Broadway musical “Matilda” will close in January, following a run that saw the show become a popular destination for family audiences and city visitors seeking something quirkier, and somewhat darker, than other all-ages Broadway titles like “The Lion King.”
“Matilda” was one of the notable success stories of the 2012-13 Broadway season, and made a serious run at the top trophy for new musical at the 2013 Tony Awards. That title ended up going to “Kinky Boots,” but “Matilda” walked away with four awards (for book writer Dennis Kelly and feature actor Gabriel Ebert, among others), plus a special Tony Honor for the four young actresses who originated the title role in the Broadway production.
The awards attention, plus the favorable reviews from New York critics, helped “Matilda” become a regular member of the millionaires’ club at the Broadway box office, consistently topping $1 million in gross sales per week for most of its first year on the boards. After the show recouped its $16 million capitalization costs in 2014, box office has gradually slowed, although the title frequently sees its numbers spike in high-tourism weeks.
Based on the novel by Roald Dahl, “Matilda” has a book by Kelly (BBC series “Utopia”) and music and lyrics by Tim Minchin (who’s currently at work on an upcoming musical version of “Groundhog Day“). Matthew Warchus directs, with choreography by Peter Darling, in a production that originated at the Royal Shakespeare Company and then transferred to the West End, where it won seven Olivier Awards.
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“Matilda” will run through the end of the year, hoping to benefit from the seasonal audience influxes that come during the summer months and over the year-end holidays, with the final performance set for Jan. 1, 2017.