Goode, a renowned San Francisco choreographer, is working alongside Berkeley Rep's associate artistic director, Obie Award winner Les Waters, to stage the new show. (Goode has been on the project for a couple of weeks, but his participation was officially announced on March 25).
Featuring music and lyrics by Sweet and a book by Todd Almond, Girlfriend begins previews on April 9, opens April 14, and closes May 9.
Director Waters said in a statement, "[Goode is] the perfect choreographer for this show, because his style always uses movement in service of storytelling and character. This touching and genuine story about two teenage boys falling in love needs a light touch, and he knows how to combine dance and narrative in ways that no one else can. Having him in the rehearsal hall has been delightful."
Goode is a choreographer, writer, and director who was awarded a John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship in 2007 and the United States Artists Glover Fellowship in 2008. In 2006, he directed the opera Transformations for the San Francisco Opera Center. His play Body Familiar was commissioned by Magic Theatre in 2003. The Joe Goode Performance Group, formed in 1986, tours regularly throughout the U.S., and has toured internationally.
According to Berkeley Rep, "This spring, romance unfolds in a new musical wound around the love songs of the landmark album 'Girlfriend.' Meeting in homeroom. Holding hands. Cheering from the stands. That awkward first kiss. In the world premiere of Girlfriend at Berkeley Rep, boy meets boy. It's an eternal story turned upside down, a dual-Romeo duet that's innocent — and Sweet." The show will feature Ryder Bach and Jason Hite, and a live band of top local musicians: Shelley Doty (lead guitar), ieela Grant (drums), Jean DuSablon (bass), and Julie Wolf (music director, rhythm guitar, and keyboards). The design team includes David Zinn (sets and costumes), Japhy Weideman (lights) and Jake Rodriguez (sound).
Performances will play Berkeley Rep's Thrust Stage. Visit or berkeleyrep.org.