Just last month, Motown Records founder Berry Gordy launched a YouTube talent search for an actor to play Michael Jackson in the upcoming Broadway production “Motown: The Musical.” Now it has been announced that the production will officially open April 14, 2013, and will star Brandon Victor Dixon and Valisia LeKae.
Dixon will portray Gordy in the new musical that will feature many songs released on the label, including hits made famous by Smokey Robinson and the Miracles, Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder, Michael Jackson and Diana Ross and the Supremes. Lekae will play Ross in the production.
Berry Gordy also wrote the book for the musical and is a producer, along with Tony winner Kevin McCollum and Sony Music CEO Doug Morris. The production will play at the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre, and previews are set to begin March 11.
Producers describe “Motown” like this:
“Motown” tells the gripping story behind the hits as Smokey finds his unique voice, Diana skyrockets to stardom and Berry fights against the odds to turn his improbable dream into a triumphant reality. The music that shattered barriers and shaped lives finally comes to the Broadway stage in the season’s most highly anticipated world-premiere event.
Dixon is best known for his work in “The Scottsboro Boys” and “The Color Purple.” He was nominated for the Tony Award for Best Featured Actor in a Musical for his role as Harpo in the latter production. LeKae has been seen in “The Book of Mormon” and “Ragtime.”
Producers have not yet announced a winner for the talent search for the role of young Michael Jackson, Stevie Wonder and Gordy in the musical. The actor is wanted to be between eight and 11 years old and will play all three roles.
The musical will be directed by Charles Randolph-Wright and co-choreographed by Patricia Wilcox and Warren Adams.