SpongeBob SquarePants mu­si­cal is com­ing to an end on Broad­way

Gulf Times Community - - HOLLYWOOD - By Peter Sblendo­rio

They’re squeez­ing the life out of SpongeBob SquarePants on Broad­way. The crit­i­cally praised but of­ten poorly at­tended mu­si­cal is end­ing its Broad­way run on Sept. 16, less than a year after its pre­miere, the show an­nounced.

The of­fi­cial rea­son for the can­cel­la­tion is listed as “pre­vi­ously planned ren­o­va­tions” to the Palace Theater, where the mu­si­cal based on the long-run­ning Nick­elodeon show is per­formed.

But SpongeBob has of­ten had trou­ble sell­ing seats since its pre­miere last De­cem­ber. There have been three dif­fer­ent weeks this year, for ex­am­ple, where the show didn’t man­age to fill even 66 per­cent of its ca­pac­ity.

The show about a yel­low sea sponge and his un­der­wa­ter ad­ven­tures in Bikini Bot­tom had been per­form­ing bet­ter in the early sum­mer, as it reg­is­tered three straight weeks with over 91 per­cent ca­pac­ity filled in June be­fore a slight dip in the week that ended on July 1.

SpongeBob emerged as a pleas­ant sur­prise late last year when it pre­miered on Broad­way with crit­i­cal praise. It gar­nered 12 Tony nom­i­na­tions this year — tied for the most of any show — and won for best scenic de­sign of a mu­si­cal.

Ethan Slater, who por­trays SpongeBob, and Gavin Lee, who plays Squid­ward, each gar­nered Tony nom­i­na­tions for their re­spec­tive per­for­mances, while the show as a whole was up for best mu­si­cal.

“SpongeBob has changed my life in so many ways,” Slater tweeted re­cently. “We must close on Septem­ber 16th, and that breaks my heart. But what ex­cites me is that we have 10 more weeks to share this thing with as many peo­ple as the #PalaceTheater will hold. Let’s end this thing right.”

SpongeBob is set to em­bark on a North Amer­i­can tour in the fall of 2019. – New York Daily News/TNS

DE­CLINE: A per­for­mance from the stage mu­si­cal. The of­fi­cial rea­son for the can­cel­la­tion is listed as “pre­vi­ously planned ren­o­va­tions” to the Palace Theater, where the mu­si­cal is per­formed.

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