Preferring that something as base as gangsta rap not sully the grand theatrical tradition of plays based on movies from TNT’s afternoon lineup, Broadway has roundly rejected Holler If Ya Hear Me, forcing the Tupac Shakur-inspired musical to close after a mere six weeks. In a statement, producer Eric L. Gold blamed “the financial burdens of Broadway,” which demand that a show actually sell tickets to remain open. Gold said he’d made a “rookie mistake” in underestimating the costs of the musical—and, presumably, in overestimating the appeal of a show that used Tupac’s music and lyrics to tell a story that wasn’t actually about Tupac, but rather a more universal, vague story about an ex-con returning to his old neighborhood. As it is, Holler If Ya Hear Me was one of the worst-selling musicals in recent years, despite—or perhaps because of—Gold’s warning that “if we don’t succeed, it’s going to be difficult to do another rap or hip-hop show on Broadway.” That statement isn’t expected to prove true, given everything we know about Broadway.
According to some, the Tupac musical will still be performed in Cuba.