The Duck Commander Musical, a new play based on the lives of Duck Dynasty‘s Robertson family, is set to premiere Wednesday night at the Rio Casino Hotel in Las Vegas.
The show, led by Tony Award-nominated director Jeff Calhoun (Newsies), is based on the 2012 book The Duck Commander Family: How Faith, Family and Ducks Built a Dynasty penned by Willie Robertson and his wife, Korie. The play chronicles the rise of the Robertson family from simple, Southern, small business owners to national reality TV superstars.
Willie Robertson told Fox411 that he cried while watching the Vegas adaptation.
“It’s emotional at times,” Robertson told the outlet. “I was crying watching it because you just think about if something were to happen differently, then none of this would have happened.”
Robertson explained that the musical is even better than the TV show at depicting his family’s close relationship, and the cast and crew expertly inhabited each of the figures in the Robertson clan.
“Some of the characters, man, they’ve got us down,” he said. “Not just the way they talk but all their mannerisms, they’ve really done their job on getting us as lifelike as possible.”
The 90-minute musical features country, rock and gospel tunes written by Steven Morris, Robert Morris, and Joe Shane (White Noise). Producer Michael David told Playbill earlier this year that audiences in Las Vegas will get to “take a seat around Miss Kay’s dinner table, watch Willie and Korie’s love story unfold and a dynasty spring to life.”
“I think that anyone who has a family and has experienced the highs and lows of family life can first of all relate to this story,” Ginna Claire Mason, who plays Korie in the show, told Fox411.
Director Jeff Calhoun echoed the actresses’ sentiment.
“They really are living the American dream – and yes, that’s true for a lot of people but I’m not sure it’s true for entire families by sticking together,” Calhoun said.
The musical’s cast is full of Broadway veterans, including Ben Thompson (Matilda) as Willie, Tad Wilson (Rock of Ages) as Phil, Mimi Bessette (Bonnie & Clyde) as Miss Kay, and Russell Arden Koplin (Les Misérables) as Missy.
Tickets are on sale now through the Rio hotel’s website, where fans can also hear a few selected songs from the show.