The spotlight turns its beam on Bright Lights, Big City tonight, as the Paul Scott Goodman show -- one of the most anticipated new musicals of the season -- begins previews Jan. 31, for an opening Feb. 24. The tuner was originally set to start up one-day earlier, on Jan. 30. Instead, an extra dress rehearsal was scheduled for that date.
A cast of 12 will enact composer-librettist Goodman's musical retelling of Jay McInerney's novel of go-go '80s excess.
Goodman himself will take the role simply called Writer in the production. Other members of the cast include Jacqueline Arnold (Clara), Carla Bianco (Mary), Natascia Diaz (Vicky), Jerry Dixon (Tad), John Graney (Michael/ Yasu), Napiera Daniele Groves (Amanda), Liza Lapira (Sally), Ken Marks (Alex), AnnMarie Milazzo (Mother), Kerry O'Malley (Megan) and Patrick Wilson (Jamie).
Bright Lights follows the sordid urban adventures of a dissolute New Yorker fact checker as he plummets through a boomtown world of nightclubs, bars, models and cocaine. Goodman wrote the score, lyrics and book. Michael Greif, who staged Rent (which also debuted at NYTW), is slated to direct.
McInerney achieved his greatest success with "Bright Lights, Big City." Along with Tama Janowitz and Brett Easton Ellis, he became a leading figure among the '80's "brat pack" of young novelists. The book was made into a movie starring Michael J. Fox in 1988. McInerney's subsequent works, which include "Brightness Falls," "Last of the Savages," and "Story of My Life," have been less successful with both readers and critics. -- By Robert Simonson