Kinky Boots, the New Cyndi Lauper-Scored Musical, Will Strut Into an October Workshop

By Kenneth Jones
16 Aug 2011

Cyndi Lauper
Cyndi Lauper

The continuing development of the new musical Kinky Boots, based on the film about a failing British shoe company that becomes a fetish-footwear manufacturer, will result in an October industry reading directed by Tony Award winner Jerry Mitchell.

Daryl Roth and Hal Luftig (as previously reported) are behind the project, which will get an Equity staged reading (representing rehearsals and presentation) Sept. 23-Oct. 6, according to a casting-call announcement.

As previously reported, Kinky Boots the Musical has new music and lyrics by Cyndi Lauper and libretto by Tony Award winner Harvey Fierstein (Torch Song Trilogy, La Cage aux Folles). Musical supervision is by 2011 Tony Award winner Stephen Oremus (Wicked, 9 to 5, The Book of Mormon). Mitchell (Hairspray, Catch Me If You Can and the 2004 La Cage aux Folles) will direct and choreograph. Casting is by Telsey + Company.

Singer-songwriter Lauper is best known for her offbeat '80s style and such tunes as "True Colors," "Time After Time" and "Girls Just Want to Have Fun." Her show will have a pop-rock sound. The 2005 source film comedy is about a drag-queen cabaret performer who helps revitalize a failing British shoe company by creating a line of fetish wear.



Broadway producer Roth is known for August: Osage County and won a 2011 Tony for producing The Normal Heart. Luftig produced Movin' Out and Legally Blonde.

Roth and Luftig have said that the film's heart and humanity (and bigger-than-life leading "lady") would translate well to musical theatre.

No production timeline or reading casting has been made public.

Geoff Deane & Tim Firth penned the screenplay of "Kinky Boots." The film was directed by Julian Jarrold. Chiwetel Ejiofor (who played vivacious drag queen Lola) was nominated for a 2007 Golden Globe Award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy. The U.K. release was in 2005; the U.S. release was in 2006.

In the movie, a son inherits his dead father's dying shoe company, which produces functional footwear for which there is no market. An encounter with a drag performer changes the lives of those in the shoe business.

"The story is really about relationships," Roth previously told the Hollywood Reporter, "and I want to find the heart at the center of it."