The artist reveals the inspiration behind the artwork, while the show’s director and book writer also discuss working with Cher.
There will only ever be one Cher, but it takes three actresses -- Stephanie J. Block, Teal Wicks and Micaela Diamond -- to portray the superstar in The Cher Show, the new biopic jukebox musical about her life. They are all featured on the poster for the Broadway show set to open this fall.
ET's got the exclusive first look at the design before it’s plastered all over Shubert Alley in New York City this coming Labor Day weekend.
Conceived by French artist Malika Favre, the design uses her signature bold style to showcase the three different ages of Cher all with jet black hair, blue eyeshadow and magenta lipstick. “I was very excited about creating art for a Broadway show as this was a first for me,” Favre tells ET. “Cher is a real music icon but also a very important fashion icon and I still remember her incredible and flamboyant costumes on stage. The art we created for the show takes the viewer through her most iconic moments, from the ‘70s Mod style to the diva she is today." (While the artwork was conceived by Favre, the main Cher Show logo was created by House Industries.)
Like the poster, all three Chers are visible “on stage the whole time and they all discuss what happened,” director Jason Moore (Pitch Perfect) says of the upcoming production, which completed an out-of-town tryout in Chicago over the summer. Each actress plays a different version of the singer, with Diamond as the youngest, Babe; Wicks as '70s Cher, Lady; and Block as a later version, Star. “It allows us to show how Cher evolved over time. Our memories do change. We can have been in love with someone and they treat us horribly in the end. So we’re trying to make use of that Tennessee Williams-kind of memory play idea to give it a theatrical layer.”
The show features over 30 songs from Cher’s catalog -- from “I Got You Babe” to “Believe” -- with a book by Rick Elice, who co-wrote Jersey Boys, one of the most successful biopic musicals to date. Elice spent a week with Cher at her home in Los Angeles in October 2015 to learn about her history in order to write it.
“Everybody has an idea of what The Cher Show should be,” Elice says of how he pulled out key moments to fit within a two-and-a-half hour runtime, joking that there was so much material most people don’t want to sit through an eight-hour production -- at least in one night. Sonny Bono (Jarrod Spector), Bob Mackie (Michael Berresse) and Gregg Allman (Matthew Hydzik) are also characters featured in the show. “The most important thing for us in the making of the show was, ‘What are our principles of inclusion and exclusion?’ Every time you exclude something, invariably there's a million people who you're disappointing. So [we’re’] hoping [we] chose right.”
While Cher hasn’t been part of the rehearsal process -- she's been busy with the release of Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again and recording her ABBA cover album, Dancing Queen -- she did attend performances in Chicago, where she went unrecognized in the crowd. One person shushed Cher and another asked her to remove her hat, Elice recalls. “When she realized it was Cher she said, ‘Oh, you could you put your hat back on.’”
For two of the performances, she sat next to Moore, giving notes and telling him, “‘[The actresses] all look like me and kind of sound like me. They can be more of them.’ It was a nice thing for her to say. It was very empowering,” the director says.
Performances of The Cher Show start Nov. 1 at the Neil Simon Theatre, with an opening set for Dec. 3.