By Nora Dominick ‘17 / Emertainment Monthly Staff Writer
After previously announcing that the highly successful American Repertory Theater production of Finding Neverland would soar to Broadway, the production has finally found its leading man.
After months of speculation, it was finally announced that Glee’s Matthew Morrison will fly over to the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre as J.M. Barrie in the scheduled Broadway production. Morrison is widely known as Will Schuester from the FOX hit comedy, Glee, which will end its six-year run this spring. He may have found mass fame through television, but Morrison has his roots in musical theatre. His claim to Broadway fame came in 2005 when he was casted in The Light in the Piazza as Fabrizio opposite Kelli O’Hara. The performance earned him a 2005 Tony Award nomination for Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical. He is also known for his roles in Hairspray, The Rocky Horror Picture Show, and South Pacific. Late last March, Morrison took part in an industry-only reading of Finding Neverland.
With direction by Diane Paulus (Pippin and Porgy and Bess), music/lyrics by Gary Barlow and Eliot Kennedy, and choreography by Emmy Award winner Mia Michaels (So You Think You Can Dance), the musical is based on the 2004 movie Finding Neverland starring Johnny Depp and Kate Winslet. The musical tells the story of J.M. Barrie and his relationship with Sylvia Llewelyn Davies, a widowed mother of four children. Barrie becomes inspired by the boys to write Peter Pan. The musical takes audiences into the heart of creating a musical and the power of imagination.
Finding Neverland recently ended its successful run in Boston at American Repertory Theater starring Tony nominee Jeremy Jordan as J.M. Barrie and Olivier winner Laura Michelle Kelly as Sylvia Llewelyn Davies. The production was beautiful and created some of the most stunning choreography to be seen in recent years. Both actors flourished on stage. Jordan may be sitting the Broadway production out, but the rest of the cast is not set in stone. Here’s hoping some of the original production cast members migrate to Broadway.
Finding Neverland is set to begin previews in March 2015 with opening night tentatively scheduled for April 8, 2015 at the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre in New York City.