Ain’t Too Proud – The Life and Times of the Temptations, a new musical about one of R&B’s premier vocal groups, will hit Broadway in Spring 2019. The production will run at the Imperial Theater in New York, New York, producers announced Thursday, although no opening date has been set.
Ain’t Too Proud launched in September 2017 at the Berkeley Repertory Theater in Berkeley, California, before moving this year to the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. It is currently playing at the Center Theater Group in Los Angeles, California, where it runs through September 30th; a stint at Toronto, Ontario’s Princess of Wales Theatre is scheduled to open October 11th and run through November 17th.
Director Des McAnuff is a veteran of jukebox musicals, which base stories around pop songs; his credits include Jersey Boys, about pop-rock act the Four Seasons, and Summer: The Donna Summer Musical. Playwright Dominique Morisseau wrote the book for Ain’t Too Proud, which focuses on the Motown legends’ formation and career.
Portraying the Temptations will be Derrick Baskin as Otis Williams, James Harkness as Paul Williams, Jawan M. Jackson as Melvin Franklin, Jeremy Pope as Eddie Kendricks and Ephraim Sykes as David Ruffin.
Ain’t Too Proud‘s Broadway move highlights the popularity of incorporating pop music into theater, as The New York Times notes. Other recently premiered or in-development jukebox musicals include Jagged Little Pill, based on Alanis Morissette’s 1995 album of the same name, the Go-Go’s Head Over Heels and Tina: The Tina Turner Musical.
In May, the Temptations released a new album, All the Time, featuring revamped versions of modern pop hits – including the Weeknd’s “Earned It.”