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Broadway Gets The Grinch for Christmas

DR. SEUSS' HOW THE GRINCH STOLE CHRISTMAS! THE MUSICAL is coming to the Hilton Theater on Broadway, according to VARIETY. The holiday-only production begins previews Oct. 25, 2006, with the official opening marked for Nov. 8. Running through Jan. 7, 2007, the family tuner will perform 12 shows a week, which required a special deal with the unions. Production will run eight shows on the weekend and has added Thursday 11:00 am matinees.

The production will be directed by Matt August, an assoc. director who has worked with show creator Jack O'Brien on New York shows including HENRY IV. John DeLuca choreographs.

THE GRINCH debuted at the Old Globe in San Diego in 1998 and has returned every holiday season after. The show is set to return to the Old Globe this holiday season as well.

For Broadway, the musical will get a re-envisioning with bigger dance numbers, puppets and set (by Rialto regular John Lee Beatty). No casting has been announced, but producer James Sanna is hoping for a big name in one of the lead roles. New York incarnation will also incorporate two familiar tunes from the 1966 animated version of the story: "You're a Mean One, Mr. Grinch" and "Welcome Christmas."

Yet, the whole affair may ruffle some legit vets feathers. Not only does the production smell of tourist-baiting commercialism, which is more typical of Madison Square Garden or Radio City, but tickets will sell for 10%-15% below the standard for Broadway musicals. Additionally, THE GRINCH show was announced before the current show at the Hilton HOT FEET was able to post a closing notice, which is a standard courtesy.

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Rick DeMott
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