MJ – The Musical at Orpheum Theatre

MJ - The Musical at Orpheum TheatreIt’s time to get your dancing shoes on as the four-time Tony winning musical is coming to Minnesota!! MJ the Musical is a smash Broadway musical that is centered on the rehearsal of the King of Pop’s 1992 Dangerous World Tour. Shining the spotlight on twenty five of Michael Jackson’s greatest hits, this jukebox musical will deliver an unforgettable parade of chart toppers.

The celebrated choreographer Christopher Wheeldon, two-time Pulitzer winner playwright Lynn Nottage (“Ruined,” “Sweat”) and an impressive cast led by Elijah Rhea Johnson will give life to Michael Jackson’s unmatched talent. By mastfully weaving together legendary songs, the Broadway production examines the King of Pop’s life, controversies, and legacy.

Get ready to watch history unfold before your very eyes at the Orpheum Theatre Minneapolis! This amazing restored theater located in downtown Minneapolis is guaranteed to deliver a night of show stopping entertainment!

MJ- The Musical Tickets

“The choreography and music are simply outstanding!” – New York City Theater

“A riveting, adrenaline rush of a show” – Washington Post

“MJ is a truly amazing show” – Stage and Cinema

“The perfect salutation to the life of an imperfect but gifted icon” – New York Theatre Guide

MJ The Musical minneapolis

Musical Synopsis

Based on the rehearsals for Michael Jackson’s iconic Dangerous tour, the show begins with the smash hit “Beat It”. When the song draws to a close, Michael Jackson speaks with an MTV reporter who has bagged a rare interview with him. “With respect, I wanna keep this about my music,” he says. “Is it really possible to separate your life from your music?” she asks, and Michael Jackson replies “Just because you read it in a magazine / Or see it on a TV screen, don’t make it factual.”
MJ The Musical is an epic production that explores the King of Pop, his life and controversies as an American powerhouse entertainer. The jukebox musical uncovers Michael Jackson’s creative drive, signature dance moves, as well as his rise to fame as a child pop icon, all the while giving shining the spotlight on more than twenty five of his greatest hits including Billie Jean, Man in the Mirror, Beat It and Smooth Criminal.

MJ The Musical takes the audience behind the scenes as Michael Jackson prepares for his 1992 Dangerous World Tour, exploring the driving force behind this creativity. As the legendary musician and his collaborators rehearse their unique setlist, spectators are taken back in time to the pivotal moments that shaped his star-studded career. MJ the Musical goes beyond the trademark moves and distinctive sound, providing a unique peek behind the creative mind that skyrocketed Michael Jackson into icon status.

Orpheum Theatre minneapolis mj musical

MJ Creative team

The jukebox musical is written by the infamous playwright Lynn Nottage, and directed and choreographed by Christopher Wheeldon. Wheeldon said: “The show is very much anchored in one particular moment in time. – I always bring up the fabulous movie that Spielberg made about Lincoln: You take one key moment, I suppose, in the history of someone’s life and then sort of use that as an anchor point for past storytelling and, perhaps, some kind of prophecy of what’s to come. We’ll be doing that with this story.”

Elijah Rhea Johnson leads as Michael Jackson. David Holcenberg is head of Musical Supervision, Orchestrations and Arrangements, meanwhile Jason Michael Webb is in charge of Musical Direction, Orchestrations and Arrangements. Other members of the creative team include: Derek Mclane (scenic design), Gareth Owen (sound design), Joe Dulude II (makeup design), Strange Cranium Billy Jay Stein (electronic music design), Natasha Katz (lighting design), Peter Nigrini (projection design), Dontee Kiehn (global associate director), Thomas Recktenwald (production stage manager), John Miller (music coordinator), Paul Tazewell (costume design), Charles Lapointe (hair and wig design), Michael Balderrama (global associate choreographer), Rich and Tone Talauega (Michael Jackson movement).
“The majority of the story is set inside a spacious, industrial dance rehearsal studio, but throughout the musical we find ourselves repeatedly transported into Michael’s mind — his memories and his dreams. The alternating between dream sequences and reality gives us the chance to repeatedly surprise the audience,” Derek McLane said in the press release.

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History and awards

After being first announced in 2018, MJ The Musical played its very first show on 6th December 2021. One year later, the Broadway production was put up for 10 Tony Award nominations, with the jukebox hit being crowned the winner of four awards including Best Actor, Best Choreography, Best Lighting Design and Best Sound Design. And that’s not all! MJ The Musical was also nominated for 13 Theatre Fans’ Choice Awards, 3 Drama League Awards, 7 Outer Critics Circle Awards (with Christopher Wheeldon and Rich + Tone Talauega winning the Outstanding Choreographer award), 7 Drama Desk Awards (winning Outstanding Orchestrations, Outstanding Lighting Design, and Outstanding Sound Design in a Musical), and 3 Chitra Rivera Awards. And in 2023, the original cast recording was also nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Musical Theater Album in 2023. Talk about creating an impression!

“The musical takes audiences through Jackson’s life and catalog with impressive ease, expertly chronicling major milestones.” – Hollywood Reporter