EXCLUSIVE: Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty Team with Susan Stroman for New Dance Musical

Tony Award-winning musical collaborators Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty are stepping out with Tony-winning director-choreographer Susan Stroman on a new dance musical for Lincoln Center Theater.

Susan Stroman
Susan Stroman (Photo by Aubrey Reuben)

Ahrens and Flaherty, who are Tony winners for their score to Ragtime, will return to Lincoln Center Theater for a month-long workshop of the yet-to-be-titled original musical this June. It will have lyrics by Ahrens and music by Flaherty. Cider House Rules playwright Peter Parnell is writing the book.

Inspired by true events, the work focuses on the relationship between a young ballerina and 19th century French painter and sculptor Edgar Degas. Stroman ( Contact, Scottsboro Boys, Happiness) will direct and choreograph the work, which is set in the harsh and colorful backstage world of the Paris Opera Ballet. LCT presented a reading of the piece last year.

The project is a homecoming for the prolific lyricist-composer team, who have had their musicals The Glorious Ones, Dessa Rose, My Favorite Year and A Man of No Importance produced at LCT over the last two decades. Stroman also staged the Tony-winning dance musical Contact for LCT, as well as Happiness and The Frogs in recent years.