, it isn't possible to run the show without those sales, especially when capitalising with Broadway economics on three separate occasions."

Other Broadway productions have also struggled in this new landscape.

A much-praised revival of For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide/When The Rainbow Is Enuf, which had struggled at the box office, announced two week ago that it would close on May 22, just a month after opening and three months earlier than planned.

But on Thursday, after receiving seven Tony Award nominations and a social media campaign to sponsor female-identifying people of colour with a pair of gifted tickets, it announced it will now play an additional two weeks, through June 5.

For the week ending on May 8, Mrs Doubtfire grossed US$477,132 (S$666,000), and the theatre was just 69 per cent full.

Still, the show is moving forward with a British engagement, which Mr McCollum said is scheduled to play for a month starting on Sept 2 in Manchester, England; a United States tour is also scheduled to kick off in October 2023.

In development for years and capitalised for US$17 mi...

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