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'Children of a Lesser God' to end Broadway run

"Children of a Lesser God" starring Lauren Ridloff

"Children of a Lesser God" starring Lauren Ridloff and Joshua Jackson will close on May 27. Credit: Matthew Murphy

With weak ticket sales and only one Tony Award nomination, the revival of "Children of a Lesser God" will end its Broadway run on May 27. It will have played 23 previews and 54 regular performances.

Mark Medoff's 1980 play about the troubled romance between a teacher and a deaf cleaning woman at a school for the deaf was considered groundbreaking in its initial run for its use of American Sign Language, offering tremendous insight into the hearing-impaired community. The original production won Tonys for best play and for its stars John Rubinstein and Phyllis Frelich. Marlee Matlin won a best actress Oscar for the 1986 movie.

But the revival, directed by Kenny Leon, didn't find an audience, despite critically praised performances by Lauren Ridloff, who received the play's only Tony nod for her Broadway debut, and Joshua Jackson. Last week the play earned just 30 percent of its potential, grossing only $297,762.

Producer Hal Luftig said in a statement that he was proud of the cast and creative team: "In a world where we too often talk over each other and struggle to be heard, there is immense power when you open your mind and start listening." 

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