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Theater

Amélie bids Broadway adieu

Times are hard for dreamers

Posted on

Joan Marcus

It’s time for Broadway to say, “Goodbye, Amélie!”

The new musical, based on Jean-Pierre Jeunet’s 2001 film of the same name, will play its final performance at Broadway’s Walter Kerr Theatre on Sunday, May 21. The musical, which was completely shut out of Tony Award nominations, has decided to close up shop after playing 27 preview and 56 regular performances.

Despite the presence of original Hamilton cast member Phillipa Soo, the production opened to largely mediocre reviews (EW gave it a B+) on April 3 and has struggled to fill its houses. Many shows rely on Tony nominations to boost publicity and faltering box office draws (the musical’s attendance was at 63 percent last week, according to Variety).

With a book by Craig Lucas and a score by Daniel Messé and Nathan Tysen, the musical follows shy Parisian Amélie (Soo), a woman who delights in doing small, secret acts of kindness for those around her. When she meets Nino (Adam Chanler-Berat), she must learn to live outside her imagination to have a shot at real love. The cast also includes David Andino, Randy Blair, Heath Calvert, Alison Cimmet, Savvy Crawford, Manoel Felciano, Harriett D. Foy, Alyse Alan Louis, Maria-Christina Oliveras, Paul Whitty, and Tony Sheldon. Tony Award-winner Pam MacKinnon directed the production.

Prior to its Broadway debut, the show premiered at Berkeley Rep in 2015 with Les Miserables’ Samantha Barks in the title role. It also played a pre-Broadway run at Center Theatre Group’s Ahmanson Theatre in Los Angeles last December.

“It has been an honor and privilege to work with the brilliant, talented team of writers, actors, and creatives who have brought Amélie to life for the past two years, from Berkeley Rep, to Center Theatre Group, to Broadway. We’d like to express our gratitude to all of them, as well as the audiences who have shared the experience with them and with us,” said the show’s producers in a statement.

The show will still release a digital recording of the cast album on May 19 (in stores on June 9).