Show History

History

Inspiration

Jekyll & Hyde is based on the Robert Louis Stevenson novella, Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde. Stevenson had been intrigued by the idea of split personalities and their effects on a human for quite some time and wanted to incorporate that into a story with the ideas of good and evil.

While studying history as an undergraduate in the University of Southern California, Frank Wildhorn was interested in turning Stevenson's novella into a full musical. After graduating in 1982, he created the show with Steve Cuden and they were able to produce a concept recording with Colm Wilkinson and Linda Eder. Years later, Grammy- and Academy Award-winning composer, Leslie Bricusse, was brought on to clean up the book and lyrics.

Productions

Jekyll & Hyde, a musical thriller, originally conceived for the stage by Frank Wildhorn and Steve Cuden, was first presented in Houston, Texas, at the Alley Theatre in May 1990, shattering box office records for the theatre and seeing its run extended twice. A hiatus emerged of almost five years before two new runs: the first in the Music Hall Theatre in Houston, and another at the 5th Avenue Theatre in Seattle. Both productions were extremely successful, prompting a North American tour that ran from August 1995 to April 1996.

The musical made its Broadway debut on April 28, 1997, at the Plymouth Theatre. It ran for nearly four years, eventually closing on January 7, 2001, after 1,543 performances. A second national tour began in April 1999 and toured for a year. Later that year, a Non-Equity tour began, running from September 2000 to May 2001.

The musical made its UK debut with a national tour from August 2004 to May 2005, then a second tour from January to July 2011. The script was eventually modified into a concert version, which toured North America and South Korea from September 2005 to May 2006. Yet another North American tour sprung up on October 2, 2012, having made various changes to the orchestrations and arrangements to give the score a more contemporary feel. The tour closed on March 31, 2013, in preparation for a transfer to Broadway, where it opened on April 18 at the Marquis Theatre. The production ran for 29 performances and closed on May 12, 2013.

Cultural Influence

  • The song, "This Is the Moment," has been covered over 1,000 times by various popular artists. It has also been featured at mainstream events like the 1994 and 1996 Olympics, the Superbowl, the World Series, several Miss America pageants and the inauguration of President George W. Bush.
  • Jekyll & Hyde has been translated into several different languages, including: German, Spanish, Polish and Taiwanese.
  • The original Broadway production of the musical is currently the longest-running show in the history of the Plymouth Theatre.

Trivia

  • Jekyll &¬†Hyde has inspired a dedicated following of self-proclaimed "Jekkies" to rival the fanatic fans of any sci-fi serial.