BWW Flashback: KING KONG Takes Final Broadway Bow

Before his final roar, we're looking back.

By: Aug. 18, 2019
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As BroadwayWorld previously reported, King Kong will play its final performance today, August 18, 2019 following 324 performances and 29 previews at the Broadway Theatre.

King Kong features a book by Jack Thorne with a score by Marius de Vries and songs by Eddie Perfect. King Kong is directed and choreographed by Drew McOnie.

Based on the 1932 novel, the stage production of King Kong is a contemporary take on the classic tale of beauty and the beast. The story follows a young actress, Ann Darrow, and a maverick filmmaker, Carl Denham, as they voyage from the bustling streets of 1930s New York to an uncharted island to capture the world's greatest wonder. At the center of this 21st-century reimagining: a 20-foot high, 2,000-pound gorilla brought to life by a team of seamlessly integrated artists and technicians. King Kong is a larger-than-life encounter with a legend that's always been too big to contain.

Before he climbs the Empire State Building for the final time, take a look at the Broadway journey of King Kong.

The show first premiered in Melbourne back in 2013, featuring a score by Marius de Vries, lyrics by Michael Mitnick and Craig Lucas, a book by Lucas. The show was directed by Daniel Kramer and choreographed by John O'Connell.

On May 17, 2017, it was announced that King Kong would open at the Broadway Theatre in fall of 2018, featuring a new creative team. The Broadway production brought on book writer Jack Thorne, director and choreographer Drew McOnie, and Australian songwriter Eddie Perfect.

In April of 2018, it was announced that Christiani Pitts would star as Ann Darrow, and Eric William Morris would play Carl Denham.

The cast began rehearsals in August of 2018

A month before previews began, a music video of "Queen of New York" was released.

A stunning first look of Pitts and the Kong puppet was previewed right before the first performance.

Previews at the Broadway Theatre began October 5, 2018.

The blockbuster production officially opened on November 8, 2018.

And the cast and crew celebrated!

Pitts and Kong performed on the CBS broadcast of the Thanksgiving Day Parade.

The production celebrated 100 performances!

The office of the New York City Mayor stopped by to announce the ceremonial street renaming!

Awards season came and King Kong won a Special Tony for the creature design team lead by Sonny Tilders, three Outer Critics Circle Awards (Outstanding Projection Design for a Play or Musical - Peter England, Outstanding Sound Design for a Play or Musical - Peter Hylenski and a Special Achievement Award to The Puppetry Team That Created and Operates King Kong, two Drama Desk Awards (Outstanding Projection Design - Peter England and Outstanding Puppet Design -Sonny Tilders), as well as the Chita Rivera Award for Outstanding Ensemble in a Broadway Show.

King Kong
Photo Credit: Joan Marcus

In Late June it was announced that King Kong's run would come to an end on August 18. BroadwayWorld wishes the cast and crew a happy final performance!