‘SpongeBob’ Musical Feat TMBG, John Legend & More Opening in Chicago Before Broadway Run

By James Knight J.knight@classicalite.com | Feb 23, 2016 05:38 AM EST

“Are you ready kids?” SpongeBob the Musical is coming to Chicago. The upcoming all-new Jukebox musical, with original music by The Flaming Lips, They Might Be Giants, John Legend and Lady Antebellum and many more, will open for a limited run this summer before heading to Broadway.

The SpongeBob Musical is a jukebox musical featuring original songs by Aerosmith’s Steven Tyler and Joe Perry, They Might Be Giants, Jonathan Coulton, Dirty Projectors, The Flaming Lips, John Legend, Lady Antebellum, Cyndi Lauper, Panic! At the Disco, Plain White T's and T.I. An addition song by David Bowie will be part of the show as well as added lyrics by Jonathan Coulton.

The show is co-conceived and directed by Tina Landau, with a book by Kyle Jarrow and Tom Kitt serving as music supervision.

Landau commented on the show in press statement found on Broadway in Chicago’s website:

“I was drawn to this project not only for its wild theatrical possibility, but also because I felt SpongeBob, at its core, is a layered and hilarious ensemble comedy. SpongeBob himself is of course its center and beating heart–the eternal innocent in a sea of cynics. He’s also the classic underdog hero, and so our production sets him on a hero’s journey with real stakes, all the while retaining the show’s trippy humor and irreverence. We’re taking our leads from the TV show but this is an original story, with an original design approach, and original songs written just for the occasion by an amazing array of songwriters. We will present the world of Bikini Bottom and its characters in a whole new way that can only be achieved in the live medium of the theatre. We’re bringing the show’s fabled characters to life through actors--not prosthetics or costumes that hide them--and we’re deploying some unconventional stage craft that will prove that anything can happen in Bikini Bottom.”

SpongeBob the Musical open June 7 at the Oriental Theatre (24 W. Randolph St., Chicago, IL) for a limited run which is scheduled to end on Sunday, July 3, 2016 before heading to Broadway.

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