January 2018 Highlights on Broadway and Beyond

Check out our guide to the biggest theatrical events of the month.

Jake Shears, Bernadette Peters & Sara Bareilles

Happy New Year to all of our esteemed readers! It's another case of "ring out the old, bring in the new..." as we look forward to a year jam-packed with theatrical treats and especially a springtime overflowing with highly anticipated new Broadway productions. From stellar London imports such as Angels in America and Harry Potter and the Cursed Child to stage musical adaptations of popular movies like Mean Girls and Disney's Frozen, there is certainly no shortage of headline-grabbing Broadway openings this year, but before we get ahead of ourselves, let's take a look at some of the highlights January has in store for us...

January 8

Jake Shears

- "I Don't Feel Like Dancin'"??? Something tells us that Scissor Sisters frontman Jake Shears will be changing his tune and dancing all the way into a pair of thigh-high, red, PVC boots from January 8. Shears will be making his Broadway debut and joining the cast of the 2013 Tony Award-winning "Best Musical" Kinky Boots at the Al Hirschfeld Theatre from January 8! He will be stepping into the role of Charlie Price for a limited engagement through to April 1, 2018. After the phenomenal success the musical experienced during Panic! at the Disco frontman Brendon Urie's acclaimed turn in the same role, producers will certainly be hoping for a similar box office boost. Everybody Say Yeah!

Kinky Boots Tickets are available now for performances through to August 26, 2018.

- On the same evening, the brand new revival of Once on This Island (our top pick of fall 2017) will also welcome two new additions to the cast as current cast members Merle Dandridge and Quentin Earl Darrington are set to take contractual leave of absences. In the meantime, they leave their roles of Papa Ge and Agwe in the (more than) capable hands of Broadway alum Tamyra Gray and Tony Award nominee Norm Lewis, respectively. We can't wait to hear Ms. Gray and Mr. Lewis explain just "Why We Tell the Story"!

Once on This Island Tickets are available now for performances through to December 30, 2018.

January 11

John Lithgow in Stories By Heart
(Photo by Joan Marcus)

- The first official Broadway opening of 2018 takes place on January 11 at Roundabout Theatre Company's American Airlines Theatre, as acclaimed star of stage and screen John Lithgow's solo show Stories By Heart opens on the Great White Way! Experience for yourselves a master of his craft as Mr. Lithgow recalls personal anecdotes from his family life and his career on stage and in front of the camera, whilst also bringing chracters from the creative genius of Ring Lardner and P. G. Wodehouse to life before your very eyes.

John Lithgow: Storie By Heart Tickets are available now for performances through to March 4, 2018.

January 15

Kandi Burruss
(Photo by Elton Anderson)

- When you're good to Kandi, Kandi's good to you! On January 15, "The Real Housewives of Atlanta" star Kandi Burruss will officially make her Broadway debut as Matron "Mama" Morton in Kander & Ebb's Tony Award-winning musical Chicago at the Ambassador Theatre. The Grammy Award-winning singer/songwriter and member of the 1990s girl group Xscape is set to play a limited 8-week engagement through to March 11, 2018, so book your tickets today and get ready to pepper her raggoo!

In addition, current cast member (and YouTube Sensation) Todrick Hall is scheduled to "razzle dazzle" in his final performance as Billy Flynn on January 14, 2018. 

Chicago Tickets are available now for performances through to September 30, 2018.

January 16

Sara Bareilles in Waitress
(Photo by Jeremy Daniel)

- "Opening Up" and back on Broadway! Sara Bareilles - the Tony-nominated lyricist/composer of the hit Broadway musical Waitress - is returning to the production and will once again be bringing all the sugar, butter and flour you can handle as leading lady Jenna. The six-time Grammy Award nominee's previous Broadway debut engagement proved to be one of the hottest tickets in town, so a return to the Brooks Atkinson Theatre comes as no surprise. What makes this return engagement even more special is that Ms. Bareilles will be re-united with current cast member Jason Mraz for the first two weeks of her run. She previously collaborated with the two-time Grammy Award winner on the tracks “Bad Idea” and “You Matter to Me” on her 2015 album "What’s Inside: Songs From Waitress". Mr. Mraz's final performance as Dr. Pomatter is scheduled for January 28, whilst Ms. Bareilles will play her final performance on February 25.

Waitress Tickets are available now for performances through to July 1, 2018.

January 20

Bernadette Peters & Bette Midler
(Photo by Rob Kim)

- Well, Hello... Bernadette! Yes, folks, she'll be back where she belongs from January 20, as two-time Tony Award winner Bernadette Peters assumes the titular role of Dolly Levi Gallagher in the acclaimed Broadway revival of Hello, Dolly! at the Shubert Theatre. Current cast member and Tony Award winner Bette Midler is scheduled to play her final performance of her much-celebrated run on January 14. In addition, David Hyde Pierce and Taylor Trensch will also play their final performances as Horace Vandergelder and Barnaby Tucker, respectively, on January 14. But fear not, as four-time Tony and six-time Emmy Award nominee Victor Garber and Olivier Award nominee Charlie Stemp will also be joining Ms. Peters in the beloved musical from January 20. It's time to put on your Sunday clothes once more and check out the new cast of Hello, Dolly! asap, we say!

Hello, Dolly! Tickets are available now for performances through to  July 15, 2018.

January 26

Peter Jöback in The Phantom of the Opera
(Photo by Joan Marcus)

- Celebrating a remarkable, milestone achievement, Broadway's longest-running show The Phantom of the Opera will mark its 30th Anniversary on the Great White Way on January 26 with a special celebratory gala at the Majestic Theatre. Prior to that, the production will welcome back Platinum-selling Swedish recording artist Peter Jöback to the titular role from January 15. He is set to bring us "The Music of the Night" until March 31, 2018. Now is the perfect time to revisit the spectacle of this history-making production... and that's all we ask of you.

The Phantom of the Opera Tickets are available now for performances through to June 30, 2018.  

As most Broadway aficionados know, January is also a time when a handful of Broadway productions come to a close, so in a quick "Last Chance Saloon" round-up, be sure to catch the following shows whose closures are imminent...

Junk plays its final performance at Lincoln Center's Vivian Beaumont Theater on January 7.

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory closes its factory doors for the last time at the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre on January 14.

Miss Saigon also boards that iconic helicopter at the Broadway Theatre and flies off into the sunset on January 14.

And finally the Amy Schumer-led hit comedy Meteor Shower rains down for a final time at the Booth Theatre on January 21.