The new musical that tells the story of the tumultuous life of the man who composed the hymn "Amazing Grace," opened July 16 to mixed reviews. When it closes, it will have played 24 previews and 114 regular performances.
Amazing Grace was written by newcomer Christopher Smith, a self-taught musician who was a former police officer and a youth outreach and education director in Pennsylvania.
In addition to the title song, the show has music and lyrics by Smith, who co-wrote the book with Arthur Giron.
Directed by Gabriel Barre (Andrew Lippa’s The Wild Party) and choreographed by Tony Award winner Christopher Gattelli (Newsies), the cast is headed by Tony nominee Josh Young, Tony nominee Tom Hewitt, Erin Mackey, Tony Award winner Chuck Cooper, Chris Hoch, Stanley Bahorek, Harriett D. Foy, Laiona Michelle, Rachael Ferrera and Elizabeth Ward Land. The cast of the musical will reunite Nov. 2 to record the 22-track album. Six-time Grammy winner Frank Filipetti will produce and engineer the recording.
The track-listing follows:
"Someone Who Hears"
"Voices Of The Angels"
"We Are Determined"
"Shadows of Innocence"
"The Battle/The Drowning"
"African Welcome Song"
"Sing on High"
"Tell Me Why"
"A Chance for Me"
"Nowhere Left to Run"
"I Still Believe"
"I Will Remember"
"Nothing There To Love"
The new musical arrived on Broadway after an out-of-town Chicago try-out last fall. The musical struggled at the box office since previews began June 25. Troika Entertainment is planning to launch a national tour of the production.
The ensemble features Leslie Becker, Sara Brophy, Rheaume Crenshaw, Miquel Edson, Mike Evariste, Sean Ewing, Savannah Frazier, Christopher Gurr, Allen Kendall, Michael Dean Morgan, Vince Oddo, Oneika Phillips, Clifton Samuels, Gavriel Savit, Dan Sharkey, Bret Shuford, Evan Alexander Smith, Uyoata Udi, Charles E. Wallace, Toni Elizabeth White and Hollie E. Wright.
A First Look at Josh Young, Erin Mackey, Chuck Cooper and Tom Hewitt in Broadway-Bound Musical Amazing Grace
Amazing Grace is described as a "new original musical based on the awe-inspiring true story behind the world’s most beloved song. A captivating tale of romance, rebellion and redemption, this radiant production follows one man whose incredible journey ignited a historic wave of change. John Newton (Tony Award nominee Josh Young), a willful and musically talented young Englishman, faces a future as uncertain as the turning tide. Coming of age as Britain sits atop an international empire of slavery, he finds himself torn between following in the footsteps of his father – a slave trader – or embracing the more compassionate views of his childhood sweetheart (Erin Mackey). Accompanied by his slave, Thomas (Tony Award winner Chuck Cooper), John embarks on a perilous voyage on the high seas. When that journey finds John in his darkest hour, a transformative moment of self-reckoning inspires a blazing anthem of hope that will finally guide him home."
The creative team also includes Eugene Lee and Edward Pierce (scenic design), Toni-Leslie James (costume design), Ken Billington and Paul Miller (lighting design), Jon Weston (sound design), Robert–Charles Vallance (hair design), David Leong (fight and military movement), Gillian Lane-Plescia (dialect coach), Kenny Seymour (orchestrations), Michael Keller (music coordinator) and Joseph Church (music director, arranger, incidental music).
Amazing Grace is produced by Carolyn Rossi Copeland and Alexander Rankin.
Tickets for Amazing Grace are on sale via Ticketmaster.com or by calling (877) 250-2929. Ticket prices range from $65-$139 (all prices include a $2.00 facility fee).