‘American Idol’s Ruben Studdard and Clay Aiken to Reunite in New Broadway Show
Those who remember watching Season 2 of American Idol back in 2003 will recall the epic final showdown at the end between Ruben Studdard and Clay Aiken. While Studdard was was ultimately declared the winner, Aiken was very close behind, with only just over 134,000 votes separating the two on that final week.
Since then, both have gone on to release music (with Aiken’s song “This Is the Night” becoming the first number-one single from a non-winning Idol contestant) and make television appearances, and now, 15 years after their historic face-off, the two will reunite for a brand new production on Broadway!
On Thursday it was announced on The View that Ruben & Clay’s First Annual Christmas Carol Family Fun Pageant Spectacular Reunion Show will run for a limited three-week engagement at the Imperial Theatre on Broadway this holiday season. Previews will begin December 7, with the show officially opening on December 11 and running through December 30. A portion of the production’s proceeds will go to the National Inclusion Project, an organization co-founded by Aiken for children with disabilities.
It seems the show will encompass music and comedy, and it’s giving off the vibe of harkening back to the old black-and-white Christmas specials stars used to make back when television was new. After the big announcement, Aiken shared his excitement about the new venture with Broadway.com:
“When Ruben and I first started talking about doing a project together, Christmas was a natural fit. It’s been fifteen years since we met on American Idol, and coming back together again, to celebrate the holidays, feels like the best and biggest gift we could both ask Santa for this year!”
Studdard added, “Christmas is about family, friends and fun. Clay and I can’t wait to bring all those things together on Broadway this December!”
Neither of the two are strangers to the stage; Studdard headlined the 30th anniversary revival tour of the musical revue Ain’t Misbehavin’ (which also featured two other Idol alums: Frenchie Davis and Trenyce) while Aiken performed in the Broadway production of Monty Python’s Spamalot in 2008.
Reuben & Clay’s Christmas Show will mark the very first time the two will perform onstage together since the Idol Season 2 finale. In the decade-and-a-half since then, they’ve stayed fairly busy. Both have released several studio albums and done charity work (Aiken with NIP and UNICEF and Studdard with The Ruben Studdard Foundation for the Advancement of Children in the Music Arts). Aiken has also been involved with politics, winning the Democratic primary to become the party’s candidate for North Carolina’s 2nd Congressional District in the 2014 midterm elections, but ultimately losing out on the Congress seat itself.
Tickets for Ruben & Clay’s Christmas Show are now available for purchase, and you can follow the production on social media platforms Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. You can also check out a behind-the-scenes preview of the show below!