The musical Sing Street, based on the 2016 film of the same name, heads to Broadway after a successful Off-Broadway run.
Sing Street, the hit Off-Broadway musical based John Carney’s 2016 film Sing Street, announced plans to move to the Lyceum Theatre on Broadway. This move comes after the show’s extended and sold-out premiere at NYTW (New York Theatre Workshop), a popular East Village theatre company known for cultivating many hit Broadway shows including the popular rock musical Rent and the recent shows Hadestown and Slave Play. Sing Street begins previews on March 26, 2020 and opens on April 19, 2020. It opens just days before the April 23 Tony Award cut-off date, which is the last date that a show can open and still be eligible for the 2020 Tony Awards.
Sing Street will be John Carney’s second film turned into a Broadway musical. His 2007 film Once was made into a musical which premiered at NYTW before transferring to Broadway in 2011. Once received rave reviews on Broadway and received eleven nominations for the 2012 Tony Awards. Once went on to win eight Tony awards, including the awards for ‘Best Musical’ and ‘Best Performance by a Leading Actor in a Musical’. Sing Street is hoping to follow Once’s winning formula by making the same move from NYTW to Broadway. Both the cast and creative team from Sing Street’s Off-Broadway NYTW run are staying on with the show for its Broadway run. The show is directed by Rebecca Taichman, who helped create and direct the Broadway show Indecent, and the Sing Street book is by Enda Walsh, who also worked on the book for Once. The music and lyrics are co-written by John Carney and Gary Clark. John Carney is also the writer and director of the films Once and Sing Street. Gary Clark was the frontman of the 1980s pop group Danny Wilson.
What is Sing Street About?
Brenock O’Connor, who is best known for his role as Olly on the hit HBO show Game of Thrones, stars as the lead character Conor, which is a similar name to his own last name in real life. Conor is a talented sixteen year old growing up in the 1980’s during the recession in Dublin, Ireland. Forced to save money, Conor has to transfer to a public school, ‘Synge Street CBS’, (CBS stands for Christian Brothers school). At this school he meets the mysterious Raphina, played by Zara Devlin. Conor makes new friends, and to impress Raphina, he starts a New Wave band and asks her to join as the backup vocalist . The show follows Conor as he struggles to deal with issues at home, contend with a bully at school, and try and chase the girl of his dreams. The show includes many of the popular songs from the 2016 film, and the actors all play their own instruments on stage.
Concerns the Show is Not “Broadway-Ready”
While the show has received many positive critical reviews for its off-Broadway run, both critics and audiences have commented that there are several improvements the show could make before transferring to Broadway. Some have noted that most of the characters, outside of the two leads, are not developed enough and do not have much significance in the show, despite having some interesting backstories. Others complained about the show’s decision to rely on the cast playing their own instruments, arguing that this choice weakens the sound and impact of the show’s musical numbers, an example seen in Once on Broadway that suffered from the same problem. Some simply claim that the show is just not quite “Broadway-ready” yet, but the creative staff has plenty of time before the show premieres to make any necessary changes, assuming they have the wherewithal to do so.