Bette Midler will return to her Tony-winning role in the hit musical revival “Hello, Dolly!” this summer for a final six-week run, the show’s producers announced Friday.
Original co-stars David Hyde Pierce and Gavin Creel will join her starting July 17 to wrap up the acclaimed production before it closes permanently on August 25.
Bernadette Peters and Victor Garber, who in January had replaced Midler and Hyde Pierce as matchmaker Dolly Levi and her reluctant love interest Horace Vandergelder, will conclude their runs on July 15, as scheduled.
The revival of Jerry Herman’s 1964 musical has been a monster hit at the box office, though ticket sales have taken a dip since Midler left the show. During her final week in January, the show raked in a remarkable $2.4 million, thanks in part to premium ticket sales, while sales for the week ending April 15 came in just over $1 million, still nearly three quarters the potential gross for the theater.
Directed by four-time Tony winner Jerry Zaks and choreographed by Tony winner Warren Carlyle, “Hello, Dolly!” began performances on Broadway on March 15, 2017, and officially opened on Thursday, April 20, 2017.
The revival won a total of four Tonys, including Best Musical Revival.
“I am delighted to return to the scene of one of the greatest experiences of my life, and I know the brilliant Bernadette Peters enjoyed her turn as much as I did,” Midler said in a statement. “Dolly Levi is one of the most joyful characters in Broadway history, and Bernadette and I were lucky to to be able to step into her glorious shoes.”
Peters said, “I am forever grateful to Bette for suggesting I step into the role of Dolly Levi. She was right. We both agree it is an amazing, joyful journey for us and the audience. And now I will hand the red dress back to my friend, the magnificent Bette Midler.”
17 Top-Grossing Broadway Musicals of All Time, From 'Hamilton' to 'The Lion King' (Photos)
A ranked list of the biggest hits on the Great White Way, as of March 8, 2020 (according to The Broadway League)
17. "Rent" (original production) Opened: April 29, 1996 Closed: Sept. 7, 2008 Gross: $274.2 million
16. "The Producers" Opened: April 19, 2001 Closed: April 22, 2007 Gross: $288.4 million
15. "Mary Poppins" Opened: Nov. 16, 2006 Closed: March 3, 2013 Gross: $294.6 million
14. "Miss Saigon" (original production) Opened: April 11, 1991 Closed: Jan. 28, 2001 Gross: $298.7 million
13. "Kinky Boots" Opened: April 4, 2013 Closed: April 7, 2019 Gross to date: $319.0 million
12. "Les Misérables" (original production) Opened: March 12, 1987 Closed: May 18, 2003 Gross: $406.3 million