Perhaps it’s predestination.
After all, Las Vegas’ performing arts center does have the same surname as Mormon prophet Joseph Smith.
Whatever the reason, The Smith Center for the Performing Arts has won the battle for “The Book of Mormon.”
The national tour of the Tony-winning musical will play The Smith Center in the summer of 2014 as part of the 2013-14 Broadway Las Vegas Season.
“We are thrilled to bring this award-winning musical as a part of our 2013-14 Broadway Las Vegas Season,” Smith Center President Myron Martin said in a prepared statement. “Las Vegas is a theater-savvy town and they know what’s hot in New York. We’ve been getting requests for the show since it opened on Broadway. We’ve also gotten many requests to help acquire tickets in New York.”
The Smith Center’s gain is the Strip’s loss; various casino showrooms also were pursuing the touring production, according to published reports.
Even before Las Vegas’ performing arts center opened in March, however, the Broadway smash was on Martin’s radar.
In 2011, at a New York meeting of the Broadway League trade association, Martin attended a presentation featuring “South Park” creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone, who collaborated on the show’s book, music and lyrics with Robert Lopez. “The Book of Mormon” focuses on two young missionaries in Uganda, mixing religious satire with tongue-in-cheek numbers that recall classic gotta-sing, gotta-dance Broadway musicals.
That irreverent, upbeat combination earned rapturous reviews – “Heaven on Broadway!” raved New York Times critic Ben Brantley – and captured nine Tony Awards in 2011, including best musical, best score, best book and best direction.
The musical’s cast album also earned a Grammy Award, adding to the show’s numerous accolades.
Contact reporter Carol Cling at firstname.lastname@example.org or 702-383-0272.