'Hamilton' To Hit The Bushnell In December; 2018-19 Season Packed With Broadway Hits

The revolution is nigh. “Hamilton” is finally coming to Hartford, for a three-week run Dec. 11 to 30.

The Bushnell announced its 2018-19 season Monday night at a special event for subscribers. “Come From Away,” “Waitress” and “The Play That Goes Wrong” are other currently running Broadway hits whose national tours are hitting The Bushnell in Hartford next season.

The full seven-show subscription season is as follows: the chaotic British backstage comedy “The Play That Goes Wrong,” Sept. 25 to 30; the recent Broadway revival of “Fiddler on the Roof” Nov. 6 to11; “Hamilton” Dec. 11 to 30; the recent musical adaptation of “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” Feb. 19 to 24, 2019; “Rent” March 12 to 17, 2019; “Come From Away” April 30 to May 5, 2019; and “Waitress” June 18 to 23, 2019.

In addition, The Bushnell has booked several other touring musicals during the season that are not part of the main Broadway series subscription package: the previously announced “Disney’s The Lion King” Aug. 1 to 19, a new tour of the recent Broadway revival of “Cats” Jan. 29 through Feb. 3, the return of “Beautiful – The Carole King Musical” March 26 to 31 and Rodgers and Hammerstein’s “The Sound of Music” May 17 to 19.

The Bushnell has not yet announced when “Hamilton” tickets will go on sale to the general public or how much those tickets will cost. Group sales to the show will not be available and there are no special discount deals. “Hamilton” is part of the full Broadway Series subscription package but not available through other subscription deals such as the “mini-package.” Current Bushnell subscribers who renew their subscriptions are currently the only people assured of tickets to “Hamilton.” There will be a ticket lottery for “Hamilton” while the show is in Hartford; details of that lottery will be announced later, the Bushnell says.


It has long been known that “Hamilton” would be part of the season, but the exact dates the show would run had not been made official. The blockbuster show, which now has separate companies in New York, Chicago and London, began its first national tour in California last year and added a concurrently running second tour this year. In contrast to the usual three- to six-day stops that most tours make, the “Hamilton” tour settles down in cities for multiple weeks.

“Hamilton” writer/composer and original star Lin-Manuel Miranda attended Wesleyan University in Middletown. He crafted part of his first Broadway hit “In the Heights” while at Wesleyan and later workshopped it at the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center in Waterford.

Even without “Hamilton,” this is a very impressive Bushnell season. With the exception of “Rent,” all the shows in the Broadway series are either current Broadway hits or were on Broadway very recently. (The “Fiddler” revival closed in New York in December 2016; the Broadway run of “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” ended in January of this year.)

“Come From Away” was one of the big hits of the 2016-17 Broadway season. The real-life-based story, set in the small Canadian town where planes were detoured from New York City on 9/11, had a significant early reading as part of the 2013 Goodspeed Festival of New Artists in East Haddam. Having just celebrated its first anniversary in New York, “The Play That Goes Wrong” is currently the longest running nonmusical on Broadway. “Waitress,” with a score by pop star Sara Bareilles, has been on Broadway since the spring of 2016. “Fiddler on the Roof” is directed by Bartlett Sher, who was associate artistic director of Hartford Stage in the early 1990s, and who has become known for his well-thought-through revivals of classic musicals. (Sher’s latest revival, “My Fair Lady,” begins performances on Broadway this month.)

Even “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory,” a flop by some standards (it got poor reviews and ran only seven months in New York), is a notable curiosity. The show, revised from a longer-running London production, includes some songs from the 1971 film version of the classic Roald Dahl children’s novel, though most of the score is from the “Hairspray” team of Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman. “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” is directed by Jack O’Brien, who also helmed the “Sound of Music” tour The Bushnell is getting in February.

The 20th anniversary tour of “Rent” has already visited the Shubert in New Haven and the Palace in Waterbury and has been on the road so long that when it reaches Hartford it will be “Rent”’s 23rd anniversary already.

Further details of The Bushnell’s 2018-19 season are at 860-987-5900 and bushnell.org.

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