Memphis Writers and Creative Team Reuniting for Workshop of New Broadway-Aimed Musical Chasing the Song

By Adam Hetrick
02 Aug 2012

David Bryan and Joe DiPietro
David Bryan and Joe DiPietro
Photo by Joseph Marzullo/WENN

After a nearly three-year run, the Aug. 5 closing of the Tony Award-winning hit Memphis is a bittersweet moment for writers Joe DiPietro and David Bryan, but the Tony-winning duo are currently chasing their next musical project.

While Memphis traces the R&B, gospel and soul sounds of black music as it spread across radio stations in the segregated 1950's U.S., Chasing the Song centers on New York City's Brill Building, which delivered hits that changed the sound of the music charts in the early 1960s.

DiPietro told Playbill.com that the writers have reunited with Tony Award-nominated Memphis director Christopher Ashley, choreographer Sergio Trujillo and producers Junkyard Dog (Sue Frost, Randy Adams, and Kenny Alhadeff) for Chasing the Song.

A fall or early winter workshop of the musical is currently being planned. Broadway is the goal.



DiPietro penned book and lyrics to Chasing the Song, which has music by Bryan. The two earned Tony Awards for handling those duties on Memphis.

Chasing the Song is set against the backdrop of the Brill Building, the iconic Manhattan locale that has served as a headquarters for music publishers, labels and agencies since the big band era. The phrase "The Brill Building Sound" was coined in response to the number of hits that came out of the location, including songs by Lieber and Stoller, Carole King, Burt Bacharach and Hal David, Connie Francis, Bobbie Darin and Neil Sedaka.