Legendary “Saturday Night Live” creator Lorne Michaels is executive producing a new project for Apple TV+ starring Emmy Award-nominee Cecily Strong and Emmy Award-winner Keegan-Michael Key. “Schmigadoon!” is a musical comedy series that prides itself on parodying iconic musicals, and will make its bow this summer on the streamer, as announced Friday at the CTAM Winter 2021 Press Tour.
The series is centered on Strong and Key as a couple — Melissa and Josh — striking out on a backpacking trip aimed at breathing new life into their flagging relationship and ends up with the pair stumbling upon a magical mystery town in which everyone appears to be fueled solely by the power and passion of 1940s musicals.
As entertaining as that might seem in the short term, the duo quickly realizes that they can’t leave town until they find “true love.”
Powered not just by a love of musical theater and a yen to clean out the barn and put on a show, “Schmigadoon!” will also host a bevy of supporting players that would make Broadway green with envy. Alan Cumming, Kristin Chenoweth, Aaron Tveit, Dove Cameron, Ariana DeBose, Fred Armisen, Jaime Camil, Jane Krakowski, and Ann Harada are all slated to appear in the first season of the six-episode series.
“There’s a whole tone to the show, which is both real, but very theatrical,” director Barry Sonnenfeld said during the TCA panel for the series, in reference to casting individuals who needed not just to act, but to sing and dance. “So the acting has to be both theatrical and real. And we were very lucky that everyone was able to pull that off as well.”
In a previously released announcement, Apple TV+ revealed that Cumming would play the town’s mayor, Mayor Menlove, and Harada, his oblivious wife, while Armisen would serve as a religious leader and Chenoweth would portray his nosy, busybody wife. Tveit will play the town’s bad boy, who aims to woo Melissa, while Cameron plays a farmer’s daughter who finds herself immediately smitten with Josh. Camil will star as the town’s cold-hearted doctor and Krakowski as his sophisticated wife, while DeBose plays a teacher who can’t help but struggle under the constraints of burg.
From Broadway Video and Universal Television, “Schmigadoon!” is co-created by Cinco Paul and Ken Daurio, screenwriters of “Despicable Me” and Paul is serving as showrunner, in addition to writing all of the original music for the series. Sonnenfeld directs in addition to executive producing, with Strong as a producer, Daurio as a consulting producer and writer, and Andrew Singer executive producing with Lorne Michaels for Broadway Video.