‘Groundhog Day’ Musical Will Cast Its Shadow on Broadway

Groundhog Day musical Broadway
Manuel Harlan

The new musical adaptation of “Groundhog Day,” currently wrapping up its critically adored premiere at the Old Vic in London, has set plans for Broadway, lining up an April opening at the August Wilson Theater.

Reuniting several members of the creative team of “Matilda,” “Groundhog Day” could well cast a long shadow over the 2016-17 Broadway season. The buzzy show, which has already earned a big thumbs-up from the New York Times’ Broadway critic, looks poised to become a significant player during awards season, should response in the States prove as strong it did in London.

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No casting for the Broadway incarnation has yet been announced, but Andy Karl, the American stage veteran (“Rocky,” “Legally Blonde”) who won raves in London for his turn in the Bill Murray role, seems a sure bet to lead the New York run. He plays a jaded weatherman stuck in a timeloop in the musical comedy from composer-lyricist Tim Minchin, director Matthew Warchus, choreographer Peter Darling and set and costume designer Rob Howell — all collaborators on “Matilda” — as well as book writer Danny Rubin, who wrote the screenplay to the 1993 film on which the show is based.

“Groundhog Day” lands in a Broadway season that also includes new musicals “Dear Evan Hansen,” “Natasha, Pierre and the Great Comet of 1812,” “A Bronx Tale,” “Holiday Inn,” “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” and “Anastasia.” The newest addition to the slate found its New York berth after longrunner “Jersey Boys,” the current occupant of the August Wilson, announced it would close in January.

“Groundhog Day” opens on Broadway April 17, with a start date for previews still to be set. Warchus and Andre Ptaszynski (for Whistle Pig) and Lia Vollack (for Columbia Live Stage) produce.

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