The long-running Off Broadway percussion show Stomp, which has entertained and mildly deafened audiences at the East Village’s Orpheum Theatre since 1994, will come to an end early next year. Producers announced today that the New York production will go out with a final bang on January 8, 2023.
After debuting in Edinburgh in 1991, Stomp moved to London and New York in 1994. A subsequent West End production closed in 2018, after 15 years, but New York’s Off Broadway edition has clanged along merrily for nearly three decades. When it closes, it will have played a total of 13 previews and 11,472 regular performances. (Touring versions of the show in Europe and North America will continue, and alumnae of the show can be seen this month at the Joyce Theatre alongside tap dance master Michelle Dorrance.)
Created and directed by Luke Cresswell and Steve McNicholas, Stomp combines sound and dance to often comedic effect through the deployment of unusual noisemakers in a punky junkyard spectacle. As the show’s publicity puts it: “Synchronized stiff-bristle brooms become a sweeping orchestra, eight Zippo lighters flip open and closed to create a fiery fugue; wooden poles thump and clack in a rhythmic explosion. Stomp uses everything but conventional percussion instruments—dustbins, shopping carts, radiator hoses, boots, hub caps—to fill the stage with a compelling and unique act that is often imitated but never duplicated.”
Combined with the closing or impending closing of the long-running Broadway shows Come from Away, Dear Evan Hansen and soon even The Phantom of the Opera (which, following a bump in sales, has just received a two-month stay of execution), the shuttering of Stomp raises questions about the current financial viability of productions that depend predominantly on out-of-town audiences, at a time when NYC tourism still hasn’t returned to its pre-pandemic levels. Other long runners, however—such as Broadway’s Chicago, The Lion King, Wicked and Stomp‘s fellow East Village 1990s sensation Blue Man Group—remain in operation.
Tickets to the final weeks of Stomp can be purchased here.
Ex-Brit turned Manhattan resident since 2008.