As February continues to speed by, New York has even more to look forward to in the coming months.
Yet another successful Hollywood film is on its way to becoming a Broadway musical. The Sting, based on the 1973 Oscar-winning film of the same name, will have its world premiere at Paper Mill Playhouse this spring in a production starring two-time Tony nominee Harry Connick, Jr. as Henry Gondorff. The new musical has a book by Bob Martin and music and lyrics by Mark Hollmann and Greg Kotis (in a nod to Marvin Hamlisch’s Oscar-winning film score, the stage musical will also incorporate Scott Joplin’s ragtime music into its score). Directed by John Rando and choreographed by Warren Carlyle, the Broadway-bound musical begins performances March 29, with a run currently scheduled through April 29.
Speaking of films-turned-musicals, a musical adaptation of The Rose, the 1979 film starring Bette Midler, is also on its way to the Broadway stage. The Jackal Group, headed by producers Gail Berman and Joe Early, have hired composer Glen Ballard to write an original score for the musical, which, like the film, will be based on the troubled life and career of a Janis Joplin-like rock singer. “Bringing The Rose to Broadway is a true labor of love,” Berman said. “We are so excited to bring a modern-day take on this project to the stage, and beyond thrilled to have Glen, a true musical vanguard at the helm.” No timeline for the musical’s arrival on Broadway has been announced.
The York Theatre Company’s production of the rarely-produced musical Bar Mitzvah Boy will feature Julie Benko Neal Benari, Ned Eisenberg, Ben Fankhauser, Tim Jerome, Peyton Lusk, Casey Watkins and Lori Wilner. With music by Jule Styne, lyrics by Don Black, and book by Jack Rosenthal, as adapted by David Thompson, the show is running now through February 8 under the direction of Annette Jolles. Bar Mitzvah Boy is the second of three shows in the York’s 2018 Musicals in Mufti Series celebrating the work of composer Jule Styne.
All For One Theater and The Bushwick Starr have joined forces to present The Brobot Johnson Experience, an Afrofuturism transmedia piece written by and starring Darian Dauchan. The piece is described as follows: “One hundred years from now, a race of Hip Hop androids known as Brobots will form a unite, The Tribe Called Space Quest, to spread their message of peace, love, and dopeness all over the universe. Through live looped vocals, rhymes, and beat-boxing, they perform the origin story of the first of their kind.” The show runs February 14 through March 17 as part of The Bushwick Starr’s 2017-18 season.
Downtown veteran performance artist John Kelly will present the world premiere of his newest work, Time No Line, at La MaMa next month. A solo piece based on Kelly’s 42 years of journal writing, Time No Line combines Kelly’s historic texts with movement, video, music and song, and live drawing into a ‘live memoir’, illuminating his experiences within the East Village performance art scene of the 1980s, gender performance, the AIDS epidemic, and our shared cultural history. Performances run February 22 through March 11 in the Ellen Stewart Theatre, with an official opening set for February 26.
The Playwrights Realm will present the world premiere of Hello, From the Children of Planet Earth, Don Nguyen’s new play about the oddities of human conception and the wonder of space travel. The cast will feature Kaaron Briscoe, Dana Berger, Jeffrey Omura, Jon Hoche and Olivia Oguma. Directed by Jade King Carroll, the show will run February 24-March 24 at The Duke on 42nd Street, with an official opening scheduled for March 7.