The Verdict: Critics Review Misty Copeland in On the Town | Playbill

The Verdict The Verdict: Critics Review Misty Copeland in On the Town Misty Copeland, a principal dancer at American Ballet Theatre, joined the cast of On the Town Aug. 26.
Misty Copeland

Copeland replaced Georgina Pazcoguin as Ivy Smith, a young dancer who is crowned "Miss Turnstiles" for the month of June.

The critics have filed their reviews, and has collected them for our readers. will continue to update our list as the reviews come in.

History-Making Ballet Star Misty Copeland Makes Triumphant Broadway Debut! See the Jubilant Shots of Her First Curtain Call

The New York Times

The Washington Post


On The Town, which will conclude its run Sept. 6 at the Lyric Theatre, features music by Leonard Bernstein and a book and lyrics by Betty Comden and Adolph Green.

The current cast includes Tony Yazbeck as Gabey, Jay Armstrong Johnson as Chip, Clyde Alves as Ozzie, Elizabeth Stanley as Claire de Loone, Alysha Umphress as Hildy Esterhazy, Michael Rupert as Judge Pitkin W. Bridgework, Allison Guinn as Lucy Schmeeler (and others), Jackie Hoffman as Maude P. Dilly (and others), Phillip Boykin, Stephen DeRosa, Justin Lee Miller, Tanya Birl, Angela Brydon, Holly Ann Butler, Kristine Covillo, Lori Ann Ferreri, Stephen Hanna, Corey Lingner, Skye Mattox, Michael Rosen, Cody Williams, Mikey Winslow, Manny Stark, Erica Mansfield, Ricky Ubeda, Ashley Blair Fitzgerald, Max Clayton, Michael Williams, Tyler Hanes, Paloma Garcia-Lee, Kathryn Terza, David Alvarez and Peter Chursin.

"We are so thrilled to have Misty joining us at this momentous time in her career," producer Howard Kagan said. "On the Town has a long history of progressive, diverse casting which began with the creative team's casting of Japanese-American dancer Sono Osato as Ivy Smith in the original 1944 production, in the midst of World War II, as well as featuring one of the first racially-integrated ensembles. So it seems fitting that this incredible talent, who has broken through barriers in the dance world, will make her Broadway debut in this show."

Copeland appears only at the Tuesday, Thursday and Friday evening shows and the Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday matinees. The show will also have a Saturday and Sunday evening performance during those weeks.

At a June 30 press conference about the ABT appointment, Copeland was quoted saying, "I had moments of doubting myself, and wanting to quit, because I didn’t know that there would be a future for an African-American woman to make it to this level. At the same time, it made me so hungry to push through, to carry the next generation. So it’s not me up here — and I'm constantly saying that — it’s everyone that came before me that got me to this position.

Copeland was born in Kansas City, MO, and raised in San Pedro, CA. She began her ballet studies at the age of 13 at the San Pedro City Ballet and won first place in the Music Center Spotlight Awards. She continued her studies at the Lauridsen Ballet Center. Copeland studied at the San Francisco Ballet School and American Ballet Theatre’s Summer Intensive on full scholarship and was declared ABT’s National Coca-Cola Scholar in 2000. Copeland joined ABT’s Studio Company in September 2000 and joined the main Company as a member of the corps de ballet in April 2001. She was appointed a soloist in August 2007.

Copeland received the 2008 Leonore Annenberg Fellowship in the Arts and was named National Youth of the Year Ambassador for the Boys & Girls Clubs of America in 2013. In 2014, President Obama appointed Copeland to the President’s Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition. She is the recipient of a 2014 Dance Magazine Award and appeared on the cover of Time Magazine’s 100 Most Influential People in 2015. She is the author of the best-selling memoir, "Life in Motion" and the children’s book "Firebird."

The Lyric Theatre Box Office is located at 213 West 42nd Street, New York, NY 10036. For more information, visit

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