Michael Jackson Broadway Musical ‘MJ’ Casts Ephraim Sykes as King of Pop

Sykes was Tony nominee this year for another biomusical, “Ain’t Too Proud”

X1.Ephraim Sykes as Michael Jackson in MJ The Musical (photo by Little Fang Photo).jpeg.jpg
Photo: Little Fang Photo

The upcoming Broadway musical about Michael Jackson “MJ” has found its King of Pop: Ephraim Sykes, the Tony-nominated star of the current Broadway hit “Ain’t Too Proud” about The Temptations.

Sykes has won raves playing microphone-flying Motown recording artist David Ruffin in “Ain’t Too Proud.”

“MJ,” produced by Lia Vollack and The Michael Jackson Estate, will begin preview on July 6, 2020, at the Neil Simon Theatre ahead of an official opening on Aug. 13.

The show features a book by two-time Pulitzer Prize winner Lynn Nottage and a score made up of some of the best-loved, top-selling songs in recording history. Tony Award winner Christopher Wheeldon will direct and choreograph.

“Ephraim Sykes is a bonafide triple threat, and dynamic rising star on Broadway. I am honored to be working with him on this exciting new production,” Wheeldon said in a statement.

In addition to his Tony nomination, Sykes has won the Chita Rivera Award, a San Francisco Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle Award, a Theater Bay Area Award, the Helen Hayes Award, and The Actors’ Equity Clarence Derwent Award. This week, he also received a 2020 Grammy Award nomination as a principal artist on the Original Cast Recording of “Ain’t Too Proud.”

Sykes credits also include NBC’s “Hairspray Live!” “Luke Cage, “Smash” and Kathryn Bigelow’s “Detroit.” His other Broadway credits include “Hamilton,” “Memphis,” “Newsies” and “Motown.”