Broadway play to close in January
“Peter and the Starcatcher” will call it quits in January, with the Broadway play now set to shutter Jan. 20.Despite strong reviews and a lot of Tony love, the Peter Pan prequel never quite caught on with auds. Weekly sales spiked in the weeks after the show scored five Tonys – four design kudos and a thesping trophy for Christian Borle – topping out in a June week that pulled in about $690,000 and played to auds at 96% of capacity. Since then B.O. has gradually tapered off. For the week ending Sept. 23 (a tough frame for most shows on the boards), receipts came in at $295,000 with attendance at 63%. Adapted by Rick Elice (“Jersey Boys”) from a novel by Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson, “Peter” won plaudits for its low-tech story-theater approach to telling the backstory of a headstrong young girl and the orphan boy who would go on to become Peter Pan. Roger Reese and Alex Timbers direct. Although Disney Theatrical Prods. is on the producing team of “Peter,” the show — lead produced by Nancy Nagel Gibbs, Greg Shaffert and Eva Price – has kept its marketing profile separate from Disney’s powerhouse Broadway tuners. Goal was to differentiate the play, a small-scale nonmusical with a quirky mix of snarky humor and sentiment, from Disney’s big-budget tuner spectacles such as “The Lion King.” But the title’s unusual, mash-up style of hipness and warmth may have made it difficult for “Peter” to carve out a clear identity with potential auds. Tony winner Borle exited the production over the summer to resume his gig on NBC skein “Smash,” but many other original cast members, including Adam Chanler-Berat and Celia Keenan-Bolger, remain on board. Show will stick around through the holiday season with the aim of picking up some tourism-fueled Yuletide sales prior to shuttering at the Brooks Atkinson Theater in January. A national tour is set to launch in August in Denver.