“Lestat” won’t live forever. It’ll just die young.
Based on Anne Rice’s Vampire Chronicles, the Elton John tuner will shutter May 28 after 33 previews and 39 regular perfs.
Early closing reps the first Broadway flop from John (“The Lion King,” “Aida”), as well as an inauspicious start for Warner Bros. Theater Ventures, the studio’s theatrical initiative that made its Rialto bow with the show.
When “Lestat” began perfs in Gotham March 25, it faced negative buzz generated by a San Francisco tryout that earned withering reviews.
The production’s creative team, including helmer Robert Jess Roth (“Beauty and the Beast”) and longtime John collaborator Bernie Taupin, significantly retooled the production, but the musical still took a beating from New York critics when it opened April 25.
Show got just two Tony noms, for costume designer Susan Hilferty and featured actress Carolee Carmello.
All that contributed to its difficulties in attracting auds. Last week, a boom sesh for Broadway overall, “Lestat” was one of the few productions to see a dip in sales, grossing $448,525 of a potential $945,788.
Still, exec veep Gregg Maday said in a statement that WB Theater Ventures remains “committed to producing exciting projects for the Broadway stage, adapted from our deep, rich library.”
Legiters will see the staking of “Lestat” as more proof of the curse of the vampire on Broadway, where bloodsucker-themed tuners (“Dance of the Vampires” in 2001, “Dracula the Musical” in 2004) have proved notorious disappointments.