THE LITTLE MERMAID Opens in Tokyo This Weekend
Producer and President of Disney Theatrical Productions, Thomas Schumacher and Shiki Theatre Company celebrate their ongoing producing partnership with The Little Mermaid, which opens in Tokyo, Japan on Sunday, April 7th, 2013 at Shiki's Natsu Theatre.
Along with the critically-acclaimed productions in Holland and Moscow, The Little Mermaid in Tokyo will be one of three currently running premiere productions of an entirely original version of the show. The production is being helmed by a creative team including director Glenn Casale (Beauty and the Beast) with set and costume design by five-time Tony Award winner, Bob Crowley (Tarzan, Mary Poppins, Aida). The score features the classic songs: "Part of Your World," "Kiss the Girl" and the Academy Award-winning Best Original Song, "Under the Sea," composed by eight-time Academy Award and Tony Award winner Alan Menken and his longtime collaborator, the late Howard Ashman, as well as 10 new songs by Mr. Menken and lyricist Glenn Slater, with book by Doug Wright.
The Little Mermaid will mark the fourth collaboration between Disney Theatrical Productions and Shiki Theatre Company following the successful and current runs of Beauty and the Beast, The Lion King and AID.A
Disney Theatrical Productions, a division of The Walt Disney Studios, was formed in 1994 and operates under the direction of Thomas Schumacher. Worldwide, its eight Broadway titles have been seen by over 124 million theatergoers, grossed over $8.9 billion and have cumulatively run a staggering 195 years. With 15 productions currently produced or licensed, a Disney musical is being performed professionally somewhere on the planet virtually every hour of the day.
The company's inaugural production, Beauty and the Beast, opened in 1994. It played a remarkable 13 year run on Broadway and has been produced in 28 countries worldwide. In November 1997, Disney opened The Lion King, which received six 1998 Tony Awards including Best Musical and is now the highest grossing show in Broadway history. The show continues in its 16th smash year, having welcomed over 68 million visitors worldwide. The Lion King can also currently be seen on tour across North America, the U.K., and Japan, and in London's West End, Hamburg, Tokyo, Madrid, and Sao Paulo.
Elton John and Tim Rice's Aida opened on Broadway next, winning four 2000 Tony Awards, and spawning productions around the world. Mary Poppins, a co-production with Cameron Mackintosh, opened in London in 2004 and established itself as one of the biggest stage musical successes to emerge in recent years. The Tony Award-winning Broadway production played more than six years at Disney's New Amsterdam Theatre and can now be seen on tour across North America and in Mexico City.
Tarzan, which opened on Broadway in 2006, is now an international hit with an award-winning production in its 6th year in Germany. In January 2008, The Little Mermaid opened on Broadway and was the #1-selling new musical of that year. Its success continues with three new productions around the world: Holland, Russia and Japan.
Two new critically acclaimed productions opened on Broadway in 2012, receiving seven Tony Awards between them: Newsies, in its second year at the Nederlander Theatre, and Peter and the Starcatcher, now playing at New World Stages.
Other successful stage musical ventures have included King David in concert, the national tour of On The Record, several touring versions of Disney's High School Musical, and Der Glöckner Von Notre Dame in Berlin.
In addition, DTP licenses stage performance rights to more than a dozen Disney musicals around the world through Music Theatre International.
Its new musical, Aladdin, will open in Toronto in fall 2013.