Laura Osnes & Jeremy Jordan Are Singin' and Shootin' in Bonnie & Clyde, Opening on Broadway Dec. 1
By Kenneth Jones
Bonnie & Clyde, the new musical with songs by Frank Wildhorn and Don Black, telling the story of the Depression-era American outlaws Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow, opens Dec. 1 following previews from Nov. 4 at the Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre.
With music by Tony Award nominee Wildhorn (Wonderland, Jekyll & Hyde, The Civil War, The Scarlet Pimpernel), lyrics by Tony winner Black (Sunset Boulevard) and a book by Ivan Menchell (The Cemetery Club), the rockabilly-and-blues-scented musical is directed by Tony nominee Jeff Calhoun (Broadway's Grease! in 1994, Brooklyn, Big River and Paper Mill Playhouse's Newsies). Sex, flesh, violence and American greed — or "want," if you will — are major elements in the pop show.
Center stage, with guns in their hands as the title characters, are Laura Osnes, a 2011 Drama Desk nominee for playing Hope Harcourt in Anything Goes, and Jeremy Jordan, recently heroic Jack Kelly in Newsies at Paper Mill.
Music supervision/orchestrations/arrangements are by John McDaniel. Jason Howland is the music director.
The friends, family and enemies of the charming criminals include Melissa van der Schyff (Big River) as Blanche Barrow, Claybourne Elder (Road Show) as Buck Barrow, Joe Hart (The Best Little Whorehouse Goes Public) as Sheriff Schmid and Louis Hobson (Next to Normal) as Ted Hinton, plus Talon Ackerman, Rozi Baker, Leslie Becker, Mimi Bessette, Alison Cimmet, Dan Cooney, Jon Fletcher, Kelsey Fowler, Victor Hernandez, Sean Jenness, Katie Klaus, Michael Lanning, Garrett Long, Matt Lutz, Marissa McGowan, Cassie Okenka, Justin Matthew Sargent, Jack Tartaglia and Tad Wilson.
Van der Schyff originated the role of Blanche Barrow and Claybourne Elder originated the role of Buck Barrow when Bonnie & Clyde first appeared, at the La Jolla Playhouse in fall 2009. It was named Best Musical by San Diego Theatre Critics Circle. They reprised their roles in fall 2010 when the show ran to critical acclaim at the Asolo Repertory Theatre in Sarasota, FL. Osnes created her role in California (opposite Stark Sands) and played Florida, where Jordan became her leading man.
Kathleen Raitt, Jerry Frankel, Jeffrey Richards, Barry Satchwell Smith and Michael Jenkins are the producers of Bonnie & Clyde, which flirts with rockabilly, blues and gospel to tell the tale of a waitress and a troubled Texas teen whose notorious exploits captured the country's imagination during the Depression.
Gospel and folk and country aren't exactly new musical flavors for the prolific Wildhorn — his score to The Civil War was peppered with it. But he does draw a distinction between the two shows.
"Certainly, the Bonnie and Clyde score is more [of a] theatre score," he told Playbill.com earlier this year. "There's no question about that. I am very much wearing the hat where I am serving the book and piece here, but the style of music is very Americana, as opposed to the Civil War score, which was very much east of the Mississippi. This is very much west of the Mississippi, so from Texas two-step to…the Western/Southern style, which is a little more bluesy and a little more Dust Bowl in the guitar sound and things like that. It was so much fun to write that score and so much fun to write for Laura Osnes and Jeremy Jordan and Michael Lanning and all of these great people."
The creative team includes Tobin Ost (scenic and costime design), Michael Gilliam (lighting design), John Shivers (sound design), Aaron Rhyne (projection design), Telsey + Company (casting), Charles LaPointe (hair and wig design), Ashley Ryan (makeup design), Steve Rankin (flight director), Neil A. Mazzella and Paul J. Smith (production stage manager).
For tickets and information, visit Telecharge.com or call (212) 239-6200. Visit the official site at BonnieandClydeBroadway.com.
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