×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Broadway’s ‘Hands on a Hardbody’ to Shutter

Musical posts closing notice after struggling to pick up speed at the box office

Hands on a Hardbody” is taking its hands off the vehicle and withdrawing from the competition, with the Broadway musical posting a closing notice for the end of the week.

Most legiters had already seen the writing on the wall for the ensemble-based tuner. With no big-name thesps to turn heads and a title taken from the little-seen 1994 documentary on which it was based, “Hardbody” has struggled to attract audiences since it began perfs Feb. 23.

After earning generally encouraging press in a tryout run at the La Jolla Playhouse in spring 2012, critical reaction in Gotham last month ran the gamut from raves to pans. It wasn’t enough to jumpstart sales at the modestly scaled musical, which has largely been nudged from the media spotlight by splashier tuners (“Kinky Boots,” “Cinderella”), Brit hits (“Matilda”) and star-driven plays (“Lucky Guy,” “I’ll Eat You Last”).

Musical marked the legit debut of Phish frontman Trey Anastasio, who co-composed the tunes with lyricist Amanda Green, but the jam-rock band’s fans evidently didn’t follow Anastasio to the Rialto in sufficient numbers. Weekly grosses never hit $325,000, with last week’s B.O. coming in at about $240,000 and auds reported at less than 60% of overall capacity.

With sales low enough that there was little opportunity to earn back much of the production’s mid-range capitalization costs, “Hardbody” will rep a fairly significant financial loss for a team of producers led by Broadway Across America and Beth Williams.

“Hardbody” drove onto the Rialto with a cast that includes Keith Carradine, Hunter Foster and Keala Settle, among others. Neil Pepe helmed the show, with a book by Doug Wright (“Grey Gardens,” “I Am My Own Wife”) about a competition in which down-on-their-luck Texans participate in an endurance contest to win a new truck.

Show will shutter April 13 after 28 previews and 28 regular perfs.

More Legit

  • Hugh Jackman'To Kill a Mockingbird' Broadway

    'To Kill a Mockingbird's' Starry Opening: Oprah, Hugh Jackman, Anne Hathaway and More

    The Shubert Theatre in New York City last was filled on Thursday night with Oscar winners, media titans, and, of course, Broadway legends who came out for the opening of “To Kill a Mockingbird.” The starry guest list included Oprah Winfrey, Barry Diller, “Les Misérables” co-stars Hugh Jackman and Anne Hathaway, Jessica Chastain, Gayle King, [...]

  • Pat Gelbart Obit Dead

    Actress Pat Gelbart, Wife of 'MASH' Creator, Dies at 90

    Pat Gelbart, widow of late “MASH” creator Larry Gelbart, died surrounded by family at her home in Westwood, Calif. on Dec. 11. She was 90. Gelbart was born in Minneapolis, Minn. in 1928 as Mirriam Patricia Murphy. When she met her husband, Gelbart was an actress, known for the 1947 musical “Good News,” in which [...]

  • To Kill a Mockingbird review

    Broadway Review: 'To Kill a Mockingbird'

    Against all odds, writer Aaron Sorkin and director Bartlett Sher have succeeded in crafting a stage-worthy adaptation of Harper Lee’s classic American novel “To Kill a Mockingbird.” The ever-likable Daniels, whose casting was genius, gives a strong and searching performance as Atticus Finch, the small-town Southern lawyer who epitomizes the ideal human qualities of goodness, [...]

  • Isabelle HuppertIsabelle Huppert Life Achievement Award,

    Isabelle Huppert, Chris Noth to Appear on Stage in 'The Mother'

    Isabelle Huppert will appear opposite Chris Noth in the Atlantic Theater Company’s production of “The Mother.” It marks the U.S. premiere of the show. “The Mother” was written by French playwright Florian Zeller and translated by Christopher Hampton. Huppert, an icon of European film, was Oscar-nominated for “Elle” and appears in the upcoming Focus Features [...]

  • Could Anyone Follow ‘Springsteen on Broadway’?

    Could Anyone Follow 'Springsteen on Broadway'? Here Are Five Things They'd Need (Guest Column)

    After 235-odd shows, with grosses in excess of $100 million, a Special Tony Award and a hotly anticipated Netflix special debuting Sunday, “Springsteen on Broadway” is an unprecedented Broadway blockbuster. As with any success in entertainment, the rush to replicate The Boss’ one-man show reportedly is under way, with a consortium led by Live Nation, CAA [...]

  • Clueless review

    Off Broadway Review: 'Clueless' the Musical

    How does a musical stage adaptation of Amy Heckerling’s 1995 film comedy of oblivious privileged teens, “Clueless,” play in the era of female empowerment and millennial engagement? True, the principal skills of lead teen Cher Horowitz are the superficial ones of mall shopping and makeovers. But her sweet spirit and independence, plus some added P.C. relevance, [...]

  • Ley Line Unveils Brian Wilson Documentary,

    Ley Line Unveils Brian Wilson Documentary, 'Hugo Cabret' Musical

    Producers Tim Headington and Theresa Steele Page have unveiled Ley Line Entertainment with a Brian Wilson documentary and a “Hugo Cabret” musical in the works. Ley Line said it’s a content development, production, and financing company with projects spanning film, television, stage, and music. Headington financed and produced “The Young Victoria,” “Argo,” “Hugo,” and “World [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content