13 Hits a Coming-of-Age Milestone: Closing Night
By Kenneth Jones
13, the new middle school-set musical with songs by Tony Award winner Jason Robert Brown, plays its final Broadway performance at the Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre Jan. 4.
Directed by Jeremy Sams, the new musical that features a cast and orchestra composed of teenagers began previews on Broadway Sept. 16, 2008, and officially opened Oct. 5. When it closes, 13 will have played a total of 22 previews and 105 regular performances.
The property, which has an original libretto by youth novelist Dan Elish and Robert Horn, has been snagged for future stock and amateur licensing by Music Theatre International (MTI).
In a statement, lead producer Bob Boyett said, "In my entire career I have never seen so much talent in a single company as I have in 13. The joy and enthusiasm of the cast and band is genuinely matched by Jason's remarkable music and the stellar creative team. I am happy to announce that although 13 is saying goodbye to Broadway, we've received much interest in a national and international tour."
The show's puberty happened in earlier productions at Mark Taper Forum in Los Angeles (in early 2007) and Goodspeed Musicals' Norma Terris Theatre in Connecticut (this past spring).
The now more fully developed show charts the anxieties and excitement of kids who are struggling with hormones and school hierarchy. Composer-lyricist Brown wrote songs for Parade (winning a Tony for the score), The Last Five Years and the revue Song for a New World.
In 13, A New Musical, according to producers, "Evan Goldman has it all — he's popular, has the perfect family and lives in the greatest city in the world — New York. That is until his parents get divorced and he's forced to move with his Mom… to Indiana. Uprooted from his old life, he has to make new friends and somehow maneuver his way through the minefield of High School to become part of the 'in-crowd.' A grown-up story about growing up, featuring the only all-teenage cast ever to hit Broadway!"
The 13 principal cast members include Al Calderon as Eddie, Eamon Foley as Richie, Caitlin Gann as Molly, Ariana Grande as Charlotte, Aaron Simon Gross as Archie, Elizabeth Gillies as Lucy, Malik Hammond as Malcolm, Joey La Varco as Simon, Delaney Moro as Kendra, Eric Nelsen as Brett, Graham Phillips as Evan, Allie Trimm as Patrice and Brynn Williams as Cassie.
Also in the cast are understudies Riley Costello, Henry Hodges, Mary Claire Miskell, Liana Ortiz, Max Schneider and Corey Snide (who plays Evan Saturdays at 8 PM), while onstage teen band members include Lexi Bodick on bass, Zac Coe on percussion, Adam Kaufman on keyboard, Zach Page on guitar, Chris Raymond on guitar and Charlie Rosen (swing musician).
The production features scenic and costume design by Tony nominee David Farley (2008's Sunday in the Park with George), lighting design by Tony Award winner Brian MacDevitt (The Coast of Utopia Part I) and sound design by Jon Weston (The Color Purple).
The original cast album from Ghostlight Records was released through digital services Sept. 30, and in stores Nov. 25.
The musical is produced on Broadway by Bob Boyett, Roger Berlind, Tim Levy, Stacey Mindich, Jane Bergère, Broadway Across America, Ken Davenport, Ted Hartley, Sharon Karmazin, Carl Moellenberg, Jamie Lightstone/Nina Keneally, Tom Miller/True Love Productions, Olympus Theatricals, Center Theatre Group in association with Shorenstein Hays Nederlander and The Araca Group.
For more information visit http://www.13themusical.com.
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