They're not wasting any time filling the Longacre Theatre, where "The Prom" closed on Sunday. Just a couple of hours after an announcement that "The Lightning Thief: The Percy Jackson Musical" would open for a limited run this fall came notice of the next show to play at the theater.
"Diana," the musical about the innocent kindergarten teacher who became the Princess of Wales, will start previews on March 2 for a March 31 opening. The show, with book and lyrics by Joe DiPietro and music by David Bryan (the team behind the Tony Award-winning "Memphis"), will be directed by Christopher Ashley ("Come From Away"). Jeanna de Waal will play Diana, reprising her performance at the La Jolla Playhouse earlier this year. Also repeating their roles will be Roe Hartrampf as Prince Charles and Judy Kaye as Queen Elizabeth II.
Unless major changes are made from the California production, the show opens with Diana, in that ballgown-on-steroids wedding dress (William Ivey Long is doing the costumes), wondering whether she should have gone out with Charles more than 13 times. Oh, well, we know how this particular story ends, but the musical focuses more on less tragic events in the princess' life that made her an international icon.