Reporting Monica Miller
NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Broadway’s “Spider-Man” musical went dark after its last performance Sunday, as the troubled show will undergo major changes and reopen next month with new direction, new cast members and even a different plot.
“Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark” plunged into darkness for a make-or-break revamping, reports CBS 2’s Dave Carlin.
Sunday’s matinee show will be the last one for nearly a month, as a massive overhaul will be underway. Some audience members said they just had to see the accident-prone production in its current form, and this was their very last chance.
LISTEN: WCBS 880′s Monica Miller spoke to fans before the performance on 42nd Street
“That was why we were excited about it being the last one,” Fairfield, Connecticut resident Greg Fell said. “I’m sure we’ll come back to see the next incarnation as well. It was impressive.”
Jim Dudney came to New York from Washington, D.C., just to see the last performance of the Broadway musical “Spider-Man: Turn off the Dark.” He said it was a chance to see the work of its former director, Julie Taymor, who was fired from the show.
“The quality of Julie Taymor’s direction and production skills—I just thought I had to see something like this,” he said.
“Spider-Man” cost an estimated $70 million to make, and featured music from U2’s Bono and the Edge. It opened in previews last November, only to get caught in a web of delays, lukewarm reviews and creative conflicts that led to the ouster of director Julie Taymor.
The biggest and most attention-grabbing problem, though, was the rash of performer injuries. The worst of the performer accidents occurred when dancer Christopher Tierney’s safety harness failed and he fell 30 feet into a pit, suffering a skull fracture, four broken ribs, a bruised lung and three cracked vertebrae.
Tierney returned to see the production while he was still undergoing therapy, and he pledged his support.
“I believe in the show – I believe in everything that’s done on that stage,” he said.
Safety citations from the Department of Labor were issued in Tierney’s case and several others, including incidents where actors were hurt rehearsing a so-called slingshot stunt with the stage out of position.
“I’m glad to see it, since no one’s every going to see it again – not this way,” Kelly Schaeffer, of Syracuse, said. “It’s going to change a lot. Glad I saw it.”
Sunday’s final show was sold out. The curtain dropped and the audience left, and when the curtain rises again in a little over three weeks, there will be new cast members, a new plot and two new songs.
Producers said previews are scheduled to begin again on May 12, and the official opening is slated for June 14.
Do you think “Spider-Man: Turn off the Dark” can be saved? Tell us in our comments section.