Tupac Shakur Rap Musical Will Get NYC Workshop With Kenny Leon at the Helm

By Adam Hetrick
April 11, 2013

Tony Award nominee Kenny Leon will direct a summer workshop of Holler If Ya Hear Me, a new musical based on the music of late rapper Tupac Shakur, according to an Equity casting notice.



Leon, who has staged Stick Fly, The Mountaintop and Fences on Broadway, will helm the five-week workshop of the musical that has a book by Todd Kreidler. The piece takes its title from a song on Shakur's second studio album.

Book writer Kreidler worked at Leon's True Colors Theatre in Atlanta, GA, and also penned a Broadway-aimed adaptation of Guess Who's Coming to Dinner?

The workshop will feature choreography by Tony Award winner Wayne Cilento (The Who's Tommy, Wicked).

According to the creators, "Holler If Ya Hear Me is a new musical inspired by the work of Tupac Shakur. Set present-day in the inner city streets 'my block' of a Mid-western industrial city, Holler tells the story of two childhood friends (John and Vertus) and their friends, relatives and adversaries as they struggle to reconcile the challenges and realities of their daily lives with their hopes, dreams and ambitions."

Shakur died as the result of a 1996 gang-related drive-by shooting in Las Vegas. In 2010 the Library of Congress selected Shakur's "Dear Mama" to become part of its National Recording Registry. He also appeared in the films "Poetic Justice" and "Above the Rim." His albums include "2Pacalypse Now," "Me Against the World," "All Eyez on Me," "Until the End of Time" and "Pac's Life."