From Future King to King of Pop: Broadway's MJ Welcomes New Little Michael December 1 | Playbill

Broadway News From Future King to King of Pop: Broadway's MJ Welcomes New Little Michael December 1

The hit musical continues at the Neil Simon Theatre.

Jackson Hayes Emilio Madrid

Jackson Hayes, who played Young Simba in the national tour of The Lion King, joins the cast of MJ the Musical December 1 at the Neil Simon Theatre.

Hayes, who hails from Middletown, Delaware, makes his Broadway debut in the role of Little Michael, sharing the part with Max Chambers. He succeeds Bane Griffith, who can currently be seen in Dallas in the MJ national tour.

MJ, which began previews December 6, 2021, prior to an official opening February 1, 2022, features a book by two-time Pulitzer Prize winner Lynn Nottage and a score made up of some of the most popular songs in recording history. Tony Award winner Christopher Wheeldon directs and choreographs.

Detroit native Elijah Rhea Johnson stepped into the leading role of Michael Jackson in MJ the Musical April 4, marking his own Broadway debut. Johnson, who helped develop the role of Middle Michael throughout the workshop process of MJ, succeeded Myles Frost, who played his final performance April 2. (Frost made history last year, becoming the youngest individual actor to win a Tony Award for Best Leading Actor in a Musical.)

The musical also has sets by Derek McLane, lighting by Natasha Katz, costumes by Paul Tazewell, sound design by Gareth Owen, projection design by Peter Nigrini, hair and wig design by Charles LaPointe, music direction by Jason Michael Webb, musical supervision by David Holcenberg, and orchestrations by Holcenberg and Webb. Casting is by Rachel Hoffman of The Telsey Office.

The show took home four 2022 Tony Awards in total, including Best Choreography, Best Lighting Design in a Musical, and Best Sound Design in a Musical.

Read more about the hit musical in the Playbill Vault.

Photos: Broadway's MJ The Musical Celebrates Michael Jackson's Thriller

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