Music Theatre International Nabs A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder Rights

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28 Jul 2014

Jefferson Mays
Jefferson Mays
Photo by Joan Marcus

Music Theatre International has announced that it has acquired live performance rights for the Tony Award-winning musical A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder.

Based on the 1907 novel "Israel Rank" by Roy Horniman, A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder opened on Broadway Nov. 13, 2013, at the Walter Kerr Theatre. Critics praised the musical that has a book by Robert L. Freedman, music by Steven Lutvak and lyrics by Freedman and Lutvak. Darko Tresnjak directs, and Peggy Hickey choreographs.

In addition to taking the Tony Award for Best Musical, Gent's Guide won Tony Awards for Best Book, Best Direction and Best Costume Design.

A timeline for rights availability has not been announced. The musical continues its Broadway run at the Walter Kerr Theatre. A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder premiered in a co-production by Connecticut's Hartford Stage and the Old Globe Theatre in San Diego.

"Gentleman's Guide is a show that the entire MTI team fell in love with, one by one," said MTI president Drew Cohen in a statement. "Starting with the production in Hartford over a year ago, we began to realize how special this show is, and we are proud to join the Gentleman's Guide family. Creating a musical farce that grabs audiences from the start and takes them on a hilarious, non-stop ride is not easy. Gentleman's Guide does this effortlessly and does so with a heart. Saying that a show about a series of murders 'has a heart' may seem paradoxical, but Gentleman's Guide defies convention in many ways, including by being a 'sophisticated farce.' The bottom line is that audiences love the show and performers will love being in the show. That is what excites us most about Robert and Steven's masterpiece."



Here's how the dark musical comedy is billed: "Monty Navarro has just received some really great news from his late mother’s lifelong friend Miss Shingle! He’s a long-lost member of a noble family and could become the next Earl of Highhurst. There are only eight minor issues, namely the other relatives who precede him in line for the title. So Monty does what any ambitious, highborn gentleman would do: he sets out to eliminate them one by one, all while juggling his mistress (she’s after more than just love), his fiancée (she’s his cousin, but who’s keeping track?), plus the constant threat of landing behind bars! But it will all be worth it if he can slay his way into Highhurst Castle… and be done in time for tea. Each of the eight heirs perilously standing in the way of Monty’s fortune are played by Tony Award-winner Jefferson Mays, in one of the most breathtaking, whiplash-inducing performances ever attempted on the American stage."