Summary of Theater
Spider-Man: Turn off the Dark is a rock musical with music and lyrics by U2's Bono and The Edge and a book by Julie Taymor, Glen Berger, and Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa. The musical is based on the Spider-Man comics created by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko, published by Marvel Comics, as well as the 2002 film about the character and the Greek myth of Arachne. lt tells the story of the origin of the character, his romance with Mary Jane and his battles with the evil Green Goblin. The show includes highly technical stunts, such as actors swinging from "webs" and several aerial combat scenes. At the first preview performance, these technical challenges caused several lengthy interruptions. Several actors were injured during rehearsals and previews.
Spider Man is the most expensive Broadway production, and had the longest preview period (182 preview performances), in history. Although the musical began performances in November 2010, the official opening was postponed several times. After receiving feedback from preview audiences and scathing reviews from critics, previews were suspended in March 2011. Director Julie Taymor left the production, as co-director Philip William McKinley was brought in to redirect portions of the show. The musical's book was revised, and new previews began May 12, with the official opening on June 14, 2011. Critical reception of the opening was better than for the earlier version, but mixed at best, with praise for the visual effects but little enthusiasm for the book and score.